[[quoteright:319:http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/Legacyofkain.jpg]]
[[caption-width-right:319:Who's the good guy? Who's the bad guy? Answering that's going to take a while.]]

->''"Thirty years hence, I am presented with a dilemma - let's call it a two-sided coin. If the coin falls one way, I sacrifice myself and thus restore the Pillars. But as the last surviving vampire in Nosgoth, this would mean the annihilation of our species. If the coin lands on the reverse, I refuse the sacrifice and thus doom the Pillars to an eternity of collapse. Either way, the game is rigged. But suppose you throw a coin enough times... suppose one day, [[HeadsTailsEdge it lands on its edge]]."''
-->-- '''Kain''', summing up [[TakeAThirdOption most of the major]] [[ScrewDestiny themes of the series]].

->''"What game is this, where [[GambitPileup every player on the board claims the same pawn]]?"''
-->-- '''Raziel''', summing up [[TheChessmaster the rest of]] [[CosmicPlaything the major themes]].

An action video game series depicting the dark, gothic world of Nosgoth and its rather [[OurVampiresAreDifferent unique vampires]]. The series follows {{Badass}} {{Anti Hero}}es, [[NameOfCain Kain]] and Raziel. Kain is a [[MagnificentBastard Magnificent]] SociopathicHero interested in conquering Nosgoth with a vampire army. Raziel is Kain's right-hand vampire who he has killed and turned into a wraith, and sets about trying to kill Kain to avenge himself. It turns out Raziel has the power to ScrewDestiny, and from there we get into time travel. Thus, from ''Soul Reaver'' on, all the main characters, including Kain, take turns playing GambitRoulette with [[CosmicPlaything Raziel as the ball]], hoping to [[UnwittingPawn trick him]] into changing history to make things better for them. Along the way, there's a ProphecyTwist or two, loads of {{Magnificent Bastard}}s, [[FloweryElizabethanEnglish faux-Shakespearan dialogue]], and many chances for [[VideoGameCrueltyPotential video game cruelty]] as you decide how to dispatch {{Mook}}s in the most fun and gruesome ways you can think of.

The series [[KudzuPlot has an amazingly complex story]], and you need to play all the games or at least have knowledge of their plots to understand it. In fact, replaying the series a second time is probably the only way you'll begin to put it all together without someone helping you. It also runs on BlackAndGrayMorality like a car runs on gasoline -- Kain is a VillainProtagonist who just happens to be fighting people that are ''more'' evil, though he ultimately [[WellIntentionedExtremist has heroic goals behind his villainous nature]]. Counterpart Raziel, meanwhile, is a NobleDemon who has a nasty habit of [[NiceJobBreakingItHero breaking things]] despite trying to do good. The series is commonly cited as having some of the best voice acting of any video game series, with actors like Simon Templeman, Michael Bell, Richard Doyle, and the late great Creator/TonyJay providing voice work.

The fate of the franchise at large is unclear. ''Defiance'' ended on a cliffhanger, albeit with most major plotlines resolved. A sixth title, a direct sequel to ''Defiance'', was cancelled mid-development and the parent companies that own the series have shown little interest in reviving it again. Kain and Raziel have also appeared as bonus characters in ''[[Franchise/TombRaider Lara Croft and the Guardian of Light]]''. In 2013, ''Nosgoth'' was announced as a team-based free-to-play multiplayer game based in the years after Kain and Raziel left the doomed timeline of the first ''Soul Reaver'', and involves humanity's final attempt to wipe out the vampires and escape their subjugation.

For a brief overview of each game's plotline, see the [[Synopsis/LegacyOfKain synopsis entry]].

----
!!This series contains examples of the following tropes:

* AlienBlood: In ''Blood Omen'', this is ColorCodedForYourConvenience: Red blood restores your health, the blue blood of ghosts restores your mana, black blood lowers your health, and green blood poisons you.
* AllThereInTheManual: A lot of story details and explanations come from the interviews.
* AmnesiacDissonance: Happens to Raziel twice. First, he discovers that in life he was a Sarafan vampire hunter, and immediately starts aspiring to that legacy. In Soul Reaver 2 he has the opportunity to meet his past human self and quickly discovers he was far more monstrous as a human KnightTemplar than he ever was as a vampire or a wraith.
-->'''Sarafan Raziel:''' "You're a righteous fiend, aren't you?"\\
'''Wraith Raziel:''' "Apparently I am..."
* AndIMustScream: Raziel's five hundred years of torment in the Abyss after his execution, his imprisonment between ''Soul Reaver 2'' and ''Defiance'', and [[spoiler:his ultimate fate]]. [[spoiler:The Elder God]] threatens Kain with this in ''Defiance'' by burying him in the Vampire Citadel.
** Due to Kain's refusal to sacrifice himself, Ariel's spirit is permanently bound to the ruined pillars.
** [[spoiler:Janos']] ultimate fate, as of ''Blood Omen 2''? Trapped in the Demon Realm. Before that, there was his possession, his imprisonment, and devolution into "the Beast".
** Since Kain altered history after saving the king's daughter in ''Blood Omen'', it can be assumed her soul was never saved from the Dollmaker and is still imprisoned in a puppet.
* AnimatedArmor: Malek's punishment was to become this.
** He also employed these as his soldiers in his bastion in ''Blood Omen.''
* AppendageAssimilation: The Soul Reaver and Raziel.
* ArcWords - "History abhors a paradox."
* ArchEnemy: Kain and Moebius are probably the purest examples given the deep, mutual, personal hatred they have for each other, and that Kain's MagnificentBastard LightningBruiser is an excellent foil for Moebius' {{chessmaster}} SquishyWizard. Malek and Vorador, Janos and the Sarafan Lord, and Raziel and Kain are all slightly more one-sided examples.
* AsLongAsItSoundsForeign: The towns in ''Blood Omen'' have German-sounding names that don't actually mean anything.
* AscendedMeme: In 2003, a certain ''Legacy of Kain'' fansite ran an April Fool's Day article about three new titles in the franchise to be released the same year, including concept art for a WideOpenSandbox ''VideoGame/GrandTheftAuto'' clone starring a SuperDeformed version of Kain, titled ''Vehiculum Furtus Maximo''. ''Defiance'' eventually included a ShoutOut to this gag by including a cheat code to transform Kain into his SuperDeformed version featured in the concept art for VFM.
* AttackDeflector: The chaos armor in ''Blood Omen'', although both you and the enemy would be harmed, and the 'repel' spell which causes missiles to bounce back.
* AttackOfTheMonsterAppendage: The tentacles in ''Defiance''.
* {{Backtracking}}: ''Soul Reaver 2'' features an awful lot. Raziel has to trek through the Sarafan Stronghold on three separate occasions with only cosmetic differences in level design. ''Defiance'' also features a lot of this.
* BadassBoast
-->'''Sarafan Tomb Guardian''': Your insults will do nothing to blunt the agonies of your demise!
-->'''Raziel''': Kain killed me once. Behold the result. I have no more to fear from ''you''.
* BadFuture: ''Soul Reaver 1'' and part of ''2'', where the Pillars have been left corrupted and Nosgoth has rotted from it.
* BagOfSpilling: Zigzagged, but mostly averted. While they may take different forms, Raziel and Kain mostly keep their skillsets between games.
** Raziel keeps the abilities he learns in ''Soul Reaver'' throughout the next two games, save for the Constrict ability which was useless anyway. He does ''not'' keep the Elemental Reavers between ''Soul Reaver 2'' and ''Defiance'', but WordOfGod gives a HandWave that this is because Raziel originally needed to imbue the Reaver in an elemental forge to activate its ElementalPowers, and the Elder God destroyed the forges between the two games. Thus in ''Defiance'', Raziel is imbuing ''himself'' with the elements and manifests them through the Reaver. He also loses the Glyphs and Fire Reaver from ''Soul Reaver'' to ''Soul Reaver 2'', but this is acceptable since they were bonus features the player did not need to find to complete the game, so presumably in the canon Raziel didn't find them.
** Kain keeps his mist form in ''Defiance'' for dodging and phasing through gates, his Blood Gout and Blood Shower spells returns, his Energy Bolt is expanded into telekinesis, and he retains the ability to teleport, but only in [[CutscenePowerToTheMax cutscenes]]. He keeps his lightning spell from ''Blood Omen'' in ''Soul Reaver'', then lacks it in ''Defiance'', but gains an equivalent ability during the game. His abilities from ''Blood Omen 2'' do not appear in ''Defiance'', but this is excusable thanks to the TimeyWimeyBall -- the events of ''Blood Omen 2'' haven't happened yet, and the events of ''Defiance'' will determine if they do or not. In ''Blood Omen 2'' he starts off with few abilities, but this is excused for story reasons, he's been in hibernation between games after suffering a crushing defeat and has grown weak as a result.
* BaldWomen: It seems to be a religious thing, maybe as an extension of the hiding-women's-hair rules of some real religions.
* BeastOfBattle: Armored war dogs in ''Soul Reaver 2''.
* BeatStillMyHeart: The Heart of Darkness, which keeps beating after it's ripped from the chest of Janos Audron. [[spoiler:And also from the chest of Kain.]]
** From the Outtakes of Soul Reaver 2: "LOOK AT THIS BLACK HEART! HOW STILL IT BEATS!... or maybe 'How it still beats'?"
* BiggerOnTheInside: The structure in the center of Dark Eden in ''Blood Omen''.
* BigBad: [[spoiler:The Elder God]], who is the main reason everything is going to hell in Nosgoth by virtue of setting up most of the major wars and power struggles in history. [[spoiler:The Hylden Lord]] could also be argued as an example.
* BlackAndGrayMorality: Vampires are meant to rule the world, HumansAreBastards, the entities who want to eradicate the vampires are the main antagonists, and the two protagonists are a pair of {{Anti Hero}}es, a murderous self-righteous vampire overlord and his twice-undead ex-lieutenant who eats souls. Morality is very, ''very'' relative in this series. Connect the plot with the Hylden and it becomes a bit more clear, though still very relative. In another game series Kain could easily be a straight-up villain, but in this series he's mostly preferable to the two main villains, since [[spoiler:the Elder God is controlling everyone's souls so he can feed on them, and the Hylden care nothing for the masses of innocent humans they kill in order to free themselves, even if that extends to killing all of them]].
* BlockPuzzle: ''Soul Reaver'' is full of them -- rumor has it that a team leader at Crystal Dynamics asked each member of the development team to design a new puzzle every week. Nearly all of them would eventually hand in another BlockPuzzle. At least the ability to flip over and stack the blocks added ''some'' variety to it.
