BREE, Middle-earth – The once-peaceful virtual town of Bree has recently found itself in the throes of chaos and confusion, as Standing Stones Games, the MMO studio behind the popular Lord of the Rings Online, introduced a new race of playable characters: outcast orcs seeking refuge from Mordor. While some players have eagerly embraced their new orcish neighbors, others fear they may be agents of the Dark Lord himself. Tensions have reached a boiling point, and the citizens of Bree are grappling with one burning question: “Can we trust these orc refugees?”
From the moment they arrived in Bree, the orc refugees were met with a mixed reception. One group of players, calling themselves “Humans for Orcish Equality” (HOE), have been parading around town with signs that read “Orc Refugees Are Welcome.” They argue that the orcs deserve a chance to turn over a new leaf and find a place within the community.
“Hate has no home here! Orcs are here for a better life…” said a pious non-binary half-elf with pink hair, “We should open our hearts and homes to them! The orc children held captive in metal cages must be released immediately!”
“Bree has always been a melting pot of races and cultures,” said a player known as Greta Wokefeet, proudly waving her sign. “We cannot judge these orcs based on the actions of a few bad apples in Mordor. We must give them the opportunity to change.”
However, not everyone in Bree shares this sentiment. A rival faction, dubbed the “Bree Border Patrol” (BBP), has taken up arms against the orc newcomers. They argue that the orcs are merely spies for Sauron, sent to infiltrate and destabilize the once-idyllic town.
“Open your eyes, people!” cried a fat shopkeeper by the name of Austin Jones. “Since these so-called ‘refugees’ arrived, we’ve had a surge in muggings, thefts, horse-jackings, and even murder! Coincidence? I think not!”
Indeed, crimes in Bree have skyrocketed since the orcs’ arrival. The once peaceful town is gripped in fear and many orc areas are considered “no-go” zones. In a bizarre twist, the local authorities have found themselves overwhelmed with cases of missing lembas bread and an inexplicable shortage of large-sized shoes. Even the Prancing Pony Inn has reported a drastic increase in bar brawls and broken furniture.
To make matters worse, the orc refugees refuse to work and are demanding that Mordoric food be sent to Bree to accommodate their tastes. Within mere days, the unruly orcs developed a taste for local ale and now spend their days wandering through the streets looking for humans to rob to pay for their habit. It may be a coincidence but at the same time, a disgusting smell now permeates Bree, as these Southern visitors do not consider personal hygiene to be a virtue and the local authorities have received many reports of these inebriated orcs defecating in the streets.
In response to the recent crime wave, Bree’s mayor, Mayor Butterbur, has called for a town hall meeting to discuss potential solutions. “We need to figure out how to keep the peace in Bree,” he stated, looking frazzled and clutching a tankard of ale. “Whether that means more guards, mediation between the factions, or a stricter curfew, I don’t know. But we must do something before things get even more out of hand.”
As the town hall meeting draws near, the citizens of Bree find themselves more divided than ever. Some have suggested building a wall to keep the orcs out, while others have proposed a “Middle-earth Peace Summit” to bring all races together in harmony.
For months, there have been whispers among the townsfolk that Mayor Butterbur and the nobility are puppets of globalist Middle-earth billionaire Saruman the White.
As of press time, it appears that the news of the orcs seeking refuge in Bree has reached the ears of the racist orc-haters known as the Fellowship of the Ring. Led by the far-right white supremacist Strider AKA Aragorn, it seems the band of malcontents have ceased their trek to Mount Doom to destroy the One Ring and are returning to Bree set things right.
Back in the real world, Standing Stones Games has refused to reverse its decision to allow orcs to be played by players. Instead, they are chastizing loyal forum members who are speaking out against it. When confronted about this by James O’Keefe from OMG News, Standing Stones Lead Designer Alan Maki nervously rattled off some bumper sticker slogans:
“Orc lives matter! Orc rights are human rights! No orc is illegal!”
When that didn’t work, Maki regained his composure and made the following statement:
“We are thrilled to have orcs as a new playable race for our players. We hope that the culture of mankind will be enriched by the diversity and inclusion of our pointy-eared, human flesh-eating brethren from Mordor. We trust that real-life orcs and those who identify as orcs will finally be able to see themselves represented in Middle-earth. Yes, we understand that this is divisive and controversial, but we felt the need to virtue signal on behalf of our corporate overlords who need to raise their ESG scores. After all, it is they that pay our salaries — not the players. We urge our loyal players to abandon their protest and dig deep within their souls to ignore the cognitive dissonance that we forced upon them and welcome the orcs to the world of men!”
Millionaire MMO streamer Asmongold weighed on in the news and released a terse reaction video to his sycophantic followers about the orc refugees. Although his words were brief, they were heartfelt:
“Dayum! That’s awesome! Coooool!”
Embracer Group which owns Middle-earth Enterprises was at a retreat in Davos and was not available for comment.
Many outraged fans of Lord of the Rings Online have started a candlelight vigil at the gravesite of J.R.R. Tolkien and his devoted wife Edith to protest the invasion of the orcs into the lands of the Free Peoples. The strange sound of spinning has been heard near Tolkien’s tombstone. As Tolkien was a devout Roman Catholic, the Vatican has sent a papal emissary to investigate the phenomena.
Only time will tell if Bree can find a solution that satisfies both factions and restores peace to their once-quiet community. In the meantime, one can only hope that the Prancing Pony’s furniture can withstand the test of time and orcish brawls.
Disclaimer: This is a satirical article and not meant to be taken seriously.