Morphs [Oak Catalog #]
- Rhyhorn 
- Rhydon 
- Rhyperior 
Rhyhorn is a large, heavily-armoured therapsid
Pokémon that bears the characteristics of both a pachyderm and a triceratops. Its body is covered by jagged, overlapping plates of unusually durable keratin, and it walks on two pairs of stubby legs that end in small, two-toed feet. The creature’s roughly pyramidal head features a small horn at the end of its snout and a large neck shield to protect the soft, uncovered flesh at the base of its skull. A large, corrugated ridge runs along the creature’s spine, presumably to discourage avian predators, and it has no tail.
Rhydon, the adult phase, is a bipedal creature with a powerful tail and a rounder, more-developed head. The armour plates have shrunk and fused together into a coat of fine yet durable scales, and the neck shield has split into a pair of winglike plates situated below its prominent ears. The ridge along the creature’s back has become a row of three spikes, and the horn on its snout has become a bizarre organ resembling an industrial drill bit; males possess a longer horn than females
. The hands now possess a rudimentary thumb, allowing for limited manual dexterity.
Rhyperior is a rotund, bipedal reptile whose bulk is supported by both its legs and its tail in a tripod configuration. The creature’s scales are a darker shade of gray than those of its previous morphs, and a series of orange, roughly hexagonal plates adorn its knees, forearms, waist, shoulders, eyebrows and the back of its skull. The three fingers it possessed as Rhydon have become blunted cones incapable of any complex hand movements, and a large, curving spike as long as its forearm juts from the elbow, turning the arms into a pair of hammer-like appendages. The tail now terminates in a massive thagomizer
, and a second horn juts from the middle of its forehead, several inches above the drill bit.
Rhyhorn’s plates are incredibly durable, able to withstand impact from a high-calibre bullet
without suffering so much as a nick. This, in addition to a thick epidermis that is incredibly insensitive to pain, has given rise to the belief that the creature’s bones are a thousand times harder than a human’s. As a direct consequence, Rhyhorn rarely shy away from predators and will charge anything they consider a threat, either to themselves or their young. Eyewitness reports have shown that a charging Rhyhorn once collided head-on with a speeding bus, caving in the bus’s front quarter and leaving the Pokémon stunned but otherwise unharmed.
Rhydon’s tough epidermis is even stronger than Rhyhorn’s, being able to withstand a direct hit from a cannon and enduring the heat of direct exposure to molten lava for short intervals. The tail is incredibly powerful, being able to severely damage steel bridge supports with only a single blow, and its arms possess similar strength. Finally, Rhydon’s most notable feature is its drill bit
; contrary to all rational logic, the horn functions exactly like a carbon-tipped drill bit, and it is even capable of boring through diamond and bedrock. Prior to the invention of the drill, older societies would scavenge the drills from dead Rhydon and affix them to sticks as makeshift spears and boring tools; in addition, trained teams of Rhydon were employed as construction vehicles prior to the industrial revolution.
Rhyperior is a rather recent discovery, as no specimens have ever been observed in the wild and the fact that Rhydon could evolve at all was only proven by accident. It was first documented in "Mysteries of the Earth
", the only known written work of Giovanni, former head of Team Rocket
and Ground-type ex-Gym Leader of the Viridian Gym. The creature’s drill remains as powerful as that of Rhydon, while its thagomizer retains all the destructive force of Rhydon’s tail. The arms can be swung like enormous hammers, explaining why its fingers are blunt, and it can insert rocks into small impressions in its palms. These impressions are situated directly over a bundle of piston-like muscles, allowing Rhyperior to launch anything placed within them with the force and accuracy of a medieval cannon.
Rhyhorn are typically found in warm grassy plains or at the foot of mountains; those that are about to evolve into Rhydon migrate into caves, mines and other deep places of the world. They have been sighted in small numbers in the wild in Johto and Sinnoh, and stable populations have successfully been introduced to the Safari zones in both Kanto and Hoenn. No Rhyhorn have ever been encountered in Orre, which suggests that the arid region cannot support them due to lack of water.
Rhydon is rarely encountered in the wild, living far underground as they bore for mineral veins
. They can occasionally be found near active volcanoes where they bask in the heat and briefly swim in the boiling lava.