* BodySurf: The Hylden Lord, aka "Hash'ak'gik," who possesses several bodies, including [[spoiler:Mortanius and Janos Audron]]. A veritable peanut gallery of Hylden souls uses [[spoiler:Turel]] as a host in ''Defiance''.
* BonusDungeon: The Lost City in the first ''Blood Omen''. Located where many players probably won't look, can only be entered during a full moon (which lasts for seven and a half minutes and occurs once every two hours or so of real time), full of traps and tough enemies, contains tons of loot, and is completely optional.
** Human Citadel in the ''Soul Reaver'' again in a place where you have no need to go.
* BookEnds: Soul Reaver begins and ends with Raziel meeting Kain, with [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yJs5PF0Uz10 Ozar Midrashim]] playing in the background.
** Soul Reaver 2 begins and ends in the Sarafan Stronghold.
* BossInMookClothing: The demons in Soul Reaver 2 deserve mention for this... specifically the Fire and Lightning Demons. For mooks, they are pretty damn tough. Especially when you have to fight them together. Their difficulty levels were toned down in Defiance, but could still be a pain if they caught you unaware.
* [[BossRush Mook Rush]]: The ending of ''Soul Reaver 2'' pits Raziel against the [[spoiler:men who will degenerate into the bosses of ''Soul Reaver 1'']], followed by [[spoiler:his human self.]] They're EliteMooks to their credit, stronger versions of the most powerful human enemies in the game, but due to the Reaver making Raziel invincible, there's no challenge to the fights.
* BreathWeapon: The [[{{Hellhound}} hellhounds]] in ''Blood Omen'' and some demons.
* BrokenPedestal: Raziel and [[spoiler:the Sarafan, who he initially believed were noble defenders of humanity before finding out they were brutal KnightTemplar butchers. And most of all, ''himself'' after Sarafan Raziel kills Janos Audron.]]
* CameBackWrong: Resurrection doesn't ''ever'' look pretty in this series.
** Except maybe flesh-and-blood vampire Raziel. It almost seems like Kain killed him for being too pretty.
* ChekhovsArmory: Thanks to time travel, odds are ''anything'' mentioned in passing over the course of the series will be revisited at some later game, regardless of if it chronologically takes place before or after the last game.
** ChekhovsBoomerang: Raziel's mentioning he was imprisoned in the Spectral Realm for 500 years at the beginning of ''Defiance'' means this puts him ''exactly'' on course with the timeline of the original ''Blood Omen'', explaining how he is able to meet with Ariel's spirit and Vorador. [[spoiler:Later on, Raziel and Janos watch the pillars shatter perfectly in-time with the events of ''Blood Omen'', and thus with his seal weakened the Hylden Lord possesses Janos.]]
** ChekhovsGun:
*** Arguably the ''Soul Reaver'' itself -- it only really became the SwordOfPlotAdvancement in ''Soul Reaver 2''. In the first two games, it was just a really powerful weapon.
*** In ''Blood Omen'', one secret room in the basement of Avernus Cathedral had a bible that praised someone by the name of "Hash'ak'gik", but no further explanation was ever given... until several years and four games later in ''Defiance'', when we find out this is the alias for the Hylden Lord. ''Defiance'' also makes it clear that [[spoiler:the Unspoken, aka the Dark Entity, is actually the Hylden Lord who is controlling Mortanius, explaining his transformation at the end of the first game]].
*** It's glossed over early on that Nosgothic vampires are vulnerable to certain sound frequencies in ''Soul Reaver,'' where Raziel can gain a sound attack and the Silenced Cathedral was originally intended to play a deadly tune to kill vampires. [[spoiler:In ''Defiance'', Turel has grown so powerful that he's immune to Raziel's standard weapons, so he rings a series of giant gongs to hurt him.]]
** ChekhovsGunman: Janos Audron is mentioned in precisely two lines in ''Blood Omen,'' never to be seen until two games later:
--->'''Kain:''' ''[Picking up the first "Heart of Darkness" consumable item] Reputed to have been [[{{Foreshadowing}} ripped from the chest]] of the greatest vampire to have ever existed, Janos Audron, the Heart of Darkness [[GameplayAndStoryIntegration restores vampiric unlife.]] Life is precious, Janos discovered -- as it was torn throbbing and bleeding from his own body.
--->'''Kain:''' ''[Entering Uschtenheim] In my travels, I learned much about the legend of Janos Audron. Here, in this quaint pastoral village of Uschtenheim, that [[HeroWithBadPublicity dark enemy was born.]] [[WrittenByTheVictors Janos preyed upon its peasants until he was finally hunted down and executed.]]
** ChekhovsSkill: Possessing corpses in ''Defiance'' mostly serves as an alternative gameplay mechanic for Raziel to shift realms with the portals closed off to him. [[spoiler:Until he uses Moebius' corpse in the climax to trick Kain into impaling him with the Soul Reaver.]]
* ColorCodedCharacters: Raziel's color motif is blue and green, Kain's is orange and red. Most prominent in ''Defiance''.
* CombatTentacles: The Elder God's tentacles serve this purpose at times, notably [[spoiler:during his battle against Kain]].
* ContinuityNod: Oh so many. Thanks to time travel, the protagonists frequently revisit familiar locations, so there's plenty of chances for these and few of them are wasted.
** The basin room Raziel enters from the Timestreaming Chamber at the start of ''Soul Reaver 2'', and the hallways of the Sarafan Keep are modeled after the building seen [[spoiler:in the flashback of Vorador slaying the Circle in ''Blood Omen'']]. Furthermore, in ''Soul Reaver'', [[spoiler:the Oracle's cauldron room and its antechamber, known as Moebius' Museum,]] have been modeled after the originals, [[spoiler:down to the tattered old ruins of a banner that hung there since before Kain first entered the caves, thousands of years before.]] Incidentally, [[spoiler:the emblem on said banner is the emblem of Moebius' mercenary army as seen in ''Soul Reaver 2'']]. Also, the earring Kain sports in his evolved form from ''Soul Reaver'' onward is the ring [[spoiler:Vorador gave him in their first meeting]].
** The climax of ''Defiance'' takes place literally minutes after the end of ''Blood Omen'', so the final few levels are full of nods to the first game, including [[spoiler:Mortanius fighting the Hylden Lord's control, Vorador's capture by Moebius's forces, and Kain's decision to reject the option for a HeroicSacrifice, shattering the pillars and allowing the Hylden Lord to possess Janos.]]
** The effect is somewhat lost because it's a different voice actor reciting the lines, but in ''Defiance'', Raziel eavesdrops on Mortanius' last message to ''Blood Omen''-era Kain.
--->Mortanius: Come to me, my undead son! Make haste to the Pillars! The stage is set for the GrandFinale! You will have your vengeance!
* CosmicKeystone: The Pillars of Nosgoth.
* CowboyBebopAtHisComputer: IGN had a hilariously bad case of this whenever they wrote previews of ''Soul Reaver,'' referring to Raziel as Kain, the Soul Reaver as a LaserBlade, series producer Amy Hennig as Amy '''B'''ennig, etc.
* CrapsackWorld: In the first game, at least -- civilization has decayed beyond this point in the sequels, rendering them effectively AfterTheEnd (time jumps notwithstanding). In ''Soul Reaver'', the world has basically become a desolate wasteland, with the vampires being a scourge of mindless beasts and the humans being confined to a lonely fortress.
** By the ending of ''Defiance'', however, there seems to be a tiny bit of hope. At least for [[spoiler:the vampires]], anyways.
* CreativeClosingCredits: Fancy-shmancy custom fonts and amazing concept art galore.
* DarkMessiah / MessianicArchetype: Kain and Raziel both think they fit the description.
* DarkWorld: Nupraptor's keep in ''Blood Omen'' is in the shape of a skull, built on a cliff. Looking through one eye socket will show you the lush landscape below. Looking through the other will show you the world through Nupraptor's eyes, a dead, twisted land with blackened ground and lava for water. Kain remarks that Nosgoth doesn't need help to make its corruption apparent.
* DaywalkingVampire: Vampires grow immune to sunlight as they grow older and more powerful. The only exception to this rule are the Rahabim, a clan of aquatic vampires who overcame the vampire's innate weakness to water instead.
* DeadpanSnarker: Kain is this all the way. Raziel develops into one over the course of the series.
* DeathByIrony: [[spoiler:Moebius]]'s demise combines this with RasputinianDeath. [[spoiler:First, he's beheaded by Kain near the end of ''Blood Omen''. He's almost immediately resurrected and teleported to the Vampire Citadel by the Elder God, where he's killed by [[FutureBadass older]] Kain, literally minutes after his first death. When Moebius's spirit awakens in the Spectral Realm, he's stabbed in the back by Raziel and sent to feed the Wheel of Fate, supervised by the very deity he worships. While Time Streamer's soul meets its end at this point, his ''body'' does not. Raziel possesses it to enter the Material Realm, only to be instantly pierced by Kain, which is exactly what he wants.]]
* DeathIsASlapOnTheWrist: ''Soul Reaver'' is one of the more noteworthy examples: The game is split into two dimensions, the Material Realm and the Spectral Plane, and if Raziel's health ever drops down to nothing, he simply moves to the Spectral Plane -- this is hardly ever really annoying, because there's usually a conduit straight back to the Material Realm close by, and sometimes the player has to hop between the two dimensions intentionally to solve puzzles. The Elder God would pull Raziel back to his chamber if he was destroyed in the Spectral Plane, causing a ''slightly'' larger inconvenience.
** The developers specifically aimed to avert the artificiality of video-game death and re-load, so this system is still in place in later games even when the plot justification of the Elder's initial control over Raziel is no longer viable and replaced with [[GameplayAndStorySegregation quick]] [[{{Handwave}} handwaves]]. In ''Defiance,'' Kain morphs into bat form to retreat when he takes too much damage.
* DecapitationPresentation: In ''Blood Omen'', this is done to the executed [[spoiler:Vorador]]. [[spoiler:Moebius]], who was in charge of it, takes this trope up a notch by leaving the head in the hand of a statue of himself in the same pose, which is seen in ''Soul Reaver 2'' about a hundred years later.
** Mentioned, but not shown, in ''Blood Omen'' is how Kain did this with the head of the Dollmaker.
* DemBones: Animated skeletons are encountered in ''Blood Omen''. Some of them walk in a fixed route and explode on contact with you. Others can [[PullingThemselvesTogether pull themselves together]] and need to be destroyed [[LudicrousGibs more]] [[KillItWithFire thoroughly]].
