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Agent 3 against an army of Octarians

The Octarians are a species of octopus ruled by DJ Octavio, and the main antagonistic species of the story mode in the Splatoon series. They reside in Octo Valley and Octo Canyon, and are responsible for stealing Zapfish from Inkopolis. Their main ink color is purple or magenta. At one point the Octarians were a neutral species coexisting with Inklings, but this ended as the result of conflicting interests of territory that lead to the beginning of the Great Turf War, in which the Octarians lost.

Unlike Inklings, the species includes a great number of variants that act differently from each other. The Octolings can shift between humanoid and mollusk forms similarly to Inklings.

History and events

The ancestors of Octarians lived in the waters of Alterna, an underground human settlement built to escape an apocalypse caused by warfare and intesified natural disasters. During the accidental collapse of the settlement, psychoreactive liquid crystals that retained the humans' desire to return to the surface fell into the water, which were absorbed by the sea life and implanted the desire into them, causing their evolution to accelerate dramatically.

A hundred years before the events of Splatoon, the Octarians of Inkadia used to have a friendly relationship with the Inklings, but further rising sea levels caused the two species to engage in a war called the Great Turf War. During the war, the Octarians used technology such as the Great Octoweapons, which was more advanced than the Inklings. The Sunken Scrolls state that the Octarians were winning the war, but lost momentum due to the Great Octoweapons being turned off by being unintentionally deprived of their plug. The Inklings emerged victorious, which forced the Octarians to retreat and live in underground domes located in Octo Valley and Octo Canyon, where they would plan their revenge.[1]

The Inklings had a fighting force called the Squidbeak Splatoon which was led by Cap'n Cuttlefish. While the Squidbeak Splatoon ceased to be, Cuttlefish continued looking out for the Octarians after their defeat, using cabins in Octo Valley and Octo Canyon as lookouts.


The Octarian domes had been losing energy during Splatoon, which may have caused some of them to no longer be habitable as suggested by the comic in The Art of Splatoon. The Octarians stole the Great Zapfish, which helps power Inkopolis, and used it to power DJ Octavio's Great Octoweapon while using other Zapfish to power the rest of the facilities and bosses. Octarians also invaded Inkopolis, as evidenced by the missions that take place in Inkopolis during evening and nighttime, presumably while Inklings or other residents are not around.

To deal with this, Cap'n Cuttlefish started the New Squidbeak Splatoon, which consists of his granddaughters Callie and Marie as Agents 1 and 2, and recruits an additional member known as Agent 3 to rescue the Great Zapfish and stop DJ Octavio's plans. Agent 3 navigated through the Octo Valley domes and confronted DJ Octavio in a final battle. In this battle, DJ Octavio used the Octobot King weapon, and during the battle, the Squid Sisters managed to hijack his music and play the Calamari Inkantation. While not visible in the game, several Octarians were spectating the battle, where this performance is said to have changed their lives. Even DJ Octavio is seen dancing to the song before he is defeated by Agent 3 and imprisoned in a snow globe.

Splatoon 2

During the events leading up to Splatoon 2, the Octarians managed to brainwash Callie by equipping her with a pair of hypnoshades and freed DJ Octavio. The Octarians stole the Great Zapfish again and rebuilt the Octostomp as well as employing Octobosses now stationed in Octo Canyon. While Callie was brainwashed, it was implied that she helped decorate Octo Canyon after deeming it ugly. She can also be heard singing in the background music present at the Octo Canyon domes, where these vocals are reversed versions of her existing work.[2] Cap'n Cuttlefish had gone on a research trip with Agent 3, so Marie took on the role to look over the Octarians while they are gone and recruited Agent 4 to help get the Great Zapfish back and rescue Callie. The final battle is staged like a concert, with multiple Octarians watching as an audience around an arena, where DJ Octavio used the Octobot King II to fight Agent 4. DJ Octavio is seen playing on the turntables with wasabi sticks while Callie stands on the upper part of the machine, singing and dancing. After they defeat DJ Octavio, he is again imprisoned in a snow globe, which is stationed in Tentakeel Outpost by the cabin.

Octo Expansion

The events of the Octo Expansion reveal that several Octarians, or at least Octolings, have had their "souls freed" by hearing the Calamari Inkantation from the fight Agent 3 had against DJ Octavio. Many of these Octolings defected and found their way to Inkopolis, where they have integrated themselves to live among the Inklings.

