Fate of Goblin slaves - a moral dilemma

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Hero_of_Canton
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Re: Fate of Goblin slaves - a moral dilemma

Post by Hero_of_Canton » Mon Feb 12, 2018 4:40 pm

Anarfin wrote:
Mon Feb 12, 2018 1:49 pm
Whoa...
Hero_of_Canton wrote:
Mon Feb 12, 2018 12:51 am
Now, if it were in my forthcoming AIM/5e campaign I'd give the Player-Heroes (Kili & Tauriel) a relatively easy DC to avoid getting Shadow Points because of their respective peoples very long histories of unending strife with Orcs and because both of them are veterans of The Battle of the Five Armies (wherein Kili lost both his Uncle and his brother), but there would at least be the risk of accruing Shadow Points.
You are missing some crucial point. We're not talking about the influence of the Shadow, that you can resist. We're talking about the Misdeed. When you are committing Misdeed, there is no saving throw.
But once again, if your players would decide that they will kill helpless slaves because it's the backstory of their characters, it's ok, but they would still get Shadow Points for that. Like Glorelendil said, It's not the "punishment" - it's the way how tainted by Shadow Middle-Earth works.
Thanks for the clarification pard, I'm an AIM/5e Newbie and I must've gotten the Shadow Point instances confused with each other.

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Re: Fate of Goblin slaves - a moral dilemma

Post by Otaku-sempai » Mon Feb 12, 2018 4:55 pm

Glorelendil wrote:
Mon Feb 12, 2018 4:20 pm
As an aside, in one of zedturtle's games we had this dilemma with a single orc prisoner. In the end we gave him back his spear and told him if he defeated one of us in battle he could go free. The coward threw his spear and ran, then we botched our Athletics rolls and he got away, but I still thought it was the best resolution for this dilemma I'd ever encountered. (Pro tip: form a tight circle around the combatants.)

Wouldn't really work with a whole bunch of prisoners, though.
Given that this seems to have been an Orc warrior or raider, that seems like a reasonable compromise. I would not have done that with one of the slaves ("Pick a champion. If he wins then you are free to go."). I note that the broken keep in "Harder than Stone" is far into the Coldfells and near the Ettenmoors. The goblin-slaves are not in a position to immediately cause trouble for others. Not to suggest the best course of action; I'm just noting the facts.
"Far, far below the deepest delvings of the Dwarves, the world is gnawed by nameless things. Even Sauron knows them not. They are older than he."

MrUkpyr
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Re: Fate of Goblin slaves - a moral dilemma

Post by MrUkpyr » Mon Feb 12, 2018 5:58 pm

I have to say that this thread has had some of the most instructive and interesting discussion of both Shadow Points and the Misdeeds that can cause them to be earned.

My thanks to ALL !!

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Re: Fate of Goblin slaves - a moral dilemma

Post by Glorelendil » Mon Feb 12, 2018 8:02 pm

MrUkpyr wrote:
Mon Feb 12, 2018 5:58 pm
I have to say that this thread has had some of the most instructive and interesting discussion of both Shadow Points and the Misdeeds that can cause them to be earned.

My thanks to ALL !!
It's a lot more subtle and interesting than the usual murderhobo approach to problem-solving, huh?
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Re: Fate of Goblin slaves - a moral dilemma

Post by MrUkpyr » Mon Feb 12, 2018 8:09 pm

Glorelendil wrote:
Mon Feb 12, 2018 8:02 pm
It's a lot more subtle and interesting than the usual murderhobo approach to problem-solving, huh?[/quote]
Our last game started with a 30min discussion about Shadow and Misdeeds, with my most frequent statement being "that's not being heroic in Tolkien's Middle Earth".

damiller
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Re: Fate of Goblin slaves - a moral dilemma

Post by damiller » Mon Feb 12, 2018 11:01 pm

When I DM/LM I always try to let players know they will get Shadow points if they take a particular action. That way they can decide up front, rather than be surprised afterward (which can be a bit of a shock).

In the past I allowed players to talk me into shaving off Shadow Points. I was not happy with the result so I never did that again. The PC can either get the # of SP I say they will if they take that action, or do something else. I see my job as reinforcing the "morality" I am going for in the game, and this mechanic in particular helps me do that. However, I always want the players to be 1) aware of the peril of their choice 2) chose a course themselves.

What I do not want is a moralizing why it might be okay, just this once, to kill/torture/hobbled the "Enemy". I want to play a game, I want quick action, and so have chosen to forego discussion with decision. All of which is the players by the way.

