Shadow for killing innocuous orcs

Adventure in the world of J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings. Learn more at our website: http://www.cubicle7.co.uk/our-games/the-one-ring/
Post Reply
Ghorin
Posts: 74
Joined: Fri Dec 25, 2015 9:20 pm
Location: France, near Paris

Shadow for killing innocuous orcs

Post by Ghorin » Fri Mar 30, 2018 7:36 am

Hello,

At last session, the PCs the PCs have been able to have a band of Orcs and Goblins eating "difficult to digest" food. As the adversaries were too numerous, that was the only way they found reduce them and be able to get close to the Orcs leader and take him an object. That way, they had to fight only the few Orcs and Goblins that were still in good health.
Then they met a few Orcs that were emptying their guts and were totally unable to fight and defend themselves (I told that point to the players). Still 2 PCs decided to kill them and the other players didn't complain about that, they agreed.
In py opinion, the PCs should have Shadow points as this was unecessary killings. But I don't know how much I should give them. The factsI have :
- The Misdeeds rule say "Murder : 5 points"
- The PCs had extenuating circumstances : the Orcs had fought and tried to kill them earlier => Anger / revenge
. But at same time, Anger and Revenge are one way to come to Shadow
. For the Dwarf PC (who killed 2 orcs), it was considered by him as a personal quest as a band of Orcs have killed one of his friend (that was the start of his own reason to go to adventure with the Calling Slayer). The other PC who killed 1 Orc is a Hobbit who has no specific affair with Orcs.

My first opinion would be :
- 2 PCs who killed the 3 Orcs : 4 Shadow Points
- other PCs who didn't complain : 2 Shadow Points
Note : with this, one PC (a Dwarf who killed 2 Orcs in that way) will become Miserable and that would be the first time for this group.

What's your opinion on that ? Thanks in advance

Zulgolra
Posts: 43
Joined: Tue Jun 14, 2016 3:47 pm

Re: Shadow for killing innocuous orcs

Post by Zulgolra » Fri Mar 30, 2018 11:20 am

I agree with you that this was not very heroic. And I would raise their shadowpoints too.
But I wouldn't count that as "murder" in the misdeed-sense. In my personla interpretation "murder" is reserved for real senseless killing or killing of a member of the free people...

In the case of orcs, I would interpret this as "unprovoked aggression" (4 points) or in your case, after nothing was anymore "unprovoked" as act of "cowardice" (3 points), because beeing a cowqrd is not only running away from the enemy, but also taking the easiest way...

User avatar
Farath
Posts: 28
Joined: Sat Mar 18, 2017 4:08 pm
Location: Berlin

Re: Shadow for killing innocuous orcs

Post by Farath » Fri Mar 30, 2018 11:48 am

Till now I never rewarded the killing of orcs with Shadow Points no matter the circumstances. To me, there is a everlasting war going on between the orcs and the free people. If orcs are met at the wrong place, they risk getting killed, no matter what they are doing.

User avatar
Ecorce
Posts: 65
Joined: Thu Jul 11, 2013 9:36 am
Contact:

Re: Shadow for killing innocuous orcs

Post by Ecorce » Fri Mar 30, 2018 12:05 pm

It's interesting.

In the books, there's no ork killed by the main characters (I think), unless to save themselves from an ambush, save a prisonner, or at war, army againt army. Apart from that, the character don't look for the orks.

It's like Tolkien didn't want to face that kind of situation. :)

Killing consciously to get a key doesn't feel heroic. Does the scenario suggests something about that (I don't have the books right now)?
Ecorce French TOR community

Thoughts about The One Ring : Les Carnets d'Imladris / Notes from Imladris

Ghorin
Posts: 74
Joined: Fri Dec 25, 2015 9:20 pm
Location: France, near Paris

Re: Shadow for killing innocuous orcs

Post by Ghorin » Fri Mar 30, 2018 12:24 pm

@Farath : I would agree with you in any other setting. But not in Tolkien's world where values like pity, forgiveness and "don't kill is not useful" is a good way to keep out of Shadow influence.

