Time War timeline

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In an event contained within the time lock, the Doctor prepares to use the Moment to end the Time War on Gallifrey. (TV: The Day of the Doctor)
You may be looking for War Era universe.

Following the fall of Gallifrey, the events of the Last Great Time War between the Daleks and the Time Lords were time locked and thus isolated in its own "specific timeline", (PROSE: Dalek: The Astounding Untold History of the Greatest Enemies of the Universe) which was mostly separate from the normal universe. (PROSE: Revenge of the Nestene) Within the war itself, the Time Lords were aware they were locked in "another version of reality". (PROSE: Dalek Combat Training Manual, TV: The End of Time)

According to conflicting accounts, the time lock was placed by either the surviving higher species, (PROSE: Dalek: The Astounding Untold History of the Greatest Enemies of the Universe) or by the Doctor himself. (COMIC: Don't Step on the Grass) This time lock was intended to ensure that no entity or faction could use time travel technology to revisit the war to alter or otherwise engage with any of the events that had occurred. Such interference was deemed too dangerous, likely to place the integrity of the Time Vortex itself at risk. (PROSE: Dalek: The Astounding Untold History of the Greatest Enemies of the Universe)

Siblings Different and Same of the Faction insisted that the Doctor's actions had erased the Time War from history, (PROSE: The Paradox Moon) although many other account showcased that the War had indeed "happened", for all that it was now inaccessible to the rest of creation, (TV: The Stolen Earth, etc.) leaving the great conflict between the Daleks and Time Lords to become the stuff of legend. (TV: The Parting of the Ways)

The War in Heaven, a time war whose exact relationship to the Last Great Time War was a point of contention between many dissenting account, (PROSE: The Eyeless, The Paradox Moon, etc.) was also documented in some sources to have constituted a distinct "War Era universe". (PROSE: The Book of the War)

Scale of the war[[edit]]

Linear scale[[edit]]

One of the battles of the Last Great Time War. (PROSE: The Whoniverse)

In a linear sense, the war lasted for at least 400 years. Fought throughout countless time periods and even alternate timelines, however, it more accurately lasted an eternity as both sides fought across space and time, opening up new fronts as the Daleks seeded themselves in different epochs. (PROSE: Engines of War) As observed by surviving Gelth, the Time War's effects were "invisible to smaller species but devastating to higher forms". (TV: The Unquiet Dead)

Prelude and aftermath[[edit]]

Certain events which long preceded the outbreak of full-scale war were considered by some to be part of the Time War, most notably the Fourth Doctor's incursion into Dalek history on behalf of the Time Lords. (AUDIO: The Dalek Conquests, TV: Genesis of the Daleks) In addition, events which postdated the fall of Gallifrey were counted as part of the war including Operation Mannequin, (PROSE: Rose) the Battle of Geocomtex, (TV: Dalek) the Battle of the Game Station, (TV: The Parting of the Ways) and the Siege of Trenzalore. (PROSE: The Secret Lives of Monsters)

Looking into what they believed to be mere possibilities for the Doctor's future via the Matrix, the Time War-era Time Lords foresaw their confrontations with the Daleks following the war. Electing to treat post-War information as confidential, the data gleamed from these "future projections" was reserved for the eyes of section leaders only. As was noted in the Dalek Combat Training Manual edition that included these projections, some information about the post-War universe, such as data about the end of the Time War, was redacted from their security level as well. (PROSE: Dalek Combat Training Manual)


One account stated that the physical war was fought in the Time Vortex and Ultimate Void, (PROSE: Meet the Doctor) with the Nestene Consciousness perceiving the Time War as being able to breach into the "normal universe", only to disappear as soon as it came. (PROSE: Revenge of the Nestene) However, many other accounts did indeed show that the conflict could be fought on terrain or in normal space (COMIC: The Clockwise War, PROSE: Engines of War, etc.) in addition to being fought through "time battles" that lesser species could not comprehend. In effect, the Daleks and Time Lords faced each other on both physical and temporal fronts. (AUDIO: The Eternity Cage) With battles opening up in the known universe, unknown universe, partly known universe, and the countless epochs that made up history, (PROSE: The Day of the Doctor, Engines of War) the universe was filled with conflict; large and small-scale engagements were fought everywhere and anywhere, (PROSE: Engines of War) with "all of time and space" becoming available for use as a battleground, while less comprehensible "time battles" were waged beyond the understanding of lesser beings. (AUDIO: The Eternity Cage)