And yes, I realize I am not letting them decide how many SP something is worth, but that is my job, not their's just as deciding what armor to wear is their's not mine. Different jobs, different responsibilities, different decisions.

d

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Rich H
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Re: Fate of Goblin slaves - a moral dilemma

Post by Rich H » Tue Feb 13, 2018 8:28 am

damiller wrote:
Mon Feb 12, 2018 11:01 pm
When I DM/LM I always try to let players know they will get Shadow points if they take a particular action. That way they can decide up front, rather than be surprised afterward (which can be a bit of a shock).
If AiMe is anything like TOR then that's exactly what you should do. As they are referred to, any action that directly resault in gaining Shadow Points upfront should be called out by the Loremaster. These are different to the potential Shadow that is gained in other ways where a Corruption Test may resist such things.

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Glorelendil mentioned this earlier but I'll state again; Shadow Points shouldn't be seen by players or GMs as some kind of punishment for character actions - they aren't. They are *not* the same as Dark Side points. Instead they are 'simply' the emotional weight and baggage, the flotsam and jetsam of memory, of what is (and has) happened to the characters in question. Adventuring, and being heroic, exposes PCs to things that the average villager or townsfolk can't even begin to comprehend so when SPs are awarded the conversation should be more about "this is the price for making those tough decisions; taking such actions has an affect that you can't quite be sure of what its outcome will be" rather than "if your character does that then they'll get 2 Shadow Points as what you're doing is wrong".

My players see gaining Shadow as a natural outcome of simply adventuring and performing great (and sometimes terrible) deeds. Sure, they are because bad things have happened but they aren't punishment currency used by the game to exert the 'right' behaviour they are more a mixture of (depending on how they were accrued) the emotional and spiritual fatigue through witnessing the works of the enemy, travelling blighted lands, performing certain deeds, etc. They have really embraced this aspect of the game, often using their Shadow Point tally (assuming you have the same in AiMe) as a gauge to how they feel. This along with their current Hope score really gives them support to role-play some pretty cool interactions with each other. It also feed really well into the Fellowship Phase as well - healing and resting, recovering from the (unavoidable) corruption of the Shadow, can be a major focus during those times and also provide some RP opportunities.
TOR resources thread: viewtopic.php?f=7&t=62
TOR miniatures thread: viewtopic.php?t=885

Fellowship of the Free Tale of Years: viewtopic.php?f=7&t=8318

Glorelendil
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Re: Fate of Goblin slaves - a moral dilemma

Post by Glorelendil » Tue Feb 13, 2018 12:34 pm

I’d say it’s more like insanity in Call of Cthulhu and less like Dark Side.
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Re: Fate of Goblin slaves - a moral dilemma

Post by Otaku-sempai » Tue Feb 13, 2018 3:52 pm

Glorelendil wrote:
Tue Feb 13, 2018 12:34 pm
I’d say it’s more like insanity in Call of Cthulhu and less like Dark Side.
Yes, gaining Shadow is much like losing Sanity in CoC, though there are perhaps some elements in common with gaining Dark Side points.
"Far, far below the deepest delvings of the Dwarves, the world is gnawed by nameless things. Even Sauron knows them not. They are older than he."

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Re: Fate of Goblin slaves - a moral dilemma

Post by Hero_of_Canton » Tue Feb 13, 2018 8:05 pm

Otaku-sempai wrote:
Sun Feb 11, 2018 9:24 pm
Hero_of_Canton wrote:
Sun Feb 11, 2018 7:24 pm
The Professor unequivically stated that Orcs were "irredeemably evil". That's good enough for me. I suppose one could try to oath-bond them into your service, like Frodo did with Gollum/Smeagol, but do you believe the oath of an Orc?

Hero of Canton
Actually Tolkien, in Letters, did equivocate a little bit on that subject, though he acknowledged that attempting to reform an Orc would be very difficult and likely to fail. Raising one from infancy would be the best bet.

However, this all misses the point: because your enemy is evil is not an excuse to behave evilly yourself. Or, to quote Friedrich Nietzsche: "Beware that, when fighting monsters, you yourself do not become a monster... for when you gaze long into the abyss. The abyss gazes also into you."
Ah yes, but in the Loremaster’s Guide pg. 49 it is written “Absolute good and absolute evil exist in Middle-earth. Sauron is irredeemable, a fallen angel who has chosen a ruinous path. The Orcs and other monsters created by the Enemy are similarly evil; they are a monstrous plague, and deserve only a merciful death.”

So in light of this passage, if you give the Goblins in question a “merciful death” why should you accrue any Shadow Points?

Hero of Canton

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