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Subject: Impressions? rss

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ghost whistler
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So, this is something I've been watching for a while. But it doesn't look like much more than an Elder Sign type of dice game.

I've seen a playthrough on youtube from one guy and it looks thematic, but ultimately very lacking in meaningful strategy and choice. You draw a card, do a dilemma, roll some dice, get a companion, rinse and repeat. There's really nothing here.

Am I wrong? A fully coop game would, IMO, have been much better.
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Maximiliano Sanchez de Bustamante
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I think the theme comes alive when you see all the references to the TV series in the dilemas, locations and cards. But I understand your point, there is no narrative or story here. The story is in your head if you are a huge fan of Doctor Who but not in the text provided by the game.

Also I see the connection with Elder Sign as well. No strategy, more a tactical game reacting to the current situation.

It depends what are you looking for. I'm ok with the current one just don't blow my mind, and in my opinion Doctor Who is a character more reactive than highly strategic and the dice implementation suits them well. I would prefer full coop with different bad characters, not always the Dalek, but it's ok. Maybe the next game in the franchise...
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Michael Tyree
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ghost whistler wrote:
So, this is something I've been watching for a while. But it doesn't look like much more than an Elder Sign type of dice game.

I've seen a playthrough on youtube from one guy and it looks thematic, but ultimately very lacking in meaningful strategy and choice. You draw a card, do a dilemma, roll some dice, get a companion, rinse and repeat. There's really nothing here.

Am I wrong? A fully coop game would, IMO, have been much better.


Only 1 play here, but your statement is pretty much my feeling. It was pretty, but ultimately I felt like it was time I could've been playing something I really like. That said, I HATE semi co-op with a passion, so if the mechanics were tweaked I could be convinced to try it again.
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Wulf Corbett
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Initially there seem like very few meaningful choices. However, when you hit problems, you start looking for Time Zones that drive the Dalek ship back, or Zones with fewer dice visible for a simpler Dilemma, or just no Red dice because an Anomaly has them trapped (or choose one WITH red dice to get them back), etc. Companions and equipment can be chosen for their effects, for specific challenges, for combinations, and so on.

It's not a DEEP strategy game, but there are a lot of choices to make.

As for the obsession so many have with Co-op vs semi-coop... I find it disturbing that so many have an utter inability to accept that they might not be the one truly special little snowflake of the day. If the players win, everyone celebrates. There. Fully co-op mode. Simple.
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ghost whistler
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It should have been structured for full co op, I don't think it is.
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Matthew Sanchez
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Play it so all doctors need to cross the line before the Dalek ship. Suddenly full coop and I assure you that it's not an easy one.
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Matthew Sanchez
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Wulf Corbett wrote:
Initially there seem like very few meaningful choices. However, when you hit problems, you start looking for Time Zones that drive the Dalek ship back, or Zones with fewer dice visible for a simpler Dilemma, or just no Red dice because an Anomaly has them trapped (or choose one WITH red dice to get them back), etc. Companions and equipment can be chosen for their effects, for specific challenges, for combinations, and so on.

It's not a DEEP strategy game, but there are a lot of choices to make.

As for the obsession so many have with Co-op vs semi-coop... I find it disturbing that so many have an utter inability to accept that they might not be the one truly special little snowflake of the day. If the players win, everyone celebrates. There. Fully co-op mode. Simple.



I think the general though why people dislike semi coop is not about being the one winner it's about design assumptions made in a semi coop. Generally speaking (Castle Panic, Legendary are two good examples of this) as a full coop they are too easy to win. The game assumes you will turn on your neighbor to give you the big victory. So your choices are win too easily (no fun for some) or make the game harder by going for the personal victory (which defeats the propose of coop).

Legendary and Castle panic both fix this by having the expansions crank the difficulty up so victory is not assured. With doctor who the easiest way to do this is either use 5 Time anomalies (almost guaranteeing you get the nasty ones), Start the Dalek Ship farther forward, or to require that all doctors escape.

My first game would have been a loss if any of these were the case. we would have had to take a much more cooperative stance. Instead we were racing until we were going to loose and then we worked coop to get one doctor across the line just in time.