Rhyperior does not seem to exist in the wild, as Rhydon’s evolution only occurs due to constant exposure to an extremely rare mineral that is sometimes brought to the surface during volcanic eruptions or discovered in tiny veins by miners. This process can be accelerated by giving Rhydon a small chunk of this mineral—called “protectite”—and exchanging it for another Pokémon using a trade machine.
Despite possessing a pair of fangs in every morph, Rhyhorn and its evolutions are primarily herbivorous, browsing amidst the foliage to eat leafy plants, shoots, bushes and roots. In times of blight or drought, they can go for up to five days without eating, and if no food can be found at that time they reveal omnivorous tendencies by eating the soil and rock around them.
Those specimens that live in the mountains subsist almost entirely on rock, soil and minerals, which it digs out of the ground with its horn. Rhydon prefers richer mineral veins closer to the planet’s core, and will bore numerous tunnels through the crust in an incessant search for delicious iron.
Rhyhorn is a very simple Pokémon which categorizes nearly all other animals as either nonentities or threats. It ignores those it places in the former, and will become hostile toward the latter, at which point it will attempt to trample and gore the offending organism. Fortunately, Rhyhorn’s stubby legs prevent it from turning easily, so it is possible for one to leap out of the way at the last second if caught in the path of an enraged Rhyhorn. Trainers must take care to appear as nonthreatening as possible when encountering a wild Rhyhorn, and must train this habit out of their own Pokémon or else the creature will attempt to kill anything it faces in a Pokémon battle.
Rhydon behaves in much the same way, and it can supplement its charges with vicious tail swipes, hammer blows from its arms, and hurling large boulder at its opponent. Its most dangerous attack, however, is its drill; if Rhydon successfully impales an opponent on its horn, it will then spin the drill bit at maximum velocity
, shredding the victim’s innards in an invariably fatal attack. For this reason, trainers are required to blunt their Rhydon’s horns before they can be used in officially-sanctioned Pokémon battles. Surprisingly, Rhydon even exhibits compatibility with various elemental attacks such as Flamethrower, Surf, Ice Beam, and Thunderbolt; however, it isn't able to use them very proficiently, and prefers to stick to its natural arsenal of physical attacks.
As Rhyperior is far bulkier and less agile than either of its previous morphs, charging and goring its opponents is out of the question. Instead it will rely on the destructive power of its thagomizer and hammer arms to deal with threats at close range, and will fire boulders with deadly accuracy to dispatch distant opponents. It also has the same elemental capacity as Rhydon - it can use elemental attacks, but it can't use them well
Courting and Childrearing
Rhyhorn are sexually mature about a year after birth, meaning that they can reproduce in all three stages of its life cycle. Bulls will engage in duels to gain the favour of a potential mate, headbutting and ramming each other until one or the other is too concussed to continue. Once a victor has emerged, a female will step forward, thereby signaling that she has accepted him as a mate, and the pair will retire to a secluded spot in order to fornicate in peace. Rhydon courtship is much the same, the only difference being that bulls grapple with one another and pit their horns against each other in "drill breaker" competitions to see which is the more durable.
Female Rhyhorn have the peculiar ability to withhold their eggs until the infant is born in a form of viviparous birth normally unseen outside of humans, and to ensure the mother's safety during the four month pregnancy the couple will use their horns to excavate a small den close to running water and mineral deposits; as the opening of the den is very small, predators cannot enter without first drawing the notice of the father, and during his mate's pregnancy the bull will consider any living thing which draws within fifteen feet of the den to be a threat, and react accordingly.
Rhyhorn and Rhydon typically bear a single calf per coupling; twins are almost unheard of. After birth, the calf spends the first five months of its life in close proximity to its mother, with the father keeping a more distant but no less attentive watch.
As Rhyperior is a new discovery with no specimens in the wild, it is not known what their mating habits are.
All stages of the line are typically solitary creatures, tending to keep their distance from one another to prevent competition over food and other resources. Despite this, childrearing sows will occasionally form small crashes in order to better protect their offspring, and males will sometimes join together in bachelor crashes if females are scarce.
In Human Culture
Rhydon was famously the first subject of famed zoologist and artist Ken Sugimori, who went on to draw many more species of pokemon, using his drawings to assist the research of his equally famous partner, zoologist and computer programmer Satoshi Tajiri.
Written by Sullen Frog, with miscellaneous contributions by Luigifan and Assassin.