The War even spread into alternate realities, which only made uncovering its proper chronology harder, (PROSE: Dalek: The Astounding Untold History of the Greatest Enemies of the Universe) and the Twelfth Doctor later reflected that the War shattered entire dimensions. (COMIC: The Clockwise War) The Dalek Time Strategist's dimensional portal connected to a similar portal created by an alternate universe Davros on a parallel Skaro where the Kaleds lived in peace with the Thals, allowing the Time Strategist to escape the Valeyard's erasure of the Daleks. Manipulating the Kaled scientist, the Dalek Time Strategist ordered Davros to wire his dimensional portal into the Time Strategist's mutant body, combining their expertise on time, space and the multiverse to merge echoes of Davros's selves from across the multiverse together, using the Davros of this Skaro as the template. The Time Strategist extended this merging to include echoes of the different Daleks created by Davros's alternate selves, (AUDIO: Palindrome) so that by the time they returned to N-Space via the Gulf of Ithon, the Daleks were infinite in number, allowing the Time War to begin again.

After travelling to Koska to harvest data from Davros to complete the restoration of the Daleks, the Dalek Time Strategist travelled with the Eighth Doctor to the Time Strategist's enclave between universes. The Dalek Time Strategist explained to the Doctor that, despite scouring every universe, he could not locate the original Dalek Emperor, and so decided to complete the Daleks's restoration by resurrecting the Emperor of his universe instead. When questioned by the Doctor, the Time Strategist explained that he had kept the Time Lord alive due to his complex involvements with the Daleks' timeline; having seen the Doctor's future, the Time Strategist failed to persuade the Doctor to destroy Gallifrey by offering him a cryo pod containing an alternate universe version of his great-grandson, Alex Campbell, (AUDIO: Restoration of the Daleks) whose N-Space equivalent had been killed previously by the Daleks. (AUDIO: To the Death)

The Time Strategist summoned the Master from the Unbound Universe to assist him against the War Master. (AUDIO: Shockwave, He Who Wins) At another point, the War Master crashed his TARDIS in a parallel universe which had been conquered by the Cyber-Mainframe whilst "exploring possibilities". (AUDIO: Master of Worlds)

Manipulation of history[[edit]]

Even though it was thought events trapped within a time lock were impossible to rewrite, (AUDIO: One Life) both the Time Lords and Daleks had access to space-time vessels (PROSE: The Day of the Doctor, etc.) and took advantage of history, changing it to their will whenever possible. (AUDIO: Sphere of Influence) As noted by one Time Lord author, it was impossible to know what had exactly happened in the War, writing that every action in the conflict "has happened, then not happened at all, then happened again but at a different time entirely". In the end, having been fought "through every time and no time", the struggle between the Time Lords and Dalek Empire would leave the universe in a constant state of temporal flux. (PROSE: A Brief History of Time Lords)

Due to its nature as a temporal war, it was nearly impossible for post-Time War individuals to deduce its proper and logical chronology, (PROSE: The Whoniverse) leaving those who survive to only know it to be a cataclysmic period of universal history. (PROSE: Dalek: The Astounding Untold History of the Greatest Enemies of the Universe) As much of the War's history was overwritten and rewritten during the fighting, (PROSE: Dalek: The Astounding Untold History of the Greatest Enemies of the Universe, The Whoniverse) with the opposing factions each undoing the actions of the other again and again, it was hard to figure out what had even happened, at least within the terms of the post-War timeline. Additionally, much of the Time War's history would become shrouded in mystery, inaccessible, and time locked. (PROSE: The Whoniverse)

There was a period of the Time War where the Daleks were wiped from existence by the War Valeyard. (AUDIO: The War Valeyard) Until the Daleks were restored by the Dalek Time Strategist and a copy of Davros, (AUDIO: Restoration of the Daleks) the Time Lords were unable to exactly recall who they had been fighting, leaving them to ponder who their mysterious, unknowable enemy had been. Not even the countless slaves the Daleks had the conscripted to serve as disposable troops could remember whom they had been serving under and surrendered. (AUDIO: Dreadshade)

