[RPG] Do Permanent Shadow Points Ever Go Away


I'm new to the One Ring RPG (never played, just reading through it) and I'm having trouble understanding Shadow points.

It sounds like Shadow points accumulate for a variety of reasons, making it harder to use Hope without becoming Miserable. Eventually you become Miserable, have a bout of Madness, and all your temporary Shadow points are healed, and then you gain a "permanent" shadow point that doesn't go away when you have another bout of Madness. And, as far as I can tell, you can never get your permanent shadow points to go away.

My questions are,

  1. Is the above accurate?
  2. Is there any other way to get rid of temporary shadow points other than to max out and have a bout of Madness?
  3. Is there any way to get rid of permanent Shadow points?
  4. Is there a cap to the amount of permanent Shadow points and Hope you can have?
  5. I ask these questions because it sounds like, on a long enough timeline, all characters become hopelessly corrupt, as a mathematical inevitability. Is this accurate?

If "yes" to no. 5, that sounds a lot more fitting in a Cthulhu game than a Tolkien game. Anyone else have any experience with this that contradicts my unfounded, first-glance reading of the game?

Best Answer

To answer each of your questions in order:

  1. Yes, you understand correctly.
  2. Yes, there is an undertaking that you can perform during the Fellowship phase that removes temporary shadow points.
  3. No, they are permanent.
  4. There's always a cap on hope. There's a functional cap on permanent shadow as well, because your character goes insane and becomes unplayable.
  5. No, because of 2. You do have to be WARY of Shadow and it is possible to have a character 'Go Denethor' and succumb to the Shadow by way of permanent Shadow points, but it would take a very long time.

I'd also argue that, actually, fighting a long, slow, losing fight against the Shadow is completely in theme for Tolkien, as that's basically what the elves have been doing for thousands of years.