After spending just over a page discussing the importance of having unique villains in a role-playing game, and then about as much time explaining how orcs can be used to fill that antagonist role, Reality Deviants Publications' "A Touch of Evil: Antagonists in Your Campaign, Vol. 1: Orcs" wastes little time presenting six NPCs that can inserted into any role-playing game or campaign. (And for DMs that need a little help, sidebars are included providing several suggestions for how to best utilize these characters and pit them against a party of PCs.)
Don't discount this book as just another NPC collection. As a DM, I pride myself on being able to create my own NPCs for my games, so I very rarely look at pre-generated villains, but at least two of these orcs (one is technically an orc/half-dragon, while one is technically a half-orc) are incredibly tempting to use in an upcoming game. Each one of these characters can be used in one-shot style games or, with a little tweaking and imagination (and maybe a little sidebar advice); they could all individually find their way into a campaign. (Or, as in the case of the aforementioned orc/half-dragon, could become the campaign itself.)
Don't expect a treatise on orc history or culture here. Instead, this product focuses solely on individual villains who just happen to be orcs. These NPCs were created keeping their orc heritage in mind, but as individuals, they provide the biggest threat to your PCs.
Each of the NPCs is given a brief history. As a DM, I wish all the players I've had at my game table over the years put this much flavor and thought into their character backgrounds. These orc NPCs could have all been boring and bland (they're orcs, after all), but writers David Jarvis and Chris Swenson have given each one depth, personality and purpose. The accompanying artwork by Jason Walton fits oh-so-well, and completes the pictures of these orcs perfectly. (Jason Walton also provided the cover artwork along with co-writer David Jarvis.)
Overall, I would recommend this supplement. It's a quick read with lots of information about its subjects, and has given this DM at least one idea for an upcoming game or two.<br><br>
<b>LIKED</b>: Ease of instant use, well presented material, well written and planned<br><br><b>DISLIKED</b>: Some of the orcs here are magic-users, yet there is very little orc-specific magic material listed<br><br><b>QUALITY</b>: Very Good<br><br><b>VALUE</b>: Satisfied<br>