Leaders are a special sub-class of units chiefly distinguished by their ability to grant additional Command Points to their side while on the field. A Leader's Command Point bonus is lost if the Leader is killed or forced to withdraw.
The following characters are Leaders:
- Welkin Gunther (as a Scout or in the Edelweiss)
- Zaka (Shamrock)
- Alicia Melchiott (Scout)
- Largo Potter (Lancer)
- Rosie (Shocktrooper)
Welkin and Zaka are automatically deployed, while the others are usually optional deployments. Deploying each of these units will increase starting Command Points by 1 and the number of CP gained per turn by 1.
These characters cannot die; regardless of what happens, they will always retreat rather than being permanently killed. The main exception to this rule is Welkin; as the player's avatar, his death is an automatic mission failure. Sometimes others will also be an automatic mission failure, though this is much rarer.
Losing a Leader also results in the loss of their Command Point bonus for the duration of the current mission. The loss will not be counted until the start of the next turn: the player does not lose a Command Point just for losing a Leader.
Valkyria Chronicles 2
In Valkyria Chronicles 2, Avan is the only character that grants a CP bonus at all times, as well as being the only character capable of issuing orders. After the August storyline mission, the player is permitted to assign a second leader to each team. This leader grants a CP bonus, and must be chosen from either the characters that make up the main cast (Zeri, Cosette, Aliasse, or Lavinia), or a character that has promoted at least once via the class change system (Veterans of any stripe, Snipers, Fencers, Gunners, Anthem Corps, Mortarers, or the upgrades of any of these classes). After completing December, a third leader can be chosen, following the prior criteria.
As is routine, a Leader's Command Point bonus is lost if the Leader is placed on standby, retreated, defeated, hospitalized, or withdraws for medical attention, returning when the Leader is redeployed. If both Avan and the secondary leader are deployed, the player will receive a total of two extra CP per turn. Post-game, this naturally increases to three if he or she choses a third leader.
Only in rare scenarios will Avan's defeat, retreat, or hospitalization result in mission failure.
Valkyria Chronicles 3
In Valkyria Chronicles 3, leaders work similarly to Valkyria Chronicles 2. Kurt Irving becomes a leader after chapter 2 which grants a CP bonus and he is the only character capable of issuing orders. After clearing chapter 10, a second leader can be assigned after purchasing the stat through the Training Grounds. This leader grants a CP bonus, and must be chosen from either the characters that make up the main cast (Riela Marcellis or Imca), anyone that has been promoted in their current class (Veterans or Elites), or a tank driver (Gusurg or Carisa Contzen). After completing the game, a third leader can be assigned, following the prior criteria.
If Kurt cannot be deployed in a mission, an additional leader can be assigned but they are only able to grant a CP bonus and will be unable to issue orders.
Valkyria Chronicles 4
The following units are leaders:
Additionally, starting with chapter 8, an additional leader can be assigned out of any infantry squad member with rank Corporal or higher.
Starting with chapter 4, infantry leaders can use the Direct Command ability, limited to a total of 1 per turn for the entire squad. This ability is essentially the Co-Op Attack concept extended to movement, and allows a leader to have a group of units follow them as they move.
Imperial Leaders are easily distinguished by their red armour, and can be of any class (including Tanks), except for Fixed Weapons. A special bonus is given after a mission for each enemy Leader killed / destroyed.
As with friendly leaders, killing an enemy Leader will remove their Command Point bonus starting on the next turn.