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Time Lords : Time travel and heuristic genocide, now in multiplayer

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I didn't die. I have no idea how considering I have no companions and nothing bar a Segment.


It's time for the final showdown between Cyber-Civilization and Plastic Consciousness Civilization! Only one Time Lord will walk away from this!

Surely you mean at least three.

Update - I'm dead. Maximum fortifications and a K9 companion were apparently no match for reckless determination.

I have no idea how I won, someone should explain the combat rules to me. I only wanted release from this Cyberhell


Also from real life Hell but at least Cyberhell I can escape

Turns out the only winning move was not wanting to win.

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The Wargaming ScribeDayyalu

The humanoid robots attacked the robotoids Kaleds, and failed !

What do we say to the God of Death ?...

... not a second time !


As they say, game over man, game over.



I killed the Kaled (this makes the third player I manage to slay) and then my FP are exhausted and the game ends (I don't know why, Jason should still have FP for movement and it could optimize).

Congratulations for the Scribe for winning the game!


As requested, I'll post my small little memos I did turn-per-turn. I don't remember if they're correct, we got a couple of crashes and replays along.




Select Cybermen


Found nothing relevant, well it happens, scan history but at least I got the Cybermen, reading lore helps in shooting in the dark



I don't exactly know what I am doing, but influencing them for victory is good, no?



Wasted jump, I guess? Tried 5 time zones, Cybermen history sure is boring


Run some scans before jump.

On 15, empty space.
On 12, I find a war against the humans. Jump, 3 FP for safety (lots of kills around)

Contact Cybermen

Influence Cybermen (because clearly they lose the war, 15 is empty) in the war against Humans
Drop a Trap

End turn.


Let's check our colonies
FP3 VOR 5 Damn it's a mess
SCAN 6 interesting setup, there's a war with my pals there
I drop a trap, Contact the humans to see their history (it's a big nothing)


I'm in a new zone. Let's run a check with SCAN 2

And VOR 6 has both the Kaled and the Zarby. I'd like to do something but I'm scared shitless of combat so.... I go to Vor 7 and....

So I choose to move to VOR 10 to jump


Check MUN. I see a colony of Cyburmen on Nes 11, and travel there, starting to cheap on FP because resources. I see a 9 Kaled stack and search for a segment (9 is high)
Find a segment. I contact the Kaleds for some info and.... that's it I guess.

Back to MUN.
Let's try to salvage our civilization.
What can I do to help 'em.
let's try to influence another war. MUN7, influenced war against the Khaleds with IP 6, won. I run a SCAN 2 and find no one interfering here, must be other wars.

Turn 8

Let's keep the influencing.I see a Cyburmen attack on Nes 6, move there and meet the Zarby


I kill everyone and proceed.


I go to Vor6

Kaled Kombat


We both survive. I drop a trap and influence the war between the kaleds and the cyburmen with my last IPs

Turn 10
Time to hunt. I warp FP1 to Vor 9 and Scan 2, and I find a Kaled on Vor 10.

He will be my prey on the next turn. I drop my last trap and wait for the next turn. I have max two moves left, I reckon.

Turn 11

I jump on the Kaled on Vor 10.
I kill the Kaled.

I move to Earth 10 to waste my last points anddd... GAME OVER?



I like Gollop. I like him so much I even pardoned him for Laser Squad Nemesis when I was a teen and Phoenix Point when I was an adult. I'll be honest, of all the games the Rat Scribe made us try in his archeological  quest Time Lords is clearly the worst. I can't exactly pinpoint the reasons, but I feel the game was built to be played quickly in meatspace - imagine being with your pals and your machine in a cozy setting- with focus on replay, information exchanges and alliances.

But I'm not even sure if it works: I'll admit that I played the MP almost blind (SP testing doesn't do much) and kept fumbling around without being capable of building an effective strategy. My interventions in wars looked useless (and to do proper recon you need to expend a damning amount of resources, and the information can quickly become outdated.). The combat mechanics are barebones and unclear - after a while I just choose to go on a killing spree because I could, and killing THREE of the FIVE players didn't give me the simplest advantage bar making the game shorter.

To be short, I didn't know what I did right, I didn't know what I did wrong, and the game in the end just wasn't fun, a thing I can not say about Pandora for example, that kept his fun factor despite the 30+ years.


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The only thing I can think of is that killing Scribe a second time may have caused a time paradox. Or maybe Jason ran out of TP? I forget if that also ends the game.

Now that it's over, I have one extra request - in addition to sharing passwords and war outcomes (I don't need super detailed accounts, just let me know when/where you managed to change the outcome of wars, if possible), could anyone who still has their save states throughout the game email them all to me? I don't expect that everyone will have all of their states, but with enough of them I can probably piece together what happened.


My password was MANYBUBBLES.

T1: Lots and lots of scanning, found both a companion and a segment on Earth-4.

T2: At Scaro-3, I influence a Nestine-Zarby war.