* DemonicPossession: Not done by the actual [[OurDemonsAreDifferent demons]], though. It gradually wears out the host, or immediately uses it up if the possessor decides to transform it.
* DidntSeeThatComing: [[spoiler:For Kain, the fact that his "edge of the coin" scenario was exactly what the bad guys wanted. For the Elder God and Moebius, both that Kain would survive having his heart ripped out, and that helping Raziel delay his merge with the Reaver would result in its completed form, which is the only thing that can harm the Elder God.]]
* DidYouJustFlipOffCthulhu: Throughout ''Soul Reaver 2,'' Raziel is becoming increasingly more belligerent toward the Elder God; even more so when he starts to realize the true nature of the Elder God. This culminates in ''Defiance'' when Raziel gives his NotSoDifferent Speech to the Elder God at the beginning.
--->Raziel: Why must this game go on? We both know what you are. You're no better than the vampires you so despise! A voracious parasite cloaking its appetite in a shroud of righteousness!
* DidYouJustPunchOutCthulhu: [[spoiler:Kain vs. the Elder God at the end of Defiance, after Raziel is absorbed in the Soul Reaver and Kain's soul is cleansed of all corruption]]. Raziel gets his own moment to do this just prior to that against [[spoiler:Janos Audron possessed by the Hylden Lord, pitting him against the last Ancient Vampire ''and'' the leader of the Hylden at once.]] Due to GameplayAndStorySegregation, he blows it.
* DoNotGoGentle: In ''Blood Omen'', both Mortanius and Moebius are aware that they are destined to be killed by Kain and have accepted it. It doesn't mean they're just gonna lay down and make it easy for him. Rahab is much the same way in ''Soul Reaver''.
* DolledUpInstallment: ''Soul Reaver'' started out as an unrelated game called "Shifter", although no actual development was ever done on it before [[IncrediblyLamePun shifting]] it into a ''Legacy Of Kain'' game. ''Blood Omen 2'' similarly utilizes unused concepts and ideas for two canceled unrelated games, "Sirens" and "Chakan", that were adapted to fit the story the team had worked out on their own for the game.
* DualWorldGameplay: ''Soul Reaver'' is an excellent example of this with a spectral realm/material realm duality and blocked paths gameplay. On top of that, time spent in the material realm was limited by continuous draining of health.
* DuelingPlayerCharacters: ''Defiance'' has a duel between Kain and Raziel, where the player must control Kain for the first portion of the fight, then control switches to Raziel halfway through.
* DummiedOut: So, ''so'' much in Soul Reaver. [[http://www.thelostworlds.net/SR1/index.html A quick guide here.]] Essentially ''Soul Reaver'' and ''Soul Reaver 2'' were going to be one game, but there wasn't enough time, money or data for that so they split it into two, hence ''Soul Reaver's'' cliffhanger ending and a lot of the cut elements for that game appearing in ''Soul Reaver 2'' and ''Defiance''.
** A certain unofficial Playstation magazine notably skimped on research and included all the cut elements in their strategy guide...
* EitherOrProphecy: In ''Defiance'', the Ancients and Hylden will each have a champion fight on their behalf, but the murals depicting their battle leaves it uncertain who will win. [[spoiler:It turns out that Raziel is ''both'' champions--he's the Hylden Champion by way of giving them the means to free themselves, and he's the Ancient Champion by entrusting Kain with the means to destroy the Elder God. Ergo, by sacrificing himself, the two "champions" effectively kill each other.]]
* ElementalPowers: Raziel gets these. In the first ''Soul Reaver'', he just had the Fire add-on. In the second, he gets Dark, Light, Air, and Fire Reavers through elemental forges, but his wraith-blade can only hold one charge at a time. In ''Defiance'', the array goes Dark, Light, Fire, Air, Water, Earth, and [[InfinityPlusOneElement Spirit]] and he can always switch between any of them at will while in the Material Realm.
** Kain's ''Defiance'' Reaver add-ons also have Fire and Lightning elements, in addition to the more esoteric Balance, [[FlashStep Dimension]], and [[TimeStandsStill Time]] modes. It was intended for Fire and Lightning to be called Conflict and Energy--Balance, Conflict, Energy, Dimension, and Time make up five of the nine [[CosmicKeystone Pillars of Nosgoth]].
*** Conflict is a better definition, since its magic allows you to [[EnemyCivilWar turn the stricken enemies against each other]].
* EleventhHourSuperpower: The Soul Reaver in the last three games.
* EndOfAnAge: Subverted, in that Kain's empire is a [[DawnOfAnEra Golden Age]] ''from a vampire's perspective''. Kain later invokes this word for word in ''Soul Reaver'' when his empire has collapsed.
* TheEndOfTheWorldAsWeKnowIt: Kain does this. At least ''three times''. And he is still one of the good guys. [[MagnificentBastard Magnificent]].
* EpiphanicPrison: [[spoiler:All of Nosgoth is essentially this thanks to the Wheel of Fate--The Elder God controls everyone's destiny by controlling their souls. Only Raziel is aware of what he truly is, and only a few more people even know the Elder God exists.]]
* EscapeSequence: The Dumah boss battle. Also Raziel's introductory level in ''Defiance''.
* EvilVsEvil: It's very hard to describe Kain as a "good guy". It just happens that his enemies are just as bad or worse.
* FacialHorror: Ariel has [[TwoFaced half of her skull exposed]]; Raziel is lacking a lower jaw after it disintegrated in the Abyss.
* FacialMarkings: Moebius has a symbol on his forehead that resembles an infinity symbol or Moebius strip. Interestingly enough, the [[http://nosgoth.net/sr2/dialogue/SR0017943-2.jpg mark on his forehead]] is the same shape as the Elder God's [[http://media.giantbomb.com/uploads/0/3661/492426-egeye_super.jpg pupil]].
* FailureIsTheOnlyOption: It's possible for Kain to wipe out all of his would-be assassins at the start of ''Blood Omen'', even without a GameShark if proper caution is taken. However, all the exits out of town are blocked off, and you'll just have to walk into and out of a building to respawn the enemies and let him die like he's supposed to.
* FantasyGunControl: [[AvertedTrope Averted]], though not in the earliest era visited. ''Soul Reaver 2'' has primitive-looking hand cannons and ''Defiance'' has demolition charges. The oracle's museum in ''Blood Omen'' has a more modern-looking gun, maybe referring to the fact that some of the other items there are Chekhov's Guns.
* FinishingMove: In ''Soul Reaver'', you need to use one of these to kill any of the vampires. Some of the other games let you use them too, but they're not necessary.
* FloweryElizabethanEnglish: most of the dialog is Shakespearean speech, laden with archaisms and florid language.
* FollowTheLeader: ''Defiance'''s combat system is obviously inspired from ''DevilMayCry'', which had come out 2 years prior. When you think about it, it was actually one of its first followers, before ''VideoGame/GodOfWar'' and ''NinjaGaiden'' made everyone forget about it.
* FutureMeScaresMe: Inverted. See AmnesiacDissonance.
** Played straight when Raziel realizes who the soul in the Soul Reaver is, [[spoiler:him]].
* GambitPileup: Raziel is the only guy who doesn't have [[GambitRoulette a needlessly complicated plan to screw over everyone else]]. Mostly because he's acting as an UnwittingPawn for every creature in existence.
** In Raziel's own words, "What game is this, where every player on the board claims the same pawn?"
* GambitRoulette: The plot. '''ALL''' of it, and almost every character is in on the fun, or at least... ''thinks'' he/she is...[[spoiler: Each person pulling the strings knows '''exactly''' what is going to happen as a result. The time paradoxes and resulting complications are the exceptions, and they are well lampshaded as such.]]
* GameBreakingBug: In ''Soul Reaver 2'', it's possible to get locked in the Dark Reaver Forge -- the exit door will just refuse to open, rendering the player unable to leave under normal means. It '''is''' possible to get oneself killed and resurrect at the checkpoint right outside the door (missing the cutscene that triggers when Raziel leaves the Forge as a result)... provided one avoided the checkpoint '''inside''' the Forge. If not, well, [[UnwinnableByMistake oops]].
** In ''Defiance,'' it's possible to get stuck in Vorador's mansion with likewise un-openable doors. Worse, while the Dark Reaver Forge is less than a quarter of a way through ''Soul Reaver 2'' and thus replaying after suffering the above bug isn't ''too'' offensive, Vorador's mansion is ''much'' further along in ''Defiance.''
** And then, there's the possibility that when you finally recover the [[spoiler:Heart of Darkness to resurrect Janos Audron]], the game might randomly decide not to make the following cutscene work, and you'll have to start a new game completely from scratch. Take into account that this is late-game, almost at the climax.
*** It's also possible to get stuck in the cracks between the rubble that falls in front of certain doors if you decide to explore it by climbing on top of it. This can happen in ''Defiance'' while playing as either Kain or Raziel.
* GameplayAndStorySegregation: Happens in ''Defiance''. [[spoiler:In order to travel between locations, Kain transforms into a flight of bats and takes off. However, as numerous cutscenes from the ''Soul Reaver'' games and the last cutscene from ''Defiance'' would attest, he could have simply just teleported, but that wouldn't have [[RuleofCool looked as cool]]. Also, it's probably meant as a CallBack to the original ''Blood Omen'', where that was his main mode of long range transportation.]]
** It was suggested by WordOfGod around ''Soul Reaver's'' release that Kain doesn't actually teleport, he's capable of moving to the spectral realm for brief periods. Since time doesn't move there, this lets him move around the Spectral Realm to where he wants to go, then come back without time passing in the physical world, thus giving the appearance of teleportation. Considering that he doesn't ever go into the spectral realm in ''Defiance'', though, this explanation probably doesn't apply anymore.
*** It is suggested that Kain's teleportation abilities are relatively short range and he requires batform for more long distance travel.
** Kain did not actually have a hundred Hearts of Darkness regardless of the player being able to collect them as consumable items in ''Blood Omen.'' The consumable items are merely symbolic of the heart's power. This is actually WordOfGod, in response to the fandom half-jokingly asking the developers about it.
** If one stands still and allows Kain's healthbar to drain without feeding until it empties, Kain dies. However, ''Blood Omen 2'' shows and ''Defiance'' further suggests that depriving and even draining a vampire of blood won't actually kill them; as immortal beings they can't die except through violence(and even that's a temporary state), but when starved of blood they will weaken, degenerate, and go mad with hunger.
