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in the Cthulhu mythos, yog sothoth is depicted as a mass of splitting and fusing orbs, it is the past, present, and future and seemingly knows everything. but for the sake of trying to make it realistic and more feasible, I’ll take away the god like attributes and try to see if I can make it into a creature of explainable evolution. So, in the future, a group of scientists are sent towards a planet that is categorized to be able to support life. It indeed is capable of doing so, but the atmosphere and planetary pressures confine the scientist to ships and droids. After a week or so, they encounter a very interesting species, which they have code named them as, The yog sothoths.

Appearance and behavior

The species look like yellow soft orbs, seemingly capable of floating above the ground, this makes the scientist believe that the creatures are capable of keeping themselves aloft by using a specially evolved Buoyancy organ. The creatures are capable of eating both meat and plants, but will prefer dead organic matter, but upon feeding, they are extremely vulnerable because they take a long time to actually envelop and consume the food.

The species as a whole are social, and will protect the elderly and young of their group and are capable of communicating by either spraying pheromones or by making a low pitch of gurgles, growls, and thrumming noises. Reproduction seems to happen asexually, by budding off and forming a smaller version of itself, however, they will sometimes reproduce sexually by running into each other and staying connected for x amount of time, upon splitting, a smaller version of both will be a result of said splitting.

intelligence

Surprisingly, their seems to be a form of intelligence from these seemingly non sentient life forms. The adults of the group possess an intelligence compared to that of a 10 year old child, which results in them being vaguely more curious in things and have been seen to collect various rocks, plants, and sometimes animals, but will discard them when they have grown bored. There is evidence to suggest that their might be a brain, but sense in the future, there is a law that states that species can’t dissect or kill another intelligence being without consent.

species variation

If that wasn’t surprising enough, the group of scientists have found two different groups of the same species, ones with eyes, and ones with tentacles or tentacle like appendages. The ones with eyes are seemingly more intelligent that the common yog sothoth, seen to be trying to at least observe and understand what humans are, and in one occasion, have been seen to even try to communicate with one of the scientists. There are only four eyes on an individual, and are formed one by one with age. This version of the species have been seen to form stone like tools and are capable of preserving the food within there body’s for later consumption.

Now, the ones with tentacle like appendages are presumed to be the best and most efficient hunters, seeing as how they are capable of hunting down other creatures. When said meal is caught, it will send tiny root like veins into the nostrils or eyes of the creature, seemingly trying to eat the vital organs, lowering the chance of escape for the creature. This variation of the species is a little more primitive in intellect, and seems to have one compared to a carnivorous cow, calm and not particularly dangerous when not Hungry, but voracious and efficient when hungry.

extra facts

Scientist have compared this creature to a highly evolve slime mold, which explains how its capable of doing the various things it’s capable of doing. The creatures are capable of forming small to large pseudopodia, but upon formation, it is seen to never retract back into the body, seemingly to not make any unnecessary appendages and to not waste precious energy. Lastly, it is theorized that if every single member of the species were to combine into a single one, it would require so much energy, that an entire land masses worth of biomass would be required to satiate such a form and its intelligence would be compared to an unspecified amount of humans, but this is only a theory and there is no evidence to support it.

Could such a species ever feasibly exist, and if not, then what is feasible?

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    $\begingroup$ I'm not sure what you are trying to do with these creatures. Have in mind that taking an eldritch horror as base means you are going for terror in your narrative. On the other hand, when creating an advanded species you have to describe the environment too, other species, the food chain (if any), etc. Finally, as aliens go, your Yogs are fine. $\endgroup$ – maxisalamone Jan 27 at 14:25
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Fungal jellyfish balloons

These creatures are plausible. Difficult to justify evolutionarily, but plausible. Let's break it down.


Buoyancy: Hydrogen bladders

the atmosphere and planetary pressures confine the scientist to ships and droids... The species look like yellow soft orbs, seemingly capable of floating... using a specially evolved Buoyancy organ.

Many fish use swim bladders, which they fill with oxygen in order to change their buoyancy. However, your creatures are submerged in air, not water. Although the atmosphere is thick, which should help with buoyancy, it's unclear how thick it is, so I suggest using hydrogen. Your best bet is to break down water molecules and use the hydrogen to float like a living gasbag.

These organs will have to be extremely fine-tuned; whereas water produces large drag forces on ascending fish, and they reach the top of the ocean relatively quickly, your gasbags may risk floating to the top of the atmosphere. They will likely ascend/descend using extremely slow, passive, incremental hydrogen adjustments. Evolutionarily, you can justify this by putting lots of predators on the ground but few in the sky.


