Meeches

Meech sketch by Steven Olds

Meeches are an extinct species of pack hunter1 endemic to Mudos. Mentioned only in passing at the start of Oddworld: Abe’s Oddysee2 and in fan relations material, it was intended for them to been seen later in the Oddworld Quintology.3

Population

The environmental conditions required by Meeches were much more fragile than those of most creatures; subsequently, Meeches were endemic to the immediate area around where RuptureFarms 1029 was built4—​thought to be open fields and plains, possibly savannah5, 6—​where they hunted Elums in huge packs.3 Their confined distribution ensured that the habitat loss and hunting of Meeches lead to such a rapid decline in their population and inevitable extinction.4 This extinction has not been officially admitted by RuptureFarms.7

It was once rumoured that a population of Meeches was discovered atop a plateau, but the Glukkons immediately relocated them to one of their hunting preserves.8 Alf’s friend Buddy lost huge amounts of weight on the South Meech Diet, but offered no proof that it was truly Meech he was eating.9 Alf has repeatedly tried to suggest that there may still be free Meeches.8, 10, 11

Physiology

Not much has ever been seen of Meeches, and their appearance detailed here has been deduced from one colourless concept sketch by Steven Olds and descriptions by Lorne Lanning and fan liaison Matt Lee. Meeches were brown,12 and stood about 3·5–4 feet (1–1·2 m) tall1 on two three‐toed legs.13 Red stripes12 ran across their armour‐plated back, which had large spikes running down their spine.13 Their mouth was Scrab‐like13, but they had four jaws.3 Their foreclaws (two per hand) were tiny and attached to their body by no visible arm.13

In other societies

In industrial society

Meech meat is eaten by consumers.2 Because Meeches could only be found in the area in which RuptureFarms was built, there was never a very big population of them, so their meat was rarer than other kinds (like Scrab and Paramite), and subsequently rather more expensive; some even considered Meech meat a delicacy.4 RuptureFarms 1029 was built in their natural environment, causing habitat loss, while it hunted Meeches for their meat to be made into the novelty meat snack Meech Munchies.2 However, these combined made short work of the Meeches, who are now thought completely extinct, although there is evidence that RuptureFarms have never admitted this.7

In native society

Mudokons revere Meeches in the same way they do all wildlife, but it has been questioned whether they worship them in the same way they do Scrabs and Paramites. No temple or tribe dedicated to Meeches has ever been explored, although Alf has admitted (quite how truthfully we can’t say) that had Meeches remained extant for Abe’s Temple Trials, he would have had to endure a third adventure in what the questioner named Meecharnia and the Meecharnian Temple;14 Alf later referred to ‘the Meechonian temple of the Mudmeechee lines’,15 almost certainly as a joke.

Production design

Meeches were always drawn and painted in concept art as being fairly green, but when they were modelled, animated, and actually running around in large packs in the Abe’s Oddysee game engine, they were made brown with red stripes running across their back.1, 12 No images or videos of these were archived before they were removed from the game. The data still exists, but won’t be taken from storage for a long time.1

The reasons why Meeches were removed from Abe’s Oddysee are not known, but although their only appearance in the games so far has been a fleeting mention by Abe in ‘This is RuptureFarms’ and the Meech Munchies poster, Lorne Lanning intended for Meeches to be seen later in the Oddworld Quintology so they could be brought back from extinction.3 At one point, Oddworld: The Hand of Odd was going to set before Abe’s birth,16 when Meeches still existed in the wild, and might have featured in the game.

Meech social structure is based on that of wolves1 or hyænae,3 while their body is reminiscent of dinosaurs: their weedy hands seem based off of those of tyrannosaurus rex, while their red striping is inspired by velociraptors.12

References

  1. Lee, Matt (07/07/2007). Email to Zerox. ‘HOLY C*APF*CK! SERIOUSLY!’. Post №33 in ‘HOLY C*APF*CK! MEECHES OMG!’ (originally ‘HOLY C*APF*CK! SERIOUSLY!’). Oddworld Discussion. Oddworld Forums.
  2. Oddworld Inhabitants (19/09/1997). ‘This is RuptureFarms’, 1·28. Oddworld: Abe’s Oddysee. GT Interactive. Abe: ‘We used to make Meech Munchies/Until the Meeches were through.’
  3. Lanning, Lorne (05/05/2000). ‘You want INSIDE info? How’s this…’ interview by souljah_73 and the Exoddus Club, question №5. The Exoddus Club. Yahoo! Clubs.
  4. Lee, Matt (10/07/2007). Email to Jordan. Post №17 in ‘Your oddworld e-mails’. Oddworld Discussion. Oddworld Forums.
  5. Alf (30/04/2001). Dear Alf 08, question №2. Alf’s Rehab & Tea. Oddworld.com.
  6. Oddworld Forums members (26/04/2008–12/05/2008). Posts №1 & 31–36 in ‘Meech Environment’. Oddworld Discussion. Oddworld Forums.
  7. Olds, Steven (a) & Cathy Johnson (c) (19/09/1997). RuptureFarms Meech Munchies advertisement. In Cathy Johnson & Daniel Wade (eds) (15/09/2004). ‘Oddworld: Abe’s Oddysee’, p. 57. The Art of Oddworld Inhabitants: The First Ten Years 1994–2004. Mylor: Ballistic Publishing.
  8. Alf (01/11/2000). Dear Alf 02, question №13. Alf’s Rehab & Tea. Oddworld.com.
  9. Crig (01/12/2003). ‘The South Meech Diet’. The Daily Deception Online December 2003. Oddworld.com.
  10. Alf (01/03/2001). Dear Alf 06, questions №13 & 22. Alf’s Rehab & Tea. Oddworld.com.
  11. Alf (01/06/2002). Dear Alf 19, question №6. Alf’s Rehab & Tea. Oddworld.com.
  12. Lee, Matt (02/07/2007). Email to Zerox. Post №1 in ‘HOLY C*APF*CK! MEECHES OMG!’ (originally ‘Meech colours revealed!’). Oddworld Discussion. Oddworld Forums.
  13. Olds, Steven (c. 1995). Meech concept sketch. From Oddworld Inhabitants (31/07/2000). ‘Meeches’. Oddworld Universe. Oddworld.com.
  14. Alf (07/2004). Dear Alf July 2004, question №12. Alf’s Rehab & Tea. Oddworld.com.
  15. Alf (08/2004). Dear Alf August 2004, question №15. Alf’s Rehab & Tea. Oddworld.com.
  16. Alf (01/03/2001). Dear Alf 06, question №16. Alf’s Rehab & Tea. Oddworld.com.