* GenreBlind: Raziel invokes GenreSavvy in ''Defiance,'' as he's realized by now the only thing he can trust of literally every other named character is their intention to manipulate him. He even calls some of them out on it. Unfortunately, he's unable to out-scheme them, and does not account for the possibility that his active defiance may be part of someone's plan (it is.) To make matters worse, the ''one time'' he is approached by someone with better intentions than anyone else, Raziel is driven to insane paranoia by a partial demonic possession and lashes out.
* GenreSavvy: Upon entering a room with a pair of demonic-looking statues standing motionless to either side of the entrance, Kain observes: "These statues were singularly inanimate. I knew better than to assume that they would remain as such."
* AGodAmI: In the canon ending for ''Blood Omen'',
-->'''Kain:''' [[spoiler: "Once I embraced my powers, I realized Vorador was correct. We are gods-- dark gods-- and it is our duty to thin the herd."]]
** Plus his speech at the end of ''Soul Reaver'':
--->'''Kain:''' "As a man, I could never have contained such forbidden truths. But each of us is so much more than we once were. Gazing out across the planes of possibility, do you not feel with all your soul how we have become like '''gods?'''"
** [[spoiler:Turel]] also declares himself to be a god, greater even than Kain, in ''Defiance,'' similar to Dumah in ''Soul Reaver.'' It's not hollow boasting; Raziel can't hurt either of them with the Soul Reaver, ostensibly the strongest weapon in the setting, and has to resort to exploiting the weaknesses of Nosgothic vampires on large scales.
*** Raziel can't hurt any of the clan leaders with the Soul Reaver. Kain will actually laugh it off if hit with it.
* GoddamnedBats: The sluagh. Loud and prone to pile-ups, they only cause a relatively small amount of damage. Even ''in universe'' they basically amount to cockroaches (Raziel routinely refers to them as "pests".)
* GuideDangIt: Good luck finding all glyphs and health upgrades in ''Soul Reaver'' without a walkthrough.
* HatePlague: Kain can magically cause enemies to attack one another in ''Blood Omen'' and ''Defiance''. In the former the spell is called "Inspire Hate", and escalates minor grievances into homicidal rage. It's related to the [[CosmicKeystone pillar of conflict]] in both games.
* HellHolePrison: The Eternal Prison in ''Blood Omen 2'' is one of the most horrific examples in fiction.
* {{Hellhound}}: Multi-headed dogs that [[BreathWeapon exhale fire]] can be encountered in a cave with lava in ''Blood Omen''.
* HeroicSacrifice: Even though he knows it'll result in an eternity of torment and the eventual loss of his sanity, [[spoiler: Raziel allows himself to be absorbed into the Reaver in order to give Kain a fighting chance against the Elder God.]]
** [[LesserOfTwoEvils From Raziel's point of view,]] the only other option at this point is [[spoiler: to be the Elder God's captive for the rest of eternity. He's a prisoner either way, but one of his prisons can do more good than the other.]]
* HilariousOuttakes: It's amazing what you can get from a bunch of classically-trained actors sitting in front of microphones. Of course, it's also just as much fun to unlock video of them doing it straight. [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5bTT39cTZVI See]] [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WS0Ks_ph5go for]] [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L1p033rLKew yourself]]. Outtakes for Soul Reaver 2 can be seen [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2up8h1tMmck here,]] [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sWlqjve_JTg&NR=1 here,]] and [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LJ0fIA_bpks&feature=related here.]]
--> Richard Doyle: "Well done, faithful servant. And now, I have an execution to see to."\\
Michael Bell: *flips Doyle the finger* "'Faithful servant' ''this''. Spin on ''this'', Moebius."

--> Simon Templeman: "I still think Tony [Jay, aka the Elder God] should be doing this in costume..."

--> Michael Bell: "The enemy race had a champion of their own, with flaming eyes and a fiery sword... yes, and a tiara, and full-length sequined gloves with 'f***-me' heels... It was ''Drag Reaver'', a whole new series!"
** In a breakdown of HamToHamCombat, it seems that Simon Templeman actually got intimidated by Tony Jay's acting ability.
* {{Homage}}: Look at Zephon in ''Soul Reaver'' and tell us he isn't modeled after [[Film/{{Aliens}} the Queen.]]
** Rahab looks rather like the Film/CreatureFromTheBlackLagoon.
** Kain's line in ''Blood Omen'' ("Alas, poor Nupraptor - I knew him well.") is the famous--and often misquoted--line from Shakespeare's ''Hamlet'' ("Alas, poor Yorick! I knew him, Horatio.") and both lines are spoken when the protagonist obtains the head/skull of Nupraptor/Yorick.
* HornedHumanoid: Many demons, the magic missile shooting creatures in ''Blood Omen'', and in some concept art for ''Soul Reaver'', Kain. What he has now may or may not qualify. {{Precursor}} [[InUniverse murals]] sometimes [[{{Demonization}} add horns to their enemies]].
* HumanSacrifice: Done by the Hash'ak'gik cult to their (or others'?) firstborn.
* HumansAreBastards: Ariel and [[spoiler:Mortanius in between being possessed by the Hylden Lord]] are pretty much the only good humans in the series. The other important humans are [[TheChessmaster Moebius]], [[WithGreatPowerComesGreatInsanity The Circle of Nine]], and [[KnightTemplar The Sarafan]].
** Applies pretty well to garden-variety unnamed villagers as well. The game does a lovely job of supporting, to a degree, Kain and Vorador's general perception of humans as corrupt, stupid cattle, significant only as a food source or an annoyance (during their anti-vampire crusades). The average town has a couple of brothels and at least one TortureCellar.
* HumansAreTheRealMonsters: Played straight for most of the series, [[spoiler: but ''Defiance'' subverts this, with TheReveal that the entire reason that the Hylden were banished from Nosgoth by the vampires was defying the Elder God, the most evil entity in the series.]]
* HunterOfHisOwnKind: Faustus, Marcus, and Sebastian in ''Blood Omen 2'' are all villainous variants, siding with the Sarafan to hunt down vampires in exchange for their lives.
* IAmLegion: Kain paraphrases this as "As long as a single one of us stands, we are legion".
* IDieFree: When you subject him to his own people-grinder, Melchiah seems to be at least a little bit happy that he doesn't have to live in his festering corpse-pile of a body anymore. [[spoiler: Turel is similarly glad to no longer live as a deranged prisoner driven to self-aggrandizing insanity by a host of Hylden possessing him and incredible hunger, relying on the occasional blood offering to keep him alive.]]
** [[spoiler: Ariel receives a well deserved end from Raziel when she appears at the end of Defiance. While her appearance is not entirely explained, it seems that every soul of a former Balance guardian is summoned to the final forge to be absorbed into the Reaver blade. The girl has been betrayed by one she trusted, watched her lover go mad and corrupt the whole world, been betrayed by her replacement as a balance guardian, and has had a literal front row seat to Kain's empire as the world died. Her final words to Raziel reflect that along with a new found enlightenment- "Release me, Raziel. The soul reaver has the power. Release us all..."]]
* IHateYouVampireDad: Initially Raziel just hates Kain for executing him. Later, he hates Kain for making him a vampire [[spoiler:after discovering that he used to be a Sarafan warrior priest when he lived]].
** Later [[spoiler:he gets over being a Sarafan Inquisitor by finding them to be the KnightTemplar cult of butchers they were, but still continues to hate Kain to a less severe extent as its literally what's been driving him for the last milleninia of time he has experienced since his rebirth as a wraith.]]
* InfiniteOneUps: ''Blood Omen'' has a spirit forge for Hearts of Darkness.
* InvincibleMinorMinion: The Greater Demons aka Beasts, a fortunately rare enemy in Blood Omen 2. Not even the one-hit-kill attack Immolate can hurt them. The only occasion on which Kain is able to kill one involves a trap and a powerful explosion.
* IronicEcho: "As your agent, I am beyond death."
** And the darker "Vae Victis! 'Woe to the Conquered!'" Raziel throws in Kain's face [[spoiler: shortly before ripping his heart out and quite literally blasting him into oblivion]].
* IWasQuiteALooker: Raziel was GORGEOUS as a vampire and not bad as a human. In [=SR2=], he references his wraith appearance as grotesque repeatedly.
** Ariel was quite [[http://legacyofkain.wikia.com/wiki/File:Ariel_the_balance_guardian.jpg beautiful]] before she got half of her face ripped off.
* JacobMarleyApparel: Seems to be the standard, with most of the exceptions falling under GameplayAndStorySegregation. ''Defiance'' takes this farther with Raziel and the revenants: Although far from standard, they both enter the material realm by possessing corpses and altering them to be (more or less) like them; Raziel still carries what little is left of his clothing, while the revenants materialize large swords.
* TheJuggernaut: Dumah. He's immune to all of Raziel's abilities, and is one of the few enemies who can chase you on both planes. Fortunately, he's stupid enough to chase Raziel [[KillItWithFire into a furnace]].
* KansasCityShuffle: A strange pseudo-example. Raziel is [[UnwittingPawn continually falling into traps]] in his quest to discover his true destiny, and being constantly reminded that he is playing everyone else's plans to perfection. At the very end, however, [[spoiler: he realizes that all of it was necessary, and that every conspiracy against him led him right where he needed to be]]. So the effect is the same, it's just by accident.
* KillItWithFire: One of the few options the players has to [[FinishingMove actually kill]] the degenerate vampire enemies in ''Soul Reaver''. Of course, it works on just about anything else pretty well too. Ironically, it's used quite effectively ''against'' the player as well: in ''Soul Reaver'', fire isn't a major concern to Raziel's health until he encounters the vampire hunter soldiers of the flame thrower variety - their stream of fire works very well at damaging Raziel and knocking him back. In ''Defiance'', since Kain is a vampire himself, he is susceptible to the arrows of Sarafan Archers because they're on fire. They are so effective, in fact, that they can knock him down when he's up in the air. [[spoiler:Strangely enough, his telekinetic powers get enhanced to the point where he can ignite things with his mind, a power he also gets in ''Blood Omen 2'', while both cases still leave him vulnerable.]]
