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    Canonfire :: View topic - Origins of the GH Ogre
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    Origins of the GH Ogre
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    Journeyman Greytalker

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    Mon May 01, 2006 11:43 am  
    Origins of the GH Ogre

    Giantcraft describes the origins of the Ogre race as the result of an affair between Vaprak and Othea, the consort (wife) of Annam. I'm wondering if there is a distinctive GH legend / origin myth on where the ogre race came from, or if the FRCS one is the accepted story.

    If the FRCS one is generally accepted, how do we account for the fact that neither Annam or Othea are considered GH deities? Did Vaprak bring some of his "children" over to Oerth at some point?

    That said, is there an accepted timeline in GH as to when the ogre race came on the scene - vis-a-vis the elves, humans, et al? Greyhawk Adventures mentions that, "the Elvenfolk (weren't) the first in the Flanaess; there were others in times so far past that the very shape of the lands has since changed." That's all I could find, though.
    Master Greytalker

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    Tue May 02, 2006 8:20 am  

    When I wrote my "Fantasy Demographics" piece, I calculated population growth rates for various races based on the demographic information given in MMI. Interestingly, of all the races I did, ogres actually had a negative growth rate. Basicly, they have too few children and it takes them too long to mature. Their populations are not sustainable, at least on Oerth. Based on that, I have always assumed that they are continually imported from somewhere else.
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    Apprentice Greytalker

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    Wed May 03, 2006 5:48 am  

    Where is your Fantasy Demographics? I would like to take a look.
    Adept Greytalker

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    Wed May 03, 2006 9:53 am  

    Here's my version, as excerpted from my On the Ogres of the Flanaess: History, Culture and Nation article:

    The ogres of the Flanaess have always been a plague on all other races, good and evil alike. It is difficult to think of where the ogres came from, or to piece together a detailed history of their race, as the ogres care nothing for such matters. The oral traditions of many Flan nations state that the ogres arose from men who fell into the worship of an evil spirit that modern scholars would recognize as the evil god Vaprak. Tricked by the lies of this spirit, the men began to ravage the Oerth, treating her bounty as something to be carelessly used and thrown aside. Other peoples suffered; animals were murdered and left to rot; the men grew wealthy, decadent and cruel.

    Although they grew physically powerful from their wealth, the men’s minds began to decay, and they began to lose touch with their humanity. The moral decay evident in some men and dwarves today, the Flan storytellers claim, was nothing compared to what the men devolved into. They became the ogres, having lost touch with whatever goodness they once had. The ogres took after their god, and the Flan stories describe Vaprak as a petty, malevolent spirit that took on his own hideous appearance due to his jealousies and attempts to take what was not his from those around him.

    Ogres have their own stories and mythology, which is mainly a series of very tedious narratives about how they crush this crafty elf or that sneaking rogue. The intelligence and wit of these weaklings avails them not against the might of the ogres, whose physical might renders them immune to any intrigues their foes might make against them. Every legend ends with the ogres mutilating and torturing a victim, which is described in exhaustive and often sadistic detail, not so much to deliver any morals as simply to make these sickening creatures laugh.

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    Master Greytalker

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    Wed May 03, 2006 10:29 am  

    NathanBrazil wrote:
    Where is your Fantasy Demographics? I would like to take a look.


    Hmm. Good Luck. I e-published this on The Citidel, a secret
    website run by Joe Katzman back when TSR was threatening to sue any fan web presence in the mid 90's. The website no longer exists.

    I have done google searches of it and not found it anywhere on the web.

    My own e-versions are on some old Mac 3.5's, maybe, and I currently run PC. I have text versions which I will...someday...upload to CF if there is interest.

    If anyone here on CF is a Citidel veteran and has an e-version saved, let me know!
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    Apprentice Greytalker

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    Fri May 05, 2006 5:39 am  

    Kirt wrote:
    Hmm. Good Luck. I e-published this on The Citidel, a secret
    website run by Joe Katzman back when TSR was threatening to sue any fan web presence in the mid 90's. The website no longer exists.

    I have done google searches of it and not found it anywhere on the web.

