Defeat the Doctor – Rule Space and Time
The third Doctor Who game from Gale Force Nine is Nemesis, and this time, instead of playing the Doctor, you play one of his famous adversaries – the Daleks, Cybermen, The Master, or the more recent Weeping Angels. Hold on – are we the baddies?
Doctor Who: Nemesis is heavily inspired by Disney: Villainous from Prospero Hall/Ravensburger and makes no secret of it. I haven’t played the latter so I checked out its rulebook, and was a little surprised at how similar it is. In Nemesis, players only have the one deck so can there seems to be more emphasis (and choice) on playing to other people’s boards, and there’s also the addition of more specific CCG/LCG terminology (‘constant’, ‘moment’, ‘instant’ etc), so I would say it’s a bit more complex and perhaps, as a consequence, a bit less elegant.
Basically you can play your cards to your own board or your opponents’ in an attempt to achieve your own nefarious schemes. Each of the four spaces your standee can move to on your board allows you to perform two actions, and if those spaces are contested it lowers that number of actions. The cards have a wide variety of abilities on them (some of them, in the case of The Master, with random outcomes!), and getting to know these and the different faction play styles will, as always in such cases, deepen the play experience. You also control two of the fourteen Doctors, and can play them along with your other cards to thwart your opponents’ activities. Conflicts consist of a totting up of strength and special modifiers added to a dice roll.
Doctor Who: Nemesis, like Time of the Daleks, didn’t rock my world, but it is very much targeted to Doctor Who fans – the game designer counts himself among them – who will love the large amount of stills from all iterations of the doctor, and how they match the card abilities. Hey, I still think Tom Baker was the best Doctor and while there have been some great episodes in the modern run, there’s been a lot of filler too. I also find having to read cards placed on other players’ boards a bit uncomfortable, but that’s just a personal preference and would probably improve as you got to know them. Not for me then, but if you’re a Doctor Who fan, and enjoy Villainous, this will probably be right up your timey-wimey alley.