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This page lists all the Leaders who may appear in the standard version of Master of Orion II, with our recommendations about which are worth hiring and in what circumstances. You'll notice that the usefulness of a leader often depends on your race design: the Spiritual skill is useless to a Unification empire because Unification never gets morale penaties or bonuses; the Environmentalist skill is useless to a Tolerant race unless it conquers some non-Tolerant colonies; the Farming skill is useless to a Lithovore race unless it conquers some non-Lithovore colonies; the Diplomat and Trader skills are useless to Replusive empires, and Repulsive is the standard negative pick in race design.

Generally you should start hiring Colony Leaders before you hire Ship Leaders - unless a Ship Leader is Famous or has Megawealth, since both these skills improve your finances significantly in the early game.

Note that you need only 1 Famous Leader (Colony or Ship) and 1 Instructor Leader (Colony leaders only).

The lists of Colony and Ship Leaders is in alphabetical order and the following format:

  • Image of the leader
  • Leader's name
  • The Leader's statistics; these normally include (where known):
    • Costs
    • Starting experience level in "experience points". 60 is the most basic.
    • For each skill, how powerful that skill is and how much it improves per additional experience level.
      Skills marked with an asterisk will increase more per level than skills that are not.
  • Our comments and recommendations.

Colony Leaders[edit]

Image Name Statistics Comments / Recommendations
Moo2 Ailis.jpg Ailis
the Gifted
Starting level: 60
Environmentalist -10% (-10% per level)
Medicine +15% (+5% per level)
Spiritual Leader +10% (+10% per level)
Non-Tolerant non-Unification empires will find Ailis a good all-rounder for new colonies, less useful for established ones that are nearer their population limit. They should probably hire him early or not at all.
The most popular production races, especially " UniTol", will find him much less useful.
Moo2 Androgena.jpg Androgena Starting level: 60
Farming Leader +10% (+10% per level)
Financial Leader +10% (+10% per level)
Labor Leader +10% (+10% per level)
Medicine +10% (+10% per level)
Androgena's Financial and Medicine skills are best used for colonies with populations of 4 or more that you want to grow fast - the Financial skill is useless at smaller colonies.
Their other skills are most useful for Tolerant non-Lithovore races (e.g. the popular "UniTol" type of production race). Other races will find him/her less useful, except perhaps if they have conquered a large Tolerant non-Lithovore colony and there's little risk of rebellion.
Moo2 Black Razor.jpg Black Razor
the Enforcer
Starting level: 60
Assassin* 3% (+3% per level)
Spy Master* +3% (+3% per level)
Farming Leader +10% (+10% per level)
Financial Leader +10% (+10% per level)
Labor Leader +10% (+10% per level)
Black Razor's combination of skills is most suited to Tolerant non-Lithovore races (e.g. the "UniTol" production race). Since these races often have slow early research, his Spy Master skill may help them to catch up. Black Razor is best used for colonies approaching their maximum populations as he has no Medicine skill.
Moo2 Brainac.jpg Brainac Starting level: 60

(Random set of skills and bonuses)

