Alphys

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Character
Name: Alphys
Occupation: Royal Scientist
Title/Rank: Doctor
Location:
Status: Varies based on route
Relationships: Undyne (crush), Asgore Dreemurr (boss, crush), Mettaton (friend, "creation")
Fandom: Undertale, Deltarune
Other:
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Alphys is a major character from Undertale. She also has a minor appearance in Deltarune.

Canon Overview

In Undertale

Alphys is a character who first appears in the Hotland area. She is the Royal Scientist, and has been observing Frisk's journey through the Underground over security cameras; she claims to have grown fond of them while watching them and offers to guide them through the area, upgrading their phone and signing them up for the local social networking service so that they repeatedly receive notifications from her as well as her phone calls throughout their journey.

She helps Frisk deal with the various challenges set out by Mettaton, who she claims has gone berserk after she made a mistake upgrading him to help fight humans; Mettaton later reveals that this was all an act set up by the two of them so that Alphys could convince Frisk that she is a good person and a competent helper, befriend them, and convince them to stay in the Underground. This act falls through when Mettaton goes off-script, and Alphys tells Frisk the truth, that they will not be able to get through the Barrier without taking a monster soul. In all Neutral endings where either Undyne or Mettaton die, she is strongly implied to kill herself.

In the Genocide/No Mercy route, Alphys does not appear directly at all, but other monsters explain that she has taken charge and evacuated all remaining monsters to a safe place. Failing to fulfill the kill counts in Hotland or the Core is the only way to get a Neutral ending where Alphys survives despite Undyne and Mettaton's deaths; in this ending she becomes the new ruler of the Underground because there is no one else left to lead the monsters.

Alphys' past and her relationship with Undyne both have a major focus in the Pacifist Route-exclusive events, and the player finds out why she is so self-negative and anxious. She and Undyne become an official couple at the end of the game, and they are seen together at the beach during the end credits.

Alphys is portrayed as an anime nerd and a fan of the fictional show Mew Mew Kissy Cutie. She is depicted as taking part in many fannish behaviors in the story, such as writing RPF and posting wank about the tonal shift in Mew Mew Kissy Cutie's sequel.

In Deltarune

Deltarune's version of Alphys is Hometown's only high school teacher, who is in charge of Kris' class. She shows a desire to be considered the "cool teacher" but her anxious behavior is otherwise similar to that of Undertale Alphys. She still has a one-sided crush on Asgore in this world, but apparently has not met Undyne yet. She is a fan of video games and of Western cartoons and comics as well as of anime, and humorously is a fan of Mew Mew Kissy Cutie 2 who hates the original series, in comparison to Undertale's Alphys.

There are many consequences to her being a teacher instead of a scientist: Deltarune's Mettaton still has no body, and all the monsters who are part of the Amalgamates in Undertale are dead for good.

Fandom

Alphys enjoys less popularity than the more bombastic characters of the game, either seen as "annoying" or "problematic" by some; however, her fans have a fierce affection for her, and many critics and reviewers praised Alphys' portrayal as a flawed and compelling character and a queer woman whose story is prominently featured in the Pacifist route. When discussing that he considered including an option to turn off her SNS notifications but ultimately didn't,[1] Toby mentioned that her messages were a highlight of the game for some fans while others found them annoying.[2]

Since Alphys does not have her own unique boss battle in-game, fanmade battles against her are a popular subject in fan games.

The name of the area where Alphys begins ranting about Mew Mew Kissy Cutie 2, "Bad Opinion Zone", has been adopted by fans to jokingly refer to wank and other opinionated debate, as well as to passive-aggressively decry opinions that they themselves do not agree with.

Fan Theories

Aside from building Mettaton's body, Alphys is depicted in-game as having built various different complicated machines, sometimes comically fast as in the case of Frisk's phone; this leads some fans to theorize that she was originally an engineer by trade and is not really a scientist. Other fans, who feel that it would be in poor taste to make Alphys not a scientist given how rare female scientist characters are in general, portray her as a genius polymath capable in many different disciplines.

Undertale Alphys and Deltarune Alphys' different opinions on the Mew Mew Kissy Cutie series seem to point to its tonal differences being a metaphor for the gentle and friendly atmosphere of Undertale's Pacifist route vs Delatrune's darker, more claustrophobic and mature ambiance.

Common Pairings

Wank

Alphys' sexuality is often the subject of fan wank; while she currently has romantic feelings for Undyne and winds up together with her at the end of the game, she is also depicted as having or once having had a crush on Asgore Dreemurr as well, as discussed by Mettaton in his quiz show or her old friends Bratty and Catty. Some fans claim her as a lesbian character who only thought she had a crush on Asgore due to compulsory heterosexuality, while others claim her as bisexual and see the opposing opinion as biphobia.

Fans of Alphys also tend to have a distaste for fan content where Sans is depicted as secretly a brilliant scientist, as this can sometimes overshadow Alphys' canonical accomplishments. Her fans complain of her being an underappreciated character in general, overshadowed by male cast members and by Undyne.

Meanwhile, Alphys' vocal detractors often complain that she should not have been allowed to have a happy ending after creating the Amalgamates and hiding them from their families for so long. Some of these detractors simply missed the postgame conversation where Alphys is revealed to have been fired from her job, while others believe that this is still too soft a consequence. For instance, game critics Austin Walker and Natalie Watson of Waypoint discuss in their Best Games of 2018 podcast review that Alphys' happy ending tarnished their overall experience with Undertale and they wanted her to be punished more prominently and severely, complaining that they wanted the narrative's moral judgments to be more black and white.[3]

Alphys' fans generally regard this type of character bashing and these complaints as missing the point of the whole game.

Fanworks

Fanfic

Fanart

Fan Videos

Fanmixes

Meta

Archives and Fannish Links

References

  1. There's a variable in Undertale that turns off Alphys' notifications. Planned to let you turn them off manually at one point but didn't. Toby Fox on Twitter, posted 13 June 2016 (retrieved 30 March 2019)
  2. Her notifications are definitely a highlight for some people but the most annoying part of the game for some other people... Toby Fox on Twitter, posted 13 June 2016 (retrieved 30 March 2019)
  3. Our Favorite Games of 2018: Austin and Natalie Don't Know How to Shut Up - Austin Walker, posted 26 December 2018 (retrieved 3 March 2019)