For a long time now, I've been working on the idea that the races in Dying Sun would all be analogous to those in Dark Sun. This wasn't really a conscious decision; it just resulted from the idea having begun as a Dark Sun hack that changed so much that I decided to make it my own. Of course, the races are all changed: Elves to Desert Men, Halflings to Wild Men, Muls to Helots, and Mantis Men to Scorpion Men (with Half-Giants entirely dropped). But still, not to hard to work out the analogies.
Almost a year later, the always -clever Tim Kirk asks me, "Why have all those Dark Sun races?" And I don't really have a good answer. Which makes me wonder if I shouldn't take a design axe to the races. On the one hand, I like humanocentric games and regard race-bloat as a bad sign in Ye Auld Game. Scorpion Men have to stay, of course, because you gotta have Tharks. But it would be pretty darn easy to turn Desert Men and Wild Men into purely cultural categories and drop Helots in favour of the NPC Infra-Men (although that's always like a dare to see who's the first to want to make a PC out of them).
On the other hand, I know that other folks really like having those choices. And I kinda think I did a pretty good job on mine. Well, the Helots are pretty bland really. But I like the Desert Men a lot, I must say: copper-skinned, hairless, ectomorphs with nictating membranes. Hmn.
Still, I'd love to hear what any hypothetical readers think about this.