As the War spread across the history of the cosmos, the universe started to fall apart, being pulled apart at its seams as its very origins were being rewritten. (PROSE: The Whoniverse) Battles between the Daleks and Time Lords raged in countless epochs, (PROSE: Engines of War) with days becoming battlelines as fronts opened up throughout time and the universe. Additionally, centuries turned against each other and divergent streams of time fought each other to survive. After the War, Ohila, who referred to it as the deadliest conflict time would ever know, reflected on the Time Lord attempt to use their time travel to avert the existence of the Daleks. Because they failed and the Daleks, using their own time machines, tried to do the same to the Time Lords, she stated time had become "a weapon in a war that could never end." (PROSE: The Day of the Doctor) Daleks and Time Lords alike from later periods of the Time War could even time travel back to earlier events in the conflict, able to change the outcomes of past Wartime events to their benefit. (PROSE: The Stranger)

As the all out war raged, (PROSE: The Whoniverse) Temporal paradoxes became an almost daily occurrence, although the War Master also reflected that there were no longer recognisable days. (AUDIO: Day of the Master) It was said that, if one was a soldier fighting in the Time War, they could die a thousand times in a single day, only, during the next day, to learn they had never been born at all. (PROSE: The Day of the Doctor) Even though the whole history of the cosmos came to be remade and torn apart thanks to the violence, (PROSE: The Whoniverse) battles between the Daleks and Time Lords, whether they be engagements fought through armies (PROSE: Meet the Doctor) and massive fleets or through agents infiltrating and rewriting major parts of the opposing side's history, continued to rage. (PROSE: The Whoniverse)

The War Master's use of the Heavenly Paradigm caused changes to history across the universe beyond his control, affecting numerous worlds. Most crucially, this resulted in the Cruciform falling from Time Lord to Dalek hands, leading the Master to flee the war. (AUDIOThe Heavenly Paradigm)

Historical overview[[edit]]

The war begins[[edit]]

According to some historians, before properly beginning the conflict, the Dalek Emperor led the Dalek Empire out of space and time, going into the Time Vortex to prepare for the War, (PROSE: Dalek: The Astounding Untold History of the Greatest Enemies of the Universe) but another account held that the Daleks only deployed their "awesome fleet" into the Time Vortex when the War finally began. (PROSE: Meet the Doctor) No matter the true circumstances, from the perspective of humanity, the Daleks suddenly disappeared "thousands of years" prior to the Battle of the Game Station in 200,100. As recalled by Jack Harkness, a former Time Agent from the 51st century, the Daleks vanished from time and space at point when they were the "greatest threat in the universe", (TV: The Parting of the Ways) thus ending the Tenth Dalek Occupation. (PROSE: A Brief History of Time Lords) The Doctor would later state that the Daleks had "gone off to fight a bigger war", that being the Time War. (TV: The Parting of the Ways)

The rescue of Davros[[edit]]

Dalek Caan following his incursion into the Time War. (TV: Journey's End)

Dalek Caan, the last survivor of the Cult of Skaro, was able to enter the Time War after initiating an emergency temporal shift, proceeding to rescue Davros from death at the hands of the Nightmare Child. Together, they emerged in the post-Time War universe with Caan being greatly affected both physically and mentally by the ordeal, appearing to have gone insane to observers. Knowing that the "entire war" was time locked, the Tenth Doctor proclaimed Caan's feat to be "impossible" whilst Davros himself deemed it "remarkable" that a "single, simple Dalek" had succeeded where Emperors and Time Lords had failed. (TV: The Stolen Earth)

The Final Sanction[[edit]]

Gallifrey appears above the Earth in an ultimately unsuccessful attempt to break free of the time lock. (TV: The End of Time)

On the last day of the Time War, Lord President Rassilon and his High Council understood that they were trapped inside the time lock. By transmitting a signal back through time and implanting it within the mind of the Master, who was fated to escape the Time War, the Time Lords had a link to the Saxon Master's location in the post-Time War universe, on Earth in approximately the 2000s.[nb 1] By throwing a White-Point Star to Earth, Rassilon made the contact physical, resulting in Gallifrey briefly appearing in the sky above Earth, while Rassilon and a number of Time Lords appeared within the residence of Joshua Naismith. The Tenth Doctor warned that, with the time lock broken, it would enable the "hell" of the Time War to descend into the universe including not only the Daleks but the Skaro Degradations, the Horde of Travesties, the Nightmare Child, Could've Been King with his Army of Meanwhiles and Neverweres. Ultimately, the Tenth Doctor destroyed the star using Wilfred Mott's gun, forcing Rassilon and Gallifrey back into the war. Attacking Rassilon in retaliation for the impact the signal had on his mind throughout his life, the Master too joined the Time Lords in the war. (TV: The End of Time)

