Dear Alf August 2012

There once was a time when seekers of knowledge from across and beyond the nation would pilgrimage across deserts, forests, jungles, mountains, volcanos, swamps and…

There once was a time when seekers of knowledge from across and beyond the nation would pilgrimage across deserts, forests, jungles, mountains, volcanos, swamps and busy parking lots to sit in the shadow of a great and wise elder. One by one, they would put to him the questions that had puzzled their civilizations, kept them awake at night, torn down tribal relations, or were just interesting. No spiritual, ethical or epistemological ponderance was too much for the shaman, and he would always respond after deep, contemplative thought with the answer that enlightened the most.

These days you just pop down to Alf’s teahouse and have a natter with the barkeep.

IncredibleMeh: Hey alf, on my PS box for a two-pack of abe’s oddysee and abe’s exodus, i saw a picture of a mudokun holding a cooked glukkon head on a platter. Did you guys actualy eat the poor shmuck, and if so, how did he taste?

Alf: My friend, you’ve got it all wrong! That’s not the genuine head of an actual Glukkon! No no no, that would be atrocious behaviour, not the kind of thing freshly freed slaves should be doing. Our lives are now dedicated to the persuit of peace and happiness, not cruel and and violent vengence. Besides, Glukkons taste horrible.

Mach: Hey alf, have those Gabbit eggs hatched yet? Because that was 150 eggs and the. We’d to hatch them soon.

Alf: Well we haven’t found a can opener yet, so I sure hope they haven’t hatched. What a horrific way that would be to enter the world!

Mat: sekto has swum (is that even a word) away now, so steefs have no reason to hide now… right?

Alf: Sekto may have gone elsewhere for now, but even with the dam destroyed and the water free, the Mongo River isn’t trouble free. The valleys are still crawling with Clakkerz, Outlaws and Wolvarks, and the price of a Steef head remains astronomical. If I were a Steef, I’d still want to keep my massive head low and not stick my bulging neck out.

Also did he end up giving that idol back to the grubbs, or did he ebay it or something?

Alf: Well he got Moolah for it, so I guess he sold it to a Clakker trader. Grubb artefacts fetch a pretty penny, that’s why you see so many mines around.

Jordan: Hey Alf i was wondering where i would be able to buy some soulstorm brew from, got a sick party coming up and hoping you could supply.

Alf: Sure, just come down to my facility for treating folks addicted to SoulStorm Brew and I’ll get you the best stuff. Like, real Brew and everything. No tricksies. Drop on by!

Colin: What does it feel like for Abe when a possessed Slig dies?

Alf: I asked Abe and he said that it varies. When he gets shot it’s often a sudden shock, when he falls a long way it’s a horrible sinking sensation in his stomach. It also depends on how much advanced warning he gets. If he knows it’s coming he can give himself a couple of minutes to prepare and not be quite so fazed when he gets back to his own body. But every single time he does it, he feels guilty for taking the Slig’s life. Abe knows this kind of stuff has to be done, but he’d prefer to do it peacefully. Poor guy, I couldn’t stand to have that much on my conscience.

How do Spoocebows compare to Slig rifles?

Alf: Well they use renewable resources, aren’t used to subjugate people, and their trade doesn’t sponsor slavery and oppression, so they compare favorably in the ethical category.

GeneralMuffins: So I was wondering, if you had to join one of the tribe’s which would it be? The Mudomo, The Mudanchee, or the Fleech tribe? (the name was never given but one of the stinky dead guys had a specific headdress for the fleeches)

Alf: An interesting question, and for the purpose of giving an interesting answer I’m going to pretend they’re not all extinct. See now the Scrab is pretty good at getting things done: he tackles his problems head-on and doesn’t respond to silly, annoying questions with anything but a head-lowered, beak-extended charge attack. I like his style. But Paramites are easier to get along with, and as a fan liaison I need that image. So I think Mudomo is my answer. I’m not even gonna consider Fleeches. What’s wrong with you?

Tori: Who writes the Daily Deception newspaper?

Alf: The Daily Deception staff. They employ the greatest paparazzi, propagandists, phone hackers and ink slingers to write exactly what will influence the masses in the way they want. The power of the news is to grab your attention with provocative headlines, report only what they want you to know and believe, and pretend anything counter to that doesn’t exist. I’ve had this argument with Crig too many times.

turok098: do mudokkons have sexual organs

Alf: The queens and the drones do, but not us workers. We don’t need ’em. Too busy working. Now where’s my hackey sack?

Sack Mudockon: Ey there Alf I was just wondering. Why is Abe immune to soul storm brew sickness

Alf: You didn’t see the state he was in when he got back from SoulStorm Brewery. Trust me, he might have farted as much of that badness out as he could Mudokonly manage, but no one drinks Brew and gets away with it. He spent a long time in my Rehab recuperating, and I’ve got the boring memories to prove it.

also how do the glukkons ground up Mudockon bones to a liquid well Tata

Alf: Excuse me, I need to go and put my head into a bowl for a while. I’ll be back in time for the next question.

OddworldFan#1: Alf, do Mudokens have second names? If so what’s yours? If not then what would you like yours to be if you had one?

