Today, Dominic McDowall focuses on our much loved Doctor Who RPG. Plus, you can get an amazing 40% off all Doctor Who PDFs over on DrvethruRPg right now here!
A cornerstone of geek culture and a fundamental pillar of TV history, Doctor Who always held a special place in both of my hearts. Not only was the show a TV highlight of my childhood, but my sister Siân played Sandra in The Christmas Invasion, and my great uncle Fred helped build the first batch of Daleks. The explosive success of the show's 2005 regeneration was the perfect opportunity to bring the storytelling magic of the Doctor's time-trotting adventures to tables across the universe.
Doctor Who plays an important role in the Cubicle 7 story – it was working on the game that let us take the company full-time, and certainly accelerated our growth enormously. I remember working on the core set very vividly – it was such an intense time, working closely with David F. Chapman into the warm early summer evenings as we shepherded the game into reality (thanks again Dave, you’re awesome!).
I was feeling nostalgic last night, so I hopped in the TARDIS for a quick visit back to 2009 when it all started. Our core goal was to make players feel like they were on a Whovian adventure of their own; exploring all of space and time, encountering aliens, talking their way out of trouble, and running away really, really fast when they couldn’t.
The Success Ladder makes the result of every roll exciting and dramatic, turning failures into new opportunities and adding narrative complications to successes, creating free-flowing, action packed pulp adventures.
Story Points evoke the innovative plots and madcap twists of the show, ensuring any adventure can turn into a rollercoaster experience in seconds. Players can spend Story Points to transform the tale and change the world however they like, creating more collaborative narratives and stopping sessions from getting stumped. Good roleplaying and acting heroically earn Story Points, but so does getting captured – it’s always the quickest way to foil the bad guy’s plans. These mechanics keep every game moving at the same frenetic pace of the Doctor’s adventures and there’s always something fun that every character can do.
Playing with a moral code as strict as the Doctor’s could seem restrictive to some, but the innovative Initiative system rewards quick wit, peacekeeping, and running away from whoever has the gun - fighting a Dalek isn’t likely to end well! Talkers and Runners always get to act before Fighters in the Doctor Who RPG – this is one of the things that really make the game feel like the show.
With over 50 years of TV history and more than 2000 years of Time Lord high-jinx, there’s plenty of adventure to be had, and we didn’t want to leave anything out. Packed with alien stats, great gadgets, and exciting scenarios, each Doctor has their own sourcebook, with the Twelfth coming soon. Whether you’re a fan of the Fourth Doctor’s jelly babies or the jammy dodgers of the Eleventh, there’s one (or more) for you!
The RPG has earned multiple awards and nominations for it's fantastic aesthetic and creative game design, accompanied by high quality images from the show.
Stepping into the TARDIS changed Cubicle 7 forever, allowing us to bring fun to a whole Whoniverse of roleplayers. All of space and time is sitting in that blue box, why don’t you hop in too?