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Michael Tyree
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sancmat wrote:
Wulf Corbett wrote:
Initially there seem like very few meaningful choices. However, when you hit problems, you start looking for Time Zones that drive the Dalek ship back, or Zones with fewer dice visible for a simpler Dilemma, or just no Red dice because an Anomaly has them trapped (or choose one WITH red dice to get them back), etc. Companions and equipment can be chosen for their effects, for specific challenges, for combinations, and so on.

It's not a DEEP strategy game, but there are a lot of choices to make.

As for the obsession so many have with Co-op vs semi-coop... I find it disturbing that so many have an utter inability to accept that they might not be the one truly special little snowflake of the day. If the players win, everyone celebrates. There. Fully co-op mode. Simple.



I think the general though why people dislike semi coop is not about being the one winner it's about design assumptions made in a semi coop. Generally speaking (Castle Panic, Legendary are two good examples of this) as a full coop they are too easy to win. The game assumes you will turn on your neighbor to give you the big victory. So your choices are win too easily (no fun for some) or make the game harder by going for the personal victory (which defeats the propose of coop).

Legendary and Castle panic both fix this by having the expansions crank the difficulty up so victory is not assured. With doctor who the easiest way to do this is either use 5 Time anomalies (almost guaranteeing you get the nasty ones), Start the Dalek Ship farther forward, or to require that all doctors escape.

My first game would have been a loss if any of these were the case. we would have had to take a much more cooperative stance. Instead we were racing until we were going to loose and then we worked coop to get one doctor across the line just in time.



I think this is an accurate assessment of my problem with semi co-op. These styles make mechanical choices that I just don't think work as well as other perfectly reasonable choices (co-op, competitive, team/traitor). I like your suggestions for switching this game up, think those could be good options.
 
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Brad103
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ghost whistler wrote:
But it doesn't look like much more than an Elder Sign type of dice game.

Am I wrong? A fully coop game would, IMO, have been much better.
If it was fully coop, it would have BEEN Elder Sign.

Wulf Corbett wrote:
Initially there seem like very few meaningful choices. However, when you hit problems, you start looking for Time Zones that drive the Dalek ship back, or Zones with fewer dice visible for a simpler Dilemma, or just no Red dice because an Anomaly has them trapped (or choose one WITH red dice to get them back), etc. Companions and equipment can be chosen for their effects, for specific challenges, for combinations, and so on.

It's not a DEEP strategy game, but there are a lot of choices to make.
I agree fully. There are good choices to make.

At first glance it seems like you'd just fill up on equipment and Companions and be done with it. But there's often times where you'll want to swap some out for a better combination of cards.

When picking a dilemma you have choices too, do you go for an available location on the table or try your luck at a new card. If you get lucky and roll the tardis you have FOUR options of Dilemmas to attempt, and you pick the one that best suits your dice pool.

One of the biggest choices is asking for help. In truth you really don't want help if you don't need it. As when you ask for help, it's your opponent who can decide whether to help from afar or near, and if they help near, they gain the same movement through the timeline that you do! Which isn't good for you.

I see this game as a competitive game where there is another player (Daleks). But the Dalek's are there for more than just another way to lose. They keep the Doctors in check. Without them, every time you asked for help, help would always be from nearby. It's an interesting mechanic. And if the Dalek's get too close, it's a game of chicken on who will force them to retreat. It should be the person in the lead, as they can afford to not advance for a turn, but if they're ahead of the Dalek's ship, then they don't need to. Then of course other Doctor's could allow the ship to advance forcing the lead player to move the Dalek's back. But this is risky for allowing the Dalek's to win outright.

As for theme. That's on the players. There is no real story besides 'get to Galifrey before the Daleks' but the Dilemmas have a good tie in with the show. Knowing the locations and the Dilemmas from what they are in the show helps. As well as knowing the Companions. It's fun to get Strax, Vastra, and Jenny all working together. The abilities of the characters and the items make a sort of sense to me as well (no hats with River!). Even seeing the dice for their named faces (Run, Tactics, etc..) helps, and makes thematic sense with both the Dilemma (yes this did run a lot in that episode!) and with what the Companions help the Doctor focus on.

I find the game to be more competitive that coop for these reasons. I don't like Elder Sign much as it seems like multiplayer solitaire, and can be a long drawn out game with high player counts. I'm glad it's not Elder Sign!

