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Nightmare Fuel / Oddworld

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For a series of platformers (except Stranger's Wrath) that run on Ugly Cute, Black Comedy and the occasional bout of Toilet Humour, the Oddworld series has a lot of very dark themes and terrifying moments.

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  • The entire grim setting of the original two games. Dark, gritty, processing meats with Ludicrous Gibs or bones and tears for profits that drive species into extinction, and filled to the brim with Mudokon slaves that are beaten and tortured as practically a way to kill time. If it isn't the wildlife trying to munch poor Abe down, it's the RuptureFarms security forces that are the size of a small army tearing their way through everything just to kill him. Crapsack World doesn't even begin to describe it.
  • The Scrabs are even described in the first game's manuals as "Territorial nightmares on four legs" and they certainly live up to that description. Between the several-foot long jaw, immense claws and humanoid torsos, they're not the cuddliest things you'll find around Oddworld, and that's saying a lot.
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  • To some players, especially younger ones, the Mudokons can be rather unnerving, mainly due to their bloodshot yellow eyes, weird foreheads, and the fact that they're the most human-like lifeform on Oddworld.
  • The bad endings of the first three games.
    • In Abe's Oddysee, Abe gets caught by Molluck and left hanging by his arms over a meat grinder (Which also happens in the good ending). After this, Big Face and some colleagues decide to abandon him for not saving enough Mudokons, leading to him getting dropped into the meat grinder and exploding into chunks and blood, with a few spurts flying out as Molluck and his Slig henchman laugh evilly. And since, unlike Abe's Exoddus, Abe doesn't turn into a cluster of birds in this ending, the implication is that Abe just got violently Killed Off for Real.
    • While Abe's Exoddus' bad ending isn't as creepy as the last or following games', it's still creepy in a way. Some Mudokons shut off the self-destruct sequence in a fit of anger at Abe, and knock him cold with an empty bottle of brew, resulting in his capture by the Brewmaster. He wakes up to finding himself stuck in a tear extractor, begging not to get electrocuted. The Brewmaster decides to increase the voltage to the maximum, shocking him in a greater magnitude than anyone else, with him screaming in pain before disintegrating into a cluster of birds.
    • The Munch's Oddysee ending is considered to be the worst of them all. Outraged that they were abandoned to cosmetic experimentation, the heavily-mutilated Fuzzles gang up on Abe and Munch while setting off the alarms, resulting in the Vykkers capturing the duo and killing Abe; the game then cuts to Munch's race ending with him being violently eviscerated for his lungs (which are to be sold). Following this is a newspaper detailing everything going downhill afterwards, with the last can of Gabbiar getting eaten, destroying any chance of the species coming back, the queen Glukkon getting a new pair of lungs, and the rest of the generations of Mudokons being doomed to birth as slaves.
  • The antagonists of the first two games suffered some serious Villain Decay when it came to Exoddus, but only because the game had to be rushed in a nine month development period and Executive Meddling in the process. The teaser trailer for its Video Game Remake as Soulstorm, on the other hand, shows the Mudokons being subjected to horrifying experimentation, lining up for said experiments carrying their own body bags, and being worked and stressed into death and insanity before being filed away with the rest of the corpses. This isn't just Darker and Edgier - this is what Exoddus was intended to be.

Abe's Oddysee

https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/mudokanpop.png
"This new kind of meat? IT WAS US!"
  • The original design for the Mudokon Pop, as pictured to the right - a Mudokon's head grotesquely impaled on a stick. This was thankfully changed into a more friendly design in the Japanese version and the New N' Tasty remake.
    • Abe's reaction to seeing it is particularly frightening, as his delivery in the nightmarish intro is the one time in the cutscenes that his narration breaks from the Creepy Monotone and expresses genuine terror.
  • If you look closely at the spiked barriers in the Free-Fire Zone outside the factory, you can see Mudokon corpses Impaled with Extreme Prejudice on the spikes. This is not only horrifying, but also raises many questions: is this how the Sligs got rid of the dead slaves before Mudokon Pops were conceptualised, or did some Mudokons try to escape before Abe but failed?
  • The unused trailer for Oddysee, Guardian Angel. The trailer shows a nightmarish-looking hovering robot with a Voice of the Legion talking to Abe in what looks to be a waste silo, before going at him with blades and saws as the trailer cuts to the game title.
    Robot: Just because life is doomed and everyone wants to eat you doesn't mean there's no hope! 'Ya need to look within… If 'ya wanna be free!
    Abe Help meeee…!
  • The audio Jump Scare of a Scrab screech that occurs on the copyright warning screen.

Abe's Exoddus

https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/blindmudokan.png
"That was before the Glukkons started stealing our bones. They used Mudokon slaves to do it. Blind ones that couldn't see. The Glukkons didn't want anyone to know what they were digging up..."
  • The blind Mudokons who have their eyes stitched shut, pictured on the right. They're blinded this way to prevent them from knowing that they're digging up their own dead ancestors.
    Caddicarus: This shit was dark, I never recovered from it, and for that I say FUCK YOU... to the legendary, limitless, luscious Lorne Lanning.
  • The very concept of Soulstorm Brew - a addictive and dangerous substance made from the bones of dead Mudokons and live Mudokon tears that gets Mudokons hooked on it and willing to do nearly anything to get more of it, enabling the Glukkons and Sligs to get Mudokons into "work" for the addictive brew, then kill them off for their tears and bones for the brew, which is then given to more Mudokons to make them work, thus beginning the cycle all over again in a never-ending "gift that keeps on giving".
  • The Fleeches - fast, tiny grub-like creatures who attack Abe with their tongues and slowly eat him with their tongues, with Abe's shriek of pain going up in pitch as he's continuously mauled by them. If that didn't sound horrifying, after attacking Abe five times, they grab him, swallow him, go into Balloon Belly mode and then suddenly return to their normal builds with a few birds flying out, presumably digesting Abe on the spot. Yikes.
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