* KillItWithWater: Another weakness of the vampires in Nosgoth, including Kain and initially Raziel, based on some more obscure vampire myths from eastern Europe. It burns them like a strong acid, and is in fact the way Raziel was executed as a vampire. In ''Soul Reaver'' it is another viable way to [[FinishingMove kill]] the vampire enemies, while in both ''Blood Omen'', ''Blood Omen 2'' and ''Defiance'' it is an element of danger for Kain. This is the case for Raziel as well, until he defeats Rahab and gains the ability to swim. The implementation of this is a notable high point for the series, given that up until that point, water was an obstacle - creating some of the most tense levels, believable barriers and interesting puzzles - and after that point it is a well implemented gameplay element. Besides letting Raziel simply cross water and allowing access to flooded areas outright, swimming allows him to ''swim up'' through pipes and the like, vastly increasing the areas he can explore, as well as letting him use his physical strength to leap high out of the water to reach ledges. Couple that with the dynamic water already has between its differences in the Spectral and Material realms, and you've got a ringer.
* KissOfTheVampire: [[SubvertedTrope Subverted]]. It even leaves VampireBitesSuck in the dust, though in ''Defiance'' it's an option if the target is close enough. In most of the games, it is established that Kain needs warm blood, usually from a still living body, to survive, restore his health and become stronger. But since an embrace is a bit impractical during combat, not to mention slow, Kain fixes this by ''telekinetically pulling the blood from a wounded enemy to his mouth at twenty paces''. Kain is even able to drain ''multiple enemies at once''; in ''Defiance,'' while ''airborne''. Comes complete with slurping sounds. In ''Blood Omen'' he had some variations on doing it manually, [[spoiler:notably a powerful spell that would drain and kill everything on the screen instantly, and a suit of armor "wrought from the flesh of Noblemen" that would drain blood automatically for him.]]
** Played straight with The Seer in ''Blood Omen 2''.
* KryptoniteProofSuit: A partial example: Kain's empire releases large amounts of smoke to reduce light levels.
** Largely an InformedAttribute considering that in the intro to ''Soul Reaver'' the sky doesn't look even slightly obscured.
* LargeHam: Kain, and ''how!'' His hamminess was toned down a tad in Soul Reaver 2 and Defiance. Vorador gets pretty hammy in Blood Omen.
* LastOfHisKind: Several examples, including the two protagonists.
* LeftHanging: ''Defiance'' ends with Kain remarking on that unfamiliar sensation called "hope", ending on as optimistic a note as the series got up to that point--[[spoiler:the Elder God is weakened, Moebius is dead for good, Kain has averted his prophesied death, and Raziel has given him the Soul Reaver at its peak of power]]. However, as ''Blood Omen 2'' demonstrated the timeline has been ''seriously'' screwed up, and there's no telling what state the actual present (the ''Soul Reaver'' era) is like because it's never visited in any other game. A lot of questions were still unanswered when the series concluded.
* TheLegionsOfHell: The demonic minions of the Hylden.
* LethalLavaLand: Dark Eden in ''Blood Omen'', a land twisted beyond recognition in a project of the guardians of nature, energy and states. And then it starts raining fire... This may not be a case of ConvectionSchmonvection, since Kain and the creatures there are all unnaturally resilient, and the world's foundations are rather loose by this point anyway. This trope is also used in the DarkWorld version of Nosgoth seen from Nupraptor's keep.
* LiteralChangeOfHeart: Using the Heart of Darkness.
* LoadBearingBoss: Happens to the Sarafan when they sort-of-kill Janos Audron, prompting one of them to exclaim "The fiend intends to bury us alive!".
* LoadsAndLoadsOfLoading: Good lord, did the original ''Blood Omen'' ever have this. The PSX version was the worst offender, with load times in the double digits ''just getting into and out of the inventory screen''. The PC version was somewhat better, but, {{egregious}}ly, when you buy the game from the PS3's store and play it ''directly off the system's harddrive'', the Loads and Loads of Loading is still present.
** This is likely why ''Soul Reaver'' made such a big deal out of having no load times at all, and it doesn't -- the developers used assorted programming tricks to avoid load times aside from when you start up the game. The lone offender is the Drowned Abbey, as some areas can have too many enemies spawn for the game to keep up with all their movements.
* LossOfIdentity: Raziel goes through a fair amount of this. Wraith!Raziel (who [[AmnesiacDissonance doesn't remember his mortal life]] at all, just his vampiric and wraithly existences) meets Sarafan!Raziel and learns that his mortal self is a [[ColdBloodedTorture Sadistic]], [[HolierThanThou self righteous]] KnightTemplar douchebag. Vampire!Raziel was still a KnightTemplar but working for Kain instead of the Sarafan. Wraith!Raziel is still a KnightTemplar at points, but he's the poster boy for UnwittingPawn and CharacterDevelopment has left him with higher moral standards than his human or even vampiric self. He even calls his [[IHatePastMe former human self]] out [[EvenEvilHasStandards for his sadism]], tells him "[[ThatManIsDead I renounce you]]" and then kills him(self?). [[YourHeadAsplode Ouch]].
* LoveMakesYouCrazy: Nupraptor the Mentalist.
* MadnessMantra: [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bDdh3vRD89k Ariel's Lament]] qualifies as this.
* {{Magitek}}: Most prominent in ''Blood Omen 2'', but there are examples all over the rest of the series as well.
* TheMagocracy: In ''Blood Omen'', despite there being a couple of kings with their own realms, the real power is wielded by the Circle of Nine.
* MalevolentArchitecture: It seems every building in Nosgoth, be it a ruined altar in the wilderness or a grand temple in a city, has open torches hanging from every column and spikes randomly stuck on the walls. In the ''Soul Reaver'' era, you can frequently find open areas of sunlight and pools of water, and weapons are just lying around in the open wherever you go. Justified in ''Soul Reaver'' where you always needed a weapon or a hazard to knock enemies into to finish them off. After ''Soul Reaver'' this was no longer a problem, as Raziel is always able to manifest the Reaver regardless of health, and killing enemies by throwing them onto spikes or campfires was mostly just left in for the VideogameCrueltyPotential.
* ManaBurn: Caused by insubstantial ghosts in ''Blood Omen'' instead of health damage. [[AnimatedArmor Armored ghosts]] damage you normally.
* MeaningfulName: ''Raziel'' means "Secrets of God" in Hebrew; in Kabbalah, [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Raziel Raziel]] is the archangel known as the "Keeper of Secrets" and the "Angel of Mysteries".
* MedievalStasis: There seems to be no significant technological advancement from the time of the Sarafan Crusades to the time of the fall of the Pillars, a period of over five hundred years. ''Blood Omen 2'' completely averts this, taking place four hundred years after ''Blood Omen'' and having society advance into an industrial revolution(one powered by magitek, but still). Interestingly this is one of the reasons the game is unpopular among the fan base; many felt it didn't fit with the tone of the rest of the series.
* {{Metroidvania}}: ''Soul Reaver'' mostly, though there's a bit of it in ''Blood Omen.''
* MindControlEyes: Those possessed by the Hylden have glowing green smoke pouring from their eyes. This becomes something of a red flag; it's unclear if the Sarafan Lord exhibiting this in ''Blood Omen 2'' is more than an artistic touch to make him scarier, until ''Defiance'' makes it clear. It's also how we know that [[spoiler: Raziel is being driven by outside forces to unreasonable rage so he'll kill Kain in Avernus Cathedral; he takes a portion of the Hylden that was controlling Turel when he reaves Turel's soul, and his eyes glow green whenever his anger grows at Kain.]] He himself admits after the fight that he feels like he's just played into their enemies' hands, and that he's not sure why he went all the way through with it.
* MirrorMatch: Twice (sort of). Once in ''Blood Omen'', when Moebius summons a version of Kain "from times yet to come," (implied by [[WordOfGod Amy Hennig]] to be just an illusion), and in ''Soul Reaver 2'', the Wraith Raziel fighting [[spoiler: his old, Sarafan self.]] It sort of happens a third time in ''Defiance'', when [[spoiler: Raziel and Kain fight in the cathedral. By this time Raziel has become so powerful he's Kain's equal, and they basically have the exact same combat abilities with subtle variations. Further emphasized by the fact you play as Kain and fight Raziel, then switch places and play as Raziel and fight Kain.]]
* MistakenForGranite: {{Lampshaded}} by a GenreSavvy Kain, who notes, "These statues were singularly inanimate. I knew better than to assume that they would remain as such."
* MonstrosityEqualsWeakness: Played straight and averted in various instances; As vampires grew more powerful, they grew more monstrous, as seen with Kain and Vorador. However, some of the most monstrous vampires are among the weakest, as seen with Melchiah and Zephon (partly because they received the smallest part of Kain's soul in their resurrection), and [[spoiler: the horribly deformed Janos in ''Blood Omen 2'']]. However, the most powerful of Raziel's brothers, Turel, is possibly the most monstrous of them all. The most powerful bosses in ''Blood Omen 2'' are the most monstrous, and the most powerful non-boss enemies in ''Soul Reaver 2'', ''Blood Omen'', and ''Defiance'' are also very monstrous.
* MooksButNoBosses: For some reason, ''Soul Reaver 2'' is the only one of the five games that doesn't have any real boss fight, even though you spend much more time fighting {{Mook}}s (sometimes [[BossInMookClothing pretty tough ones]]) than in [=SR1=].
* MookMaker: ''Blood Omen'' has large machines at Malek's bastion that [[AnimatedArmor bind spirits to suits of armor]] until you shut them off.
* MrExposition: ''Janos'', even compared to Kain and Raziel whose narration have them as this, he's entire purpose in the story is basically this. When meeting Janos in the game, brace yourself for a ''lot'' of chatter. Even the [[HilariousOuttakes actors comment on it]]:
--> René Auberjonois: *turns script page, sees giant speech** Uugh.
--> Michael Bell: I've just been waiting for him to see that page.
--> René Auberjonois: I need a break to call my agent.
--> Michael Bell: He wants to get paid by the word now.
* MsFanservice: Some would argue that this was [[TheScrappy Umah's]] purpose. Oddly, some concept art depicts her wearing a flowing robe rather than the close-fitting gear she sports in the final game.
** As the games progressed, the neckline on Ariel's dress got lower and her [[http://lparchive.org/Legacy-of-Kain-Blood-Omen/Update%202/Kain_0017.jpg breasts]] [[http://lparchive.org/Legacy-of-Kain-Blood-Omen/Update%2018/future-46.jpg got]] [[http://lparchive.org/Legacy-of-Kain-Blood-Omen/Update%2027/L6mov-23.jpg bigger]]. However, given that [[{{FacialHorror}} half her freaking]] [[{{TwoFaced}} face is torn off]] and the remaing half [[{{UncannyValley}} looks kinda zombie-like sometimes]], YMMV on this one.
