The pinnacles of civilization, along with the depths. Running the gamut from empire builders and hunter gatherers, humans fill any and all niches in the world available other than carrion eater. Most of the world’s civilizations are dominated by humans, though not all of them.
The dwarves of the mountains are builders of near impenetrable defensive structures, taking painstaking efforts to ensure their homes are next to impossible to invade. Unfortunately, this often leads to some level of isolation. Dwarves of the deserts are well known traders, having developed extensive trading network across the sands. The dwarves that are more common in human lands have fairly well integrated into their societies, though they still maintain some of their own ways of life.
Halflings are quite content to live peaceful lives if possible. There are three distinct cultures commonly found separate from humans: tower builders, marsh halflings, and the halfling nomads. The tower builders prefer to build homes in hilly moraines with decent access to cobbles, building homes under the hills and towers sprouting above for defense. Marsh halflings live in swamps and other wetlands, building stilthouses in the marshes. Halfling nomads build small wagon homes and travel from place to place, hunting and gathering to survive, while also trading furs and oddities in the cities they visit. Of course, some halflings are all too content to stay in the cities, integrating into the culture swiftly enough.
Orcs and Half-Orcs
Orcs are a brutal but honorable race. Though some orcs may be the worst enemies of various societies, those orcs who have chosen to be peaceful or join the human civilizations are respected, especially in the military. Though in the savage wildernesses there is talk of half-orcs being bred through rape, in civilized areas one finds a few odd couples, and no shortage of half-orc communities. Half-orcs breed true, so as time has progressed, the half-orc communities have grown larger.
Kobolds and Goblins
It is a pitiful plight that the kobolds and goblins are in. Both races have been thoroughly subjugated as slave races, and are used to work in quarries and mines or in sewage and vermin cleaning. Neither race is looked on very kindly by societies as a whole, though there are some sympathizers and some who would prefer to eradicate them entirely.
A race somewhat unheard of in cities far from the savannahs, catfolk are true hunter gatherers, very much living on the land. A highly matriarchal society, since the women are both hunters and gatherers, while the men are mostly defenders of the tribe, only hunting when the opportunity for an easy kill presents itself. They lead harsh lives, but live them with passion.
On Elves and Gnomes
There are myths and legends of elves and gnomes. Often the elves are used to terrify and frighten children into good behavior, since elves are supposed to be both sneaky and vicious, while gnomes are a horror even viler than that. While elves are supposed to be baby snatchers, gnomes are claimed to be baby eaters, with sharp sharklike teeth and a spittle drooling appetite for tender meat. Thankfully, not a single one of either race has actually been sighted in all of history, so chances are that they are simple fairy tales.