It is also shown that many Octarians had been kidnapped and taken to another underground facility located under the sea, which belongs to Kamabo Corporation. These Octarians underwent several tests with the premise that they would return to the surface if they succeed. These tests served to select out the best genes, where the successful test subjects get tricked into building a machine that blends them alive into a paste of supreme DNA. Other Octarians get Sanitized, which is a state reminiscent of zombie[3] where they lose their sense of self and free will, and submit to Kamabo Co's ideas. They have also had "life's energies" purged from them, as Marina states that they show no pulse or signs of life. Commander Tartar is responsible for this plot, who is an AI made by the professor to guide the next intelligent lifeform to avoid the same fate as humans did. The AI founded Kamabo Co., which had concluded that the desire to fight others must be eliminated in order to prevent yet another extinction, and believed that combining the best individuals that they had tested in the Deepsea Metro would eliminate "the general idea of the individual." After that, they could create a new lifeform, and in turn a harmonious world.[4]

Agent 8 is one of the Octolings who ended up in the facility and lost their memories. They are revealed to be test subject number 10,008, which suggests that there may have been 10,007 other test subjects in the facility. Given that only Octarians were sanitized and Octarian technology was frequently used for the tests, most test subjects may have been Octarian. This is further hinted by Commander Tartar's animosity towards specifically Inklings and Octarians, and that the denizens of the deep are explained to not necessarily be test subjects.[3] Sanitized versions of the Octobosses that Agent 4 fought in Octo Canyon are also present in the testing facilities.

Agent 8 is an Octoling who had their "soul freed" after listening to Calamari Inkantation. This song is also one of the first things they remember after losing their memory as well as motivating them to reach Inkopolis. They manage to escape the facility with the help of Off the Hook and help defend Inkopolis and the world from the NILS statue. While being stuck underground in the facility, it is possible to read Agent 8's thoughts on the Octarians and their previous life in the army, as well as Marina's worry about being revealed to be an Octoling who also worked for the army. Cap'n Cuttlefish was apprehensive of the defected Octarians at first but showed support throughout the Octo Expansion.

The Inklings in Inkopolis are said to be unaware that Octolings are Octarians, and instead, assume that they are Inklings with weird hairstyles. This is attributed to the Inklings' laid-back and inattentive lifestyle.[3] It is revealed that Inklings do learn about Octarians and their army in schools, and Pearl did recognize the Sanitized Octarians as Octarians, which may imply that descriptions or depictions of Octolings are absent in Inkling school curriculum for Inklings not to notice.

Splatoon 3

In Splatoon 3, the Octarians make a return once again, this time affected by Fuzzy Ooze. DJ Octavio is initially assumed to have been involved in the theft of the Great Zapfish again, but Cuttlefish and Agent 3 soon realize that he is not involved in it and in fact had discovered that his entire army had vanished under mysterious circumstances. It is later revealed that Mr. Grizz is the true culprit and fuzzified the Octarians as part of his plan to restore a supposed missing balance in nature, and in addition, for unknown reasons, allowed them to be used in the various kettles in Alterna.

Appearance and traits

Three Octarians; a humanoid Octoling, and two born from severed tentacles.

Like Inklings, Octarians are ink-based creatures that use their ink as ammunition for their weapons. Octarians come in two types: those born from severed tentacles, and the humanoid Octolings.[5] Octarians severed from tentacles carry two protruding, circular eyeballs with a green sclera and purple-blue small irises with purple markings around the eyeballs. They have large, round, connected, purple lips, but lack other visible features such as ears or noses. All severed Octarians have two small and stubby legs but otherwise lack humanoid limbs.

The Octolings appear as humanoids that can swap into a octopus form, similarly to Inklings. The octopus forms for the Octolings who are seen working for the army still have green sclera and small irises and pupils as opposed to the defected Octolings, which have white sclera and bigger irises and pupils. Both of these Octolings have black markings around their eyes, except for DJ Octavio, who still has purple eyelids in his octopus form. When splatted, they have an octopus "ghost" which flies away. Currently, only Octolings and the Octo Samurai have shown this ghost animation, as well as being the only ones shown respawning from a spawn point.