    My own e-versions are on some old Mac 3.5's, maybe, and I currently run PC. I have text versions which I will...someday...upload to CF if there is interest.

    Consider this an expression of interest. I'd very much like to see your work, Kirt.

    Thanks.

    Boddynock
    Master Greytalker

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    Fri May 05, 2006 3:45 pm  

    Quote:

    Consider this an expression of interest. I'd very much like to see your work, Kirt.




    I did some digging and found the tables from the version of this that was rejected by Dragon. These values are derived from 1st edition: 2nd edition values are similar but not exactly the same.


    “r” - the intrinsic rate of population growth per year

    Gnoll 0.13

    Hobgoblin 0.12

    Goblin 0.05

    Orc 0.02

    Human 0.014

    Kobold 0.013

    Bugbear 0.004

    Drow Elf 0.004

    Wood Elf 0.002

    Hill Dwarf 0.0016

    High Elf 0.0016

    Mountain Dwarf 0.0014

    Halfling 0.0011

    Grey Elf 0.0009

    Gnome 0.0007

    Ogre -0.002



    “Doubling time” – the time required for a population to double in size

    Gnoll 5.1 years

    Hobgoblin 5.8 years

    Goblin 14 years

    Orc 30 years

    Human 48 years

    Kobold 53 years

    Bugbear 169 years

    Drow Elf 189 years

    Wood Elf 294 years

    Hill Dwarf 434 years

    High Elf 435 years

    Mountain Dwarf 496 years

    Halfling 610 years

    Grey Elf 748 years

    Gnome 1012 years

    Ogre (population in decline)


    1% replacement time – if 1% of the population is killed (e.g., in war), how long will it take to replace those individuals?

    Gnoll 27 days

    Hobgoblin 31 days

    Goblin 2.4 months

    Orc 5.3 months

    Human 8.4 months

    Kobold 9.2 months

    Bugbear 2.5 years

    Drow Elf 2.7 years

    Wood Elf 4.3 years

    Hill Dwarf 6.3 years

    High Elf 6.3 years

    Mountain Dwarf 7.2 years

    Halfling 8.8 years

    Grey Elf 11 years

    Gnome 15 years

    Ogre (never replaced)
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    Master Greytalker

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    Sat May 06, 2006 2:14 pm  

    Thank you for finding those Kirt.

    At first blush it seems Hobgoblins and Gnolls should take a more dominant role than orcs do given your figures.

    Given the slow recovery rate no wonder Elves and Gnomes tend to avoid conflicts.

    One wonders given their aggressive stance that the dwarven population isn't exict already?
    Master Greytalker

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    Sun May 07, 2006 7:32 am  
    War

    I suppose that Hobgoblins and Gnolls could be so warlike, or self destructive that their behavior moderates their population. I have always thought that this was the reason behind humanoids lack of dominance. Even if they reproduce and mature quickly, if they die off a great deal, this could account for their small numbers.
    Master Greytalker

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    Sun May 07, 2006 5:28 pm  

    Gnolls maybe Anced_Math but I thought Hobgoblins were written as highly Lawful and disciplined humanoids; much more so then orcs?
    Master Greytalker

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    Sun May 07, 2006 6:40 pm  

    My article actually went into detail for each race, describing how these population growth rates affected both the battlefield tactics and world views of the races.

    As a short response to the concerns raised...

    The ¨r¨, or rate of growth given, is the maximum rate of growth assuming no competition for resources. Drop a tribe down in a hex by itself and they will grow at close to this rate.

    Once things get full and they are fighting for food it slows down quite a bit.

    Gnolls fully utilize their high growth rate. They have minimal use of tactics and often suffer high losses in battle. Their incredibly high replacement rate insures that they always bounce back. The reason that they are not more dominant in a world sense is that they have little or no cooperation between bands. The more organized, lawful goblinoid races can always push gnolls out of the most productive areas. The gnolls live in the marginal areas, subsisting on little food, their overall growth rate kept effectively low by the low availability of food.

