Saturday, 31 March 2012

The Belated Toymaker

Doctor Who Adventures waited until this week to have an Ultimate Monster Collection cover mount with the five colour-cast miniature-scale Daleks and one each of every miniature they've done, and a new Minotaur and Handbot.

Damn them.

The Minotaur is pretty good too.

Slingers - Space Caper Movie

On the subject of sizzle reels, SLINGERS.

Even if it never becomes a show, the Hustle Vs Firefly teaser starring Sean Pertwee is a perfect little vignette right there.

And have we done "Ocean's Eleven caper movie in space" in Doctor Who? We must have, surely... TNG and DS9 both did it.

If not, let's do that.

(I've already come up with reasons for modern heists, naturally going for the Crown Jewels, so why not mix it up?)

So there's a unique and vitally important item. Or a companion has been kidnapped. Or something. Whatever the case, it's some irreplaceable, and you can't just TARDIS in and grab it.

What matters is that this requires a highly convoluted con/sting/heist to sort out.

With optional time travel to make it possible if someone needs to be in two places at once.

There will also naturally be a slick and entirely crooked owner. And big thugs who are seven feet tall and have four arms or something.

And some kind of insane game of chance that could prove fatal.

And a space station that looks like a roulette wheel.

The Minister Of Chance sizzle reel?

As noted by Tim Knight, there may be plans afoot for something visual about the Minister of Chance.

Even if it comes to nothing, it's an interesting glimpse at what something like a Time Lord would look like from an outside perspective, especially when playing on ideas of magic and trickery to add to his mystery. Dodging any blow, blocking arrows fired at his back, all by the power of seeing the future.

Thursday, 29 March 2012


Less than 48 hours after the boxed set pdf, the Eleventh Doctor upgrade set is free online. The adventure books (for both editions) are also on sale there separately, nice and cheap.

Now to persuade my printer to knock them out in usable form before next Saturday...

Tuesday, 27 March 2012

The Hour Is Here

After a quiet period it's been quite a week in Whonews, and now, of immediate relevance:

The Eleventh Doctor edition in PDF.

Or free with a direct preorder of the box.

First impression: The character sheets are landscape format.

Second impression: The adventures we playtested are still there.

Third impression: Hey, SteveD got his name in the credits!

Fourth impression: I don't think the spread of example pregen PCs is as immediately useful. They all have sketched-in backgrounds this time rather than one or two-word archetype descriptors, which can help play and provide plot hooks, but a few of them seem weird for the sake of weird - particularly Indiana Jones. The student and journalist would have been handier to me at least.

Fifth impression: Smilers and Winders! Remember when they were being hyped up as a thing? Ah, those were the days...

Sixth impression: The Weeping Angels have a whole page of special rules. Their powers run on Story Points, which is an interesting spin on the mechanics.

Monday, 26 March 2012

A day after the Convention ended, here's that teaser trailer.

Mostly from the Western episode naturally, as it's already finished location shooting (and there's Ben Browder - with a moustache!) but also snow, Daleks, Rory's dad, big robots a bit like the ones in The Empty Planet, what looks suspiciously like the Byzantium cliff, and... Filch vs Cleopatra?

It was seven years ago today...

I remember seeing a big billboard near a friend's with Christopher Eccleston and Billie Piper and the date and time, and thinking "this might actually work..."

It was Conpulsion, our local gaming con, so there was a large-ish receptive-ish audience watching it on the big screen downstairs.

And I figured it really might.

Happy NewWhoniversary!

Saturday, 24 March 2012

Stop that, it's silly!

Doctor Who’s 25 Silliest Moments per SFX: "Much as we adore Doctor Who, we have to admit that sometimes it’s downright ridiculous. Here’s a run-down (in chronological order) of 25 of the show’s daftest bits."

Note that this list is a couple years old and so predates the glory of the Christmas Shark.

A certain amount of silly is of course an important part of Who's lifeblood. And better that it be intended than unintended...

The Waters Of Enceladus

One of Saturn's 66 known moons, Enceladus, may have oceans and constant snow. And maybe conditions for life.

Friday, 23 March 2012

Thirteen Insane Ideas For The New Companion

“The Doctor will meet a new friend in the most unexpected place.”

“Who she’s playing, how the Doctor meets her, and even where he finds her, are all part of one of the biggest mysteries the Time Lord ever encounters. Even by the Doctor’s standards, this isn’t your usual boy meets girl.”

Which is what we know. So, naturally, I’m going to take that as a challenge. This will, coincidentally, lead to some companion character ideas. Some more viable than others.

Thursday, 22 March 2012

Companion Alignment Chart

Falling out of the Wild Mass Guessing about the new companion on RPGnet, Gideon proposed this classification system for companions rating them by Tech and Feisty.

I'd say general levels of Feisty have increased over the years - Ian and Barbara were more Feisty than many later companions, but they were paired with a low-Feisty Doctor. The number of companions may also be a factor as there's only so much Tech and Feisty to go around, as is the Feisty level of the Doctor.

Scott Gray writing the Eighth Doctor comics suggested a binary system of Girl Next Door and Mrs Peel - ordinary people versus warriors, spies, aliens and superhumans.

Of course there are plenty of fringe cases - Sarah Jane varies in Feisty level or GND/Peel-ness from adventure to adventure and becomes totally Mrs Peel when she returns in 2006 - and characters who change, generally rising in Feisty with experience and occasionally becoming godlike entities.

Where does your companion fall?

Wednesday, 21 March 2012

"I was in M&S holding an avocado..."

Jenna-Louise Coleman is the new companion, starting at Christmas.