@Ecorce : That's right, in the books : no more killing than what was necessary. That's an important point.

In fact in Tolkien's books there is one similar situation : Bilbo and later Frodo who both could have killed Gollum but choose to save it. You could say that Gollum wasn't an Orc and you're right. But he had a similar behavior than Orcs (always ready to kill anybody).

This is because of that Tolkien's book situation that I was considering to give shadow points. Now, as said by Zulgolra, this wasn't a murder, that was more unprovoked aggression / cowardice act => 4 shadow points.

Still i'm waiting for other opinions as this is a delicate subject : i will have to explain to the players and without good explanation they might disagree with my decision (mostly for the Dwarf who might become Miserable while Orcs are his main revenge target).

User avatar
Farath
Posts: 28
Joined: Sat Mar 18, 2017 4:08 pm
Location: Berlin

Re: Shadow for killing innocuous orcs

Post by Farath » Fri Mar 30, 2018 12:45 pm

Gollum for me is another matter.
And it is true, that the main characters only killed when necessary, at least I remember it this way too. There is a lot of room for pity and forgiveness in Tolkiens world. I also remember Gandalf on the stairs in Moria talking to Frodo about killing Gollum. But that is Gandalf with his wisdom.

On the contrary I remember the Rohirrim slaughtering many of the orcs when they met them close to fangorn. The orcs made camp and the Rohirrim didn’t know that they had prisoners. They didn’t seem to hesitate and to my understanding the Rohirrim were always eager in hunting orcs in their territory.

User avatar
Farath
Posts: 28
Joined: Sat Mar 18, 2017 4:08 pm
Location: Berlin

Re: Shadow for killing innocuous orcs

Post by Farath » Fri Mar 30, 2018 12:55 pm

But everyone to his liking. There’s no right or wrong. A LM should see how it fits best in their setting. Maybe I’m just not (yet) that tolkinesque than the most of you guys! ;)

Ghorin
Posts: 74
Joined: Fri Dec 25, 2015 9:20 pm
Location: France, near Paris

Re: Shadow for killing innocuous orcs

Post by Ghorin » Fri Mar 30, 2018 1:07 pm

@Farath
Thanks for your opinion, it also makes sense ... and make it more difficult for me to decide ... unless i answer that all the Rohirrim got Shadow points on that slaughter day ;-)

User avatar
Geomtje
Posts: 80
Joined: Wed Jan 10, 2018 2:15 pm
Location: The Netherlands

Re: Shadow for killing innocuous orcs

Post by Geomtje » Fri Mar 30, 2018 1:16 pm

It’s a moral debate and there is no one good all fitting solution. Whatever you choose to do is completely up to you and what you think is best.

I do think that it is good consider what type of creature you’re dealing with and what the threat of that creature has been / is / and will be.
J.J.R. Tolkien wrote:...so do all who live to see such times. But that is not for them to decide. All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given us.

User avatar
Earendil
Posts: 288
Joined: Mon Mar 09, 2015 3:47 pm
Location: Belfast, Northern Ireland

Re: Shadow for killing innocuous orcs

Post by Earendil » Fri Mar 30, 2018 1:19 pm

Ghorin: I agree with your decision, although I think I would have given fewer shadow points (maybe 3 and 1, or even 2 and 1 if the orcs were a danger to others rather than out in the middle of nowhere). But remember that the rulebook says you should warn players if they are about to carry out a misdeed and earn shadow points. I think it's perhaps a bit unfair to punish them after the fact, without warning them first. (Unless they do the same thing again, in which case they should already know!)

Shadow points are gained for doing things that bring you closer to the Shadow, which might or might not be your own fault. But butchering helpless enemies, even orcs, seems like the sort of thing servants of the shadow might do. Especially if they were there to retrieve something, not to stop the orcs attacking innocents.
Last edited by Earendil on Fri Mar 30, 2018 1:22 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Aiya Eärendil Elenion Ancalima!

... but you can call me Mark.

Post Reply

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 4 guests