The Evil Race/Class

You know one of my favorite things? How many instances there are of scary-looking bikers being totally awesome people who aren’t actually terrifying thugs. I mean, some biker “gangs” are groups of people who do awesome charity work, like helping kids feel brave enough to confront adults who have abused them in court.

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They’re called “BACA”.

I think at this point, there are probably more people who are aware of the fact that a leather-clad handlebar mustache’d tattooed big guy with a bike is probably a Nice Dude who is not going to run you down with his loud bike, but there are definitely still people who aren’t sure if all bikers aren’t Hell’s Angels who want to kill and/or traffic them. And frankly, even BACA is working on the “bikers are scary” stereotype. So even if we think bikers might actually be nice, we apparently still think they are scary (perhaps because we still think they can break our face and/or kill us with their biker gang, who knows).

In a fantasy genre, this honestly makes me think of Orcs. Orcs are a “bad” race. But of course, if you talk to enough DnD players, you find several who wanted to play an orc or at least a half orc and turn that trope on its head. Even I have one that I want to do one day. Along with Orcs, it’s always bugged a friend that the Uruk’hai’s language was considered objectively worse and more evil than other languages like, that’s not actually how languages work, thanks. And along those lines, that’s not actually how races should work, either.

I’d like to advise that you scrutinize carefully any bad races in your story, especially if they’re the good old stereotypical Orcs. And I’d likewise suggest you think carefully about class/occupations that are stereotyped as evil. Bikers or necromancers, you shoudn’t just box order a cardboard printout of a sterotype. I mean, sure, stereotypes are useful, but flat characters are bad.

And hey, maybe you can present The Evil Race and it turns out your MCs are just racist.

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Look at those Isvhalans, with their scary red eyes and their psychotic murderer- oh actually most of them are perfectly nice people and are gonna be essential in our Save The World plan nm my bad.

As always, it’s important to remember little involving sapient life is black and white and you should always take a close look at anything you’re framing as objectively good or objectively evil. You could come up with a race or class that’s definitely totally evil 100% of the time, or define it as such in your story – I mean in the defense of the Uruk’hai, they are literally made from bad crap to be evil people. Their reproduction is popping out of a tar pit thing. They’re arugably not real people. But before you go making your villain a member of a Bad Race or leader of a Bad Race, you’ve gotta remember people are dynamic and race might sometimes be more than just skin-deep but it’s not that powerful.

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About Rii the Wordsmith

An aspiring author, artist, avid consumer of storytelling medium, gamer, psychologist (insomuch as one with her bachelor's is a psychologist), wife, mother, DM, Christian, a friend to many, and, most importantly, an evil overlord.
This entry was posted in General Writing, Making Villains (Making Villains la-la-la!) and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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