During the events of September 1998, Leon Scott Kennedy was a rookie police officer who arrived in Raccoon City for his first day on the job, only to confront the t-virus outbreak first hand. He survived the incident. Later, Leon became a member of an underground anti-Umbrella organization. Six years after the Raccoon City incident, Leon became a secret agent for the U.S. government assigned to protect the U.S. President's family.
Leon is an idealistic rookie cop. He burns with the need to protect and to serve, and life as a cadet was an eye-opening experience. Leon, at the age of 21, was assigned to work for the Raccoon City Police Department (R.P.D.) in their Select Police Force (S.P.F.) division after graduating from the police academy. He arrived at Raccoon City on September 29, 1998, a few days later than he was scheduled to.----
|“||Hey, it's up to us to take out Umbrella.||”|
On September 29, Leon went to Raccoon City for his assignment, entering through a highway that was seemingly abandoned by the U.S. Military, who were to blockade the area. When he arrived, the majority of the city's police officers were already dead and most of the citizens had already turned into zombies. After his first encounter with the living dead, Leon met with another survivor, Claire Redfield, who had arrived in the city in search of her missing brother, Chris. Together, Leon and Claire decided to seek refuge within the R.P.D.'s headquarters, but after arriving there, they get separated when Leon's police car gets destroyed, both of them barely getting out of the vehicle alive when a truck driven by an infected crashed into it, forcing the two to search for a way out of the city separately.
During his probe of the R.P.D. precinct, Leon meets another survivor named Ada Wong, a woman who claimed she was looking for her missing boyfriend. Together, they found a secret entrance within the sewer leading to one of Umbrella's secret facilities. Ada is mortally wounded (first, by a mutated William Birkin's claw and later, by a T-103 Tyrant ), and Leon discovers that Ada was a spy working for Umbrella's undisclosed competitor. However, at the near end, a mysterious figure (with Ada's voice and silhouette) helps Leon (or Claire) by giving them a rocket launcher to help defeat the Tyrant. Leon is reunited with Claire and the two (along with William Birkin's daughter, Sherry) make their escape through a secret railway and then escape via the train, leaving the mutated Birkin to be destroyed in the self-destruct sequence.
Following the Raccoon City incident, Claire continues her search for Chris while Leon looked after Sherry. Leon makes an undisclosed deal with the U.S. Government for Sherry's safety and, after that, joins an anti-Umbrella task force, participating in numerous classified missions over the next five years. Through harsh training, pushing himself to the limit, Leon has changed from hapless rookie to one of the top agents in the world.
In November 1998, Leon sends Ark Thompson out to investigate Umbrella's facilities on Sheena Island. The following month, Claire sets out to Europe to continue her search for Chris. While on Rockfort Island, Claire sends Leon an e-mail, asking him to inform Chris of her location. He does so and Chris heads out to find her. Leon's other activities during this time will be told in the upcoming Resident Evil: The Darkside Chronicles.
While receiving special training for a top-secret government organization working directly under the U.S. president, Leon befriends another agent named Jack Krauser. Krauser is reportedly killed in a helicopter crash sometime in 2002.
|“||Guess that's a local's way of breaking the ice. Anyway, you know what this is all about. My assignment is to search for the President's missing daughter.||”|
In 2004, a 27-year-old Leon was assigned to a top-secret organization under the direct control of the President of the United States. He is assigned to guard President Graham's family, but when the President's daughter, Ashley Graham, is kidnapped, Leon's first mission is to track her down. Information gathered pointed to the kidnappers being located in a remote area of Spain. Leon investigates on his own, along with two members of the local police. Unfortunately, it seems something bizarre has happened to the local townsfolk and after the two officers disappear (they are eventually found dead), Leon finds himself relying on his skills once again in a deadly fight for survival. Leon learns from his superiors that the perpetrators are a group called "Los Illuminados" (from Spanish, meaning "The Enlightened"), a religious cult led by a man named Osmund Saddler. This cult uses a mysterious parasitic organism known as "las Plagas" (Spanish for "the Plagues") to take control of the local townsfolk, as well as many others around the area, such as a group of Mercenaries. Although a seemingly hopeless situation, the fanatical cult finds the formidable Leon to be more than they bargained for as he foils attempt after attempt to kill him. During the course of his mission, Leon is helped by Luis Sera, a man who is revealed to be a researcher who used to work for Saddler, but betrayed him. Leon also once again has a chance encounter with Ada, who is also involved in this incident. She provides assistance to Leon, but has a fight of her own to battle out, as well. Leon is assisted by Ingrid Hunnigan, an information analyst and fellow government official via a communicator. As Leon progresses, however, he finds the transmission hijacked by the cult and he is forced to fend for himself.
