Specimen 9 (A.K.A. Taker) is a hostile enemy and the central antagonist in Spooky's Jump Scare Mansion.
Specimen 9 appears to be a black and red, realistic looking humanoid skull with what seem to be collar bones extending down the rest of its "torso", with studs where its limbs had once presumably been.
Starting from Room 51, players may occasionally enter a room with three paths: A door to the left, a dead end to the right, and a long dark hallway straight ahead.
After travelling down the long dark hallway for a while, the walls will gradually close in on the player until they can no longer move. After another second or two, Specimen 9 will appear at the end of the hall and turn and quickly rush to the player, filling the screen with its face at the time of contact. Most of the screen becomes red, with a huge wall of text composed solely of "TO TAKE THE DEAD", which references the fact that Specimen 9 "takes the dead", at least according to the CAT-DOS.
Aside from this, Specimen 9 can appear in any room if the player stays idle for two minutes. If this happens, Specimen 9's chase theme will start playing before appearing from the room's entrance door, and will begin to chase the player. It moves quickly and through walls and deals 60 damage, killing the player in 2 hits. Specimen 9 will not move or appear when the game is paused. If the Karamari Hospital DLC is active, Specimen 9 will not appear.
"AMPUTATED MARSHMALLOW", Specimen 9's chase theme:
"SOUR LEMON", Specimen 9's death screen sound:
- Specimen 9 is one of the three specimens that can kill the player on contact, the others being Specimen 7 and the Old Man (while the player is inside the mansion).
- It is also the only specimen to attack the player in any room if they leave the game idle for too long and unpaused.
- Specimen 9 is additionally the only specimen that can kill the player in safe rooms (the elevator, CAT-DOS room, Minigames room, etc.)
- Specimen 9 is the only specimen deemed so hard to contain that it had to be dismantled.
- Specimen 9 and Specimen 1 are the only specimens not to have a themed room and can be encountered any time throughout the game.
- Although, the endless hallway could count as Specimen 9's room.
- Specimen 9 can be considered the central or secondary antagonist of the game due to its major role.
- There is a CAT-DOS Easter egg, which can be triggered by going into "MODIFY_HOUSE_LAYOUT" 6 times. After doing that, going into Specimen 9's data will yield results of other random "Specimens".
- This can only happen at room 900.
- Specimen 9 is strongly inspired by Red from the NES Godzilla Creepypasta in many ways:
- They share a red/black color scheme, have a highly disturbing, skeletal appearance and are considered malevolent game glitches.
- Both pursue the player and instantly kill (and consume) them upon contact until their final fight, and both are very difficult to outrun.
- They share a connection to dead bodies, torture and death.
- Both are final bosses.
- Both are associated with highly disturbing, discordant "music".
- Finally, both can be considered main or major antagonists.
Specimen 9's Boss Form is the final boss of Spooky's Jump Scare Mansion.
Specimen 9 in Boss Form is a large red humanoid creature that resembles an "evolved" version of its regular form. It resembles a skinless humanoid figure with a low hanging jaw.
During the boss fight, Specimen 9 will cycle through three different moves. They are as follows:
Its first attack involves creating 3 to 6 holes in the floor from which screaming pillars with distorted faces blast out, damaging the player if they so happen to be on top of one of the holes.
After this, it will create large shadow hands that stretch out across the room, following the player. After a short bit, the hands will stop, and smaller hands will shoot out from the larger shadow hand, potentially damaging the player. This attack also spawns smaller enemies who can easily be defeated with a single axe swing.
Its third attack rapidly shoots balls of energy at the player. The player must deflect the energy back at Specimen 9 using the axe. Successfully deflecting the energy will immobilize Specimen 9 for a short period, leaving it vulnerable to attacks.
It will eventually rise back into fighting after that short period; cycling through the attacks again. The attacks become deadlier and harder to evade as the fight continues. After enough hits, the boss will be defeated, and the game will end.
"FRIED CALAMARI", Specimen 9's boss battle music:
Screaming pillar sound effect:
- Specimen 9's energy orb ability is a nod to Ganondorf's boss battle from The Legend of Zelda series, in which the player must deflect the energy orb with their weapon back to the boss, making it vulnerable to attack.
- The hands shooting out from the shadow hand on the floor are left hands closed to fists. Left-handedness is classically seen as more evil (from Latin "sinistre", lit. "left-handed").
- Coincidentally or not, Spooky is also usually depicted as left-handed.
- Before the Boss Battle, the player goes through a white room where a radio announces "I'm taking all those 'logs' they keep throwing out. And I'm nailing them together." and the number 731 appears on a wall. This is likely a reference to the infamous Japanese Unit 731, which performed horrific experiments on prisoners during World War II. They referred to their test subjects as "logs" because victims of the experiments were burned like mere wood, while the "nailing together" part seems to be a reference to how Specimen 9 gains more mass as it "takes the dead".
- Additionally, its secret CAT-DOS entry reveals that it is a survivor of Unit 731's experiments.
- Because of its distended jaw, Specimen 9's boss form bears a slight resemblance to the Servant Grunt from Amnesia: The Dark Descent. The monsters that the boss summons bear resemblance to the Servant Brute from the same game.
Specimen 9 now has a fully 3D model.
Specimen 9 is now faster and instantly kills the player on contact, dealing 120 damage now instead of 60. After the player is struck by Specimen 9, the screen will cut to black into what seems to be a CAT-DOS version of Windows OS's error window, with some cat ears, a ":3" face and a tail, named CAT-WIN. The window will continue to bounce around the edges of the screen, similar to the DVD Screensaver. Once the player hits the or key, a cutscene will play.
The player will appear in a dark room, unable to move. Suddenly, spotlights will begin to appear, going down the dark room and ending at a door. Shortly after the door opens, Specimen 9's theme starts playing, followed by Specimen 9 coming out of the door charging towards the player, ending the cutscene and showing the death screen.
- In HD Renovation, Specimen 9's "TO TAKE THE DEAD" death screen is affected by field of view, meaning one can zoom in or out this screen by altering the FOV.
- It is worth noting that, after the first time Specimen 9 has killed the player, its CAT-DOS changes. It will now display no Type, the Fatalities will now count the amount of times it has killed the player in that playthrough and its Method will be replaced with "TO TAKE THE DEAD" repeated several times.
It now has a fully 3D model and an animation when hit. It also has a new transformation cutscene, wherein the standard Specimen 9 will zoom out greatly, and red clay will "collect" on it, turning into a full-body view of its boss form. The boss will then zoom out to where it hovers as the battle begins.
The balls of energy that Specimen 9 shoots sometimes look like red rings. Said balls of energy also seem to move faster than in the original game.
Specimen 9 returns in Spooky's Dollhouse, albeit with a minor role compared to his role as a major antagonist in the first game.
It now has a darker, more metallic look, and an unsettling grin. It is also larger than before, with a rounder shape.
In Spooky's Dollhouse, Specimen 9 will appear if the player attempts to use the GL Labs tram before deactivating the Spirit Seal. After activating the tram, the vehicle will begin to run, but will eventually come to a complete halt due to the tunnel growing tighter like it did with its room in the main manor. After a few seconds, Specimen 9 will emerge from the tunnel and kill the player. It now makes grunting noises when it kills the player.The new sprite replaces the old one in its death screen as well.