El Ministerio del Tiempo

El Ministerio del Tiempo

There is a new series on Netflix which I have been enjoying, called The Ministry of Time (El Ministerio del Tiempo), it is a Spanish series about a government department in Spain responsible for the looking after the “doors of time”.

In the first season there are three main characters.

El Ministerio del Tiempo Team

Amelia Folch is the leader of the protagonist patrol. She is a late 19th century pioneering university student a

Julián Martínez is a trained SAMUR paramedic from 21st century Madrid.

Alonso de Entrerríos is a highly experienced 16th century soldier from Seville,

I do enjoy TV series and films about time travel, even if they do sometimes give me a headache when it comes to paradoxes.
I enjoyed the first season of Timeless which had a similar concept and characters.

Unlike many of the UK and US series, the Ministry of Time does not feature a secret military unit or spy team, these are government bureaucrats who struggle with pay freezes and budget cuts as well as trying to maintain the timeline.

The premise is that in the heart of Madrid is a secret ministry that through doors provides access to the past. These doors cover a range of times and places across Spain. There are also other doors that “rebel” elements have access to and attempt to change the course of history.

The episodes I have seen have covered the Spanish Armada, the Civil War in the 1930s and various other aspects of Spanish history. I do find myself delving into Wikipedia to discover more about Spanish history.

There are some issues that I don’t get. People from the past can travel to the future (the present), however people from the present can only travel to the past and are unable to travel to the future. It would appear that the present is the only future you can travel to.

Another aspect I find troubling is that according to the initial episodes, the time behind each door travels forward at the same speed, so when two days pass in the present, two days pass in the past. Then in another episode they talk about a door which is stuck in a time loop, the day repeats itself. What troubled me was that the team went to that day five times, but never met themselves. If the day resets behind that door, then there was nothing they could do to change the timeline.

Despite the weird time travel problems that arise in a series like this, I do enjoy it.

One aspect of the series that may put you off is that it is in Spanish and is subtitled. I don’t mind this, but I know for some it’s a deal breaker.

From a gaming perspective, there are lots of ideas in the series which could be translated to the tabletop.

Steampunk Old West: Time Travel

Old West

This is a series of blog articles, updating and based on my original article on Steampunk Old West. I will be posting a few blog articles over the next week or so on my experiences and thoughts on taking the old west and adding a dash of victorian science fiction. I have painted and have been painting up some Foundry Old West figures for use with the Legends of the Old West Warhammer Historical rules. I liked the concept of a traditional Old West game, however the film Cowboys and Aliens got me thinking about “different” old west backgrounds. I did first start thinking about adding Victorian Science Fiction or Steampunk elements to the games.
As well as aliens, and steampunk tech, another thing that could be added to the mix is time travel.

One inspiration for this was Harry Turtledove’s Guns of the South, in which South Africans travel in time and arm the Confederate South with the AK47. Adding 20th Century weaponry to the 19th Century can make for some interesting scenarios and games. The key really is to keep the weapons to a minimum, otherwise you no longer have an old west game, it’s just a moderns game but with cowboys!

Another idea would be to put some modern day soldiers in the old west. Though having the advantage of modern weapons, the journey back in time would be confusing and the modern day soldiers would be hesitant and unsure.

Another variation would be to follow a Star Trek style scenario have have future humans travel back in time to the old west. They could be armed with phaser style weaponry.

Star Trek: The Next Generation had a few old west holodeck adventures and that could be another mechanism for having games with cowboys and future tech. For example the Borg invade the Enterprise holodeck and the Star Fleet personnel need to team up with cowboy holograms to defeat them.

“Spectre of the Gun” (originally titled “The Last Gunfight”) is an episode from the third season of the original science fiction television series Star Trek that was first broadcast on October 25, 1968. In this episode, having been found trespassors into Melkotian space, Captain Kirk and his companions are sent to die in a psychic illusion that takes the form of the town of Tombstone, Arizona, on Earth on the historic date October 26, 1881.

A Town Called Mercy

Of course if we are talking about Time Travel then we mustn’t forget the Doctor. Across his many generations he has travelled to the Old West, including the recent episode, A Town Called Mercy. This episode saw the Doctor, Rory and Amy visiting the American Frontier, or “Wild West”, where they encounter a town which is cut off from the rest of the frontier until they hand over Kahler-Jex, an alien doctor, to a cyborg called the Gunslinger. However, the Gunslinger is a product of experiments by Jex to win a civil war on his planet, and the Doctor is unsure of what is the right thing to do.

The first Doctor also visited the wild west in The Gunfighters, where he interacted with the main protagonists in the gunfight at the O.K. Corral.

I already have a few Doctor Who miniatures that are on my workbench.

Why You Can’t Travel Back in Time and Kill Hitler

Nice article on the problems with time travel and travelling back in time to assassinate Hitler.

Next month sees the release of Valkyrie, a film about Claus von Stauffenberg, the man who tried to assassinate Adolph Hitler. Plenty of time travelers have had the same idea, although their plan was to kill Hitler before he enacted mass genocide. Their intentions may be noble, but the plans always seem to go awry, leaving history unchanged or even worse than when they left. We list all the ways their attempts go wrong, so you can plan your time travel accordingly.

The article that is mentioned and linked to that I enjoyed was Wikihistory by Desmond Warzel:

One of the bylaws of the International Association of Time Travelers states that you can’t kill Hitler. The problem is, everybody kills Hitler on their first trip. This leaves more experienced time travelers the onerous task of undoing the historical edits of n00bs.

Final Impact

Hey a German World War Two Attack Helicopter….

This is the cover from the next (and final) John Birmingham Axis of Time Trilogy set of novels.

A story which looks at what would happen if a future carrier group found themselves back in the middle of World War Two.

I enjoyed the first two novels so I think I will get this one, however it is not released until January 30th 2007.

Buy it from Amazon.