* MultiPlatform: Every game in the franchise has seen a PC release, and different games in the series have been ported to the SegaSaturn, {{Playstation}}, {{Dreamcast}}, {{Playstation2}}, {{Xbox}} and {{Gamecube}}.
* MultipleEndings: In the first ''Blood Omen'' game, there was a "good" and "bad" ending where the player got to choose whether or not Kain sacrificed himself to save Nosgoth. This is one of the few games where the "bad" ending is canon.
* NamesToRunAwayFromReallyFast: Mortanius, Bane, the Nemesis, the Unspoken, [[spoiler:the Hylden Lord]], and of course '''[[NameOfCain Kain]].'''
* NeckLift: Kain does this through main strength as a prelude to VampireBitesSuck on a regular basis in ''Defiance'', but he's so BadAss he can do it [[MindOverMatter telekinetically]] too. You can do this in game from the get-go, and he even does it to [[spoiler:Moebius, who should be noted is an incredibly powerful sorcerer]] in their second meeting.
* TheNecrocracy: In ''Soul Reaver'', Nosgoth is ruled by Kain, supported by his Council of six vampire lieutenants. They preside over an empire of vampires - the clans of the lieutenants - and humans 'domesticated' during Kain's rise to power.
* [[NeverTrustATrailer.VideoGames Never Trust A Trailer]]: {{Subverted}} in [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OF0ilULgn7M this]] ''Blood Omen'' trailer: [[spoiler:The trailer makes it look like Mortanius is stabbing Kain in the back when he's actually pulling the sword out of him. [[{{Foreshadowing}} But it turns out he's the one who arranged for him to murdered in the first place]].]]
* NiceJobBreakingItHero: So the boy king William the Just grows up to be a tyrant called the Nemesis. Kain's solution: kill King William before he ever becomes the Nemesis. The downside? Moebius planned for it and makes William out to be a martyr now, and the resulting crusade is the reason why vampires are almost extinct.
** How about Raziel solving all the puzzles to find Janos in the back of his lair, only for the Sarafan to follow him since he so graciously did their work of getting in for them?
*** "My god! [[spoiler: The Hylden!]] We walked right into their trap..."
* NighInvulnerability: Raziel. This is one of the reasons why everyone is [[UnwittingPawn so eager to manipulate him]].
* NoCanonForTheWicked: Averted. Soul Reaver picks up after Kain chose to rule over Nosgoth in Blood Omen.
* NonLinearSequel: There's the first game, which involved time travel. Then, ''Soul Reaver'' takes place thousands of years in the future. ''Soul Reaver 2'' has the main character traveling in time, so it's a partial prequel to the whole series and ''also'' happens between the first and second games. Then there's ''Blood Omen 2'', which takes place after the original, but before ''Soul Reaver'' in an ''alternate time line'' created in both ''Soul Reaver 2'' and the (so far) last game, ''Defiance'' which takes place both concurrently with the original ''Blood Omen'' and five hundred years before that.
* NoOntologicalInertia: [[AvertedTrope Averted]], but [[InvokedTrope Invoked]]: [[spoiler: When Raziel meets Janos Audron for the first time, they discuss why the Sarafan pursue Janos so intensely - "[The Sarafan] have this foolish notion that destroying me will somehow topple our entire bloodline. Thankfully, we are not that fragile."]]
** Their architecture, however, apparently is. Moments after [[spoiler: Janos Audron's heart is torn from his chest (which doesn't really kill him, by the way)]], the aerie collapses into rubble.
* NoSidepathsNoExplorationNoFreedom: While ''Soul Reaver'' was a {{Metroidvania}} (even with having [[WhatCouldHaveBeen a good quarter of its content axed before release]]), ''Soul Reaver 2'' drops this aspect completely, becoming a totally linear game with no secret areas or items whatsoever: there are no more glyphs and the lifebar upgrades automatically. This is part of what makes it very short. ''Defiance'' brings back a bit of exploration but nowhere near as much as SR1.
* NoSell: Moebius owns a sceptre that has the power to weaken any vampire in its presence... which has almost no effect on Raziel when they meet at the beginning of ''Soul Reaver 2'', due to Raziel's '[[CameBackWrong remaking]]'. It might stop the reaver from manifesting, but Raziel could still tear Moebius apart with his bare hands if he wished. [[spoiler:Kain similarly becomes immune to the sceptre during his last meeting with Moebius in ''Defiance''. This is {{justified}} because, in Kain's own words:]]
-->[[spoiler:'''Kain:''' The part of me that staff once affected is no longer in its place... but you already knew that, didn't you? I always was considered heartless!]]
* NotSoDifferent: [[MagnificentBastard Kain]] has the following [[BreakingSpeech to say on the subject]]: "Can you grasp the absurd beauty of the paradox? We are the same - Sarafan and vampire. With our holy wars, our obsession with Nosgoth’s domination, [[spoiler:who better to serve me than those whose passion transcends all notions of good and evil?]]" and shortly thereafter, he adds: "You think the [[KnightTemplar Sarafan]] were noble, altruistic? Don’t be simple. Their agenda was [[TakeOverTheWorld the same as ours]]."
** Raziel's opinion of the Elder God is that it is no different from the vampires it so dispises; a voracious parasite with delusions of righteousness.
* OffWithHisHead: A common way to murder enemies in Soul Reaver 2. Also, the eventual fate of Nupraptor.
* OhCrap: The expression on Moebius' face when he realises that [[spoiler:Kain survived having his heart ripped out]] is ''priceless''.
** Kain, at the end of ''Soul Reaver 2'':
--> My god... [[spoiler:the Hylden]]! We walked right into their trap...
* {{Ouroboros}}: All over the damn place. Literally, in the form of an artifact that [[spoiler: Janos]] gives to Raziel near the end of ''Defiance,'' and in a floor decoration in the Sarafan stronghold, and of course symbolically in [[spoiler: a rather grotesque interpretation of it, in the form of Raziel impaling himself on the Reaver whilst the wraith blade hovers outside of it, and then ''again'' in ''Defiance'' when his soul enters the blade while the purified Reaver joins with Kain to heal and purify him.]]
* OurDemonsAreDifferent: Coming from AnotherDimension, big and beastly-looking, with magical attacks that seem to be natural. Often [[HornedHumanoid horned]], and very tough. Can be [[SummonMagic summoned]] by people, or at least by the guardian of dimension and her subordinates.
* OurVampiresAreDifferent: Nosgoth vampires are, among other things, killed by ''water'' (related to certain frequently overlooked vampire myths), can be harmed by soundwaves, and, in regards to Kain's progeny, tend to devolve into mutant monstrosities over time. Some vampires demonstrate a level of immunity to sunlight, and the need to rest in coffins regularly is absent. Impalement with any instrument will kill them regardless of whether or not it's made of wood. Also, their origins are definitely not [[{{Precursors}} the usual...]]
** An internal example as well, as there are three different types of vampires within the series: The Ancients who were transformed into vampires by the curse of the Hylden (Janos); the humans turned into Vampires by the Ancients (Vorador), and Kain and the vampires he and his lieutenants sired. Each type demonstrates very different powers and mannerisms. Furthermore in ''Soul Reaver'', each Vampire tribe has undergone divergent evolution over the centuries.
* PayEvilUntoEvil: [[spoiler:[[{{Necromancer}} Mortanius]] turned Kain into a vampire to set him upon the insane/evil circle of nine and purge them.]]
--> '''Anarcrothe''': [[spoiler:''You betrayed us, Mortanius! You had Kain killed and turned him into a monster! You set him upon us!'']]
* PhlebotinumBomb: A few. The Device in ''Blood Omen 2'' was [[spoiler: a Hylden weapon which would have killed all living things in Nosgoth except their race]]. The Pillars of Nosgoth were raised [[spoiler: by the Ancient Vampires to banish the Hylden race and seal them in the Demon Realm]]. The purest example is the Silenced Cathedral in ''Soul Reaver'', originally designed by humans to kill all vampires in Nosgoth during the era of Kain's empire (they were vulnerable to sound). The vampires killed the humans, and kept the cathedral silent - hence its name - [[WhatCouldHaveBeen but the original ending of ''Soul Reaver'' would have had Raziel using it against them]].
* PhysicalGod: The Elder God.
* PlanetEngland: In ''Blood Omen 2''', Nosgoth is implied to be a country with a capitol, while in all other games it is implied to be the name of the whole world.
** [[FridgeLogic Since Blood Omen 2 is an alternate continuity, it could be that it ''is'' the capitol of the new world.]]
* {{Precursors}}: The Ancients and the Hylden.
* ProphecyTwist: The prophecy that a Vampire and a Hylden champion will battle each other to decide the fate of the world. [[spoiler: Raziel is essentially both champions, as he frees the Hylden by giving them Janos as a vessel, but also gives Kain the means to destroy the Elder God with the purified Soul Reaver. The Elder God and Moebius set Raziel up to discover the predicted battle between the two, hoping he would figure the two champions were him and Kain and thus be newly motivated to kill him. It works at first, but Raziel later discovers the truth]].
* ProphetEyes: They are a side effect of [[DemonicPossession possession]], in a {{Deconstruction}} of GlowingEyesOfDoom. Not all characters with eyes like that are known to have gotten them this way, though.
* ProtagonistPowerUpPrivileges: Played with. Kain is the hero of the first game ''Blood Omen'', and in the introduction to the second game ''Soul Reaver'', it's mentioned Kain is always the first among him and his lieutenants to evolve a new ability. During said intro, Raziel, the protagonist of this game, becomes the first to beat him to it by growing wings, stealing the spotlight from Kain in a fourth-wall sort of way.
* PsychopathicManChild: Elzevir the Dollmaker from the original ''Blood Omen'' was a particularly disturbing version of this. Even Kain is disturbed by him.
* PullingThemselvesTogether: [[AnimatedArmor Malek]], some undead and some animated dolls in ''Blood Omen''.
* PurpleProse: Everyone talks as if they've been listening to Shakespearean actors before the game begins, though the exact magnitude varies between games and characters. But in a testament to Amy Hennig's skill, the flowery and often hammy and over-the-top dialogue [[TropesAreNotBad completely works]], and in fact, the series wouldn't be the same without it.
-->'''Raziel:''' This cannot be! What madness does this scene portend? Kain must think me credulous, to suffer these lies!