    Gnolls become a dominant force when there is a power vacuum. When some local hegemony collapses and the gnolls are able to move into prime hunting land, their numbers explode. Rangers talk about the ¨outbreaks¨ of gnolls that follow natural disasters. For example, if a human land is overrun (eg Bone March), such that humanoids move into it and food is temporarily abundant, the gnolls are able to respond the quickest, making several new generations of adults in the time it takes other races to raise one. The gnolls dominate the land for a time with thousands of individuals. At some point they become so numerous that their small bands begin to fight with each other. When they become self-limited, then the slower-growing but more organized humanoids start picking their bands off one at a time and pushing them out of the area.

    This also happens when disease or natural disaster strikes. Any event that drasticly reduces humanoid populations means that the gnolls will come back first, and will enjoy great numbers until the other humanoids recover to the point of being able to push them out again.

    (If PC´s have completely decimated the orc tribes in a region, then a gnoll outbreak is sure to follow. When the gnolls start raiding human villages, the druids will shake their heads and say it is the fault of the PC´s...)

    As for the hobgoblins, they are very well organized at the level of the tribe, but are extremely self-limiting. Any two hobgoblin tribes are deadly enemies of one another, and tribes almost never submit to rule by greater overlords. In contrast, orc tribes of the same patron diety work quite well together, and so can organize at a higher scale. Once a hobgoblin tribe is established in a region, it is extremely difficult to dislodge. They are highly organized, competent warriors with a high growth rate to replace losses. Their lairs are the best of all the large goblinoid races for organized defense - assaulting a hobgoblin lair is like attacking a castle. However, should a hobgoblin tribe grow so much that it needs to divide, the two new tribes are bitter enemies. One of them always leaves to establish elsewhere.

    Thus, a typical settlement pattern is isloated hobgoblin strongholds surrounded by a sea of orc and goblin lairs in more productive areas, with gnolls pushed out to the margins. Bugbears and ogres are so vulnerable (in a demographic sense) that they seldom lair by themselves, but instead bugbears live with goblins and ogres with orcs. Their adults have the status of great warriors (meaning they seldom have to fight), while insuring protection for their children by living in a larger lair.


    As far as demi-humans, yes, elves, halfings and gnomes all tend to avoid conflicts, knowing that even one death will not be replaced for a long time. Dwarves are more war-like, and indeed they are on the decline in many lands. In some regions there are more dwarven ruins occupied by goblins than there are active dwarven strongholds! When dwarves do go to war, they assume all the technological advantages they can. Heavy armor, magic weapons, artillery, priest spells, and powerful heroes help them to maximize damage and minimize losses. What is less well known is that dwarves often conduct ¨culling¨ operations (a dwarven euphamism for genocide). Dwarves have extensive maps and intelligence of the humanoid lairs around them. When the time is right, they tunnel their way into the chambers of the women and children and have at them with steam-powered armor-plated vehicles that shoot gouts of flaming oil. Having reduced the numbers of the next generation, they retreat back down their tunnels and pick off any warriors that try to follow.
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    Apprentice Greytalker

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    Mon May 08, 2006 6:24 am  

    This is very very cool. I have more interest in this. What was your methodology in arriving at these values? I am guessing that the "1% replacement time" is something along the lines of gestation periods for creatures, but I would like more info.

    I tried to do something like this when I was younger. I tried a few things like using the glossography human populations as a base value for whatever % is found in the the WOG encounter tables then work backwards and to assumed a more or less "static" population. I had a base formula of

    P1 * H1 P2 * H2
    ______ = _______

    C1 C2 (The C1 and C2 should be separated by the = sign

    which came out to
    (P1*H1*C2)/(C1*H2)=P2

    where
    C1 = %chance of humans amongst all encounters
    C2 = %chance of other encounter in question
    H1 = Hit Dice of Humans
    H2 = Hit Dice of encounter in question
    P1 = Human population
    P2 = Population of encounter in question

    I did not take into account things like growth rates or wars. I assumed that they were factored in. That was the simplicity of youth...
    Apprentice Greytalker

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    Mon May 08, 2006 6:46 am  

    Also, did your figures take into account that many of the humanoid races are more or less constantly at war?
    Master Greytalker

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    Tue May 09, 2006 2:30 pm  

    I would love to see your rationale for each race, kirt.

