I found this pattern in the depths of Ravelry while looking for an amigurumi crochet pattern to make for a friend. From there I found the Facebook page associated with otama and scrolled through hundreds of pictures of these weird... things. There are photos of otamas at the bottom of the ocean, resting atop animals, disguised as rasta dudes, arranged on skewers in a field, the strange list goes on. From what I can gather, the pattern was made by a Japanese man named Koji Takamiya andit's supposed to be a tadpole character.
Otama at the Ballard Locks
I made one just for fun and quickly got hooked (lol crochet jokes). I don't really know why this pattern of all things became the one I make over and over... I guess it's the mixture of how easy the pattern is, the cute factor, and the mysteriousness of why they even exist.