Bissops were non-sentient lizard-hounds used by the sentient Yuuzhan Vong species. Bred by the Yuuzhan Vong to track and hunt living creatures, bissops were carnivorous and had snouts that they used to seek prey. During the Yuuzhan Vong War, bissops were utilized by Yuuzhan Vong warriors to track down both escaping prisoners and enemies who had infiltrated their territory on worlds such as Selvaris and Caluula. Additionally, bissops were used to pull the sled of Supreme Overlord Shimrra Jamaane in 29 ABY, during a ceremony on the planet Yuuzhan'tar.
Biology and appearance
- "I vote for burning it. Otherwise the bissops might be able to sniff it out."
- ―Han Solo comments on the bissop's good sense of smell
Resembling a lizard-like hound, bissops were bred by the sentient Yuuzhan Vong species for their hunting and tracking abilities. Low-bodied and possessing long snouts that had a good sense of smell, bissops had skeletons, as well as claws on their feet that left distinct tracks in dirt. The creatures had the body strength to be able to carry a grown Yuuzhan Vong in a saddle on their backs, and were agile and fast. Because they were a Yuuzhan Vong-related life form, bissops were susceptible to the effects of the deadly Alpha Red pathogen.
Classified as non-sentient, bissops sniffed both the ground and the air when they were tracking something, and also brayed and howled when actively hunting a moving target. Carnivorous in diet, bissops were docile enough for some Yuuzhan Vong to ride them with saddles, or for others to use them to pulls sled. However, if attacked by an enemy, bissops would race to strike at the attackers. The hounds were typically accompanied by Yuuzhan Vong minders while hunting, and usually hunted together in groups. Bissops were trained by their masters to return to a base camp if something happened to the rest of the hunting team.
Bred into existence by 27 ABY, bissops were used by the Yuuzhan Vong during the Yuuzhan Vong War, when the Yuuzhan Vong invaded a galaxy other than their own. Typically accompanied by Yuuzhan Vong warriors while on the hunt, bissops were used as hunters and trackers by the Yuuzhan Vong, and were utilized in the war effort. In 29 ABY, on the Yuuzhan Vong controlled world of Selvaris, bissops stationed there were used in an attempt to capture escaped prisoners of war.
The hounds were also used on the world of Yuuzhan'tar, which had been captured from the New Republic. On Yuuzhan'tar, bissops were occasionally used to transport high-ranking Yuuzhan Vong in saddles, and it was there that a pack pulled the sled of Supreme Overlord Shimrra Jamaane during a ceremony at the Place of Sacrifice. Bissops were present on the Yuuzhan Vong–controlled world of Caluula, and three of the beasts accompanied a squad of warriors as they tracked a group from the New Republic across Caluula's surface in 29 ABY. However, as the entire Yuuzhan Vong hunting squad had been exposed to the Alpha Red pathogen and thus weakened by it, the New Republic group easily killed the warriors and the bissops.
Behind the scenes
Bissops were first mentioned in Elaine Cunningham's novel The New Jedi Order: Dark Journey, which was released in 2002 as an installment of The New Jedi Order series. The hounds later made their first appearance in The New Jedi Order: The Unifying Force, which was written by James Luceno and released in 2003 as the last book in The New Jedi Order series. Bissops also received a small entry in 2008's The Complete Star Wars Encyclopedia. In the novel The New Jedi Order: Balance Point, a book in The New Jedi Order that was released prior to Dark Journey, there is a brief mention of lizard-like creatures being used for mounts by the Yuuzhan Vong. However, as they are not specifically identified as bissops, this article refrains from assuming the creatures are bissops.
- The New Jedi Order: Dark Journey (First mentioned)
- The New Jedi Order: The Unifying Force (First appearance)