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Tian Ethinic Diversity

Pathfinder Campaign Setting General Discussion

Dark Archive

I'm getting ready to have some fun in the Dragon Empires and I'm really enjoying the primer and the gazzeteer but me and my players have some questions regarding the various ethinic groups the comprise Tian Xia. What was the ethinic inspiration for each group? We've figured that Tian-Min is based on Japanese and Tian-Shu is based on Chinese but we're having some issues with the others. I was wondering what everyone else's take was. We use this kind of stuff during character creation as it really helps us immerse ourselves in the setting with names and cultural trends.

This is what I think but I could be way off:

  • Tian-Dan: Vietnamese
  • Tian-Dtang: Korean
  • Tian-Hwan: ?
  • Tian-La: Mongolian
  • Tian-Min: Japanese
  • Tian-Shu: Chinese
  • Tian-Sing: Indonesian

Liberty's Edge

I agree with you on Tian-Min and Tian-Shu.

I'd peg the Tian-Hwan as Chinese as well, but of an oppressed ethinic group. China actually has (and always has had) quite a few different ethnic groups within it, even leaving aside foreign ones, and many have been opressed at one time or another.

The Tian-Dan aren't based directly on a real ethnic group, and draw at least as much of their inspiration from China as the Tian-Shu, so I'd again go Chinese for my inspiration there.

The Tian-Dtang always struck me as more Vietnamese than Korean, but I'm less than perfectly familiar with either, so I could be wrong.

The Tian-La are absolutely and unambiguously mongols.

And the Tian-Sing are indeed generally Indonesian.

Dark Archive

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Huh...Interestingly enough I just typed Pham Duc Quan

the ruler
of Xa Hoi into google and got a facebook page for someone with that name....there's a sovereign dragon in disguise in vietnam and he has access to facebook. I think he works for the BBC.

....I think I'm suppose to be scared right now but my brain just shut off.

Paizo Employee Managing Editor

3 people marked this as a favorite.

In terms of names, Tian-Hwan names are Korean-inspired, Tian-Dan names are indeed Vietnamese-inspired, and Tian-Dtang names are Khmer/Cambodian-inspired (the rest of the list is correct). Culturally, some of these groups are represented more literally than others.

Dark Archive

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o.O Thanks Judy!! That's great! So the completed list would look about like this:

  • Tian-Dan: Vietnamese
  • Tian-Dtang: Khmer/Cambodian
  • Tian-Hwan: Korean
  • Tian-La: Mongolian
  • Tian-Min: Japanese
  • Tian-Shu: Chinese
  • Tian-Sing: Indonesian

Though it should (as it was) be noted that the actual cultures of individual nations and groups are as varied as the real world is. With each of these major ethnicities divided up into all sorts of cultures and styles that are not dependent on real world analogues.

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