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The Vampire Squid (Vampyroteuthis infernalis) is a small species of deep-sea cephalopod found in both Endless Ocean and Endless Ocean 2.

Its scientific name literally translates from Latin into "vampire squid from hell". Despite the name "vampire squid", it does not consume blood. It also isn't actually a squid.

Encyclopedia Description

Endless Ocean

“These mollusks have dark red bodies with wing-like fins, eight arms, and two filamentous organs. They can be seen year-round inside deep underwater caves.

When they sense danger, they raise their tentacles to protect their bodies. They also have several photophores, or light-producing organs, at various points on their bodies that are used to attack predators. If this fails to dissuade an attacker, they can also discharge a sticky cloud of glowing mucus from the tips of their tentacles.

Despite having a scientific name that means “vampire squid from hell,” they do not suck blood and are not true squids. While they are distant ancestors of both octopuses and squids, they are actually a member of their own order, which is called Vampyromorphida.”

Endless Ocean 2

"Easily recognized by its wing-shaped fins, eight arms and two extended thread-like organs. It raises its tentacles to cover its body in a defensive posture when it feels threatened.

It has several light-producing organs and can release a viscous luminescent fluid from the tips of its tentacles. It uses these abilities freely to defend itself from predators by diverting their attention.

[Hellish Messenger]

Its scientific name, vampyroteuthis infernalis, literally means 'vampire squid from hell'. However, this species is not a squid, nor does it suck blood, so the scientific name probably comes from its appearance.

Incidentally, although it is not a squid, it isn't an octopus either. It is a creature closely related to the ancestors of squids and octopuses."

Introductory Dialogue

"Wow, a vampire squid! These guys have a really interesting defense mechanism. When they're attacked, they fold their tentacles up to protect themselves. Why not see for yourself? Go on--just a little poke is all it takes! They won't bite! Aren't deep-sea creatures the coolest things in the whole world?"

Location

Endless Ocean

A small group of vampire squids is found inside Fiend's Cave in the Abyss.

Endless Ocean 2

They are found in the Zahhab Region Depths in the Southern Cavern, and some are seen in the the Twin Caves as well.

Behavior

These small squids float around in small, loose groups, swimming slowly and staying close to their cavernous home. When poked, they 'shake' their tentacles in protest. They are bioluminescent, but this happens with a seemingly random pattern.

Notes

  • This is one of Oceana's favorite creatures.
  • The Fiend's Cave in Endless Ocean is also the home of a much larger squid. Perhaps they felt the presence of a 'family member', of sorts, and decided to make their homes there because of it.

Real-Life Information

  • Both games make accurate note of how the vampire squid defends itself - by bringing its arms up and around its body[1]. This works partially because the vampire squid has little hooklets on the insides of its arms that look quite threatening to deal with[2]; in reality, these hooks are soft extensions of the tentacle itself, called 'cirri' [3][4].
    • It also defends itself by way of the light-producing organs at the tip of each arm. These organs, as well as the squid's ability to release a glowing fluid, are correctly reported in both games as well[5].
      • There are light-producing organs called "photophores", and the vampire squid has them in various places across its body[6]. However, the glowing points at the tips of the arms are not photophores, and are simply called "arm-tip organs"[7][8][9].
      • This glowing fluid makes up for the fact that the vampire squid does not produce ink[10].
    • Pulling its arms up around itself also exposes a remarkably-dark section of the inner membrane, which helps disguise it against the black water it calls home[9][11].
    • The vampire squid pulling its arms up to surround itself is colloquially known as "pineapple" or "pumpkin" posture[7][11].
  • Like both in-game descriptions report, the vampire squid's scientific name means "vampire squid from hell", even though it is not vampiric nor a squid (nor from hell)[12]. Instead, it gets its name from a combination of factors; it is dark-reddish, and the webbing between its arms may look like a vampire's cape[2][11]. With these aspects, the hooklets on its arms, and its huge eyes, it leaves quite the visual impression despite being harmless[10].
  • Despite its name, the vampire squid does not suck blood from its victims. Instead, it eats marine snow, which is particulate matter that drifts down to the deep ocean from shallow waters[13]. It uses the two thread-like organs mentioned in both games in order to collect this snow, then gathers it up with its arms to eat it[14].
  • The order Vampyromorphida, to which the vampire squid belongs, is actually home to only the vampire squid, like both games report[15][16]. This lonesome status classes it as what is scientifically called a "phylogenetic relict", which means that it is the only living member of a taxonomic group that is otherwise extinct[3][7].

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