The majority of Octarians have red tentacles and use various shades of purple/magenta for their ink color. Octolings have red hair, while Elite Octolings have black or dark red hair. The octopus forms of Octolings, however, match their ink color just like Inklings. It is also shown that at least Octolings are capable of changing ink color, based on the defected Octolings living in Inkopolis. The more tentacles an Octarian has, the more intelligent they are, for example, Twintacle Octotroopers are more intelligent than regular Octotroopers, and the Octolings are more intelligent than Twintacles.[5] Aside from the Octolings, the rest of the Octarians' genders remain unknown, with the exceptions of Octo Samurai and DJ Octavio who are referred to as male.


While the Octolings of the Splatlands seem to share their culture with the Inklings there, the Octarians of Inkadia have a very different culture from the Inklings, and are frequently described as diligent, serious-minded and loyal to their leader. Even defected Octarians such as Agent 8 still seem to respect DJ Octavio, based on a mem cake. Marina also has a sticker of the text from DJ Octavio's album art on her laptop as seen in the Octo Expansion.

It appears that Octarians are a part of the army at an early age as revealed by documents on Marina, where she started elementary training at the age of 6 and designed weapons when she was 10.


The Octarian society features a lot of machinery, which is also present in their military. Octarians are skilled with technology and machinery, and their capabilities are described as being 15 years ahead of the rest of the world.[5] Inventions such as floating platforms are staple examples of Octarian technology as revealed by Cap'n Cuttlefish. They tend to hoard a lot to not let anything go to waste, and frequently use ancient artifacts left from the humans of the past era for their technology, such as air conditioner fans for their UFOs[6][7] and telephone poles to make objects float[8], and are described to make them more efficient. Defected Octarians still seem to have an affinity with technology, as Marina still likes to develop machines and weapons as her hobby, and Agent 8 appreciates Sheldon's technical talk. The Octolings who live in Inkopolis also inspect weapons more carefully than Inklings when trying them out in Ammo Knights.

Octarians have a trade deal with the Salmonids, where they trade their technology for Power Eggs, which are described as a form of energy source.[9] This may explain why Power Eggs are present in the domes and why Octarians drop Power Eggs when defeated.

Like Inklings, Octarians are seen using a mixture of conventional weapons, such as Gatling guns, snipers and missiles, while also using weapons inspired by regular appliances such as bowling balls, stamps and showers. Octolings also use weapons that have an Inkling equivalent. In the Octo Expansion and Splatoon 3, Sanitized Octolings and Fuzzy Octolings respectively can use the same special weapons as Inklings.


Octarians wear uniforms or a standard set of clothes, which carry a general theme of having a black color and metal elements. The Octarians resembling tentacles usually only wear black boots with some peripherals relating to their attack methods; such as Octodivers wearing snorkels and Octocopters wearing propeller helmets. Octolings wear black, tight clothing exposing their midriff, black boots, metal plating and belts. Every Octoling in the army also wears goggles or shades which cover their eyes.

During Splatoon 2, the outfit worn by the Octolings changed, as well as certain Octarians having a different look for their gear and machines. It is unknown whether this is related to the difference in location between Octo Valley and Octo Canyon, or if they updated their look over time. However, in the past, Marina is seen wearing the old Octoling gear even though she is stated to have worked in Slimeskin Garrison in Octo Canyon. The new Octoling gear also uses the term "Neo" in its name, which implies that the gear is the new standard uniform and is not dependent on location.


Octarians seem to like music, as their leader is a DJ and the society has a band, Turquoise October, which plays music in each dome. The final Great Octo Weapon against Inklings also has music integrated into its design by featuring turntables and speakers that play DJ Octavio's music. Octarians were also invited to spectate both final battles, which were perceived as "concerts" according to the Sunken Scrolls. DJ Octavio also kidnapped Callie and had her work as a singer in the final battle in Splatoon 2. Her vocals can also be heard in Turquoise October music that plays in the Octo Canyon domes.

Hearing the Squid Sisters sing the Calamari Inkantation is also what caused many Octolings to defect to Inkling society.


Octarians have a language different from Inkling. In the Japanese version, DJ Octavio speaks only in katakana, which is usually used to display foreignness in the way the speaker speaks. It is also suggested that Marina sings in Octarian since her lyrics are rendered in katakana in the Splatune 2 booklet, where the developers confirmed that she is singing in a different language than Inkling.[10]

As seen with the Octoling amiibo, defected Octolings can have difficulties speaking Inkling and make several grammatical mistakes. In the Japanese version, Marina also speaks in a way that suggests she only recently has learned the Inkling language.

