Losel

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Greyhawk creature
Losel
Losel01.jpg
A losel, as depicted in Living Greyhawk Journal #3 (2001).
Alignment Usually neutral evil
Type Humanoid
Subtype Orc
First appearance From the Ashes

Losels are orc-baboon crossbreeds. Though roughly humanoid, they are little more than tool-using animals in many respects. Their name means "lost ones."

Ecology

Losels live to be around 20-25 years old. Females remain pregnant for around 6 months, giving birth to litters of 2-5 offspring. Infant mortality is very high, with typically only one losel in a litter surviving to maturity, which they reach at the age of 3.

Males typically hunt small mammals and similar prey, while females gather fruits, nuts, and tubers while guarding the young.

Losels have a fierce hatred of beastmen, attacking them whenever possible. They also hate sylvan elves, who are always trying to exterminate or drive them from their woods. Losels are hunted and eaten by kech.

A group of losels serving orcs may mix with their cousins or range outside their lair. Rogue males cast outside of a losel band sometimes take over a band of baboons.

Environment

A losel, as depicted in From the Ashes (1992).

While apparently native to the southern jungles and perhaps other regions (such as the Fellreev Forest) where orcs and baboons have been known to produce offspring without outside intervention, losels have been bred by Iuz and the Scarlet Brotherhood and can be found in the lands under their control. Thanks to Iuz, they are especially common in the Vesve Forest. Gellor, in Artifact of Evil, says that losels are mixtures of orc and boreamandrill, a thick-furred northern baboon, and he speculates that Iuz brought many of them from the Fellreev Forest.

A losel lair may be a cave or a copse of trees. They spend most of their time on the ground but sleep in trees, and use trees to conceal themselves. Those serving in a military force may have their own barracks, typically a large hut.

Typical physical characteristics

Losels look like baboons with orcish features and fully opposable thumbs. They are more stooped than orcs, but can walk upright if convinced to. They have very short-range infravision (10 feet).

Alignment

From the Ashes gives their alignment as "Lawful (neutral) evil," while the Living Greyhawk Journal #3 gives it as usually neutral evil.

Society

Losels are tribal creatures that largely keep to themselves, deferring to stronger creatures when forced to interact with them. They are always male-dominated, but not to the extent that orcs are. Losel tribes are loosely territorial, using scent markings and scratches in bark to define the boundaries of their lands. Competing tribes of losels may fight one another, but more often they are content with ritual combat between their leaders involving feigned aggression and exchanges of insults.

Losel tribes normally only fight when certain of victory, but will quickly relocate if they believe their foe is stronger than they are.

Religion

Losels have no recorded religion and their tribes have no clerics, shamans, or witch doctors. The rare few exposed to clerics may become adepts.

Language

Losels speak a crude form of Orcish that is difficult for other speakers of that tongue to understand. They can also communicate with baboons.

History

Losels were not reported in the Flanaess until circa CY 500.

Publishing history

Losels first appeared in print in Artifact of Evil by Gary Gygax (1986). They were first given game statistics in From the Ashes (1992).

See also

Bibliography

  • Stewart, Doug, ed. Monstrous Manual. Lake Geneva, WI: TSR, 1994.