How would you justify an ogre demon hunter as part of the Illidari?
Outland had more than enough ogres to pick from.
We only ever saw night elf and blood elf demon hunters working for Illidan, but there’s no reason to believe that they’re the only ones that exist. There are a lot of details we never see during expansions, and some of them are established retroactively, like worgen and goblin death knights.
Now that Warlords of Draenor established that ogres were smart before fel corruption, and with the font of power we know Illidan had that could have sated the blood elves’ addiction, it wouldn’t be a stretch to imagine that Illidan had managed to uplift some ogres to act as enforcers. Also, the fel breakers on Draenor definitely seemed to follow many of the same practices, and there’s no reason Illidan couldn’t have recruited some ogres who had been fel breakers in our timeline.
What is the point of this site?
Ogri’la is a World of Warcraft fansite focusing around the ogre race in the Warcraft universe. Its main purpose is to convince Blizzard that ogres would be an excellent addition to the current lineup of playable races, while also providing a fun and interesting site for anyone else who might appreciate the concept of ogres.
Is the lore on this site canon?
While much of the lore on this site has foundations in canon sources, they were only used as a starting point for original stories. The original stories are intended to showcase ogres in strong, thematic situations that also tie into a larger narrative in Warcraft, and not just be retreads of secluded quest hubs.
Why do you want ogres to be a playable race?
Ogres are one of the few Warcraft races to have existed since Warcraft I, and in Warcraft II, they were a major Horde unit, parallel to the Alliance’s freshly-introduced paladins. By the end of Warcraft III, they rejoined the Horde, and they were part of the first World of Warcraft April Fool’s Joke (which were once notorious for coming true). In fact, the original ogre model had a texture that prominently displayed the Horde emblem as a tattoo on their chest.
Ogres have one of the most fleshed out stories out of all the non-playable races, with at least one major character and clans across two worlds (three if you count alternate Draenor separately), including the Stonemaul Ogres who are officially part of the Horde. They were one of the first monsters given a new model post-launch, complete with a full set of animations (which were later recycled for Moonkin form). They had a second texture overhaul seen on certain ogre enemies in Cataclysm, and the ogres on Draenor have a second model revamp.
It is undeniable that they are as iconic to Warcraft as the noble, yet warlike orcs of the Horde and the proud, muscle-bound humans of the Alliance. In fact, one would be hard-pressed to find a reason that they should not be playable.
How can you have a race without females?
Nobody said that Blizzard couldn’t add female ogres. Worgen and draenei didn’t used to have unique female models before they were made playable. There is some precedent, as a handful of possible references to female ogres appear in-game, such as the female ogre masks during Hallow’s End, and the ogre quest giver, Tharg, who mentions the death of his wife. It’s not hard to believe that they’d exist, and they’d be easy enough for Blizzard to create.
Why did you tie the number of heads to class choice?
There were many options I considered, but I decided that this was the most flavorful. Blizzard, of course, could choose which one they preferred.
Death Knight, while the justification is that it is a “hero class,” set a precedent that classes could affect a character’s look. Since, originally, most two-headed ogres became that way as part of Gul’dan’s plan to mutate them into powerful spellcasters, it would make sense that mages and warlocks would have two heads, but not the more simple warriors. In addition, Worgen have set a precedent for new features being added to the character creator.
Of course, with the character creation after Mists of Pandaria, head number could easily be fit in as a new choice exclusive to ogres.
Aren’t ogres too stupid to be playable?
While ogre intelligence jokes are a common source of humor from ogres, they consistently show that they can be much more.
Warlords of Draenor has provided a major counterargument for this question. While many of the ogres we know today are diminished, ogres used to be a powerful race that formed empires. Their might was not purely through strength, showing intelligence and cunning required to govern such vast swaths of people, and many were well-spoken to boot. There’s no reason playable ogres can’t come from alternate Draenor or some lost remnant floating around Outland where they retained their old selves.
Even the ogres we know have their moments. Draz’Zilb, a Stonemaul Ogre, explicitly calls you out, in perfect Common, for assuming he’s dumb just because he’s an ogre. The ogres of Ogri’la are another obvious example, though not one that is likely to join a faction. Cho’gall is a major ogre villain who has proven to be as clever as any other character, even before the influence of the Old Gods. Not to mention, as early as the Warcraft III manual, there is lore about them being much more clever than they appear, and are more than able to set up working civilizations like anyone else.
Aren’t ogres too tall to be playable?
Simply, no. While many of the ogres in the game are towering giants, the same can also be said about some blood elf enemies and various NPCs from all races. The ogres in lower level areas, like Deadmines or Loch Modan, are barely taller than humans. In fact, according to the RPG books, ogres are, on average, shorter than tauren.
Aren’t ogres too silly to be playable?
Some may see them that way, but Warcraft is well known for its humor. Goblins and gnomes aren’t taken very seriously in the game, and they’re both playable. The goblin starting area in particular broke new records in silliness. If Blizzard made ogres playable, it wouldn’t be hard to play up their warrior tendencies for their early quests, and leave the majority of the humor to their /silly’s.
That said, the new backstory given to ogres in Warlords of Draenor makes the humor much less relevant. No longer are they simple barbarians, but well-spoken emperors and gladiators. This expansion of their history makes it easier to rely more on the fantasy counterpart culture, like many Warcraft races, than the simple joke of dumb brutes.
Why make this site now?
This site was actually originally created before the game came out, under a different name. It promoted the inclusion of ogres as one of the two final Horde races (assuming high elves would fill out the Alliance), being traditional races of the Horde and Alliance stretching back to Warcraft II (and even in World of Warcraft, the Stonemaul Ogres are part of the Horde, and the Silver Covenant are high elves loyal to the Alliance, they’re just not playable).
When the Forsaken were put into the Horde and the gnomes were brought out of obscurity for the Alliance, the site died down, not expecting ogres anytime soon.
Burning Crusade was a perfect opportunity to reintroduce ogres as playable, since they had perfect ties to Outland. Wrath of the Lich King would not have fit well, even if they did add races, seeing as how they don’t seem to appear in Northrend at all. Cataclysm also would have been a great time to bring them in, as the black dragonflight are the enemies of the Stonemaul Ogres, the ogres in Ogri’la, and the other clans in the Blade’s Edge Mountains.
Seeing another opportunity missed has led to the resurrection of the site.
Where does the name Ogri’la come from?
Ogri’la is the name of an ogre promised land in World of Warcraft, located on a ledge in western Blade’s Edge Mountains. It is a place of enlightenment where the mystical Apexis Crystals have granted the ogres there heightened intelligence and wisdom.
Blizzard derived the name from Shangri-La, an isolated land from the 1933 novel Lost Horizon, by James Hilton. The name has come to be used as a term to describe paradises hidden from mankind.