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Todd Jeffries as Hunter/Instructor with characteristic armor and adorned with red markings for the hunt. "Flesh & Blood".
|Base of operations||Delta Quadrant|
Portrayed as a significant threat to the Voyager crew, the Hirogen are a dominant warrior species in the region, roaming vast distances in pursuit of worthy prey. Although they are an ancient race, their technology is not superior to that on Voyager, although their "tetryon"-based weapons are unfamiliar to Starfleet.
While the Hirogen are initially a major threat to Voyager, the Starfleet crew eventually help the Hirogen to solve problems arising from their way of life, leading to a de facto truce.
Similar to the aliens of the Predator species from the science fiction franchise of the same name, the Hirogen are presented as driven by the hunt, who highly prize the unusual trophies taken from the carcasses of their prey. They are not described as having a home planet; and their society is apparently organized around space-faring nomadic hunting packs or tribes, with a hierarchical structure in which an Alpha warrior leads and a Beta and a Gamma are, respectively, secondary and tertiary subordinates. Contact between tribes is maintained through an ancient communication network over vast distances. Before the hunt, the Hirogen ritualistically apply paint to their armor. Hirogen hunters are shown as being much taller than humans, usually over two metres in size with a muscular build evolved for combat; and they are usually shown wearing armour, with masks for inhospitable environments. There has only been one 'civilian' Hirogen shown on-screen; the Season 7 episode "Flesh and Blood," introduces a Hirogen technician, who does not participate in hunting and is looked on with disdain by others of his species, as he has no taste for the hunt.
Sometime around the year 2374, the USS Voyager encounter the Hirogen when the crew uses an apparently abandoned ancient communications network to send a message to the Alpha Quadrant. It is not clear if the Hirogen created the technology or merely appropriated it for their use; but they vigorously object to its use by Voyager. Sensing Voyager to be worthy prey, the Hirogen attack in force. Voyager's weapon systems are initially unable to penetrate the hull armor of the Hirogen fighter craft. Many conflicts ensue between Hirogen and Voyager as the aliens continue their ritualistic hunt; but, under Captain Janeway's guidance, the Starfleet crew is able to survive each encounter.
In 2377, one of the final confrontations between Voyager and a Hirogen war party is so devastating to both sides that a cease-fire was reached, an unprecedented event in the entirety of Hirogen history. The Alpha in charge of the Hirogen raiding party had initially invaded Voyager in the hopes of obtaining holographic technology; and, though he fell during the combat, Janeway delivered the technology to his successor. The Alpha acknowledged that, by chasing 'prey' across the entire Quadrant, the Hirogen people were losing all cultural and national unity and would eventually be overcome by other species. By creating holographic hunts, with the safety systems off, they could continue to have lethal and challenging hunts while remaining united in a single portion of space. Unfortunately, the Hirogen program their holographic prey too well—the hologram warriors are programmed to learn from each "death", and their combat abilities increase exponentially. This eventually reaches the logical conclusion of the prey becoming the predators, and it is only the intervention of the Voyager crew that prevents the Hirogen's utter extermination.
- "Message in a Bottle" — The Hirogen claim to own the ancient relay network through which Voyager's holographic Doctor was transmitted to the Alpha Quadrant.
- "Hunters" — A transmission from Starfleet Command gets held at a Hirogen relay station. The crew sent to retrieve the message are captured by a Hirogen hunter.
- "Prey" — Voyager rescues a surviving Hirogen hunter who has become prey to a captured member of Species 8472.
- "The Killing Game" — The Hirogen, having boarded and taken control of Voyager, practice their hunts in holographic situations where the crew believe they are characters native to each environment.
- "Tsunkatse" — A Hirogen hunter, one of the warriors forced to fight in transmitted personal combat games, first helps the recently captured Seven of Nine and then becomes her opponent in the arena.
- "Flesh and Blood" — Voyager's holographic technology, given to the Hirogen at the end of "The Killing Game", has been modified and the sentient holograms are rebelling, turning from hunted to hunter.
Other media 
The Hirogen were featured in the 2000 PC game Star Trek: Voyager: Elite Force. Several missions took place aboard their ship, and their Tetryon Pulse Disruptor is obtained as a usable weapon.
They were also featured in the game Star Trek Online.
See also