* RespawningEnemies:
** ''Blood Omen'': indoor [=NPCs=] respawn as ghosts; Aside from being slower and weaker, their attacks only [[ManaBurn lower]] your ManaMeter, and their now-blue blood replenishes it. Outdoor [=NPCs=] respawn normally when you leave the map. That includes Kain's killers, and he may even repeat his monologue...
* {{Retcon}}: Technically, all the {{Foreshadowing}} and anything in ChekhovsArmory that comes from ''Blood Omen.'' When Crystal Dynamics ganked the series from Silicon Knights, they didn't take any of their ideas for a sequel and started ''Soul Reaver'' from scratch. However, they still managed to make it work. The one ContinuitySnarl in it all is the "future Kain" Moebius summons to attack Kain -- WordOfGod says it was just an illusion Moebius conjured to psych Kain out.
** Meanwhile, ''Nosgoth'' retconned the extinction of Raziel's clan by showing that there were members left who have come out of hiding and been re-accepted into vampire-kind to help put down the human rebellion.
* RetGone: While it hasn't happened in the story as far as we know, according to WordOfGod it could: When one changes history, it actively re-writes itself, admitting as little change as possible. When someone pushes history too far, its path of least resistance would be to expel him instead.
* TheReveal: ''Soul Reaver 2'''s ending [[spoiler:(Raziel ''is'' the Reaver)]], and an important plot point in ''Defiance'' [[spoiler:(the Heart of Darkness is ''inside Kain'')]]. Then again, [[spoiler:Kain was known to be in possession of the Heart in the first ''Blood Omen'']]
** Also in ''Blood Omen'', when Kain is revealed to be the new Balance Guardian.
** A significant one in ''Soul Reaver'', in which [[spoiler:Raziel finds out that, in life, he and his brothers were Sarafan warrior priests.]]
** And again in ''Soul Reaver 2'' during the sequence in which [[spoiler:Sarafan Raziel kills Janos]]
* RippleEffectProofMemory: Raziel and Kain, though Raziel does not remember the 'new' history.
* RoaringRampageOfRevenge: The first ''Blood Omen'' begins like this before moving onto the larger plot, and the entirety of ''Soul Reaver'' is driven by Raziel's quest for revenge against Kain.
** Vorador's slaughter of the circle, Raziel's slaughter of the Sarafan inquisitors [[spoiler:(including himself)]], and the whole of ''Blood Omen 2''.
* RuleOfSymbolism: While many recurring images and motifs appear throughout the series, not all of them can be chalked up to destiny and are just coincidence, but they still fit. A perfect example is the mural of the Scion of Balance that lays in the Spirit Forge at the end of ''Defiance'', depicting a horned vampire with large black wings holding the Soul Reaver. [[spoiler:The presence of the horns and the shape of the wings make the figure posed to form Kain's clan emblem, seen hanging over his shoulder since ''Soul Reaver''.]] There's ''no way'' this could be deliberate on Kain's part since he's never been to the Spirit Forge, but the symbolism works perfectly to the player to make it clear [[spoiler:he really is TheChosenOne after all.]]
* SanDimasTime: In ''Defiance'', Kain is told by the Oracle of the vampires [[spoiler: really the elder god]] that Raziel is five hundred years ahead of him in the timeline, and that he's looking to reclaim the heart of darkness to raise Janos. Kain acts with a sense of urgency, but really, being immortal, he should be able to simply wait around for five hundred years to go stop Raziel rather than jumping into a time portal opened by a being he knows and outright states can't be trusted.
** In all fairness to Kain though, five hundred years is a heck of a long time to wait, and he was already hyped up trying to reach Raziel by searching the temple. Suddenly being told that his quarry was five hundred years ahead of him after fighting through the temple and being given a straight road to Raziel? Less patience, more action!
* ScryVsScry [[UpToEleven vs scry vs scry...]]
* SealedEvilInACan: The Hylden.
* ShoutOut: A code in Defiance turns Kain's Reaver blade into [[PennyArcade a cardboard tube.]] Amusingly, Kain says "Fear the tube!" when you put the code in.
* ShutUpHannibal: This happens a few times over the series- Raziel in ''Soul Reaver 2'' mocking Moebius after refusing to kill Kain as he was 'ordained' to, Kain 'continuing the conversation' with Moebius in ''Defiance''. But perhaps the most epic example, as pointed out in BreakingSpeech, comes at the end of ''Defiance''. Considering how good the villains are at being just SO smugly shelf-assured about everything they do, it's amazingly satisfying to put them in their places.
** Kain tries one against the Sarafan Lord after the latter's HannibalLecture, but in a rare moment it's a LameComeback and his words actually did get to Kain.
* SkeletonsInTheCoatCloset: The bone armor in ''Blood Omen'', which [[JustifiedTrope fools lesser forms of undead into not attacking you]], and to a lesser extent the flesh armor. Mortanius the necromancer also seems to wear some large bones over his chest.
* SlasherSmile: Kain puts on a good one when he finds Moebius after [[spoiler:returning from having his heart ripped out]].
* SlidingScaleOfFreeWillVsFate: Raziel and Kain have fun playing with the scale like a teeter-totter, but mostly the series starts out firmly at YouCantFightFate, then heads into Fighting Fate Is Hard as loopholes in time's laws are found.
* SlidingScaleOfIdealismVersusCynicism: It zig-zags. A good general view is, however, the story gets more idealistic as it veers into Type 2 of the Trope above. You'll also notice Kain is incredibly cynical and fatalistic in the ''Blood Omen'' games and seems to be in ''Soul Reaver'', but he starts to show signs of fighting back when he gives his TakeAThirdOption speech at the beggining of ''Soul Reaver 2''. Raziel is always idealistic, but that doesn't make good things happen until ''Defiance''. A noticed trend is that Raziel acts for the right reasons and does the wrong thing, Kain acts for the wrong reason and does the right thing. [[spoiler:Arguably ends up as EarnYourHappyEnding if you accept the ending of]]''[[spoiler:Defiance]]''[[spoiler:but not so much if you still think there's NoEnding]].
-->Kain: Now, at last, the masks had fallen away. The strings of the puppets had become visible, and the hands of the prime mover exposed. Most ironic of all was the last gift that Raziel had given me: More powerful than the sword that now held his soul, more acute even than the vision his sacrifice had accorded me. [[SchiffOneLiner The first, bitter taste of that terrible illusion - Hope.]]
* SmugSnake: Moebius, and he pays for it. Hard. [[spoiler: Three consecutive times. In under five minutes. Payback's a bitch.]]
* SoulCuttingBlade: The Soul Reaver, which eats souls in its wraith blade form.
* SophisticatedAsHell: Sort of. After spending five games speaking in eloquent, faux-Shakespearian dialog, Kain's reaction upon seeing [[spoiler:the Elder God]] at the end of ''Defiance'' is simply, [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KEQVULC9PwA "What in the hell...']]
* SpannerInTheWorks: Raziel full-stop. [[spoiler:Kain turns into one at the end of ''Defiance''. Who would've thought that getting your heart ripped out wouldn't kill you?]].
* SpectralWeaponCopy: Raziel uses a Spectral version of Kain's Soul Reaver.
* SpikesOfVillainy: The entire Army of the Nemesis, including [[TinTyrant the Nemesis himself]], formerly known as William the Just. Kain adopts some of these as well.
* StockSoundEffects: The game uses several audio clips that were also featured in the original ''VideoGame/MaxPayne'': the snippet of music playing on gramophones in ''Blood Omen 2'' is the same as that from ''Max Payne'''s ShowWithinAShow ''Lords and Ladies'', while the clip of a woman sobbing that can occasionally be heard in the spectral realm in ''Defiance'' is the same clip that Max hears in his nightmares.
* StrippedToTheBone: The flays in ''Blood Omen'', magical homing shuriken-things that remove all flesh from the bones.
* StrongerWithAge: Vampires "evolve" over time, occasionally entering a cocoon-like state and emerging changed; Typically stronger and with new abilities, as well as less human. But Kain's [[spoiler:spiritual and mental corruption]] caused his descendents to eventually degenerate. It's implied that a vampire's evolution conforms to his personality; Vorador's chin horns used to be a similar beard, human Rahab's armor had a sea horse painted on it, and Raziel told Zephon the latter's final form is a true representation of his soul. It's revealed in ''Soul Reaver 2'' that some changes, like the typical three-fingered hands, are [[spoiler:the turned vampires becoming more like the originals]].
* SummonMagic: Used in-game by some enemies. In the story as well as the game, this and teleportation are the specialty of the guardian of dimension, the planer Azimuth, as well as some of her subordinates. Not content with summoning creatures from other worlds, she takes a time-streaming device from [[TimeMaster Moebius, the guardian of time]], in order to summon creatures from other eras, [[spoiler: such as Turel]] in ''defiance''.
** ''Soul Reaver 2'' begins with Moebius re-routing Raziel from one time machine to another, and what he says (" "Where am I?" Is the usual question ") suggests that he has summoned people many times. While fighting Kain in ''Blood Omen'' he "calls the puppets of the past, present and ages yet to come": A Sarafan, a contemporary vampire hunter and someone that looks like Kain, [[spoiler:but is [[WordOfGod confirmed]] to have been an illusion]].
* SundialWaypoint: One of the puzzles in Soul Reaver relies on this. In a twist, it requires you to do a typical mirror puzzle to get the beam where you need, then obscure it - which allows you to walk the shadow across a chasm.
* SuperSmoke: Kain can turn into mist in order to pass through small openings and avoid harm, among other things. ''Blood Omen'' sometimes complicates the use of this ability with holes in the floor that suck you into them, immobilizing you.
* SwordOfPlotAdvancement: Much of the series centers around the Soul Reaver as it changes hands through history, changing history itself on the way. Because [[spoiler:it's revealed that Raziel ''is'' the Soul Reaver, Raziel is a walking paradox, walking around with a future version of his own soul clinging to his arm]]. Thus by sheer nature of possessing the Reaver, Raziel's every action has the potential to change time. Besides that, the force of two different incarnations of the Soul Reaver from different time periods can also create a paradox and change history.
* TakeAThirdOption: One was taken by Kain, it required four more games to conclude his choice.
* TemporalParadox: It's stated that one can't actually ''alter'' time because [[StableTimeLoop going back in time to change the past]] [[YouAlreadyChangedThePast causes the time-traveler to be part of the events that have already happened and led to the future]]. Causing a paradox, however, such as taking an item from one point in time and bringing it into contact with itself at a different point in time, makes the timeline "vulnerable" to change at that moment, in that place. Time ''hates'' being played in such a manner, and will ''violently'' restructure itself to fit the alteration. So many characters go to such absurd lengths to manipulate Raziel because he's [[spoiler:a walking paradox with his own soul clinging to his arm]] and thus has the potential to alter the timeline with every action he takes.
