Gorman Disenza

Gorman Disenza is a disease on Oddworld that affects the extremely rich. For several years, fans questioned whether it was a canonical condition, but in 2008 Lorne explained that Gorman Disenza has an important part to play in Oddworld: Squeek’s Oddysee.1

Biology

Gorman Disenza is a viral2 disease that only affects the extremely rich, such as financial elitists and powerful businesspeople. It is fatal, but its progression can be completely halted by cryogenically freezing the sufferer. The cure for Gorman Disenza is not yet known, but it is thought that it will emerge from Gabbit blood. There are various research associations devoted to Gabbit experimentation in the hope of discovering the cure, many of which are funded by Lady Margaret’s grandmother, a sufferer of the disease who has been kept cryogenically frozen for more than a hundred years.1

Production history

Several ideas came together to inspire Gorman Disenza. One was Lorne’s observations of inheritance down rich families, where people would withhold their inheritance from their children and use it to fund research into curing a disease of which they’re dying, in an attempt to buy a longer life. Another was his being aware that many disease research organizations end up contributing only a small proportion of their income to actual research. Lorne then decided he wanted to create a disease that affected only the extremely rich, because he liked the idea of a disease that targeted behaviour over genetics or condition, feeling it to be more archetypal.1

The solution was Gorman Disenza, co‐created by Lorne and Paul O’Connor. Lorne took the word ‘gormandize’—​meaning to gorge—​then with Paul looked through names of diseases. They found ‘influenza’, and decided that ‘Gorman Disenza’ sounded suitably like it would be a disease.1

For several years, fans questioned whether it was a canonical condition, or one just made up as an example,3, 4 because until Lorne confirmed the existence of the disease in a 2008 fan interview,1 the only reference to Gorman Disenza was by Paul O’Connor in his final Oddworld: Munch’s Oddysee Designer Diary entry. Whilst giving an example of a game flow diagram, Paul casually described the virus rendering Munch unconscious:

Thus, if Munch has succumbed to the Gorman Disenza virus in the movie preceding a region, we know that the region needs to open with Munch unconscious and the player in control of Abe.2

Fandom

Since the start of 2007,5 the Gorman Disenza Virus has been available as a failsafe for moderators of the Oddworld Forums to deal with phoney members such as spambots and multis.6 It is a 437‐point infraction (changed from 15‐point in May 2008)7 with no set expiry. Consequently, the term ‘Gorman Disenza’ has been used as a verb, although with uncertain conjugation:

As a present participal:
As a past participal and adjective:

References

  1. Lanning, Lorne (15/08/2008). ‘Part 5: Glukkon history’ of ‘Nate interviews Lorne Lanning’. OddBlog. The Oddworld Library.
  2. O’Connor, Paul (18/01/2001). ‘Designing a Region’. Entry №15 in Oddworld: Munch’s Oddysee Designer Diary. Videogames.com.
  3. Nate (09–11/05/2004). Posts №11, 25, and 29 in ‘Oddworld Questions & Answers III’. Oddworld Discussion. Oddworld Forums.
  4. Nate & Max the Mug (11/11/2006). Posts №12, 16, and 17 in ‘What about Squeek???’. Oddworld Discussion. Oddworld Forums.
  5. Nate (15/01/2007). Post №409 in ‘Warning Reports’. Employee Lounge. Oddworld Forums.
  6. Alcar (18/02/2007). Post №30 in ‘New Infractions System’. Employee Lounge. Oddworld Forums.
  7. Nate (30/05/2008). Post №239 in ‘General Business’. Employee Loung. Oddworld Forums.
  8. Nate. Posts №571 (11/09/2007) & 734 (23/05/2008) in ‘Warning Reports’. Employee Lounge. Oddworld Forums.
  9. Mojo (02/05/2008). Post №714 in ‘Warning Reports’. Employee Lounge. Oddworld Forums.
  10. Nate. Posts №553 (17/08/2007), 618 (28/10/2007), 685 (15/02/2008), 691 (24/02/2008) & 695 (25/03/2008); and Max the Mug (01/07/2008). Post №755 in ‘Warning Reports’. Employee Lounge. Oddworld Forums.
  11. Nate. Posts №588 (20/09/2007) & 620 (29/09/2007); and Max the Mug (07/07/2008). Post №763 in ‘Warning Reports’. Employee Lounge. Oddworld Forums.
  12. Bullet Magnet (20/05/2008). Post №718 in ‘Warning Reports’. Employee Lounge. Oddworld Forums.
  13. Nate (22/05/2008). Post №725 in ‘Warning Reports’. Employee Lounge. Oddworld Forums.
  14. Nate. Posts №737 (30/05/2008), 743 (27/06/2008), 746 (29/06/2008) & 750 (29/06/2008); and Alcar. Posts №740 (02/06/2008) & 741 (03/06/2008) in ‘Warning Reports’. Employee Lounge. Oddworld Forums.
  15. Nate (01/07/2008). Post №754 in ‘Warning Reports’. Employee Lounge. Oddworld Forums.