Sunday, 24 December 2017

How Wild are the Wilderlands?

The Road to Wildwood (0633)
Following on from last time, I had a look at the population density of Map 1. With 64347 "Able Bodied" people listed on the map, we get a total population of just 257388 people living in an area of 38,000m². That's just over 6¾ people per square mile.

In mediaeval England, just before the Black Death struck, there was probably about 4-5 million people living in that amount of space - at least 16 times more heavily populated.

There's not a huge number of countries today with population densities that low. Kazakhstan is slightly less and The Central African Republic (AKA The Congo) is a shade higher (see illustrative image). The UK value is 640/m², the U.S. is ~84, and even Canada is only half as populated as Map 1 of the Wilderlands which is itself the second highest population density of the 18 map set.

There is a certain amount of hidden population on the map as each marked settlement has some small but unspecified number of hamlets of 10-60 inhabitants, but that doesn't change the overall picture much.

So, yes, the Wilderlands are pretty damn wild and the trade routes shown in the previous post should be regarded in that light. Away from the handful of really busy lines between the big cities of Warwick, Sticklestead, the CSIO itself, and Ossary, trade is going to be light indeed.

Next time: does the JG Wilderness setting "make sense" as a demographic simulation and should we care? Hints: no and no.

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