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« You know, life in the Special Forces is not as exciting as Hollywood makes it out to be. In each mission you are completely surrounded by bastards who don't want your ass in there, and if they discover you, your chances of escape are slim. Every man from my squad knows it, but we never talk about it. You can’t run away from the death.
Leon Ortega

Leon Ortega is the main protagonist of ArmA: Armed Assault's Rahmadi Conflict campaign.


Ortega is the team leader of USMC special forces callsign Nightwolf.

During the war against the Communist regime of North Sahrani, Ortega took part in several operations aimed at crippling its offensive capabilities which ultimately resulted in the capture of its leader, Prime Minister Torrez.

Following their success against northern forces and the fragmenting of its military, Ortega's team was called upon to hunt down the final remnants of the SLA on the island of Rahmadi.

Located just a short distance away from the Sahranian mainland, he was tasked with the mission after reports of SLA troops being present are obtained by U.S. intelligence agencies.

Rahmadi Conflict (2006)

« Man, two special teams for one operation? I think it's gonna be a big one...

Ortega's Nightwolf, alongside another fireteam with the callsign of Flash Team, are assigned to infiltrate the southern and western coastlines of Rahmadi (respectively) in preparation for the main assault by allied forces. Their objective was to neutralise the anti-aircraft batteries situated along each coast, which were preventing U.S. forces from being able to land and establish a beachhead.

Under the cover of darkness, Ortega's men and Flash Team infiltrated their respective AO by boats and synchronised their attacks, successfully destroying all the AA defences on the shore while also disabling several of their tanks. Satisfied that there were no more SLA left on the coast, the green light was issued for the main assault to commence.

Reinforcements soon land on the coast and take over the southern and western shorelines. By the time the sun rose, U.S. forces had established their camps and were preparing to advance further inland to hunt down the SLA's unknown leader.

« The sun is rising and we’re still waiting for orders. I hope that we’re not waiting for the SLA to show up. Or are we?

Before moving out however, Ortega met with senior officer Captain Carrey and is told that the CIA had obtained new intel from their interrogations on Torrez. He was not in fact, the official leader of the SLA, and took all his orders from a man named Ramirez, the former president of the North before he went into hiding.

Ortega is surprised with the news, but their chat is interrupted when a call comes in from the camp's headquarters, ordering Ortega to immediately link up with Sgt. Statham for an urgent briefing. Statham updates Ortega on their current situation: Ramirez' existence was not confirmed, but it was highly likely that he was the one organising the SLA on Rahmadi. Most likely, he was hiding somewhere within the main town.

Ortega is ordered to hunt the rogue president.

An attack against their camp by the remnants was also expected soon and true to his word, the SLA launches its assault on the U.S. camp at that same moment. Statham orders Ortega to hunt down the president but first tells him to destroy the remaining AA batteries in the nearby village, as they were preventing U.S. aircraft from being mobilised.

Gathering Nightwolf together, he hastily updates them on their new tasks before moving out into the nearby hills. They fight their way through the SLA troops advancing toward the camp and surrounding the village, Ortega's team succeed in destroying the last of the SLA's AA vehicles before pulling back to resume their hunt for Ramirez.

Despite rummaging through every single dwelling in the village and clearing out its defenders, the president is nowhere to be found. However, Ortega manages to come across a lone SLA officer attempting to make a run for it. The man is quickly apprehended and Ortega begins to threaten him if he refuses to spill any information he had on Ramirez' whereabouts.

The officer reveals that Ramirez had already left several hours before the U.S. invasion, and was on a smaller island called Porto roughly 72 kilometres east of Rahmadi.

The final assault begins.

One Last Fight

« So we’re flying there, I am looking down into the flashing water and I can’t stop thinking about that strange island that we keep getting closer and closer to that we don’t know anything about...
Ortega on the flight into Porto

A helicopter soon arrives to pick up Ortega and Nightwolf, and the men are flown directly towards Porto to stop the rogue president once and for all.

Since the wind was too strong, Nightwolf's helicopter pilot is forced to divert their landing onto the western coast of Porto. Statham informs them over the radio that nine trading ships were docked and ready to depart, and it wasn't clear as to which one Ramirez was planning to head to. Furthermore, he receives even more bad news; Ramirez' Especas units were planning to create havoc in the city by massacring civilians in order to stop the Americans from advancing.

Ortega's team quickly diverted to the city, and managed to stop the killings before the situation got out of hand. However, although they had stopped the massacre Ramirez was still attempting to make a getaway towards one of the ships. Resuming their search, Ortega soon spots a vehicle racing out of the city and heading towards the shore, which he assumes to have Ramirez riding inside.

« Ortega: Hands in the air! Don't try anything! Now you're gonna atone for every barbarity you've done!
Ramirez: We both know that I personally did nothing.
Ortega: You know what? You disappointed me, Richie! You are more a politician than a soldier.
Ortega captures Ramirez

Quickly intercepting the fleeing vehicle, Ortega apprehends the passenger, who does turn out to be none other than Ramirez himself. Ortega restrains him and delivers a satisfying kick onto the leader, knocking him into the ground. Reporting back his success, U.S. reinforcements soon arrive to pick up the former president.

Post-Rahmadi Conflict

« The news about the victory out there on Rahmadi, filled the airwaves. I hear soldiers talking about going home already.

With his capture, the last of the SLA threat to the southern Kingdom's stability came to a decisive resolution.

Ortega reflected on his mission thus far and noted that despite looking forward to returning stateside, he felt somewhat depressed that he was leaving the battlefield once more.

Personality and Appearance

Ortega is a white male with a mostly shaved head of hair. He wore fatigues adorned in the Universal Camouflage Pattern (UCP) and a coyote brown Interceptor Body Armor (IBA) vest with a hydration pack. For headgear, he wears a Pro-Tech bump helmet with ESS combat goggles strapped and a headset attached.

« My home is the battlefield, this is the only place where I feel alive. My duty on the other hand, is to destroy it every time this surge of life runs through me. Pretty ironic...
Ortega reflects on his life

Ortega was a Marine who prided himself in his skills and proficiency to handle any task that was thrown at him. He was someone that came to terms with his willingness to fight whenever the opportunity arose but at the same time, wasn't a cold-hearted individual who allowed his desire for combat to transition into pure bloodlust.


  • Although team switch is available throughout Rahmadi Conflict, Ortega is considered to be the protagonist as all cutscenes are narrated from his perspective. Each mission will automatically end in failure if he's killed, a condition that specifically applies to him and not the other members of Nightwolf.


See also

Characters of ArmA: Armed Assault
U.S. Army David Armstrong* • William Porter
USMC DavisLeon Ortega
SLA RamirezTorrez*
RACS Andrea RiboliChancellor
Black Element Denys de Jong* • Dewan Robinson* • Jamil Stehlik-Fawaz* • John Wicks† • Kurt Lambowski* • Tom Larson*
Civilians Isabella XiménezJoseph III† • Marian Quandt† • Orlando† • Raoul Gonzales*
indicates deceased characters | * indicates character status is unknown
DLCs that the character was first introduced in:
Queen's Gambit