The war ends[[edit]]

Gallifrey immediately before its relocation from the universe. (TV: The Day of the Doctor)

On the last day of the Time War, Leela was provided with a Wayfinder by the War Doctor through Axton, allowing her to escape the conflict, returning to the TARDIS and the Fourth Doctor. (WC: The Final Battle [+]Loading...["The Final Battle (webcast)"])

Just prior to the fall of Gallifrey, the Doctor was preparing to use the Moment to end the war when the sentient weapon enabled him to make contact with his future incarnations, the Tenth and Eleventh Doctors in the post-Time War universe. The Tenth and Eleventh Doctors, along with Clara Oswald, were allowed to accompany the War Doctor back to the barn on Gallifrey. Knowing that the events were time locked, the Tenth Doctor acknowledged that they should not have been allowed to enter them, with the Eleventh Doctor understanding that they had been let through the time lock. It was after this that the Doctors and Clara decided to change the outcome of the war that they remembered, leading to "all thirteen" incarnations of the Doctor piloting their respective iterations of the TARDIS into Gallifrey's atmosphere as they relocated the planet into a pocket universe. After returning to the National Gallery with his future selves and Clara, the War Doctor took his leave in the TARDIS before regenerating into the Ninth Doctor, losing his memory of saving Gallifrey and so believing that it had been destroyed. (TV: The Day of the Doctor)


As the vast majority of the Daleks were destroyed in the fall of Gallifrey, the species was observed to be effectively extinct, with any that remained no longer able to plunder their own past or escape from within the timeline of the war itself. (PROSE: Dalek: The Astounding Untold History of the Greatest Enemies of the Universe) However, pockets of Dalek survivors did in fact manage to emerge in the post-Time War universe. The Metaltron, a Dalek veteran of the fall of Arcadia, (PROSE: Dalek) was found by the Ninth Doctor, who surmised that it had fallen through time. (TV: Dalek) The Dalek Emperor, who had survived aboard his ship, recalled that he had fallen through time before emerging in the time of the Fourth Great and Bountiful Human Empire. (TV: The Parting of the Ways) Elsewhere, the Cult of Skaro had escaped the Time War in a Void Ship known as the Sphere, which was discovered by Torchwood London before opening in 2007. The Tenth Doctor understood that, within the Sphere, one could potentially sit out the end of the universe and the beginning of the next. (TV: Army of Ghosts/Doomsday) Following the fall of the Cruciform, the War Master escaped to the far future, just prior to the end of the universe, where he disguised himself as a human so that he would not be found. (TV: The Sound of Drums) Another Renegade Time Lord, the Monk, fled the Time War and was found by Missy in 16th century England. (AUDIO: Divorced, Beheaded, Regenerated)


Even after the New Dalek Paradigm was established, the Daleks found that everything they had ever known was in flux, their past having changed forever. The war had thrown up a bewildering jumble of alternate realities and superfluous time lines, such that no one could tell what had actually happened and what was now fantasy. With the war time locked away from reality, even the events of the conflict itself seemed uncertain. (PROSE: Dalek: The Astounding Untold History of the Greatest Enemies of the Universe)

At the time of Strax's birth and first deployment, the Sontaran Subliminal Education Matrix contained an entry on Time Lords which noted that "perhaps there is a universe-spanning war going on just out of sight, an apocalyptic crusade fought in the space between one second and the next". Strax read this line when he selected the education matrix's entry on the Time Lords to learn more about them. (PROSE: A Soldier's Education) Within the war itself, the Sontarans made multiple failed attempts to open up their own front in the conflict. (AUDIO: The Sontaran Ordeal, The Eternity Cage) In the post-Time War universe, General Staal knew legends of the Time War, which understood that the Sontarans were not allowed to be a part of. (TV: The Sontaran Stratagem)

In a guide for her next incarnation, the Thirteenth Doctor admitted that she did not "remember much" of the War Doctor's experiences, but hoped that her successor would, stating that the War Doctor deserved to be remembered. (PROSE: A Short History of Everyone)

Relation to the wider universe[[edit]]

The planet Lujhimeme was cut in half by the time lock which contained the Time War. (COMIC: Running to Stay Still)

