Destiny of the Doctors (video game)

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Doctor Who: Destiny of the Doctors was a 1997 action video game developed by Studio Fish and published by BBC Multimedia. It featured specially recorded audio by Tom Baker, Peter Davison, Colin Baker, Sylvester McCoy, and Nicholas Courtney. It also featured specifically recorded cut scenes with Anthony Ainley reprising his role as the Tremas Master, in what would be his final performance in the role before his passing in 2004.

According to writer Gary Russell, it was his intention that the game was a direct prequel to 1996's Doctor Who TV movie. The game ends with the Tremas Master being locked up by "monsters", implicitly one of the species featured in the game, with the Master telling the Doctor: "you know what these monsters will do to me." The intention, to Russell, was that these monsters were the Daleks, and that this story would lead directly into the Master being executed on Skaro.[1] This explains the absence of the Eighth Doctor, and makes this story one of several intended to lead directly to the 1996 film.

Publisher's summary[[edit]]

The Master holds the seven incarnations of the Doctor as prisoners in a vast combat arena.

He must be challenged.

You are the challenger — the Graak — an electo-telepathic entity created by the Doctor. Succeed, and the tables are turned on the Master. Fail and the Doctors, and Graak, are removed from space and time forever.


  • real-time VR environment
  • Daleks, Cybermen, Sea Devils, Zygons and more...
  • City of Thoughts database - 600 entries with text, stills, audio and video
  • original video of all seven past BBC Doctors
  • specially shot video and new newly recorded audio
  • 28 mind-bending quests
  • seven action-packed challenges
  • up to 20 hours of play

The more you play, the harder it gets!

There are some corners of the universe that have bred the most terrible things. Things that act against everything that we believe in.

They must be fought — and defeated!



The Tremas Master is on the planet Siralos, a planet of pure psychic energy. Through the use of the planet's energy he has created the Determinant, a realm under his own control, and initiates plans to bend the Universe to his will. To begin, he summons and imprisons the seven complete incarnations of the Doctor. He recalls each Doctor in reverse order, giving a mocking account of each incarnation. The Doctors create the Graak, a champion to battle the Master on their behalf. Amused, the Master accepts the Doctors' challenge, declaring the destiny of the Doctors to be in the Graak's hands.

The Graak awakens in the console room of the Fourth Doctor's TARDIS. Via telepathic contact from the Fourth Doctor, the Graak learns of his purpose and begins his task.

Freeing the Doctors[[edit]]

The Doctors' levels can be initiated, visited, and completed in different orders, depending upon the actions of the player. Each timeline begins in the console room of the Doctor in question's TARDIS, where the player has chosen to send the Graak via use of the TARDIS console. After the first six times the Graak frees one of the trapped Doctors, he is transported back to the console room to proceed to another level and continue his task. After the final Doctor is freed and the last level is completed, the game ends.

First Doctor[[edit]]

Leaving the console room of the First Doctor's TARDIS, the Graak finds the corridors patrolled by Cybermen.

The Graak arrives at the Great Divide, where the Master gives him a choice of five Symbols to get into the Determinant.

To be added

A Dalek, and Graak's energy level counter.

Inside the Determinant, the Master is stacking playing cards. He shows the Graak a small box, which he implies was taken from the Celestial Toymaker, and orders the Graak inside.

Inside the box, the Graak is attacked by Quarks. Eventually the Graak finds and frees the First Doctor.

The Graak is transported back to the Master, who claims to still be toying with the Graak. Telekinetically knocking over his house of cards, the Master threatens the Graak and sends him away.

Second Doctor[[edit]]

The Graak is in the Second Doctor's TARDIS. Yeti patrol the corridors.

The Graak arrives at the Great Divide, where the Master gives him a choice of five Symbols to get into the Determinant.

To be added

The Master is sitting behind an Underground ticket booth and makes a ticket for the Graak that reads "NO RETURN." The Graak is transported aboard a twisted version of the London Underground, during which he has to avoid more Yeti, roadblocks, and the Master's train ahead of him. At the end of the Track, the Second Doctor is Freed.

Aboard the Master's train, which is emblazoned with a red "M" emblem and the slogan "we'll never get you there," the Master angrily orders the Graak to go away and threatens to change the rules.

Third Doctor[[edit]]

The Master recalls the Earthbound Doctor

The Graak is in the Third Doctor's TARDIS. The Doctor has informed the Graak that the Third Doctor's TARDIS workshop contains his old radio. With this, the Graak can contact Brigadier Lethbridge-Stewart.