Alf: If I could have a second name it would have to be some kind of pun. “Alf Tannin” or “Alf Kettler”. What do you think, folks?

gizzybiscuits: Is Sam a monotreme? (Egg-laying mammal)

Alf: It doesn’t make a whole heap of sense to use fancy words like that round these parts. Life on Oddworld evolved on Oddworld, quite separate from the categories you’re familiar with. Sure there are resemblances that you’ll recognize, but Mudokons can’t really be described as mammals. We did, after all, evolve from birds – hence our feathery hair. But Sam lays eggs, yeah.

How good or bad does Stranger deal with not being able to socialize in a herd of his own kind?

Alf: If he’s anything like most other species, badly. Mudokons, Grubbs, Gabbits, Sligs all of us are incredible social. Of course, he could be like an Elum. Elums get on perfectly well in groups but they also have no problem being on their own for indefinate stretches. It’s just another form of their hardiness. Or maybe he’s like a dominant Scrab and he can’t stand to be with others of his kind. Why are you even asking me? Go ask him!

S2R: Hi Alf, will you appear more often in the HD remakes ? (that bottle throwing story sounds awesome ;P)

Alf: Yeah, I could get some great royalties out of that gig. Good thinkin’, Boombatmud!

Finally, at the end of AO, there’s a scrab and a paramite beside Abe and Bigface, why aren’t they attacking muds ?

Alf: They’re ceremonial and fully trained to remain calm and still when presented with large crowds of juicy, tasty, yummy, delicious Mudokons. Wait, did I just say that? I think I creeped myself out.

1- Seeing how dangerous the mine car is, who’s suposed to ride it ?

Alf: Whoever doesn’t want to be on the receiving end of all that danger!

2- Is there fleeches in western mudos ?

Alf: There are Fleeches everywhere if you know the right places to look.

3- Which kind of slig do you fear the most, walking or flying sligs ?

Alf: Walking Sligs. Walking Sligs could come at you from any angle. They could be perched atop a hill or hiding in a hole in the ground. There’s a nothing you can do to protect yourself from a Slig on foot except try to dive behind the nearest cover and hope there’s a way out. Flying Sligs can only come from one direction: up. They’re so noisy you could hear them descending in a nightclub and you can protect yourself by simply opening an umbrella. Easy. Don’t know why Abe didn’t think of it. What a chump.

Could you describe what a slig’s face looks like? It’s cool, I don’t need to sleep ever again anway. Thanks Alf.

Alf: Words cannot describe the horror. Only an ear-piercing scream.

Zach: Hey Alf I got a question for ya! If those bird portals can take Abe in and out of high security areas then why can’t they just take him directly to where the mudokens he needs to save, or to a certain glukon he needs to assassinate are? Often times he seems to need to run/sneak through lots of annoying sligs and other defenses.

Alf: Some reason roads can’t bend and sway to give you a direct route to your destination. Bird portals are where they are, no matter how lazy you wanna be!

Fawaz: alf hello please can you tell us something about squeek

Alf: His name is Squeek.

Lotsa Questions: Where did Squeek get his name from? If you’ve met him yet *wink*.

Alf: Oh gee, I dunno, maybe his momma gave it to him.

Kyle: I was just wondering if Squeek’s Oddysee would include the journey to Ma’Spa or if it would be skipped over? Since there’s been talk about future plans for Squeek but not Munch’s Exoddus, I was just curious.

Alf: If I could divine the future, Kyle, I’d be finding out the upcoming trends in tea consumption and the destined winners of hackey sack tournaments, not some rubbish about a mythical spawning grounds. Honestly, do you know whether slapsang or oddlong will be more popular in three months? No? I’ll go back to reading palms.

Will gameplay within the Quintology always include rescuing Mudokons, etc?

Alf: As long as there are Mudokons to be rescued, I don’t see how it couldn’t. Unless Abe has a sudden change of heart. Come to think of it, he has been sporting a pair of very shifty eyes these past few weeks.

Jack: Hi Alf! just wondering if you could answer this question. Who created the robot Glukkons in Rupture farms on the first game?

Alf: I only lived in RuptureFarms from the very moment I hatched from my egg to the day Abe rescued me 15 years later, so you’ll have to enlighten me about these robots you’ve been seeing. The only mechanical creep I remember was the factory Shrink, and you didn’t see him unless you’d done something majorly wrong. Like that time I filled a vendo with Meetle Shanks instead of Meep Shavings, and our supervisor Neel got an allergic reaction from them. Ever seen a tree grow around a cable or a fence or something? That’s exactly how he swelled up around his mask. It was disgusting. I have no idea what robot Glukkons you’re thinking of.

That’s all for this super-delayed edition of Dear Alf, but I’ll be back later this very freakin’ month to deliver another batch of enlightenment to make up for my recent absense. My deepest, tastiest apologies to everyone who’s been waiting so long for a Dear Alf, and especially to those of you who’ve entrusted me with their delicious questions for so long.

I’ll probably be working through a bit of a backlog for a short while, but don’t you dare think you shouldn’t keep sending me every question under the sun for inclusion in a future edition of Dear Alf! You can email me, you can tweet me, you can even go and pester me on Facebook! Remember: the only bad question is the one you don’t ask! Take care, Alfnauts!