This is a replacement for my earlier Monster write-up. I'd appreciate any thoughts as to whether this sufficiently differentiates the Orc from the Hobgoblin.
Hobgoblins are the weakest of the Major Powers on Ortho, having once been servants to the Demon Lord Alzrius and hailing from the plane of Acheron. Religiously unorthodox and despised by the Orcs, Hobgoblins have fought a continuous up-hill struggle for acceptance as the Harmonium's premiere fighting force. Even now, they are a long way from being fully trusted despite almost six hundred years of faithful service.
Nevertheless, Hobgoblins are at the front of any Harmonium army. A bloodthirsty, militaristic, and ruthless fighting race that believes whole heartedly in the unity promised by the OCA. Many of the worst excesses of the Harmonium (authoritarianism, legalism, lack of mercy, genocidal hatred of chaos, and militarism) are all held up by the Hobgoblin as virtues. It remains to be seen if they will soften the attitudes or harden the Harmonium's further.
Personality: Hobgoblins tend to have a strongly collectivist view of things. Individuals, Luxury, Friendships, and Families take a backhand to the glory of the State. Hobgoblins have a strong racial pride and religious pride but this has been mostly been absorbed into their service of the OCA. This does not prevent Hobgoblins from being strongly critical of Ortho's government but they simply believe that it could be much better if it was run by Hobgoblins in the service of their god.
Hobgoblins seem to revere militaristic discipline in all things and the view that there is no greater honor than service that involves risking one's life. Oddly, Hobgoblins have a very strong sense of personal pride but little that amounts to a code of 'honor.' Hobgoblins are a pragmatic people and view anything that serves the will of the majority, so long as it's approved (before or after), as allowable. Hobgoblins deeply disdain professions that do not involve military ends and one who takes up a 'safe' profession are unworthy of notice.
Hobgoblins who achieve individual glory are, paradoxially, often revered above those who serve the Collective. This is due to the meritocratic belief that while all Hobgoblins must serve the many, the many are designed to serve the individual who shows his exceptional nature. Hobgoblin society is largely egalitarian with merit determining a person's place in society.
Most Hobgoblins are unusually bloodthirsty by Ortho standards and hold non-soldiers and non-Hobgoblins in extreme contempt. To be called "Ochuck" (translated as "Hobgoblin in spirit") is the highest compliment they can give a fellow soldier and it is usually given to those warriors of both exceptional quality or ruthlessness. Hobgoblins rarely retreat even against hopeless odds and relish the chance to die in battle. Most will only leave the field under direct orders from a superior.
Hobgoblins tend to have very little need for personal possessions beyond weapons, supplies, and a place to call their own. Most Hobgoblins disdain emotional closeness unless it relates to the glories of the State or Battle. Even relations amongst families are defined by the desire to see their children sent to war and win glory for the race.
Physical Description: Hobgoblins on Ortho are roughly the size of human beings or slightly taller. Almost all of them have bright yellow skin and bat like ears with a shark like set of teeth. Hobgoblins have a fanatical obsession with fitness and very few of them are not athletically pleasing to look at. Even older members of the Hobgoblins tend to be lithe and trim for their age.
Hobgoblins love uniforms and awards with them treated as formal wear in most cases. They have adapted all of their clothing to the Ortho military and display their medals from the Harmonium with pride. Hobgoblin 'civilian' wear tends to favor militaristic themes as well with nearly every goblin cub also sporting "Youth Brigade" attire from the time they can walk.
Alignment: Hobgoblins are predominantly Lawful Evil in alignment with a substantial portion of the society also being Lawful Neutral. Every Hobgoblin has subservience and the chain of command drilled into them from practical birth. Lawful Good Hobgoblins are often considered as lacking sufficient "belly" for most missions and repeatedly bullied until they conform to more appropriate views. Neutral Good, Neutral, Chaotic Neutral, and Chaotic Good Hobgoblins must often flee their own homeland to escape the nightmarish environment of their people's totalitarian ways.
Strangely, Neutral Evil and Chaotic Evil Hobgoblins have been known to rise reasonably high. The Hobgoblins respect results above anything else and a person who breaks the rules will often be forgiven so long as he achieves victory for the State. Furthermore, many successfully learn to navigate the Byzantine systems of Hobgoblin society to the point that they rarely have to fear discovery of any lawbreaking. This infuriates many Ortho neighbors who find often find Hobgoblin tactics and strategies to be revolting.
Hobgoblin Lands: The vast majority of Hobgoblins are located in North Thaera and the surrounding lands. While Hobgoblins were originally settled in North Thaera as a punishment, they've since transformed the region into a suitable home for Hobgoblin-kind. Hobgoblins are not often at home amongst large numbers of other people and most that are not from Thaera tend to be living in villages or towns exclusively populated by Hobgoblins. The Hobgoblin race is an expansionist one and frequently request their retirement pensions in the form of land that they use to start towns for their race in.