    Hope you or someone finds the full article Confused
    Master Greytalker

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    Wed May 10, 2006 12:24 pm  

    First off, I must say that I am trained as a community ecologist.
    That means I know enough about *population* ecology to be able to exploit its tools, but not enough to worry about whether my assumptions are realistic or not. Wink

    In population ecology, the intrinsic rate of population growth is calculated as birth rate minus death rate. (or, if you want to be fancy, birth rate plus immigration rate minus death rate minus emmigration rate).

    Now, we don't know the natural birth rates or death rates of these races. But we have clues that let us fudge them.

    I decided to get an estimated r as the adult maturation rate minus the natural death rate. That is, my r is roughly keeping track of the growth of the adult population by counting how fast children turn into adults and how fast adults die of natural causes.

    The information on individuals in lair in the MMI says what fraction of individuals are males, females, and children. And for the humanoids it gives their lifespan (how old they can get). For the demi-human races in DMGI there are data for young adult, adult, mature, old, and venerable.
    These demographic data formed the basis of my calculations.

    Looking at the tables in the DMG, one can work out that young adult is a consistant fraction of old age (1/5 IIRC). Since the DMG gives the old age for the humanoids, we can get the age of maturation of any of the races. I then made the assumption that the number of new adults each year is simply the number of children divided by the maturation age. Idea

    For example, if the maturation age of a species is ten years (if children become young adults when they are ten), then every year roughly one tenth of the children become adults. If half of the individuals in the population are children, that means that every year about one-twentieth of the total population transform from children into adults (one half divided by ten). This gives an (adult) r of 0.05

    For the adult death rate, I just took the inverse of the old age for humanoids, or the venerable age for demihumans (since demi-humans have less violant lives). So if in the MM it says a humanoid races "lives to about 50 years" then I assume that every year, about 1/50th of the adults die of "natural causes". Idea This gives it an adult death rate 0.02 (Or I may have subtracted old age minus young adult, then taken the inverse, I don't remember)

    Then we calculate the r as maturation rate minus adult death rate. In the case above, 0.05 - 0.02 = 0.03

    Or, every year about one twentieth of the population move from children to adults, about one fiftieth of the adults die of old age, so every year the overall population increases by about 3 percent.

    There are a lot of assumptions here, but when I used the MM and DMG values for Men, I got an answer that is within the range for a normal human population under good conditions, so I thought, "close enough". Happy


    Now, this growth rate assumes that there is ample food. As a first approximation, population ecologists use the "logistic growth equation", which gives a "sigmoidal curve" for population growth. This equtions assumes a "carrying capacity" (maximum population size based on resources). Growth rate is low at low populations, is maximum at half carrying capacity, and is zero at carrying capacity. In other words, I define what the maximum population is for my hexes. If the current population is far below that, they can grow at nearly r. As the hex gets "full", the effective r decreases until it reaches 0 and the population ceases to grow.


    As far as whether these values include the fact that humanoids are constantly at war, well, yes, but at some point it gets a little circular. When the MM says that x race can live to be 50, I assume that means given their normal level of fighting, etc. When it says that 20% of the population is children, I assume that takes account of the children that die during raids etc.

    That actually goes into my description of the races. For example, the two fastest growing species are gnolls and hobgoblins. But they are fast for very different reasons. Gnolls are fast growers because they mature early - live fast and die young. They can turn a little food quickly into kids and then those kids into adults. Hobgoblins are fast because they have the highest number of children per adult of all the humanoids, IIRC. That to me implies that they take great care in raising their young, training them to fight, etc. Kobolds lay hundreds of eggs but probably the little kobolds are happy to steal eggs and eat their siblings. Hobgoblins take care of each other. Weakness is not tolerated, but the tribe invests a lot of energy in making sure that every whelp grows up strong.
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    GreySage

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    Wed May 10, 2006 1:57 pm  

    Maybe other races (humans, neanderthals, hill giants) sometimes bear ogre children for reasons having to do with recessive genes.
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