You'll have to make up your mind depending on what he has this time.
Moo2 Cassandra.jpg Cassandra
the Elerian Mystic
Starting level: 60
Diplomat +10 (+10% per level)
Telepath* +3% (+3% per level)
Environmentalist -10% (-10% per level)
Spiritual Leader +10% (+10% per level)
Tech:Telepathic Training
Cassandra's Telepathic Training tech is fairly easy to research; but if a non-Creative race hires her early enough, it can have both Telepathic Training and Microbiotics.
Cassandra's Diplomat skill is useless to Repulsive empires.
Her Environmentalist skill is useless to Tolerant races (until they conquer planets with non-Tolerant populations), and her Spiritual skill is useless to Unification empires. But many races which are neither (mostly research races) will find this combination useful.
Cassandra's Telepath skill boosts your defensive spying, but its defense against Mind Control only becomes relevant if you've lost the space battle, and in that case the enemy can invade or bomb your colony.
Moo2 Chug.jpg Chug
the Planetologist
Starting level: 60
Researcher +5 (+5 per level)
Environmentalist -10% (-10% per level)
Farming Leader +10% (+10% per level)
Tech: Terraforming
Could be very useful if you get him very early. For example if your race is not Tolerant and you're building your first few Colony Ships his Environmentalist skill will make this much faster; and at this stage even 5 extra RP is useful (it's insignificant later).
On the other hand if your race is not Tolerant you're probably using a research race, and many of these are Lithovores, which would make the Farming skill irrelevant.
Getting the Terraforming tech (1150 RP) early and free may help you to grow your population faster; in fact you could even hire him to get Terraforming and then dismiss him to save paying his salary - this tactic could be useful for " DemoLith" races that have plenty of cash but lack population capacity bonuses. It's not a disaster if another race then hires him and gets Terraforming - it might make it easier to feed them when you conquer them.
You need to decide according to the circumstances.
Moo2 Claw.jpg Claw
the Klackon Taskmaster
Starting level: 150
Operations* +3 (+3 per level)
Farming Leader* +15% (+15% per level)
Labor Leader* +15% (+15% per level)
Claw is expensive - note his very high starting level. If you can afford him, the extra 3 Command Points provided by his Operations skill are probably not a significant bonus. But if you're a Tolerant non-Lithovore race, Claw can really boost your ship production - use him at your best shipyard. If you don't want the colony to build a ship, you could make Trade Goods and Claw will pay for himself reasonably fast.
Moo2 Crassis.jpg Crassis
the Labor Leader
Starting level: 60
Labor Leader +10% (+10% per level)
Crassis is cheap because his range of abilities is limited. He may be useful for a Tolerant race. You could always hire him and then dismiss him if a better Labor leader comes along.
Moo2 Draxx.jpg Draxx
the Spy Master
Starting level: 60
Assassin* 3% (+3% per level)
Spy Master* +3% (+3% per level)
Draxx is cheap because his abilities are limited. He may be useful for a Democracy, which needs all the help it can get in counter-espionage. You could always hire him and then dismiss him if a better Assassin / Spymaster / Telepath comes along.
Moo2 Electra.jpg Electra
the High Priestess
Starting level: 300
Telepath +2% (+2% per level)
Environmentalist* -15% (-15% per level)
Farming Leader* +15% (+15% per level)
Spiritual Leader* +15% (+15% per level)
Electra is very expensive because of her high starting level. But her combination of abilities is not particularly useful for the most popular types of race:
  • The Environmentalist and Spiritual skills are useless to "UniTol", the most popular type of production race.
  • Her Farming skill will be generally useless to many research races, as these are often Lithovores.
  • Telepath is not a particularly valuable skill, and Electra's starting level in Telepathy is fairly low.

Electra may be useful for a non-Unification Lithovore race that has conquered a large non-Lithovore colony, provided there is very little risk of a rebellion.

