Adventure: Death and Rebirth
Time and again the Doctor has given his life to save others. His companions have also paid the ultimate price. With the grand adventure coming to its end the players will have to make a sacrifice as well, although what they sacrifice will depend on them.
At the conclusion of the last adventure the PCs were on the Lords of Times ship, arriving at the birth of the universe. Remarkably the ship is able to withstand the stresses caused by a rapidly expanding universe.
Before long the Lord of Times planet will be brought through time, protected by the vessels protective field. Once they do time will collapse into a single fixed point, eliminating free-will forever.
If the PCs can reach the core of the ship, or access the ships floor plans, they’ll see that at its heart is a structure very similar to the Time Regenerator. Anything placed within will be destroyed but its energy field will be broadcast outwards, imprinting on the universe. Not only that but the disruption will prevent the Lords of Time home world from arriving. It will return to its point of departure, the end of the universe.
You can set challenges to prevent the group from immediately accessing the Time Regenerator, whether it be Lords of Time standing in their way, security systems or using gadgets to access the device.
When they finally reach it they’ll need to decide who or what to place inside. If one of the characters is bonded with an Eternal they have more of an insight into what their choices are.
Any time traveller will have the original web of time encoded into their bio-data. If they were to sacrifice themselves then the original time line would be restored, a world without Lords of Time.
This will mean certain death but is a noble sacrifice. A kind games master may reward a player with extra character points when they’re generating a new character. All is not lost, since they are imprinted on the universe they could manifest elsewhere in space and time, just waiting for their friends to find them.
A Time Lord who enters the Time Regenerator will be forced to regenerate. Not only would the original time line be restored you could use this as a means to restore Gallifrey.
You may wish to go further and have a new universe created for each regeneration sacrificed. This could create multiple alternative realities, allowing both the original timeline and one in which the Lords of Time exist. This can be preferable to hit the ‘reset button’, allowing future adventures in newly created universes.
If you want the decision to be more extreme than just the loss of a regeneration the Time Lord could become entirely human. This would be a much greater sacrifice and leading to lasting consequences in the campaign.
The PCs most faithful companion, their time ship, could be sacrificed. This may seem to be a natural choice since it is not truly sentient and has is connected to time. All of its travels could have been for this very moment, remapping history.
The biggest consequence is that the PCs will be left without a time machine. As a final act the TARDIS might shift them to an appropriate time and place, such as Earth in the 20th or 21st century.
If Gallifrey wasn’t restored they may struggle to find a replacement TARDIS. This could lead to a quest to build one themselves. It is also possible that the TARDIS imprinted its nature so that other species could build replacements. In which case the PCs just have to find one.
A character bonded with an Eternal may decide to sacrifice the entity. While it gave them greater power hopefully they will be wary of it corrupting them. Whether the Eternal agrees to the plan depends on its personality. If it is opposed it could assume control of the PC, requiring the others to force it into the Time Regenerator.
The sacrifice may be exactly what the Eternals planned. Under the Lords of Time the universe had become toxic. The release of Eternal energy may restore it and allow the Eternal to further its agenda.
This can have further consequences, with a universe that is more suitable to Eternals, leading to more encounters with the species. They may also have to adjust to living in a universe shaped by Time, Death or Pain.
Rogue 1st Doctor
If you used the idea of the 1st Doctor going rogue then this could be where that storyline ends. The 1st Doctor could sacrifice himself, as he is ‘spare’. This allows all of the PCs to remain alive and symbolically demonstrates how everything began with the 1st Doctor.
To tie into the 50th Anniversary you may wish to have the PCs witness him regenerate into his subsequent regenerations, until it reaches the 12th Doctor and they can no longer stand to look into the Time Regenerator.
Land of Fiction
The energy from the Land of Fiction that prevented the PCs from being erased could be used here. Either the PCs can used their TARDIS, with its link to the Land of Fiction, to focus the energy into the Time Regenerator or using themselves as the conduit.
Not only would the universe be restored those within the fictional realm would find a way into our dimension. This could allow a campaign to have people and places from a broad range of books, films and audio. You need not restrict yourself to Doctor Who either, allowing cross-overs with other works of fiction.
This would also allow the continuing adventures of previous Doctors and those like Richard E Grant’s 9th Doctor.
Whatever they choose the Lords of Time have been stopped. All that is left is for the survivors to escape as the ship around them is consumed by the reborn universe. With one adventure left who knows where the PCs will find themselves?