After retrieving the radio, the Graak is contacted by the Brigadier. The Brigadier tells the Graak that he can use the radio to contact UNIT, and that the Doctor has somehow linked the TARDIS's security cameras to the UNIT surveillance system; in this way, the Brigadier can follow the Graak's progress.

The Graak manoeuvres through the TARDIS, with Autons patrolling the corridors. He eventually finds his way to the Great Divide, where the Master gives him a choice of five Symbols to get into the Determinant.

To be added

The next the Graak sees is the Master behind the controls of a spacecraft. He orders for the countdown to begin, and a Dalek begins counting down from five, ending in "Blast off!"

The Graak follows the Master in another craft and manages to shoot it down. After he disables the Master's craft, the Third Doctor is shown to be freed from the Master's trap.

The Master is seen in his cockpit, where alarms are ringing. A Dalek voice can be heard saying "Evacuate, evacuate..." The Master calmly looks at the Graak, says "Bad move, Graak, bad move," and sends him away.

Fourth Doctor[[edit]]

The Graak is attacked by a Raston Warrior Robot in the Doctor's brain.

The Graak finds himself in the fourth Doctor's TARDIS, where he can hear the Fourth Doctor telepathically calling for help. Leaving the console room, the Graak finds the corridors patrolled by Cybermen.

The Graak returns to the Great Divide, where the Master gives him a choice of five Symbols to get into the Determinant.

To be added

Inside the Determinant, the Master attempts to hypnotise the Graak into giving up on saving the Doctor. The Graak is teleported inside the Fourth Doctor's brain. The Fourth Doctor attempts to telepathically guide the Grakk toward him.

The decaying Master appears on a wall.

On his way through the Doctor's brain the Graak encounters images of the Master's various incarnations, images of the Doctor himself, and a Raston Warrior Robot. Eventually, The Graak finds and frees the Fourth Doctor.

Fifth Doctor[[edit]]

The Graak is aboard the Fifth Doctor's TARDIS. Silurians patrol the corridors. The Graak returns to the Great Divide, where the Master gives him a choice of five Symbols to get into the Determinant.

To be added

The Master is dressed as a king at a medieval court. "Let the proceedings commence," he declares, opening a curtain and sending the Graak through.

The Graak finds himself in a joust against a Sontaran. Via his telepathic contact the Fifth Doctor tells Graak of Sontarans, their history, and their one weakness. The Graak defeats the Sontaran, and the Fifth Doctor is freed.

Sixth Doctor[[edit]]

The Graak finds himself in the Sixth Doctor's TARDIS. Ice Warriors patrol the corridors, and the Graak has to avoid them in order to return to the Great Divide.

Once inside the Great Divide, the Master gives him a choice of five Symbols to get into the Determinant.

To be added

The Cyber Tomb, with a Cyberman patrolling to the right.

The Master is standing in a room, and is looking out the window where beautiful springtime images appear. The Master states that it's not for him, and decides to turn back the clock so that everything freezes. The Graak then has to manoevre through a maze of ice, and collect a series of yellow stars. At the end, he finds and frees the Sixth Doctor.

The Graak returns to the Master's room, which is now in a state of disarray with snow all over the place and lightning in the background. The Master tells the Graak that he has incurred his wrath, and will receive no mercy, and sends him away.

Seventh Doctor[[edit]]

The Graak finds himself in the Seventh Doctor's TARDIS. Daleks patrol the corridors.

Graak returns to the Great Divide, where the Master is waiting. He gives him a choice of five Symbols to get into the Determinant.

To be added

The Master drives up to the Graak in a small red car. He laughs and asks the Graak, "Where's your sense of humour? I look no more ridiculous in this then the Doctor does in his beloved Bessie." He then starts his car and begins driving, taunting the Graak. The Seventh Doctor then asks "Is that Bessie I hear?"

The Graak finds himself driving Bessie in a road race against the Master, avoiding the Autons which block the road. The Graak wins the race, and the Seventh Doctor is freed.

The Master driving the car is revealed to be an Auton duplicate. The genuine Master approaches the car, berating the "incompetent dummy" for losing the race.


The Graak finds himself in the Great Divide. The Master appears and taunts him, pointing out that the Doctor is not in the Determinant after all. He explains that, despite all of the Graak's work, the Doctors are still within his possession. The Cloister Bell sounds, signalling that the TARDIS is in distress. The Master states that as soon as he exits the Determinant, the TARDIS will self destruct

(When playing this level, if Graak does not begin with at least 740 points of Energy, then he will die before the entire level plays out. However, this does not change the outcome of the game, it just cuts to the last scene.)

