In ‘A Good Man Goes To War’ the Doctor takes the unprecedented action of recruiting people in order to launch a campaign against his enemies. It is reflective of the danger that Amy is in. Here his opponents have demonstrated a full awareness of his capabilities and a mastery of time and space. This is war.
Only a handful of these characters were previously shown on-screen but the others are all alien races we are familiar with (Silurian, Sontaran). The choice of ally was obviously restrained both by budget and time constraints.
It is fun to imagine who the Doctor would recruit if he could choose anyone. The obvious choice are his companions, the people he trusts most of all. Then from that pool he’d select those best suited for battle.
Who better to lead the charge than the Brigadier? The ideal time to recruit him would be during UNITs glory days, maybe during the period that the 3rd Doctor was whisked away to the Death Zone. While he was absent the 11th Doctor could arrive, explain the situation and load up the TARDIS with the Brigadier, Yates, Benton and a squad of UNIT soldiers.
Leela would have the combat skills and the savagery needed, although her lack of technical skills could be a draw back. Still, the Headless Monks relied on melee weapons, making her an even match with her knife and Janus thorns.
With Gallifrey gone she’d need to be recruited prior to her leaving the Doctor’s company. She always seemed to accept the Doctor’s word quickly and so it is easy to imagine that the 11th Doctor could get her to go along with his plan and not reveal anything to his earlier incarnation.
Battle would be the perfect place for Ace to show her best qualities, as well as her Nitro 9. Since her departure is not shown on-screen we can imagine any number of situations when the 11th Doctor could pick her up.
Jamie would have acted as a loyal soldier but there would be the question of breaking the memory locks placed on him by the Time Lords following ‘The War Games’. Could the Doctor remind him of who he was and get the loyalty he required for the coming battle?
Not all of his allies need engage in battle directly. Zoe and Liz Shaw could both bring their substantial intellect to bear, refining the Doctor’s plan and predicting the enemies counter-measures.
Mel’s fabled skill in computers and her photographic memory could prove useful in disabling security systems. Assisted by K9 (any version) they would be unstoppable. It is certainly a pairing that would be interesting to see.
It is just a shame that Romana (1 or 2) would have been unavailable, either in E Space or Time Locked away, depending on what you believe her final fate to be. Having another Time Lord by his side would have turned the odds in the Doctor’s favour.
Within the fiction of the show there are very good reasons why the Doctor didn’t do this. He’d already lost ‘time’ to the enemy, he knew that Amy had given birth and that they would have her child.
He could have felt that even with the TARDIS he couldn’t travel too far and wide, or with the precision necessary to getting tangled in his own past. He needed people who owed him favours and so could be compelled to go with him but didn’t have much history with him.
There was also the fact that the chances were that not everyone was going to make it out alive. He could protect them, here each ally was someone who could defend themselves. As things turned out both Strax and Dorium are apparently killed in battle.
Not only would this be heart breaking for the Doctor to loose someone close to him it would damage time if it happened to someone snatched between moments of his life. Adventures and indeed the course of his life could change drastically if one or more of his companions mysteriously vanished, never to return.
This doesn’t diminish the exciting idea of using classic characters in such a fashion, especially if running a campaign using the Doctor and his companions. The idea of setting up an adventure where the players are allowed to form their ‘dream team’ has a lot of potential.
The threat would have to be big enough to warrant such a course of action, the players should realise that this is something special and not something they should do when things get tough.
You can limit the number of people they recruit, based off either the time available to them or the difficulty of piloting the TARDIS to each location. This prevents the players from simply getting everyone or taking too long to decide.
Once the allies have been recruited they can either be run as NPCs or they can be divided into small squads, based on the number of players in the group. This allows the focus to change between each squad and allow the players to control a character in each group.
This could lead to an epic series of adventures, an All-Star version of Doctor Who. Extra care should be taken to ensure that characters aren’t killed or otherwise injured in such a way that it could affect the continuity of Dr Who.
Although this could lead to a new campaign arc, creating a greater threat. The player characters combined forces might have defeated the enemy but the deaths of some of their number has shattered time.
Now they must travel through a time line which is rapidly reshaping itself. Can they restore things to the way they were and, more importantly, can they save their friends lives?