This has been festering in my brain for a while now but for all their attempts at feeling big Bethesda's game worlds always feel small. With skyrim I think I've finally hit on why that is. The cities are only a few city blocks there are only a few dozen people in living in them and the fields and farms never seem large enough to feed what people there are.
The final sign that spelled it out to me was when I walked into Rorikstead for the first time. To set this up in the games opening a fellow prisoner says he's from Rorikstead. Turns out when you get there Rorikstead is comprised of 4 buildings and 9 people. This was the final straw that really broke the immersion for me. The place seemed hardly worth being on a map as a way station let alone the town people treat it as. Since then the whole world seems bit hollow. As lovely as the mountains, forests and wilderness are I can never get over the fact that the world seems both light on the number of people and the means to feed them.