I don’t know about you but I’m a little narked at Ubuntu forcing the PulseAudio issue. It sucks; big sweaty nut sacks worth of sucks!
I’ve seen a whole bunch of threads saying “don’t remove it, it’ll destroy your soul and rape your nasal passages” but that’s a load of tosh. I’ve removed it on Ubuntu 9.04, 9.10 and Mint Linux Gloria (8) without any issues. Actually, by removing it and going back to ALSA I now have a working sound in Skype, Urban Terror and WormUx where as I never did before.
Here’s what you do:
Fire up Synaptic
Quick Search for Pulse
Remove PulseAudio, it’ll remove a ton of dependencies
Quick Search for Alsa
Install gnome-alsamixer and alsa-oss
Click apply. Reboot your PC and it should still start up with sound. Skype will need to be reconfigured to use ALSA but the games will automatically have audio again.