Leon eventually finds Ashley in a church and he becomes responsible for her safety as the two make their way around Los Illuminados-controlled area. It is revealed, however, that both Leon and Ashley have been injected with the Plagas and are now in a race against time to find a cure for this before they are forever turned into Saddler's slaves. Acquiring weapons from a mysterious merchant, Leon manages to fight his way through many harrowing perils within the local village and a mysterious Castle run by the cult. He eventually fights against two of Saddler's underlings, village chief Bitores Mendez and the Castle's castellan, Ramon Salazar. Leon also confronts his former comrade, Jack Krauser, who was now working as a double agent for both a mystery party and Saddler. It is revealed that this mysterious third player in the conflict is none other than Albert Wesker, whom Ada is also working for. Unknown to Leon, a secret battle is being waged behind the scenes, which is explored in Ada's unlockable scenerio, "Separate Ways". Eventually, Ashley is abducted and Leon must race against time to rescue her before her Plaga fully develops, not to mention his own. With continued support from Ada, Leon fights his way through a local military base, where Saddler and the cult have taken refuge. Fighting against both a deadly enemy and the enemy within, this battle tests all of Leon's strength and skill. Leon fights against Krauser for the last time and eventually saves Ashley and himself after removing Las Plagas from within them by use of a special radiation machine developed by Luis late during his mission. Afterwards, Leon battles Saddler in his true form and, with Ada's help (who provides him with a specialized rocket launcher), is able to put an end to him and his plot.
After the battle, Ada takes the Plagas sample from Leon at gunpoint and makes her getaway, but gives Leon and Ashley a means to escape, as well, via a jet-ski. Ashley invites Leon to her residence for "overtime", but Leon politely declines. Despite this turn of events, after completing his mission, he talks with Hunnigan, who finally manages to re-establish contact. He compliments her on her appearance (she isn't wearing any glasses at this point) and lightly flirts with her by asking for her number, to which she reminds him that he's "still on duty". Upon being left in the dust by a second woman, Leon can only reply with an amused sigh, "...story of my life."
|“||Shoot them in the head.||”|
In 2005, WilPharma's head of R&D released the t-Virus in a Harvardville Airport Terminal. The building was locked down and the government sent in the marines along with the Special Response Team to clear out the Zombies.
Leon was selected by the president to take charge of the S.R.T. due to his experience. Under his leadership and advice, they learned how to effectively kill the zombies and rescued five survivors including Claire Redfield.
After saving them, Leon was involved in the fight with Curtis Miller, the Marines, and Angela Miller at WilPharma. He was able to save Angela and kill the G-virus-infected Curtis Miller. At the end, he, Claire, and Angela exposed Frederic Downing for escaping Raccoon City with the t-Virus and G-virus sample, the t-virus incident at the airport, and setting a time bomb in the WilPharma building in order to secretly sell the last of the G-virus data, t-virus along with its vaccine, and the G-virus.
As the incident comes to a close, Leon is called in for yet another mission. He and Claire part ways, with the two hoping that they will each meet again someday under far more "normal" circumstances.
Please note that the following section pertains to a game that has neither been confirmed canon or non-canon.
Sometime in 2000, Leon, now a member of an underground anti-Umbrella organization, was sent to eliminate a prototype B.O.W. that was believed to be among the passengers and crew of the luxury ocean cruiser, the Starlight. Upon his arrival, Leon discovered that there had been a t-Virus outbreak on board. At some point, Leon met a young survivor named Lucia and fought a good candidate for the B.O.W.: a large, grey humanoid who could produce tentacles from its abdomen and transform into an amoeba. After 24 hours without contact, fellow operative Barry Burton was sent to find Leon. He was eventually found unconscious. After he and Barry saved Lucia from the B.O.W. again, Barry left Lucia with Leon. When they saw Barry on the security camera talking to Umbrella, who had contacted him on the way there, they found him, and Leon was seemingly betrayed by Barry. While Barry and Lucia were on an Umbrella-owned submarine, Leon killed the B.O.W., who was trying to destroy the ship's fuel converter, by blowing him into the steam ducts. Afterwords, Barry and Lucia found Leon. In the end, Leon, along with Barry and Lucia, killed the real B.O.W., a fully-grown parasite that had been removed from Lucia's body, with a hail of gunfire. A small cut on Leon's neck was bleeding green blood.
