Ho-Oh (Japanese: ホウオウ "Houou") is a Fire/Flying-typeLegendary Pokémon introduced in Generation II. It was the Legendary Pokémon mascot of Pokémon Gold Version, and it appeared again in the game's remake, Pokémon HeartGold Version. When you catch Ho-Oh in the Tin Tower(Gold)/Bell Tower(HeartGold), it will be holding the Sacred Ash item. In HeartGold/SoulSilver, even if the player defeats it, it will re-appear after the player beats the Elite Four.
Ho-oh appears in the Episode 1 in Pokémon Indigo League when Ash sets out on his journey he sees Ho-oh flying in the sky. Ash then sees it again in the episode " Gotta Catch Ya Later! " where it's flying towards the Hoenn region. It also makes an appearance on a painting in the episode "A Ghost Of A Chance", which is also the first episode where Ho-oh is mentioned by name.
Ho-Oh, like its lesser counterpart Moltres, is based on the legendary Phoenix, a creature of Greek Mythology also known as the Firebird. Many cultures worldwide hold the Phoenix as a symbol of Longevity, Resurrection, and Reincarnation. Thus, Ho-Oh epitomizes this belief, as it was reborn rising from its own ashes. It also used its vast powers to give new life to the first Raikou, Entei, and Suicune, after they perished in Ecruteak City's Burned Tower. It is believed that through its unique abilities, this mighty Pokémon created the Legendary Beasts of the Johto Region out of a Jolteon, a Flareon, and Vaporeon respectively. However, it is unknown whether this is actually true.
It is said that wherever a Ho-Oh flies, a beautiful rainbow appears behind it.
Power and abilities
Ho-oh, a Legendary Bird Pokémon based on the Phoenix Bird, is a vastly powerful Fire-and-Flying type Pokémon. It can revive any Pokémon, is incredibly fast, and has the devastating Fire-Type attack,"Sacred Fire".
It also holds an item called Sacred Ash, which is like a Pokémon Center, only portable. This Held Item is unique in that it revives all fainted Pokémon in your party to full HP/full PP. If caught at Navel Rock in Emerald/FireRed/LeafGreen the Sacred Ash is buried under the spot that Ho-oh occupies. After Ho-oh is caught or defeated, press the A button and you will obtain the Hold Item Sacred Ash.
Ho-oh does not evolve.
In the anime
Ho-oh was first seen in the first episode, Pokémon - I Choose You!. It was one of the first Pokémon Ash has ever seen, but he doesn't know what it was until further on. When he announced to Professor Oak that he saw something, he pointed at Articuno; it was a thoughtless mistake. Ho-oh was mentioned many times in For Ho-Oh the Bells Toll!, though the only legendary Pokémon seen was Suicune. Ho-oh is then seen in Gotta Catch Ya Later!.After that Ho-Oh also makes an appearance in Battling the Enemy Within.
Its English name is simply another way of transcribing 鳳凰 Hōō or Suzaku, which is known to be the Japanese word for "Phoenix".
When Ash Ketchum started his adventures he spotted a Ho-Oh, making it the first Generation II Pokémon to appear. Although a Generation II Pokémon, it appeared in the very first episode of the anime. That episode was in the first season, which involved only Generation I Pokémon. Despite making its debut in the first episode, it had not yet been confirmed as a Pokémon. However, Ho-Oh served as a foreshadowing clue for the future of the Pokémon franchise today.
It also shows that Ash was pure of heart from the very start, as Ho-Oh appears only to those pure of heart, as well as signifying a new beginning.
Its name is a palindrome, meaning its name is spelled the same backwards as it is forwards. Only three other Pokémon share this same trait, namely Girafarig, Eevee, and Alomomola.
Even though it is said to have seven different colored feathers, it only appears with three colors on its wings (Green, white, and red) and one color on its tail (yellow). All together, there are only four different colors. However, its R/S and Pokémon Emerald description states that the colors of its feathers change when struck by light at different angles.
Ho-Oh has not been a featured Pokémon in any movie yet; however, it has made cameo appearances in many.
The legend of Ho-Oh was inspired by an ancient Osakan folktale in which a phoenix rose from the ashes of a massive pagoda after it was destroyed by severe weather or war.
Ho-Oh resembles the phoenix of ancient Chinese mythology known as the Fenghuang.
A Shiny Ho-Oh has orange feathers and silver trim, such as its beak. A Shiny Ho-Oh kidnapped Silver and the other kids on the Mask of Ice's orders.
It is possible that Lugia and Ho-Oh are references from the book of Genesis. With Lugia being the 40-day storm (being able to create a 40-day storm with the flap of its wings) and Ho-Oh being the rainbow after the storm.