Captain Moroni declares in his epistle and also again in this chapter that he will seek death among the Lamanites until they sue for peace. But his actions seem to show that this was primarily meant to be a threat to intimidate and scare the Lamanites.
Even though he freed his prisoners and surrounds a large number of helpless and drunk Lamanites, he does not attack or kill them. He lets them wake up peacefully and surrender to him. This shows Moroni’s true motivation which was not at all to kill or attack, but to defend his people.
“But behold, this was not the desire of Moroni; he did not delight in murder or bloodshed, but he delighted in the saving of his people from destruction; and for this cause he might not bring upon him injustice, he would not fall upon the Lamanites and destroy them in their drunkenness.”
Moroni’s threats likely scared the Lamanited into surrender which seems to be exactly his intended strategy.