Only downside, is the game does tend to take a long time to play through. 2+ hours with 4 players moving along as a good pace is a lot for a 'yahtzee' type game. I imagine expansions may increase player count. Not sure if that'll be good or bad.

Overall, I'm quite impressed with the game, and enjoy playing it!
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Stephen Winterflood
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sancmat wrote:
Play it so all doctors need to cross the line before the Dalek ship. Suddenly full coop and I assure you that it's not an easy one.


Now why didn't I think of that variant? whistle
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Wulf Corbett
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Braffe wrote:
It's fun to get Strax, Vastra, and Jenny all working together.
I was playing with Sarah Jane and both Petronella Osgoods, and realised... has anyone had Amy Pond, River Song and Susan together? Susan, of course, was the Doctor's Granddaughter*... That would be an interesting conversation...

* She could, of course, be the daughter of The Doctor's Daughter, from the episode of the same name...
 
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ghost whistler
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Braffe wrote:
ghost whistler wrote:
But it doesn't look like much more than an Elder Sign type of dice game.

Am I wrong? A fully coop game would, IMO, have been much better.
If it was fully coop, it would have BEEN Elder Sign.

Wulf Corbett wrote:
Initially there seem like very few meaningful choices. However, when you hit problems, you start looking for Time Zones that drive the Dalek ship back, or Zones with fewer dice visible for a simpler Dilemma, or just no Red dice because an Anomaly has them trapped (or choose one WITH red dice to get them back), etc. Companions and equipment can be chosen for their effects, for specific challenges, for combinations, and so on.

It's not a DEEP strategy game, but there are a lot of choices to make.
I agree fully. There are good choices to make.

At first glance it seems like you'd just fill up on equipment and Companions and be done with it. But there's often times where you'll want to swap some out for a better combination of cards.

When picking a dilemma you have choices too, do you go for an available location on the table or try your luck at a new card. If you get lucky and roll the tardis you have FOUR options of Dilemmas to attempt, and you pick the one that best suits your dice pool.

One of the biggest choices is asking for help. In truth you really don't want help if you don't need it. As when you ask for help, it's your opponent who can decide whether to help from afar or near, and if they help near, they gain the same movement through the timeline that you do! Which isn't good for you.

I see this game as a competitive game where there is another player (Daleks). But the Dalek's are there for more than just another way to lose. They keep the Doctors in check. Without them, every time you asked for help, help would always be from nearby. It's an interesting mechanic. And if the Dalek's get too close, it's a game of chicken on who will force them to retreat. It should be the person in the lead, as they can afford to not advance for a turn, but if they're ahead of the Dalek's ship, then they don't need to. Then of course other Doctor's could allow the ship to advance forcing the lead player to move the Dalek's back. But this is risky for allowing the Dalek's to win outright.

As for theme. That's on the players. There is no real story besides 'get to Galifrey before the Daleks' but the Dilemmas have a good tie in with the show. Knowing the locations and the Dilemmas from what they are in the show helps. As well as knowing the Companions. It's fun to get Strax, Vastra, and Jenny all working together. The abilities of the characters and the items make a sort of sense to me as well (no hats with River!). Even seeing the dice for their named faces (Run, Tactics, etc..) helps, and makes thematic sense with both the Dilemma (yes this did run a lot in that episode!) and with what the Companions help the Doctor focus on.

I find the game to be more competitive that coop for these reasons. I don't like Elder Sign much as it seems like multiplayer solitaire, and can be a long drawn out game with high player counts. I'm glad it's not Elder Sign!

Only downside, is the game does tend to take a long time to play through. 2+ hours with 4 players moving along as a good pace is a lot for a 'yahtzee' type game. I imagine expansions may increase player count. Not sure if that'll be good or bad.

Overall, I'm quite impressed with the game, and enjoy playing it!


I hear what you're saying, but I'm just not really seeing it.

Maybe it's down to the timey wimey cards. From what i've seen they mostly look pretty bland.

Also it seems a bit counter intuitive that the first doctor can draw, for instane, Harry Sullivan or Leela, and equip her leaving the fourth doctor with...