The Graak finds himself deep within the TARDIS, where the Sea Devils were earlier, the Cloister Bell continuing to sound. The Graak works his way toward a room with blue diamonds on the floor and, at the top of a ramp, four large square stones. The Graak uses a portion of his life force (the player's energy counter) to activate the light, and the Doctor appears. The Graak continues activating all of the other stones until he has no more remaining life force, sacrificing himself to save the Doctors.

In a black void, the Master is staring off worriedly into the distance. He begins to quickly walk away, but a green light appears and he is transported away.

The Master finds himself trapped in a jail cell. He pleads for the Doctor and the Graak to summon the energies of Siralos and free him, insisting that the entire battle was just meant as a stimulating intellectual challenge and he always played it by the rules. Fearful of what "those monsters" will do to him now they've got him, the Master continues begging for the Doctor's help as he is taken off into the distance by his unidentified captors.


Major characters[[edit]]


All monsters voiced by archive audio from the TV series and/or David Coker.



The game was released in a standard computer game box with a single PC CD-ROM disc inside a standard CD case, in set in the centre of the box. The CD case contained a 16 page colour instruction booklet.

Game features[[edit]]

  • The City of Thoughts database and the TARDIS database are two of the more notable features of the game, allowing the player to access 600 entries from the BBC archives, including detailed information on many TV stories, monsters and other characters. This includes many video clips of which this was the first release.


  • The Autons can have their control signals scrambled by the Doctor's radio.
  • The Master has Graak steal a Cybermat, an ancient Silurian artefact and the Zygons' mushroom.
  • The Cloister Bell is heard many times in the TARDIS.


  • The 1997 release date of this game followed the release of the 1996 TV movie Doctor Who starring Paul McGann, set in 1999.
  • The Master makes reference to the seven "complete" incarnations of the Doctor as opposed to the "seven past incarnations" or just "the seven incarnations". This makes it ambiguous as to when this takes place. Given that the Master is portrayed by Anthony Ainley, this would imply that the Seventh Doctor is nearing the end of his incarnation, as stated in TV: Doctor Who. Although the game packaging uses the logo for the 1996 TV movie, the Eighth Doctor is neither seen nor mentioned anywhere in the game. While the City of Thoughts database entry on the Seventh Doctor falls short of mentioning his regeneration, it does state that his "spirit of curiosity and adventure will carry him into his next incarnation". Although this game was released a year after the TV movie, development began before the TV movie aired and anything was known about a new incarnation of the Doctor.
  • Gary Russell, credited in the game not only as a writer for the aforementioned City of Thoughts but also for "subject matter expertise", had close links to the TV Movie’s production from having written its novelisation in February 1996. (Doctor Who: Regeneration) Russell later confirmed that he "deliberately had the Master taken away by the Daleks at the end of DotD to lead into the TVM (thus also explaining why there was no McGann)."[1]
  • Russell noted that this controversially does not take into-account the First Frontier Master. Russell also wrote PROSE: The Novel of the Film, which name dropped the Tzun from First Frontier, and AUDIO: Dust Breeding, where the Tremas Master was reverted from his Traken body to his Decayed Thirteenth incarnation. All three stories contradict each other.
  • Ian Levine began an unlicensed fan project to expand Destiny of the Doctors into an actual episode of Doctor Who featuring Sylvester McCoy as the Seventh Doctor, with himself appearing as a Time Lord.


Modern availability[[edit]]

Destiny of the Doctors cover

Destiny of the Doctors is currently out-of-print. The game was made for computers running Windows 95; due to changes in Windows operating systems over the years, the video segments of Destiny of the Doctors are not likely to function under modern Windows systems (though some degree of success might be found by modern Windows users.) There has been no indication of any plans to release the game in an updated edition, or port it to non-Windows-95 systems. Both developers involved in the game's production, BBC Multimedia and Studio Fish, have since shut down, decreasing the likelihood of any rereleases.

The video footage of Anthony Ainley as the Master recorded for this game was preserved, and most of it was released as a bonus feature on the DVD release of Survival. An outtake from the recording sessions was appended to the DVD release of The Keeper of Traken in tribute to Ainley; technically an Easter egg, it is not listed in the menus but is instead viewed by allowing part four to play past the closing credits.

External links[[edit]]