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    Low Population Densities Make Sense?
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    Adept Greytalker

    Joined: Apr 26, 2002
    Posts: 416
    From: Canada

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    Sat Jun 18, 2016 12:05 pm  
    Low Population Densities Make Sense?

    I don't have the links immediately to hand, but I recall several blog posts criticizing the published demographics of the Flanaess by saying they were too low, and that there was a lot of vast, empty space in the areas between the cities.

    But here's the kicker-don't those demographics actually make sense, when one considers that all the other sentient races need places to live, too?

    There are the fairy-folk, various giant races, different kinds of humanoids, as well as independent human and demihuman tribes and enclaves. All of these beings need land to live on, and their own access to food and resources. Much of that "vast, empty space" that the critics decry is actively used by any number of creatures, even when they're just passing through.

    I can't help but wonder how many of the criticisms thrown at D&D fantasy worlds over the years fail to take into account that the humans of these worlds have to share them with all the other sentient races, with their own preferences and agendas,that are running around. Real humans have only ever had each other as competition for living space and resources. However, if there are all sorts of monsters out there, many of them sentient creatures like orcs and goblins, who are actively trying to kill and eat the humans a of a fantasy world, then it only makes sense that they win some battles and that the numbers of humans and demihumans are lower than they would be otherwise.

    After all, where do you think the treasures the monsters are hoarding in their dungeons and layers actually came from in the first place?
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    Fri Jun 24, 2016 11:06 pm  

    Very good food for thought. I've done population density maps before of the Flanaess, they weren't much but scrap maps though. And I think it was only of the Great Kingdom. What I found interesting (pre-Living Greyhawk population numbers) is that the GK and its Provinces should by demographics of humans alone overtake the continent in any land war (which they sort of did until other factors broke it up). Throw in elves, dwarves, orcs, etc and maybe some other nations like Keoland or Nyrond can hold out but I think the GK was far and away the most dense area when it comes to mustering troops. Maybe later writers didn't like the population disparity and tried to compensate with other nations, I dunno.
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