Moo2 Emo.jpg Emo
the Science Leader
Starting level: 0
Science Leader +10% (+10% per level)
Emo is cheap because he has only 1 ability. But it's only effective if you have a lot of scientists in a system, so not while you're building Colony Ships as fast as you can. Once you've passed that phase you should be racing for Supercomputers, and they almost make Emo obsolete.
Moo2 Felina.jpg Felina
the Naturalist
Starting level: 60
Environmentalist* -15% (-15% per level)
Farming Leader* +15% (+15% per level)
Felina's big problem is that her Environmentalist skill is useless to most production races as they are usually Tolerant, while her Farming skill is useless to many research races, as most are Lithovores.
Moo2 Galis.jpg Galis
the Financial Leader
Starting level: 0
Financial Leader* +10% (+10% per level)
Although Galis has only 1 ability and is follically challenged, you should usually hire him if he appears early. He's cheap, his Financial skill will at least pay his salary initially, and quite soon he's showing a profit. The big difference between Galis and other single-skill Leaders is that his skill works for all types of race and in all stages of the game, no matter what the bulk of your people are doing.
Moo2 Garron.jpg Garron
the Ambassador
Starting level: 0
Diplomat* +15 (+15 per level)
Famous -60 BCs (-60BCs per level)
Megawealth +10 BCs
If Garron appears early, you should make hiring him a priority. His Megawealth will pay off his hiring fee in 10 turns, and his Fame will save you a fortune in hiring fees for other Leaders. OK, his Diplomat skill is useless for Repulsive empires, but who cares when he's such a goldmine?
Once you have Garron, Lydon, who has the same skills, will sometimes offer his services for free - if engaging Lydon as well leaves you with at least 1 vacant Colony Leader position, accept and look for good ways to spend the money.
Moo2 Grogg.jpg Grogg
the Gnolam Capilatist
Starting level: 60
Megawealth +10BCs
Financial Leader* +15% (+15% per level)
Labor Leader +10% (+10% per level)
Grogg is fairly expensive but pays for himself quite rapidly if put in a high-population system. Although his Labor skill may be most useful to Tolerant races, others can use it to move 1 or 2 "people" from industry to research.
Moo2 Houri.jpg Houri
the Environmentalist
Starting level: 60
Environmentalist -15% (-15% per level)
Houri's Environmentalist skill is useless for Tolerant races, and for non-Tolerant races it is often useful only while they are building Colony Ships as fast as they can - Atmosphere Renewer makes her near enough obsolete.
Moo2 Khunagg.jpg Khunagg
the Ruthless
Starting level: 60
Commando +2 (+2 per level)
Farming Leader +10% (+10% per level)
Labor Leader +10% (+10% per level)
Tactics +6 (+6 per level)
Khunagg's combination of Farming and Labor makes him most useful to Tolerant non-Lithovore races, i.e. usually to production races. In a Colony Leader the Tactics and Commando skills are only operational when you're defending a system he governs.
Moo2 Kimbuzzi.jpg Kimbuzzi
the Farming Leader
Starting level: 60
Farming Leader +10% (+10% per level)
Kimbuzzi is cheap because he has only 1 ability. It's useless for Lithovore races (including most research races). Farming races may find him useful for making large Arid planets productive. Dismiss him if you have no Colony Leader vacancies in your Officer Pool.
Moo2 Kirsus.jpg Kirsus
the Psilon Scientist
Starting level: 60
Researcher* +7 (+7 to 8 per level)
Science Leader +15% (+15% per level)
Kirsus' 7RP as a Researcher may be useful in the early game, while you're building Colony Ships as fast as you can. His Science skill is only effective if you have a lot of scientists in a system. Supercomputers almost make Kirsus obsolete, but he can help you get to that stage significantly faster.
Moo2 Lydon.jpg Lydon
the Noble
Starting level: 0
Diplomat +10 (+10 per level)
Famous -60 BCs (-60BCs per level)
Megawealth +10 BCs
If Lydon appears early, you should make hiring him a priority. His Megawealth will pay off his hiring fee in 6 turns, and his Fame will save you a fortune in hiring fees for other Leaders. OK, his Diplomat skill is useless for Repulsive empires, but who cares when he's such a goldmine?
Once you have Lydon, Garron, who has the same skills, will sometimes offer his services for free - if engaging Garron as well leaves you with at least 1 vacant Colony Leader position, accept and look for good ways to spend the money.
Moo2 Malovane.jpg Malovane
the Battle Lord
Starting level: ??
Commando* +3 (+3 per level)
Instructor* +1 (+1 per level)
Labor Leader* +15% (+15% per level)
Spiritual Leader* +15% (+15% per level)
Malovane is very expensive and usually appears relatively late, and his combination of abilities often does not fit most races' requirements well:
  • His Instructor skill is less useful than that of other Leaders because he appears so late.
  • His Spiritual skill is useless for Unification empires.
  • His Labor skill is most useful for Tolerant races; but many of these have Unification governments. It may help a non-Tolerant race by enabling them to move 1 or 2 workers into research.
Moo2 Matrix.jpg Matrix
the Cyber Mage
Starting level: 150
Assassin 2% (+2% per level)
Telepath* +3% (+3% per level)
Science Leader* +15% (+15% per level)
Spiritual Leader* +15% (+15% per level)
Matrix is fairly expensive and seldom appears early in the game. His combination of abilities is most useful to the most common research races; especially Democracies, which need an Assassin's help with defensive spying. His Spiritual skill is useless to Unification governments, but his Telepathic boost to offensive spying may help them to keep up with research races and to fill gaps in their set of techs.
Moo2 Megatron.jpg Megatron
the Relic Android
Starting level: 150