Hobgoblins have numerous difficulties with several prominent races on Ortho despite, or perhaps because, of their vast loyalty to the Harmonium. Hobgoblins tend to dislike serving under Beholders thanks to the fact that they, correctly, believe that their loyalty to the Harmonium is only eye deep. Likewise, the Hobgoblin race has an intense rivalry with Orcs. While Orcs despise Hobgoblins for their former service to Alzrius and worship of Hextor, Hobgoblins loathe the Orc for wielding a tremendous amount of influence in the Harmonium that they believe should be theres. Furthermore, Hobgoblins consider Orcs to be too obsessed with their own families and personal enrichment to be true servants of the Harmonium.
Hobgoblins, oddly, get along with Dwarves the best of Ortho's people. Despite their antipathy on other worlds, the two races respect the other's devotion to hard work and duty. Hobgoblins don't share Dwarven devotion to their clans but otherwise consider them the best battlefield companions other than a fellow Hobgoblin. Likewise, Hobgoblins have numerous pejoratives about humanity from their laziness to their smell but consider them preferable to Orcs by far.
Otaki invoke mixed reactions from Hobgoblins with most of the parent race viewing them with a mixture of shame and sexual interest.
Religion: Hobgoblins find the watered-down view of The Lords of Order not to their taste. The idea of worshiping a God of Guardianship and not War is something that utterly perplexes them. Culturally, Hobgoblins tend to revere the foreign God Hextor almost to the man. It is not so much out of a loyalty to the foreign deity than they don't see much appealing in the Harmonium's honorable and noble gods. Those Hobgoblins that do revere The Lords of Order tend to revere Saeduenical due to the deity's uncompromising nature.
Oddly, despite that deity's historical enmity to Hextor, St. Cuthbert has also found converts amongst the Hobgoblin race. Despite frequent attempts to find Alzrius worshipers amongst the Hobgoblins, most of them find the Demon god too chaotic for their tastes.
Languages: Hobgoblins speak their own language and that of Ortho Common. They also are familiar with Sign Language and Signaling in order to better carry out stealth missions. Hobgoblins only reluctantly learn the language of Orcs and Beholders.
Names: Hobgoblins favor names that sound vaguely menacing to humans. Thrach, Starrsk, Zulle, and so on are typical sounding Hobgoblin names. Crutag is an especially popular name due to the legendary Goblin leader's ancestry to most modern hobgoblins. Due to the unimportance of the individual, family, and the fact that all Hobgoblins are (theoretically) soldiers; they tend to only adopt surnames when arriving in human lands. Common surnames are A'Crutag (Son of Crutag), Kurr (Soldier), Ir'Ortho (Of Ortho), Jost (Priest), Thaera, Sogg (Officer), or their hometown's last name.
Adventurers: Hobgoblins favor martial classes above all others. They show an incredible variety in these classes once they have shown to be 'distinguished' soldiers (about level two) however with units of Blackguards, Rangers, and numerous prestige classes formed as elite units. Almost all Hobgoblins start as Fighters, however, unless they were judged to be fit for other sorts of training.
Due to Hobgoblin's unquestioning nature and the relatively collectivist nature of their personalities, they tend to make poor Priests and Sorcerers. Nevertheless, both positions hold extremely high regard in the service of the state. Even more highly regarded are Wizards whom tend to be right along in the battlefield with the rest of the troops. Hobgoblin wizards are rarely found in the laboratory and more often are the 'swift' road to becoming an officer due to their focus on how to use magic to bring victory.
Hobgoblin Rogues are more often assassins and saboteurs for the State than common thieves. Most multi-class as Fighters but hold slightly better social standing than general fighters. Most Hobgoblins are more than a little in awe of those who can strike, kill, and retreat without risk to themselves (even if they don't fear death).
Hobgoblin Bards are rare but do exist, they tend to be little more than spies and often specialize in illusion magic to aid in the acquisition of information or corrupting of enemies. Few would believe the Hobgoblin skilled in the arts of seduction but rarely are they even discovered as being of said race! Very few Ortho governments would tolerate the independent nature of the Bard but, as always, results triumph amongst the Hobgoblin.
* +2 Dexterity.
* +2 Constitution.
* -2 penalty to Charisma.
* -2 penalty to Wisdom.
* A hobgoblin’s base land speed is 30 feet.
* Darkvision out to 60 feet.
* +4 racial bonus on Move Silently checks.
* Automatic Languages: Ortho Common, Hobgoblin.
* Bonus Languages: Beholder, Dwarven, High Orthese, Kobold, Orcish
* Favored Class: Fighter
* Level adjustment +0