Maybe tha tmatters, maybe not. if it doesn't then that tells me the game isn't that thematic, it's just luck of the draw. If the fourth doctor has the first's ring then it all becomes a bit bland.

Unfortunately there isn't more online actual play to see, but there's something here that's putting me off. The Dalek element looks really boring: add a dalek, lose a die. Time anomalies (of which there are only 8) seem to do the same thing. No chance for anything really interesting to emerge.

YMMV
 
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ghost whistler
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Winterflood wrote:
sancmat wrote:
Play it so all doctors need to cross the line before the Dalek ship. Suddenly full coop and I assure you that it's not an easy one.


Now why didn't I think of that variant? whistle
can't see that working; once a doctor crosses the line, what does he do in the meantime?
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Maximiliano Sanchez de Bustamante
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ghost whistler wrote:
Winterflood wrote:
sancmat wrote:
Play it so all doctors need to cross the line before the Dalek ship. Suddenly full coop and I assure you that it's not an easy one.


Now why didn't I think of that variant? whistle
can't see that working; once a doctor crosses the line, what does he do in the meantime?

Prepare custard and fish fingers ¿?
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ghost whistler wrote:
I hear what you're saying, but I'm just not really seeing it.

Maybe it's down to the timey wimey cards. From what i've seen they mostly look pretty bland.

Also it seems a bit counter intuitive that the first doctor can draw, for instane, Harry Sullivan or Leela, and equip her leaving the fourth doctor with...

Maybe tha tmatters, maybe not. if it doesn't then that tells me the game isn't that thematic, it's just luck of the draw. If the fourth doctor has the first's ring then it all becomes a bit bland.

Unfortunately there isn't more online actual play to see, but there's something here that's putting me off. The Dalek element looks really boring: add a dalek, lose a die. Time anomalies (of which there are only 8) seem to do the same thing. No chance for anything really interesting to emerge.

YMMV

The game still has to be a game. So not everything is going to work perfectly. But they made adjustments to make it work for both. The doctors ring/hat/guitar/etc... all work BETTER for the appropriate doctor. Same with the companions, they get more skills/dice based on who they're with. While playing the first doctor I had 3 'gain x while with the first doctor' companions, which worked out amazingly well. Then I regenerated. Now none of them are any better than a basic companion. I swapped them out soon after to find companions that work better with my new doctor. This mechanic helps get that theme across.
 
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Stephen Winterflood
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ghost whistler wrote:
Winterflood wrote:
sancmat wrote:
Play it so all doctors need to cross the line before the Dalek ship. Suddenly full coop and I assure you that it's not an easy one.


Now why didn't I think of that variant? whistle
can't see that working; once a doctor crosses the line, what does he do in the meantime?


Now why didn't I think of that... part 2 whistle

They help the others get there, here is the link to my variant I posted 2 weeks ago.

https://boardgamegeek.com/thread/1897062/doctor-who-time-doc...
 
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ghost whistler
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Braffe wrote:
ghost whistler wrote:
I hear what you're saying, but I'm just not really seeing it.

Maybe it's down to the timey wimey cards. From what i've seen they mostly look pretty bland.

Also it seems a bit counter intuitive that the first doctor can draw, for instane, Harry Sullivan or Leela, and equip her leaving the fourth doctor with...

Maybe tha tmatters, maybe not. if it doesn't then that tells me the game isn't that thematic, it's just luck of the draw. If the fourth doctor has the first's ring then it all becomes a bit bland.

Unfortunately there isn't more online actual play to see, but there's something here that's putting me off. The Dalek element looks really boring: add a dalek, lose a die. Time anomalies (of which there are only 8) seem to do the same thing. No chance for anything really interesting to emerge.

YMMV

The game still has to be a game. So not everything is going to work perfectly. But they made adjustments to make it work for both. The doctors ring/hat/guitar/etc... all work BETTER for the appropriate doctor. Same with the companions, they get more skills/dice based on who they're with. While playing the first doctor I had 3 'gain x while with the first doctor' companions, which worked out amazingly well. Then I regenerated. Now none of them are any better than a basic companion. I swapped them out soon after to find companions that work better with my new doctor. This mechanic helps get that theme across.


That's fine, but it just sounds like a game based on pure randomness.
 