Leon wears a full-body R.P.D. uniform in Resident Evil 2 with a vest in contrast to other officers in the game who wear summer uniforms. This outfit is predominantly different shades of blue and is used by the newly-established R.P.D. Select Police Force (as evident in Resident Evil 3: Nemesis). He has two alternate costumes to wear in the game that changes his shooting style with the handgun. The first is a casual outfit consisting of a leather jacket with a picture of a skull on the back and jeans, while the second costume is a tank top with cargo pants and an R.P.D. cap. The Nintendo 64 version replaced these costumes with a S.T.A.R.S. uniform and another consisting of camouflage pants with T-shirt, leather vest and sunglasses.
In Resident Evil 4, However, he loses the jacket early in the game, much to the chagrin of players who liked its look. When playing Ada's scenario Separate Ways, you do however learn the previously unknown fate of the jacket; it was stolen by a Ganado when Leon and Luis were captured at the end of Chapter 1-1. He sports a variety equipment and gear around his waist, including a buttpack (used to hold loose supplies), double pistol mag pouches, navigation light, rappel, and radio pouch. A drop leg holster is strapped to his thigh, and he also wears a brown leather shoulder holster. Later in the game, the player has the option of acquiring the Tactical Vest, which puts a black assault vest and assorted gear on over Leon's standard outfit, making him look quite intimidating as well as dramatically increasing his constitution. The vest reduces damage by 30% as well. The player can also unlock the classic R.P.D. uniform from Resident Evil 2.
In the PlayStation 2 and Wii ports of Resident Evil 4, he is given a classic mafia-style outfit that is unlocked along with the Chicago Typewriter after the player clears the "Separate Ways" scenario. Since the Typewriter has infinite ammo, Leon will simply tilt his hat when the reload button is pushed and if the player hits reload four times, Leon will throw his hat in the air and catch it. Wearing the Mafia costume will change Leon's pose on the attaché case screen while the Typewriter is equipped and will change the Typewriter's magazine from a standard box magazine to a drum magazine. The mafia outfit also changes the look of Leon's knife. Instead of a combat knife, it becomes a switchblade to complete the authentic criminal motif. This change is purely cosmetic, and does not affect the performance of the knife at all.
Leon's Degeneration attire is similar to that of his outfit from Resident Evil 4, albeit with a new, leather jacket, lighter gray "5.11" shirt, and different-colored pants.
In Resident Evil 2, Leon's primary weapon is a VP70. In Resident Evil 4, Leon uses a 9mm handgun designed by Joe Kendo especially for Leon. This prized weapon makes a reappearance along side Leon in Degeneration, but is accompanied by a Glock 30, which Leon uses as a backup pistol.
Over the seven years since the Raccoon City disaster, Leon's personality changed noticeably. From his one day as a rookie police officer, to an Anti-Umbrella member, to his years as a government agent, he learned to understand his surroundings a different way.
In his personal life, he preferred to stay single. When asked about who Ada Wong was, Leon responded back to Ashley Graham with her being like a part of him he just couldn't let go, implying that, although leading a single life and being "unlucky" in love, he still couldn't let go of Ada.
- Leon's story was different in Resident Evil 1.5, the prototype version of Resident Evil 2. Still the unlucky rookie cop, instead of coming into town upon Raccoon City's destruction as he did in the final version, in the original draft Leon and a small group of cops are holed up in the Police Station having battled fiercely since the beginning of the incident. Leon had entered service a few days prior. The Precinct would be compromised shortly before the start of the game, and Leon would declare to morale drained surviving cops that they have to brave the gauntlet of horrors outside and escape or be doomed to wait for their death as the game starts. Leon's scenario originally had two supporting characters: Marvin Branagh and Ada Wong (who instead wore a researcher's outfit, and was known as "Linda").
- A casual portrait of Leon with a bloodhound was featured in Resident Evil 1.5's promotional artwork.
- In the conceptual designs for Leon there are numerous illustrations of him and Elza Walker (the early version of Claire) wearing an armoured vest with Umbrella's logo and the acronym U.S.S. (suggesting that it belonged to the Umbrella Security Service, HUNK's unit). This was part of a proposed armour system for Resident Evil 1.5.