Known individual Octarians

Types of Octarians

See also: List of Octarians

Ground units

Air units


Great Octoweapons


Sanitized Octobosses

Return of the Mammalians Octobosses



Squid Research Lab here with what we believe is called a "shower thought." While contemplating our own bristles, we realized that Octarians now seem to be sporting magnificent manes of hair. But don't let those good locks fool you - warm 'n' fuzzy Octotroopers are still deadly!
— @SplatoonNA on Twitter[11]

In the manga series

In the end of Chapter 0: Yellow, a then-unnamed Specs flies over a group of Octotroopers and Octoballs. They appear again in the Hero Mode issues when Goggles and Rider are enlisted by Cap'n Cuttlefish to recapture the Great Zapfish. The Octo Expansion arc introduces the Sanitized Octarians as well as Agent 8 and other Octolings.



  • According to The Art of Splatoon, Octarians are not able to reproduce on their own and are thus created by cutting off a tentacle from a host. Their intelligence and rank are linked to how many limbs they possess, with high-class Octarians possessing more limbs. It was later confirmed that only common Octarians are cut from tentacles.[5]
    • Worth noting also is the presence of SashiMori's DJ, a ten-year-old Octoling. He possesses all eight tentacles and resembles an analogous phase in an Inkling's growth cycle, implying that Octolings and Inklings may share similar reproductive cycles.
  • Some characters use insults to refer to enemy Octarians, such as Marie repeatedly calling them for "Octoslobs" in Octo Canyon, Cap'n Cuttlefish calling them for "Octojerks" in Octo Valley, and Pearl once calling Sanitized Octarians for "Octo-nerds" in the Octo Expansion. The Inkling Boy amiibo, on the other hand, calls them "Octodudes".
  • Octarian society appears to have an affinity for DJs, as this is the profession of every confirmed Octarian musician, with Shiver being the only exception.
  • While most Octarians' genders remain unknown, there may be differences in what positions each gender can occupy, as it was revealed that only elite female Octolings are allowed to be a part of the specific Octoling troop that is encountered in the single-player campaigns.
  • In the Sweater vs. Sock Splatfest, it is implied that Octarians celebrate "Octivus", which seems to be a reference to Festivus, as opposed to Inklings, who celebrate "Squidmas". However, Octivus is only mentioned in the North American localization.
  • The spawning animation for normal Octarians shows them appearing after a swirl of purple ink. Sanitized Octarians, however, appear after a short series of green glitching effects. The same is true for their "getting splatted" animations; normal Octarians simply burst, while Sanitized Octarians burst with the same glitch effects as their spawning animation.
  • Some enemies act oddly at times, most likely to balance out the game so the player is not overwhelmed.
    • Ground enemies seem to miss more often when the camera is facing the other way.
    • Jumping repeatedly causes them to not hit any shots.
    • If there is more than one Octarian noticing the player, only one attacks.
      • This does not apply to later stages or in the Octo Expansion.
    • Flying enemies won't attack if the camera is not focused on them.
      • In later stages and in the Octo Expansion, they try to fly into view.
    • If more than two Octolings are attacking at the same time, one of them will disappear.
      • This animation is identical to the one that plays when a player disconnects or goes out of bounds in online matches.
      • This does not apply to later stages, the Octo Expansion, or Return of the Mammalians.


A real-life Shibuya Tower exhibit on 2018 shows the Japanese title of Octo Valley mode, "Octalien Strikes Back" (in Latin letters), showing that the name is intended to be a portmanteau of "octo" and "alien", possibly referencing their UFOs and Inkopolis invasion.[12] However, the English name is the romanization of the Japanese name instead of the intended "Octalien".

Names in other languages

Language Name Meaning
Japan Japanese オクタリアン
Octalien: from "octo" and "alien"[12]
Netherlands Dutch Octariaan Octarian
CanadaFrance French Octarien Octarian
Germany German Oktarianer Octarian
Italy Italian Octariani Octarian
Russia Russian Осьморянин
From осьминог os'minog (octopus), possibly море more (sea), and ending "янин" "yanin" meaning belonging to some nation

Transcription of English name
Spain Spanish (NOE) Octariano Octarian
China Chinese 章魚軍團[14]
Zhāngyú Jūntuán
Octopus Army
South Korea Korean 옥타리안