Eating: Extracellular digestion + omnivorous lifestyle

... upon feeding, they are extremely vulnerable because they take a long time to actually envelop and consume the food... it will send tiny root like veins into the nostrils or eyes of the creature... lowering the chance of escape for the creature

Yog sothoths move slowly because they float. Often, they may choose to passively drift to new food sources, but when they choose to actively propel themselves by releasing gas or flapping their appendages - they won't be fast enough to catch large prey. Attacking eyes or nostrils first makes little sense because such a slow-moving creature could easily be walked away from.

They will adopt an extracellular digestion mechanism like fungi. Since fluid-filled stomachs are heavy, and putting whole creatures inside them will weigh your creatures down even more, they won't have stomachs at all. They will use small hyphae to anchor to plants, insects, or dead animals, and they will secrete digestive enzymes from their hyphae to dissolve and consume them. If you want to maintain the nostrils and eyes part, maybe those orifices provide the best direct access to nutrients.


Communication: Vibration and pheromones check out

The species ... are capable of communicating by either spraying pheromones or by making a low pitch of gurgles, growls, and thrumming noises.

Fish can use their swim bladders both to produce and receive sound. If yog-sothoth are mostly empty air-sacs, they can definitely utilize their structure for communication. Pheromones may make more sense as a passive means of communication; I get the impression that these are relatively low-activity creatures due to the energy constraints of floating in search of food, so "smelling" may make more sense than "talking".


Reproduction: Budding checks out

Reproduction seems to happen asexually, by budding off and forming a smaller version of itself, however, they will sometimes reproduce sexually by running into each other and staying connected for x amount of time

Budding is consistent with the passive, fungal qualities of their method of digestion. They may also consider releasing spores in order to start new colonies. A species with both sexual and asexual reproduction is plausible, but the sexual reproduction part may be dependent on how easily these creatures can locomote.


Intelligence, Eyes, and Tools: Yes, maybe, no

... their [sic] seems to be a form of intelligence from these seemingly non sentient life forms. The adults ... have been seen to collect various rocks, plants, and sometimes animals... There is evidence to suggest that their might be a brain... scientists have found two different groups of the same species, ones with eyes... There are only four eyes on an individual, and are formed one by one with age. This version of the species have been seen to form stone like tools

Human brains are heavy, and they take a lot of energy. Floating creatures are by definition light, and they may not eat frequently enough to meet the energy needs of complex brains. If you scale up their hydrogen bladders to match heavy brains, you'll need to provide even more food.

One possible solution is to settle for insect-like brains. Consider cockroaches, which have ganglia all over their bodies to control separate segments. Your yog sothoths could start by having nervous systems spread over the surfaces of their hydrogen bladders in order to receive sensory information and control hyphae growth. Then, the density of their nerves could increase, creating a woven-mat-brain system under their skin. It would be less heavy than a human brain, and probably less powerful, but at least on-par with insects or rodents.

Eyes are harder to account for than brains, because other senses have the potential to be cheaper for a passive organism. Consider that their bladders could be used like giant ears for echolocation, or their pheromone senses could also smell predators and prey. You could definitely still have eyes, but they would shift the classification of these creatures on the plant-animal gradient.

Tool use seems hardest to explain. Stone tools are heavy, and your creatures want to stay afloat. They probably don't have skeletons to anchor grasping arms onto, and tentacles attached to fragile floaters may not be very strong. What about simple tools, like twigs?


Pseudopodia + Megabrain: Not plausible

The creatures are capable of forming small to large pseudopodia... if every single member of the species were to combine into a single one... its intelligence would be compared to an unspecified amount of humans

What use do pseudopodia have if these creatures only descend to feed? Maybe if they get so heavy after eating that they have to walk - but then I suspect they would just go dormant.

Furthermore, if every human brain was combined, they would surely have significant computing power; that doesn't mean a mechanism exists to facilitate such a connection.


Conclusion

Yog-sothoth are plausible as floating, omnivorous gas-bags that graze on plants and dead animals using hyphae. Their airborne nature limits the weight we can give them in terms of stomachs or brains, but complex organs are still plausible.

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    $\begingroup$ If the brains of the Yog-Sothoth are distributed throughout their structure then it’s possible their neural architecture is more like a distributed computing cluster than our specialised-cortex model. If that’s the case then we can posit that multiple Yogs (perhaps while linked for breeding) temporarily interlace their brains by growing nerves into each other. Depending on the kind of problem they’re considering this may well manifest as an apparent increase in intelligence. $\endgroup$ – Joe Bloggs Jan 28 at 8:32

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