* TimeAbyss: Most of the main characters, the longest being the Elder God.
* TimeMachine: In at least three locations, the largest being the Chronoplast. Controlled by Moebius in his time.
* TimeTravel and all its associated conundrums. Yes, ''all'' of them. It's a long story, and a lot of it takes place concurrently.
* TitleDrop: In Soul Reaver it's "Become my soul reaver. My angel of death." In Soul Reaver 2, the Elder God tells Raziel "You are always and will always be my soul reaver." During the final battle in Defiance, [[spoiler:the Elder God]] says, "This defiance is pointless."
* TonightSomeoneDies: The plot synopsis on the back of ''Defiance'''s game case makes it clear that Kain and Raziel are embarking on a journey that only one of them will survive.
* ToyTime: The Dollmaker's place in ''Blood Omen''. The creation process of his animated toys may or may not involve human entrails.
* TwistEnding: Every game except ''Blood Omen 2'' has one.
* UnexpectedGameplayChange: A meta example. ''Blood Omen'' was a top-down adventure RPG similar to Zelda--you explored towns and dungeons, you had equipment and spells you accessed in a menu, you could speak to people, etc. ''Soul Reaver'' turned the gameplay on its head with a third-person over-the-shoulder action-adventure game with no towns, no interactions with [=NPCs=] beyond killing them or not, a wide-open sandbox world you could explore freely, and no equipment save for the weapons you found laying around. ''Soul Reaver 2'' then kept the third-person perspective and no equipment traits while having more NPC conversations and more linear plot and gameplay progression. From there, ''Blood Omen 2'' and ''Defiance'' mostly stuck to ''Soul Reaver 2's'' formula, with ''Blood Omen 2'' placing a greater emphasis on combat over puzzles and platforming.
* UnwittingPawn: Raziel [[ButtMonkey in every game except the first]]. Kain turns out to be one too in ''Blood Omen'', and by creating Raziel in the first place, is arguably ''still'' one in the sequels.
* VampireVords: Mostly averted, though Janos Audron plays it straight.
* {{Vaporware}}: ''The Dark Prophecy'', a straight sequel in the style of ''Defiance'', which was in development for the {{Playstation 2}} and would have presumably tied up all the loose ends in the franchise... but was never finished, most likely because of Amy Hennig, the head writer of the series after ''Blood Omen'', leaving Crystal Dynamics for Naughty Dog, as well as the death of Tony Jay, the voice of the Elder God. Not to mention the fact that ''Defiance'' didn't sell too well.
* VideoGamesAndFate: The series takes place in a universe in which free will does not exist and all destinies are pre-determined; the only way to change destiny is to travel back in time and create a temporal paradox, which forces time to "reshuffle". Both Kain and Raziel initially believe they have free will, before discovering that it is an illusion. At one point in ''Defiance'', Raziel is informed by another character that, as a result of a temporal paradox, he was in fact the only entity in the universe capable of free will, and yet his choices were nevertheless staggeringly easy to manipulate by outside influences.
* VideogameCrueltyPotential: Part of the fun of the series is the ability to kill enemies in a variety of gruesome ways by using your powers and the environment to your advantage. You can pick up and throw enemies into wall-spikes, fires or bottomless pits, do any of the three with your telekinesis, or just cut them to shreds with your weapon before impaling or decapitating them. ''Defiance'' also added on the ability to use telekinesis in more creative ways, leading to you being able to inflict {{Rasputinian Death}}s on enemies--use TK to pull an enemy towards you, sword combo, knock him into the air, leap after him, sword combo, TK blast to knock him into a wall spike.
** Played with an interesting twist in ''Soul Reaver''. There is a city of humans that can be navigated at one point, complete with vampire hunters who will attack you, at first. If you choose to kill them, they keep attacking you, and the villagers flee in terror. If you ignore them, not only will they help you kill the vampires, but the villagers will kneel down and praise you, allowing you to nibble at their souls for a snack.
*** In ''Defiance'' you come across more prisoners chained up in the first few levels, and you're free to slash them to bits with the Soul Reaver. Heck, they're so weak already you can feed from them while they're still alive and save time. Even Kain notes it would be a shame to waste a free meal...
* ViewersAreGeniuses: If they can follow the timeline without taking notes, anyway. [[http://www.gamefaqs.com/console/psx/file/917578/25247 Take a gander.]]
* VillainProtagonist: In the first game, Kain has no vested interest in restoring Nosgoth beyond finding a cure for his own vampirism, and certainly thinks nothing of murdering its inhabitants in cold blood. And he's ''still'' better than the "good guys" (the Sarafan and the Circle of Nine). About the only thing Kain does for actual good reasons (kill William to prevent him becoming the Nemesis) [[NiceJobBreakingItHero backfires immensely]].
* VoiceActors: Consistently oh so very good that it is one of the carrying strengths of the game. With a great faux-Shakespearean script spoken by extremely deep-voiced English actors, it's widely regarded one of the best, often ''the'' best, voice work ever in a video game. Main actors include Simon Templeman (Kain), Michael Bell (Raziel) and the late Tony Jay (Elder God). [[InsistentTerminology The late, GREAT Tony Jay.]]
* VoiceWithAnInternetConnection: Mortanius in ''Blood Omen'', who is busy [[spoiler:struggling with his [[DemonicPossession possessor]] for control]], and the Elder God in ''Soul Reaver'', who isn't very mobile. In ''Defiance'' we actually see them doing it; Mortanius has a fancy magic circle, The Elder God simply speaks.
* WalkingShirtlessScene: This was pretty much the dress code in the heyday of Kain's empire, with all six lieutenants lording their gorgeously sculpted abs over their human chattel. (Well, not so much Melchiah.) Kain himself embodies this trope in ''Soul Reaver'', ''Soul Reaver 2'', ''Defiance'', and the first few levels of ''Blood Omen 2''. You could list Raziel as well, but that would imply he's limited to shirtless-ness.
* [[WhamLine/VideoGames Wham Line]]:
** ''Blood Omen'': "He is the last! [Moebius points at Kain and swords are drawn.] Destroy him!"
** ''Soul Reaver'': "The blade is vanquished. So it unfolds...and we are a step closer to our destinies."
** ''Soul Reaver 2'': [[spoiler: "The Reaver was never forged to be a soul-stealing weapon... the ravenous, soul-devouring entity trapped in the blade was... and always had been... ME."]]
*** A short while later, there's also [[spoiler:"My God... the Hylden... we walked right into their trap..."]]
** From ''Defiance'': [[spoiler:''(regarding the Heart of Darkness)'' "Kain has it?" *shocked silence* "It is IN Kain!"]]
* VoluntaryShapeshifting: Vampires are seen turning into a wolf-like creature, several bats (or a huge swarm of them), and [[SuperSmoke mist]].
* WarriorMonk: The Sarafan warrior-priests.
* WearingAFlagOnYourHead: Kain and his lieutenants wear their flags as partial capes. After Raziel is thrown into the Abyss, he uses his flag as a scarf, covering the area where his lower jaw used to be.
* [[WhamEpisode Wham Moment]]: Way too many to count, but a few examples: Raziel discovering that [[spoiler:''his human self'' was the one who murdered Janos]], the entire ending of ''Soul Reaver 2'', the discovery of [[spoiler:just where the Heart of Darkness is]], and [[spoiler:Raziel ripping said heart out of Kain's chest]].
* WhatHappenedToTheMouse: Played with--after Janos Audron [[spoiler: is possessed by the Hylden Lord in]] ''Defiance,'' we never see him again... because he flies off to be in the events of ''Blood Omen 2,'' which was released before ''Defiance.''
* WhoWantsToLiveForever: The immortality curse, bestowed by the Hylden, ''really'' screwed the Ancient Vampires. First, it resulted in mass suicides, as many couldn't stand [[spoiler:being shunned by The Elder God, who put a lot of emphasis on the eternal cycle of souls dying and being reborn]]. Second, because the Pillars chose their guardians at birth and [[ImmortalProcreationClause vampires were no longer born]], humans started to replace them in the Circle. Vampires abducted the human guardians to train them and eventually turn them into Vampires. This directly led to [[spoiler:Mortanius and Moebius' rebellion and the downfall of their whole race.]]
* WindowsOfTheSoul: "I swore I saw a glint of satisfaction in Kain's eye when the Soul Reaver was destroyed"
* WingedHumanoid: Raziel had leathery bat wings... until Kain tears them to shreds. Janos and the rest of the Ancient Vampires have black, feathery angel-wings. The Hylden have little leathery wings with no 'finger bones', kind of like a pterosaur's.
* WorldOfHam: All the voice actors get in on the [[LargeHam ham]] moments in the series. The ham is all over the place.
* WrittenByTheWinners: Raziel remarks that "history is written by the victors" upon finding out [[spoiler: what the Hylden have to say about their war with the Ancients, who ''started'' said war because the Elder God demanded it]]. Faustus also quotes this in ''Blood Omen 2'': ''"History is written by the winners, Kain!"''
* YouAlreadyChangedThePast: The rule is described as part of how time functions; several plot twists happen because various characters have discovered the rule has a loophole and [[spoiler: Raziel himself is a walking "violate this rule for free" card.]]
* YouCantFightFate and ScrewDestiny: [[ZigZaggingTrope Played with, inverted, subverted, pinned to the ground and shot repeatedly in the head.]] To go a in-depth, no you can't fight fate. YouAlreadyChangedThePast and created a StableTimeLoop in the process, but even if you know this you're powerless to change it. However the events of the series center around the main characters finding and exploiting loopholes in these rules, so only ''normally'' YouCantFightFate. But if you have the ability to time travel, know your history, and are [[ManipulativeBastard good at manipulating people]], eventually you'll find a way. It just so happens that most of the main characters have those abilities, and the only one that doesn't ''is'' one of the loopsholes the rest are exploiting. The other catch is that even if you do find a way to change history and defy fate, [[ButterflyOfDoom you'll create a ripple effect throughout history]] that can change things you didn't anticipate, and in this series things usually change for the worse, since history hates being tempered with.
* YouCantGoHomeAgain: In the original ''Blood Omen'', the then-fledgeling Kain realizes that he will never be welcomed in Coorhagen, due to his new [[TheUndead circumstances]]. [[spoiler: He then discovers the entire city fell to the plague, further reinforcing the trope.]]
----