After many years of war, the Nestene abandoned its conquesting ways, and made peace with the Plastic Conjunction on Nestenia, developing a rapport with the Embodiment of Gris, which observers described as a romance. However, Nestenia would fall victim to fallout from the Time War which briefly penetrated the normal universe, with the Nestene de-aged by a wave of Early, the food stocks destroyed by cloud of Late, and the Embodiment driven insane by a blizzard of Tick-tock. (PROSE: Revenge of the Nestene)

At the end of the Time War the time lock tore right through the planet Lujhimene, severing it in half. The time lock maintained the planet's gravity and atmosphere, and also spun its core as if nothing had happened. The Eleventh Doctor visited Lujhimene looking for the Volatix Cabal. (COMIC: Running to Stay Still)

The Twelfth Doctor once said that, even though it was over, the Time War could still kill someone due to that being the nature of a temporal paradox. However, he then claimed people should not worry and forget that warning, stating it would never happen. (PROSE: The Dangerous Book of Monsters) It was possible for individuals from the post-Time War universe to encounter combatants for whom the War was still going, as was the case when River Song and Kate Stewart's UNIT had encounters with the War Master. (AUDIO: Concealed Weapon, Master of Worlds) River also met the Eighth Doctor whilst he was in the midst of the conflict on two occasions. (AUDIO: The Rulers of the Universe, Lies in Ruins) The Tenth Doctor's TARDIS was once pulled back into the conflict's time lock by a telepathic summons from the War Master and he had to rapidly depart to prevent himself becoming trapped there. (AUDIO: The Last Line)

Alice Obiefune, a companion of the Eleventh Doctor, found her way into the Time War by using the Master's TARDIS and met up with the War Doctor. (COMIC: The Organ Grinder) Using the chaos of battle as a cover to escape to his future-self's TARDIS, the Master found a chronal tumour implanted in it. (COMIC: The One, Kill God) Believing he could now escape the Time War, he tried to do so, only to create a paradox; by trying to leave the War in his TARDIS, he could never implant the tumour. With this and the tumour reacting with the songbox, a paradox was made, and the Master's current regeneration was unwritten as his TARDIS burned. (COMIC: Fast Asleep) Now never having been in his child body, (COMIC: Fast Asleep) the Master remained present in the War's early days, still in his older "War Master" body, until he left the fighting after the events involving the Heavenly Paradigm. (AUDIO: The Heavenly Paradigm) To return Alice home, the Doctor removed the tracker dart from her left there by the Then and the Now, leaving it to interact with the Psilent songbox to create the Then and the Now originally. He then placed Alice inside it and sent her back to her Doctor. He told her that because of the paradoxes, they would all forget the events that happened there. (COMIC: Fast Asleep) The Doctor was later surrounded by members of the Volatix Cabal when Abslom Daak, having arrived from the post-Time War universe, descended from the skies, ever accompanied by the corpse of Princess Taiyin of Mazam, preserved within a cryogenic freezer-unit. The Doctor expressed his concern as Daak fired upon the Volatix. (COMIC: Physician, Heal Thyself)

After entering the Doctor's time stream to stop the attacks by the Great Intelligence, Clara Oswald was recovered by the Eleventh Doctor after being torn into "echoes" whom saved the Doctor across their incarnations back to the First Doctor. As a result, Clara recognised the previous ten faces which the Eleventh Doctor acknowledged at the time, but not the "ghost" of the War Doctor. (TV: The Name of the Doctor)

The "chronological complications" brought about by the War and Gallifrey's apparent destruction resulted in Gallifrey and other artefacts native to its home universe landing within the universe of New Eden for a brief time. Inhabitants of New Eden's universe followed these artifacts on a path that brought them into conflict with Daleks, who had also arrived within New Eden. (GAME: The Interstellar Convergence)

Following the Time War, the Tenth Doctor suggested that an alternative version of Leela could use the Spriggan's TARDIS to rejoin the war and become one with her original self. (AUDIO: Splinters)


  1. Both Planet of the Dead and The End of Time are referred to in dialogue as taking place after the end of Journey's End, which is set in either 2008, according to TV: The Fires of Pompeii, TV: The Waters of Mars, and AUDIO: SOS (and heavily implied by TV: The Star Beast and TV: The Giggle), or six weeks after the middle of May 2009, circa June, according to PROSE: Beautiful Chaos. However, the year of The End of Time is unspecified, as is whether or not it is intended to be the Christmas immediately after Journey's End.