Never seen her in anything (except apparently she was Connie in Captain America - one of the dates at the World's Fair) have to watch ITV's Titanic now.

(I'd never seen David Tennant in anything before he was announced, they reshowed Casanova so those without cable could get a look at him.)

Let the wild mass guessing about who she is begin!

(First mad idea since she's dark-haired and mid-twenties, she's obviously the Doctor's opposite sex clone. For reals.)

Tuesday, 20 March 2012

My Conpulsion Doctor Who adventure


"The Mayan calendar is counting down to this!"

December 2012. An ancient artefact, long forgotten in the storerooms of the Natural History Museum, sends out a signal to another galaxy. And something answers.

Unless the Doctor and his companions can stop it, this really will be the end of the world.


Yes, it's partially this.

As the date approaches - and passes - I'll put more up here, like the pregen characters besides the Doctor, Amy and Rory.

For now, let's just say there will be plenty of running, and probably not a visit to Mayan times.

Saturday, 17 March 2012

St. Patrick's Day

Happy St. Patrick's Day.

As noted here, Doctor Who has never been to Ireland. Its present would work as a modern setting (as well as standing in for London in the last series of Primeval) but of course its past is rich in possibilities. Here's one to start with. Of course I wouldn't want to exaggerate or stereotype things (I can do that for the English and Scots because of my heritage) so much as I love Father Ted I'd stay away from anything with holy stones and Eurovision.

Thursday, 15 March 2012

Cardiff needs GMs

Due to unforeseen circumstances I am not GMing at the Nationals this year, and a month after I told them this they're still short a GM for my category. And ten others. Half of which I could also do. Damn it.

Including Doctor Who just to make me feel even worse.

Monday, 12 March 2012

The Door In Time Action Figures: Series One

Spurred on by this collection of thoughts on how characters might be made as figures I got to thinking about The Door In Time since it started with a Doctor Who figure...

Kai: Sonic cane (obviously). Undisguised Door - all brass and roundels.
Effie: Handbag, phone. The Door as it appears at her house.
Dan: Service revolver. WWII base Door.
Gabriel: Multitool. Futuristic Door.
Nimue: Transparent "psychic effect" that clips on over her head. Wooden Door.

TARDIS playset: Coatless Kai figure (with a sonic cane) and two new Doors, as well as clip-in compatibility for other characters' Doors.

The Writer Speaks: Who Edition

Steven Moffat talks about writing Who, Sherlock, and indeed Coupling and Press Gang.

"what’s the monster this week, what’s the adventure, what’s the fastest way we can start the story, how soon can I get Matt Smith running is probably the focus there."

Thursday, 8 March 2012

Intergalactic Women's Day

Google shows it's International Women's Day, celebration and call to action for an often oppressed majority.

It's possible to do an episode about the treatment of different sexes without being preachy or offensive, or silly, but it's certainly a fine line. An adventure focusing on a female PC would probably be a safer bet, or a Celebrity Historical about a woman you admire or would find entertaining to feature, or maybe something referencing it in passing, like a Women's Lib meeting in a late 60s adventure. Perhaps a trip to the first IWD at a pinch.

Or something more metaphorical about the oppression of a vital group?

Hmm. Daleks all sound male, so do Cybermen despite presumably being about 51% female brains in their armour, and there are no female Sontarans nowadays...

Then there's the possibility of a female Doctor.

Who would you cast? It depends if it's a new Lumley-style regeneration (Tilda Swinton!) or a female version of a current Doctor (Jaime Winstone as Eleven, replacing Sue Perkins as Ten) or some other way of switching him over for a session or so, if not permanently.

Kammerice's 38 Farscape Barenaked Ladies Song Plots includes "I’ll Be That Girl" about switching the crew's genders to catch them in discriminatory laws and traditions. That could make for a funny one-week-only treatment of the idea. I can imagine the Doctor being pretty casual about the whole thing.

"Hey! Look at this! I'm a woman! Big flash of light, turned into a woman! Isn't that odd?"
"... You're taking this very well, Doctor."
"Course! It's a new experience, a new frontier! All these things to try - ooh, kissing men, what do you think?"
"I didn't necessarily mean you, Rory."

"Typical. Twenty minutes as a woman and I've been kidnapped. I always used to wonder why women get kidnapped more than men. I suppose it makes sense, we're not as fast and we're more portable..."

"I see, turn me into a woman so the authorities won't listen to me. Very clever. And also rather rude. Don't think I approve."

"I wear a dress now. Dresses are cool! Whoops! Not so sure about the shoes, though."

Tuesday, 6 March 2012

Conpulsion 2012

Conpulsion - April 6th-8th 2012.

Cubicle 7 has a very strong presence this year. Confirmed guests include Gareth Hanrahan, Doctor Who: Adventures In Time And Space developer and writer of the Primeval rulebook, Francesco Nepitello, main designer for The One Ring: Adventures Beyond the Edge of the Wild, Stuart Boon, author of Shadows Over Scotland, and artists Andy Hepworth (Victoriana, The Laundry) and Jon Hodgson (The One Ring).

I will be there as well, demo-ing DWAITAS on Saturday the 7th, either morning or afternoon, among other things.

Thursday, 1 March 2012

Wales and Books! Both important things to Doctor Who!

It's St. David's Day. As shown by a Google Doodle of a dragon sniffing a daffodil. To celebrate, I am still considering going to the official Doctor Who convention.

It's also World Book Day.

Read a book!

Doctor Who is the sort of setting where books contain great and often secret knowledge, magic spells Sufficiently Advanced Science Formulae to bring the dead back to life, and universes waiting to pull the reader in more literally than usual.