- Leon had two different character designs, but Capcom eventually settled for the way he looked in the final version of Resident Evil 2. When Ayumi Saito interviewed producer Shinji Mikami, he claimed that Leon looked too much like Chris Redfield.
- Leon's arrival in Raccoon City in Resident Evil 2 is never fully explained. It was stated that the U.S. Army had placed a blockade around the city to prevent the infected from leaving, so Leon could not have been allowed to enter. After getting drunk at a party, Leon drove to a motel and spent the night. After oversleeping, he donned his uniform and drove to Raccoon City. It was this mistake that saved him from being turned into a zombie during the Raccoon Police Department siege.
- Leon has many connections to other characters, when one considers the various canonical and non-canonical Resident Evil games. He is the one who sent Detective Ark Thompson to Sheena Island in Resident Evil: Survivor.
- Leon seems to have a passing familiarity with Kevin Ryman, as evidenced by Kevin's ad-libs in the "Desperate Times" scenario of Outbreak File 2. Kevin is a member of the same unit as rookie officer, Leon S. Kennedy. The two had met only once before the outbreak occurred. While they aren't friends, Kevin does have a fond opinion of Leon, mentioning whilst reading Leon's resume that: "The new guy? He seems pretty cool."
- During the Raccoon City incident, the entire defense team (including all the S.P.F unit members) was completely wiped after suffering devastating losses and ammunition shortages. Leon and Kevin Ryman were the only surviving S.P.F members.
- Leon, Carlos Oliveira, and Billy Coen were the only main characters in the Resident Evil series that did not directly met Albert Wesker, the series' main antagonists, though he knows of Wesker through unexplored means.
- Became a temporary guardian for Sherry Birkin before handing her into Government custody. Claire Redfield was too busy looking for her brother after the trio escaped Raccoon City.
- Leon kept in touch with Claire Redfield through the Anti-Umbrella movement.
- Leon worked alongside Jack Krauser in one of many various government agencies. They were allies before Krauser faked his death.
- In Resident Evil 4, if Leon checks a table full of rations while on the island, he will reminisce of his training days in the O.R.E. O.R.E. stands for Operational Readiness Evaluation/Exercises.
- Leon is one of the few characters to possess a Kendo Custom Weapon, namely his handgun used in Resident Evil 4 and Degeneration.
- In September 2006, it was rumored that Leon was to be in the third Resident Evil Film. However, this did not turn out to be true and bringing Leon as a character in the film would contradict released information from Resident Evil: Apocalypse. Screen Gems created a promotional faux newspaper, "The Raccoon City Times", that detailed the background of Jill Valentine, and also included that she was dismissed from the S.T.A.R.S. after the death of her partner, Leon Kennedy.
The following is an excerpt from "The Raccoon City Times" that is accessible through a link above.
- Leon, and the events he underwent in Resident Evil 4, are referenced by Chris Redfield in Resident Evil 5, when he refers to the Majini by saying "The whole town's gone to hell. The people here, they're acting like those Ganado detailed in the Kennedy report!"
- Dante, the protagonist of the Devil May Cry series is bears a resemblance to Leon. This is likely due to the fact that Devil May Cry was originally intended to be Resident Evil 4, but evolved outside of the Resident Evil formula during its early development stages.
Leon is one of the two main playable characters in Resident Evil 2, the other being Claire Redfield. Depending on the order in which you play both characters, events in his scenario changes.
He also stars in Resident Evil 4, (where his face was designed after model Christian Duerre), as well as making an appearance in several of the novels. He also appeared in the CG Film, Resident Evil: Degeneration.
Leon also appears in the mini-game The Mercenaries for Resident Evil 4 and is the starting character. He is powerful as he is equipped with the Riot Gun and is the only character to wield a shotgun. His roundhouse kick can easily dispatch groups and his suplex is devastating. However, ammo for his shotgun isn't as common as pistol ammo. His handgun has higher firepower than the handguns of Ada and Wesker, but also has the slowest firing rate of all three guns.
Leon is set to appear in Resident Evil: The Darkside Chronicles as a playable character in the Resident Evil 2 scenario.
- Resident Evil 2
- Resident Evil 4
- Biohazard: Degeneration
- Resident Evil Gaiden
- Claire Redfield
- Sherry Birkin
- Ada Wong
- Ashley Graham
- Angela Miller
|Leons epilogue from Re3||An early design for Leon in Resident Evil 1.5.|