I love me some good cheat sheets. They can be a quick and dirty way to compile the information you need in any given game without having to waste valuable game time flipping through rule books. It’s one reason why GM screens still show up so frequently even when many game systems encourage transparency rather than secrecy.
For me, I’ve also found it helps me to gain a better grasp of a system. By compiling my own cheat sheets, it soothes the OCD graphic designer in my soul while allowing me to spend time absorbing the rules by doing more than just reading a passage in a book over and over again. When I’m a player, I’ll often pull together a sheet of the rules relevant to whichever character I’m playing in that game. As a GM, though, I need a more overarching review of the important rules.
One of the games I’ve done this for is Doctor Who: Adventures in Time and Space by Cubicle 7. It’s often my go-to system for one-shots and convention games. I absolutely adore the show and I find the game to be a simple and flexible system that’s great to introduce to players of all experience levels.
The first cheat sheet included here is one I designed is specifically for GMs. It brings together most of the charts you’ll need for running the game while also bringing in some other pertinent bits of information, like which skills are available, how to handle damage, and what story points can be used for. You’ll still need the books to look up some specifics, like good and bad attributes, but the most commonly needed information is right there for you on the cheat sheet.
The second one I put together is intended for players. It lists all the ways they can spend their story points. Story points are one of the most crucial parts of the game, allowing players to do amazing, extraordinary things. Like a simple shop girl saving the Doctor (and London) from an alien determined to destroy everything, or an unassuming nurse intimidating an entire Cyberman army to find his kidnapped wife. Unfortunately, for some inexplicable reason, many players shy away from using them and I’ve been trying to find ways to encourage them to spend them more freely. This sheet puts all the ways they can be used at the player’s fingertips.
Feel free to download them and use them in your own games. I’d love to hear how they work out for you, or even if you’ve made your own cheat sheets for other games. What makes it easier for you to master a game system?
Doctor Who: Adventures in Time and Space is published by Cubicle 7, copyright 2009. Doctor Who and all associated properties are trademarked by the BBC (British Broadcasting Corporation).