Saturday, April 12, 2014

The Five Doctors - Comparing Attributes

Now that we have the stats for the first five Doctors in Doctor Who: Adventures In Time And Space, we can do what we did to other officially recognized RPGs based on licensed settings: compare their stats!

I've decided to do that exercise purely based on their Attributes and Skills, excluding their special traits and gadgets usually on their person. I'll also do it on a per-attribute (and then later, per-skill) basis, just to see what patterns or insights come up. Most of it won't be a surprise to long-time fans of the series, but perhaps there are some eyebrow-raisers hidden. Let's see!

Awareness: The Doctor's Awareness is set at 4 all throughout his incarnations. This places his awareness above human average, but below an exceptional level of awareness (wherein intuition is rarely wrong). He's certainly not at the human maximum (which is 6). This may seem surprising, given the current portrayals of The Doctor, but each of these older Doctors had personality quirks that -- it could be argued -- dampened their innate awareness. Still, one might argue for a higher value here for all of them.

Coordination: Given the age of the 1st Doctor, I'd argue for a below average rating here. The 2nd Doctor is certainly in the 3 to 4 range to my mind, and the 'Intergalactic Man of Mystery' feel of the 3rd Doctor certainly places him at 5. The 4th and 5th Doctors are also men of action, but not to the almost James Bond-ish levels of the 3rd Doctor.

Ingenuity: Well, this is interesting. As a measure of intelligence, as well as "general knowledge and practical experience", this attribute would certainly rank the Doctor at beyond the human maximum (6) most certainly. What's of note is that the 5th Doctor garnered a jump to a value of 8 -- perhaps as a measure of increased experience after those four prior lifetimes of adventure?

Presence: The Doctor is certainly always above average in terms of force of personality. I like that the 3rd and 4th Doctors are reflected as being individuals who can "charm or boss their way through almost anything", with the 5th Doctor as a return to the former levels (given his drop in self-assuredness, no doubt).

Resolve: As an attribute reflecting willpower and determination, I agree whole-heartedly with the first three Doctors having the human maximum rating. I'm not so sure about the 4th, though it could be argued that his tendency to go off on tangents could be interpreted as a lack of focus (he's still better than 'above average', but not at the peak of human ability). I can understand the 5th's rating here, given his occasional self-doubt.

Strength: This has the most variance, and tells a great story. The 1st Doctor's advanced age was, certainly, well-reflected in this near-crippling value rank. The 2nd Doctor, rejuvenated but not at human average, makes sense, but I'd have put him at average. The 3rd Doctor, with his man of action status, certainly figures at above average but not at strongman levels. And the 4th & 5th certainly struck me as being average as well -- the 5th Doctor's fondness for cricket certainly is better reflected in coordination rather than here.

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