Farming Leader* +15% (+15% per level)
Labor Leader* +15% (+15% per level)
Science Leader* +15% (+15% per level)
Techs: Android Farmers, Android Scientists, Android Workers
Megatron is fairly expensive and seldom appears early in the game. Using Androids well is tricky: they "eat" 1 PP each per turn; that means you need to crank up production; that's easiest for Tolerant races; but these races miss out on a significant benefit of Androids, since they can't use Androids to "over-populate" colonies.
Megatron's combination of other abilities should be most useful to Tolerant non-Lithovore races - usually production races.
Moo2 Mentox.jpg Mentox
the Legendary Scientist
Starting level: 150
Famous* -90BCs (-90BCs per level)
Researcher* +7 (+7 to 8 per level)
Science Leader* +15% (+15% per level)
Techs: Research Laboratory, Autolab
Mentox is fairly expensive and seldom appears early in the game. You should have researched Research Laboratory yourself before he appears. But if he appears several turns before you expect to research Autolab, hire him! That's especially beneficial for non-Creative races, as it allows them to have both Autolab and Cybertronic Computer. And don't dismiss him unless all your opponents already have Autolab - you don't want the risk that he will offer his services and techs to one of them!
Moo2 Necron.jpg Necron
the Dark Lord
Starting level: 300
Telepath* +3% (+3% per level)
Financial Leader +15% (+15% per level)
Labor Leader +15% (+15% per level)
Science Leader +15% (+15% per level)
Spiritual Leader +15% (+15% per level)
Necron has an impressive set of abilities, especially for non-Unification empires - but he's very expensive and usually appears rather late.
Moo2 Nimraaz.jpg Nimraaz
the Master Tactician
Starting level: 60
Commando +3 (+3 per level)
Operations* +3 (+3 per level)
Instructor* +1 (+0 to 1 per level)
Tactics +9 (+9 per level)
Nimraaz' Instructor skill is useful if you already have a few other Leaders, and he's cheap enough and early enough for that investment to pay off. His Operations skill (+3CP) may save you 30 BC in fleet support some time. In a Colony Leader the Tactics and Commando skills are only operational when you're defending a system he governs.
Moo2 Orphus.jpg Orphus
the Peacemaker
Starting level: 150
Diplomat* +15 (+15 per level)
Famous* -60BCs (-60BCs per level)
Instructor +1 (+1 per level)
Medicine +15% (+15% per level)
Spiritual Leader* +15% (+15% per level)
Orphus' skills look impressive but are not particularly useful. His Diplomat ability is useless to Repulsive empires, and his Spiritual ability is useless to Unification empires. He usually appears a little too late for his Fame, Instructor and Medicine skills to make much difference.
Moo2 Ralleia.jpg Ralleia
the Siren
Starting level: 150
Diplomat* +15 (+15 per level)
Famous* -60BCs (-60BCs per level)
Spiritual Leader +15% (+15% per level)
Ralleia often appears fairly early, but looks expensive for that stage in the game. Her Diplomat ability is useless to Repulsive empires, and her Spiritual ability is useless to Unification empires. But other empires should hire her if they have a populous system with no Leader, as her Spiritual skill will improve every aspect of a colony's performance. The boost she gives to a populous system's tax income will more than pay her salary; and if you don't already have a Famous Leader and want to recruit more Leaders, she'll save you a fortune in hiring fees. (Our judgement is not at all influenced by the fact that she's drop-dead gorgeous).
Moo2 RashIki.jpg Rash-Iki
the Warlord
Starting level: 60
Commando +2 (+2 per level)
Instructor* +1 (+1 per level)
Labor Leader* +15% (+15% per level)
Tactics +6 (+6 per level)
Rash-Iki often appears early enough for his Instructor skill to pay off. His Labor skill will often be most useful to Tolerant Empires, but other empires may use it to move a few workers into research. In a Colony Leader the Tactics and Commando skills are only operational when you're defending a system he governs.
Moo2 Tanus.jpg Tanus
the Revolutionary
Starting level: 150
Farming Leader +10% (+10% per level)
Labor Leader +10% (+10% per level)
Science Leader +10% (+10% per level)
Spiritual Leader +10% (+10% per level)
Tech: Advanced Government
You should always hire Tanus for his Advanced Government tech, which is very good in itself and shouldnt fall into the hands of other empires. His Spiritual skill is useless to Unification empires, and his Farming skill is useless in Lithovore colonies. But the great majority of empires can benefit from at least 3 out of his 4 abilities.
Moo2 Torg.jpg Torg
the Overlord
Starting level: 150
Commando +2 (+2 per level)
Farming Leader +15% (+15% per level)
Financial Leader +15% (+15% per level)
Labor Leader +15% (+15% per level)
Torg's Farming skill is useless in Lithovore colonies, and the main use that non-Tolerant empires will have for his Labor skill to let them move 1 or 2 workers into research. His Financial skill will usually prove useful.
Moo2 Urro.jpg Urro
the Ikarian Doctor
Starting level: 0
Researcher* +5 (+5 per level)
Medicine* +15% (+15% per level)
The 5 RP from Urro's Researcher skill will only be significant while you're building Colony Ships as fast as possible. His Medicine skill will be useful for as long as you have colonies that need to grow, particularly in early game.
Moo2 Valin.jpg Valin
the Rogue Trader
Starting level: 60
Megawealth* +10BCs
Trader* +15% (+15% per level)
Financial Leader +10% (+10% per level)
Valin's Trader skill is useless to Repulsive empires. But any empire will find his Megawealth and Financial skills valuable for a long time.
Moo2 Vott.jpg Vott
the Technomancer
Starting level: 150
Megawealth* +10BCs
Researcher* +7 (+7 to 8 per level)
Financial Leader +15% (+15% per level)
Science Leader +15% (+15% per level)