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ghost whistler wrote:
That's fine, but it just sounds like a game based on pure randomness.
Well, it is a dice game Going to be a lot of randomness there.

I do think it's much much less random than Elder Signs. Many of the cards you get in DW, you keep with you throughout the game (unless forced to discard). In ES, I think all the cards are 1 time use. With this semi permanent card set up you can mitigate a lot of luck. And you can build your setup the way you want more or less. There is some luck of the draw with Companions, but many are linked to other Companions that allow you to search the deck for these people. That helps with the randomness as well.
 
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C David Dent
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Braffe wrote:
I do think it's much much less random than Elder Signs. Many of the cards you get in DW, you keep with you throughout the game (unless forced to discard). In ES, I think all the cards are 1 time use. With this semi permanent card set up you can mitigate a lot of luck. And you can build your setup the way you want more or less. There is some luck of the draw with Companions, but many are linked to other Companions that allow you to search the deck for these people. That helps with the randomness as well.


THIS. I hate Elder Sign for the randomness as dice (in general) hate me lots. I played this game and felt like, while it was random I could at least make myself think i had some control (Much like the Doctor flying the TARDIS, I imagine).
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ghost whistler
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Braffe wrote:
ghost whistler wrote:
That's fine, but it just sounds like a game based on pure randomness.
Well, it is a dice game Going to be a lot of randomness there.

I do think it's much much less random than Elder Signs. Many of the cards you get in DW, you keep with you throughout the game (unless forced to discard). In ES, I think all the cards are 1 time use. With this semi permanent card set up you can mitigate a lot of luck. And you can build your setup the way you want more or less. There is some luck of the draw with Companions, but many are linked to other Companions that allow you to search the deck for these people. That helps with the randomness as well.
ok, then what makes the game different each time?

You will just end up digging out the same cards for the doctor you're playing and go from there.

 
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ghost whistler wrote:

You will just end up digging out the same cards for the doctor you're playing and go from there.
You can if you want to, but there are 4 Doctors and a decent, although not extensive, selection of Companions & Timey-Wimey cards to try out. If you are absolutely determined not to vary the game experience, by all means play it safe, but even before the expansions (which, admittedly, I hope to add a whole lot more cards to extend the replayability) there's plenty to experiment with.
 
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Wulf Corbett wrote:
ghost whistler wrote:

You will just end up digging out the same cards for the doctor you're playing and go from there.
You can if you want to, but there are 4 Doctors and a decent, although not extensive, selection of Companions & Timey-Wimey cards to try out. If you are absolutely determined not to vary the game experience, by all means play it safe, but even before the expansions (which, admittedly, I hope to add a whole lot more cards to extend the replayability) there's plenty to experiment with.
Many games work this way though, you find your strategy and try to do that time and time again. I don't necessarily try to pick the same cards each time, but I do try to gather my linked companions as soon as I can. Or if I draw a random companion I know I like playing, I'll try to find those links. But like Wulf said, I hope the expansions will add a lot more to the game so there are many paths to follow.

@Ghost Whistler. I realize much of my discussion was about explaining why I like the game as a non-coop, and without much randomness, which is what I thought you were looking for in an answer, but I think you're looking for the opposite. Still, I hope my thoughts do help, and I've enjoyed this discussion and all the insights given here
 
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I've only played base Elder Sign, but I think that there are more options for dice manipulation than Elder Sign gives you. Having three sets of three thematic dice and bunch of generic ones lets you choose more about your die pool than just "Do I get a red or yellow die." Add in that the rerolls are die specific and some are all, any or a fixed number and it's at least one step more gamey than Elder Sign in my opinion.
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ghost whistler
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Braffe wrote:

@Ghost Whistler. I realize much of my discussion was about explaining why I like the game as a non-coop, and without much randomness, which is what I thought you were looking for in an answer, but I think you're looking for the opposite. Still, I hope my thoughts do help, and I've enjoyed this discussion and all the insights given here


Always a pleasure.

I will never say never on this game, because i'm a mad dr who fan.

But something is holding me back. it's possible that this is a really good game. It's also possible that, with expansions (including a full coop variant), this will rock.

for now, i'd have to try beforehand. It's price point is appealing though
 
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