The UNIT Campaign: Terror Of The Autons

masterautonThis is a continuing series of adventures for those wanting to run a UNIT campaign in parallel to the television stories.


The Master is still on the loose and to make matters worse there is apparently a traitor within UNIT. Supplies are going missing and someone is sabotaging the organisation’s efforts to track the rogue Time Lord.

The PCs are part of the investigation but are soon distracted by time skipping. They’ll suddenly find themselves in different locations, hours into the future. Could the Master be manipulating time in some way?

In fact the PCs encountered the Master during the Auton incident and wiped their memories, just as he had with Jo Grant. He went one step further with them, brainwashing them to be loyal to him.

The Master has been ringing them to activate their programming. They then bring him whatever supplies he needs and makes sure that the investigation is hampered. They awake with no memory of this, nor any recollection of the phone call.

PCs may at first pursue the time manipulation angle but the Doctor will quickly confirm that his instruments don’t detect any chronal activity. The truth will be revealed if they instead concentrate on the search for the traitor within UNIT.

They’ll find witnesses that will put them in the secure areas where the supplies were taken (with one such witness being the Scottish Mr Campbell). Vehicles signed out in their name show additional mileage and fuel consumption that they don’t recollect.

If there is another UNIT officer investigating these incidents they may believe the PCs are willing traitors. The PCs will either need to cover up the evidence or find a way to convince a superior officer of their innocence.

Once they know they have been affected the Doctor could help deprogram them. They will need lengthy psych evaluation but they will no longer be a pawn of the Master. In fact they now have the advantage.

When the Master next contacts them to give them orders they can lead an operation to capture him. This will take him by surprise and the Master may begin to view the PCs as worthy foes.

To ensure that the Master is still free to put the events of ‘The Mind of Evil’ in motion you can reveal that there is another UNIT officer under his spell, perhaps the very same officer who was pursuing the PCs.


At the end of ‘The Terror Of The Autons’ Captain Mike Yates shoots the Master, only for it to turn out to be Rex Farrel.  The PCs are assigned the unpleasant job of providing a cover story for this incident, least the public find out that UNIT shot an innocent man.

This can be part of the bigger cover story, explaining away the wave of deaths caused by the Autons. Will they make Rex Farrel just another statistic, buried amongst all the other people killed by plastic? Might they pin his murder on the Master so that they can give further motivation for the public to report any sightings of the escaped criminal?

You could also explore the fall out for Mike Yates. Does he feel guilt for shooting Farrel or try to tell himself that he was just doing his job? How do other UNIT soldiers feel, knowing that the enemy can turn innocent people into weapons?

There could also be an internal investigation with the PCs either taking part or giving evidence. This can establish how UNIT deals with similar incidents in the future.


The Doctor and Jo Grant are missing! They were last scene entering the UNIT lab but have now vanished, with no one seeing them leave. The TARDIS is still there, its door locked, so the Brigadier is confident that they are still on Earth.

The PCs are assigned to investigate and experience several supernatural incidents. Doors open and close on their own, typewriters type ‘Help Me’! and the temperature drops sharply.

The explanation is that the Doctor couldn’t resist experimenting with the dematerialisation circuit he stole from the Master. The mental blocks placed on him by the Time Lords caused him to accidentally send himself and Jo Grant out of phase. In their incorporeal forms they are only able to interact with the physical world by absorbing heat from the local area. Even then their interaction is brief and clumsy.

Eventually the PCs may witness ghostly forms of Jo or the Doctor appearing. Once they realise that they are trapped they must seek a way to bring them back in phase. PCs with a scientific background stand the best chance of achieving this but it could also be an opportunity to bring Liz Shaw back, to oversee the rescue.

One solution could be to have Jo and the Doctor enter an environment with a high temperature. Given physical form the Doctor can work to stabilise their condition but they must work quickly before the local area bursts into flames.

The PCs will have been responsible for saving the Doctor and Jo, something that will strengthen their relationship.

This entry was posted in 3rd Doctor, Adventure, Master, Terror Of The Autons. Bookmark the permalink.

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