Tech: Virtual Reality Network

Vott's Virtual Reality Network tech is huge if you get it well before you could research it; a 20% morale boost at all your colonies with no construction or maintenance. It's even better for a non-Creative empire since that makes it possible for the empire to have both VR Network and Galactic Cybernet. Although VR Network is useless to Unification Empires, they should seriously consider hiring him for his other abilities and to prevent non-Unification opponents from getting VR Network early. Don't dismiss Vott unless all your opponents already have VR Network!
Moo2 Xantus.jpg Xantus
the Supreme Leader
Starting level: 300
Environmentalist -15% (-15% per level)
Financial Leader +15% (+15% per level)
Labor Leader +15% (+15% per level)
Science Leader +15% (+15% per level)
Spiritual Leader +15% (+15% per level)
Xantus' Spiritual skill is useless to Unification empires, and his Environmentalist skill is useless in Tolerant colonies. But the great majority of empires can benefit from at least 3 out of his 5 abilities. Unfortunately he rarely appears, and usually very late. Xantus is as expensive as his high starting level and powerful skillset would lead you to expect.
Moo2 Yota.jpg Yota
the Elder Sensei
Starting level: 0
Famous* -90BCs (-90BCs per level)
Instructor* +1 (+1 per level)
If Yota appears, it's usually early. If you don't have both an Instructor and a Famous leader, hire him now!