Understanding the impacts of loading density is one of the factors that we teach in the kiln disign and operation courses at the college. Adjusting loading density in regions of a kiln of almost any type is not something that is somehow "separate" from firing a kiln,..... nor is it a "workaround"...... it is an integral part of learing to fire kilns.
Lacking industruial quality equipment (and even there most of the time), where it is a bit more possible to divorce even-ness of temperature distribution in a unit from the load density (not totally possible), learning how to stack is a part of the process.
John, you just changed my clay life. A year ago I switched to electric fire to stop the "the kiln gods were not smiling on me" complaints. Other potters in my studio are shocked when I now say things like "I made a bad glaze choice on that piece" instead of blaming the humidity on firing day. But I do still have problems with slightly under-fired glaze in the bottom 8 inches and top 5 inches on the kiln. I will stop blaming the kiln and learn to load better. Thank you. -Dawn