Daleks fans are in for a treat as a new computer-generated comic featuring the metal terrors hits the Internet. Trapped In Amber is a prequel to the 700-page epic web-comic Second Empire, which told the story of a Dalek civil war and depicted a very different side to the alien villains to the one we're used to seeing in Dr Who.

For one thing, the Doctor doesn't appear in the Dalek universe created by writer/designer Mechmaster. That is, apart from in a couple of gags, such as a Dalek news report that speculates, "Blue boxes in the sky - are they real?"

Daleks comic

Mechmaster's Daleks are more closely related to those in that appeared in a spin-off comic strip in 1960s magazine TV Century 21.

Unlike the TV versions, which are mostly limited to barking "Exterminate!" the Daleks in Second Empire have individual personalities, which leads to a cast of memorable characters from mad scientist Yttral to old soldier Grexzol, who continually bores the other Daleks with stories from his glory days in past battles.

Dalek civil war

It is a plan by Dalek leader the Golden Emperor to genetically remove such idiosyncrasies from the Dalek race that leads to an intergalactic war between the Emperor's army and a rebel colony lead by Dalek general Xenol. The battle between the factions leads to impressive battle scenes involving thousands of Daleks and results in some stunning art work depicting space ship interiors, alien planet vistas, and a huge variety of variations on the basic Dalek design, including an eye-catching range of colour schemes.

Dalek art work

But impressive as the art work is, it's Mechmaster's writing that impresses most. As well as genuinely thrilling action sequences, Second Empire features a range of pop-culture references that send up or pay homage to other film and TV universes, from James Bond to Star Wars and Star Trek, all served up with a string of one-line gags.

Trapped In Amber takes place before the events of Second Empire and finds the Daleks at war with their arch enemies the Mechanoids. It includes the welcome return of old soldier Grexzol.

Ongoing story

Fans anxious to find out what happens could be in for a long wait, however. Mechmaster began Second Empire around 2007, expecting it to last about 30 pages, but such was the epic scale of the comic that he only completed it in 2015.

So far, he's posted sixteen pages of Trapped In Amber and assures us more will appear as he completes them.