Elder Scrolls

Orsimer (Skyrim)

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SK Orsimer Race

Some of Various Orc faces

"Orcs, also known as Orsimer, are natives of Orsinium, a small mountain kingdom between Hammerfell and Skyrim. It has been sacked and rebuilt many times."
The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim

The Orsimer (more commonly known as Orcs), are the native people of the Wrothgarian and Dragontail Mountains. Despite historical misconceptions, they are in fact a variant of elves or mer, hence the name "Orsimer," meaning "Pariah Folk." Following in the footsteps of Trinimac, and subsequently Malacath, Orcs have consistently held a standard as a race as some of Tamriel's greatest warriors and smiths.


Most orcs are found in strongholds throughout Skyrim, though some are seen in major cities such as Morthal and Markarth. The Dragonborn may enter, but cannot have conversation with the Orcs inside. Once you near an Orc Stronghold, a guard will tell you to stay away. You are allowed to enter the stronghold, but the Orcs dislike it, thus making conversation impossible until you complete the quest the guard gives you. This quest varies per Stronghold. If the Dragonborn is an Orc, they will be accepted and may enter and engage in conversations without the need for prerequisite quests, though they will still treat the Dragonborn as an "outlander." However, if you are an Orc, as well as a vampire, then there will be a prerequisite quest. Orc strongholds tend to have a mine and blacksmith tools, which are usable regardless of whether the associated quest has been completed.


The Orsimer (Orcs) are the second tallest playable race in the Skyrim, standing slightly shorter than Altmer (High Elves), at a scale of 1.0450.

Character creation

Skill bonuses

Starting spells

Special abilities

  • Berserker Rage - Take half damage and do double damage for 60 seconds. This does not apply to damage dealt by spells; however, it does stack with other physical damage buffs. While Berserker Rage is active, the screen turns red and a little blurry while sound dulls a bit.

Popular usage and unique gameplay

Orcs excel above and beyond in warrior roles. Their natural abilities fall under the warrior banner with the exception to enchanting, but this isn't outside of the realm of the warrior. With proper training this can easily give any Orc player character a needed boost in the game. The variety and extent of their skill bonuses make Orcs arguably the best pure warriors in the game. Two popular game play roles are as Tank or Blademaster, obviously focusing on use of heavy armor and respectively on shields and dual wielding over an Archer, Assassin or Mage-type role. Tie this into their racial Berserker Rage, and a tidy warrior is complete.

It is interesting to note that Orcs are the warriors of the Mer bloodlines. They alone excel under the warrior constellation focusing more on brute strength over cunning, speed and magic like the rest of the Mer. Oddly, an Orsimer is head of the Arcanium at the College of Winterhold.

Notable Orsimer



See also


Start a Discussion Discussions about Orsimer (Skyrim)

  • Are Orcs the best fighting race in Tamriel

    76 messages
    • wrote:high health* not high race :P   Smoke weed (no sorry), drink skooma every day
    • Take with grain of salt thanks to my extensive use of Combat Mods. Statwise: While it has been a while since I've played TES:V without mods...
  • Best "Warrior" class?

    23 messages
    • Ok 1st of all DO NOT pay attention to these well, fools, most of them aren't geniouses, not stupid but not geniouses. When looking into a r...
    • If you are aiming that first sentence at the other users here, I will let you know that insults aren't allowed on threads, so please refrain f...

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