T3: Neston-4, spent a big chunk of points to influence a Nestine-Human war.

T4: Fought with Argyraspide on Neston-6, but stalemated.

T5: Neston-5, influenced a Nestine-Kaled war.

T6: Explore Neston's timeline.

T7: Explore Neston's timeline.

T8: Killed on Neston-6 by Dayyalu.


Agreed for the most part with Dayyalu, though I found reconnaissance to be, with a bit of luck and some faith in incomplete information, to be not prohibitively expensive. Singleplayer experience told me that wars tend to concentrate around eons 4-6, so a lot of my scanning was focused around those, supplemented by contacting strong races. I did most of my scanning in the first turn, and I definitely had a strong starting timeline, which made it easy to locate a piece of the action that I could trace back to my starting point, influencing some wars along the way. Hunting players does not seem to be a winning strategy, except maybe as a late-game tactic where the risk to your own position is minimal. It costs resources you could be spending on advancing your species' advancement, and you could just as easily be killed, though I'll note that it didn't seem like anyone in this game got killed while instigating an attack. Far better to avoid combat while other players kill each other, though as we've seen, getting resurrected with most of your points still intact and a relatively settled board to mess around on with minimal interference is even better. But you have little control over that.

And the starting timeline completely dictates whether you ever had a chance to begin with or not. If your race is doing pathetically in the initial timeline, then it's hopeless. It might have been better if the game kept track of points gained/lost since the initial timeline.

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The Wargaming ScribeDayyaluArgyraspide

Got everyone's password, and enough save states and notes to make that chart.

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That makes the game incredibly more clear. And now I better understand your point that the initial timeline is decisive, but that Scaro-3 was truly a game-changer. By killing everyone I merely reinforced the initial timeline and guaranteed the Rat Scribe victory.

Apologies for delay.

Well, indeed, I did not do anything in the game. I got killed on my turn 2, came back turn 8, and then time-travelled a bit before being murdered again. While I found some wars, it was either

  • Wars between Kaleds and another race, and that the Kaleds won according to a scan #1,
  • Wars between Kaleds and Kaleds...

I still won ^^.

Ahab's chart (thank you for that, it is a great visualisation) shows that you can really change fate of civilizations, if you can find the right pressure points. The Zarbies were all but eliminated, and the Nestines which started second-to-last were first for a time. While this can happen, the game remains incredibly unbalanced.

  • Obviously, the key problem of the game is that ALL your efforts can be undone in one unlucky combat, giving whoever was first at the beginning of the game a tremendous advantage since that's where the game will tend to return to. It would have been much better if killing just undid whatever you did locally (+ a cost in resources, certainly).
  • I believe an even better advantage is how early your civilization starts migrating.
    Here is what the timemap looked like at the very beginning of the game :

I will call "safe" below an event that happens before any war can interrupt it (it can happen during a war, since losing a war while emigrating does not cancel the emigration).

The Zarbis were never "safe" - they had their first war before migrating. If they lost that initial war, it would have been game over for them. Even after that, their influence was very dependent on the SCA branch (which Ahab cut short), though maybe winning some other war here and there could have helped them a lot.

Another weird case : the Humans migrate only once before time period 6 (I don't count people migrating back to immediately wage war against their cousins ^^), and in all their history they only lose ONE war in Nes-6 (+ double annihilation on Vor-11, much too late to matter). Let's assume their champion finds what happened on Nes-6 and fails to secure a win because RNG. After that there is nothing left to do, except playing defence for a third place. And no, they can't even try to win the war by killing their rivals early - they are against a Cyburman branch that never fought in a war...

Similarly, the Cyburmans had a terrible start with no migration until era 5, and a branch that extinguish itself on Nes...

Compared to the Kaleds, which managed to migrate safely :

  • 3 times on their starting world Nes,
  • 2 more times on Vor,
  • 1 more time from Ear,
  • 3 more times  from Scar (through the safe path from Ear, self-wars don't count)

Even if the Kaleds lost ALL their wars, they would still have reached era 13 (Nes1 => Nes-3=>Vor-3 =>Vor-4 => Ear-4 => Ear-5 => Sca-5 => Sca-13. It is impressive that Ahab managed to catch for a time...


I feel like there is a good idea on the high level, but there is a lot missing to turn TimeLords into a great game :

  • A bit more intel, maybe by making the civilization give a bit more history when you talk to them ("ah yes, there were the Nestene, but they lost a war against the Daleks, so now that's only the Daleks and us the humans")
  • A way to use influence points to "force" migration (at the cost of reduced growth the same turn)
  • A way to use influence points to convince a civilization to attack another,
  • and as I said, a more lenient punishment when being "killed"
  • Time map segments, time traps and beacons could also be, I believe, safely removed. I don't feel they added anything to the game.

Would those changes turn Timelords into a good game ? I am not sure, but what we played was a particularly unconvincing, and actually frustrating, game.


Thanks for trying it though !


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