Of all the things that decayed when Raziel was thrown into the abyss (his jaw, hands and feet, much of his torso) his hair remains intact.
Lampshaded in an EGM interview. When asked a similar question, Hennig responded, "Because he'd look silly if he was bald. It's magical hair, or maybe he just has a deep follicle."
In Soul Reaver 2 Raziel seemed to have been much more aware of his path and the fate of Nosgoth. He seemed to have reached a level of understanding and wisdom that was practical and deep. He even made some interestingly correct assumptions about the collapse of the Pillars. And yet in Defiance he acts impulsively and is heedless in many occasions, even his correct assumptions about the collapse of the Pillars were no longer apart of his speech. What's with the change?
He's scared out of his mind: his destiny is to play an endless cycle of deaths and resurrections, ad infinitum, and being a tool in all of his many forms. Being born a human and growing up to be a fanatic, even killing his future savior in his crusade; being killed by his wraith self; being resurrected as a vampire in some twisted parody of his former faith; serving Kain for a thousand years, then be executed for growing wings; being reborn as a wraith who can't die and must feed on souls and who finds a weapon that suits his new form perfectly; chase after Kain, only to find out Kain is actually the good guy; going out to see his former self kill the one person who can make sense of it all, chasing him down and killing him, perpetuating the cycle, and finally finding out that his ultimate destiny is to be locked into a weapon for another few thousand years, only to be freed by and latch onto his wraith self, riding along again to see how badly he screwed up the first time, and finally becoming so insane in that new form that he's actually instrumental in his own cyclical fate. Talk about a fate worse than death. In Defiance, his main motivation is to run like hell from the weapon that would become his prison and find a way to break the cycle. I think even he's done waxing poetic about the Pillars at that point.
If Kain doesn't want to sacrifice himself to the Pillars because he's the last vampire, why doesn't he just bite someone and then sacrifice himself?
Later games suggest that, at the end of Blood Omen Kain had some inkling of how important vampires are to the balance, and didn't want to leave the fate of the world in anyone else's hands. Also, he gleefully puts the "Sociopathic" in "Sociopathic Hero", so it's pretty much certain he just didn't want to die, so used the most likely excuse.
The dilemma, as Janos put it, is this; the Pillars are meant to be served by vampire guardians, they choose their guardians from birth, and vampires are no longer born. Added problem; Kain was still corrupted by Nupraptor's madness, which is why his vampire offspring devolved into beasts. He couldn't simply turn the new human guardians when they're chosen in the time of his Empire, in the way the Ancients did. As of Defiance, he is cleansed of that corruption by Raziel and the purified Wraith Blade, but vampires are still sterile. As it is, he could only repeat the process the Ancients used, which is a fragile and risky business, as Moebius and Mortanius's uprising showed. And of course Because Destiny Says So. Kain is destined to be the Scion of Balance; he is supposed to restore balance to the Pillars by returning them to Vampire guardianship, which is also the reason he didn't die after his heart was ripped out. In Nosgoth, the Time Stream and Destiny are forces that tend to physically act to get stuff done, as is seen in William's Chapel. In other words, he can't die - not without a temporal distortion and a death by the Soul Reaver, at any rate.
Another WMG possibility is simply that Kain did not know how to make another vampire. He was created through a method that is absolutely unique, and it took him 500 years to find a new way to create offspring, namely by splitting off portions of his soul to animate the Sarafan corpses, essentially creating a new breed of vampires.
Blood Omen 2 in fact states that Kain needed Vorador to sire new vampires at the time.
Yes, Kain cannot pass the blood curse. He needed to actually pull souls from the underworld and sacrifice part of his own soul to bind them to their former bodies, to create his lieutenants. He indeed need Vorador to sire some vampires in order to populate Nosgoth. We still don't know how he managed to de-decapitate V, though.
Regardless of what anyone will tell you, Kain didn't sacrifice himself at the end of Blood Omen because he simply no longer gave a damn about the world(he didn't really give a damn about it in the first place). He wanted to live, and he knew he could concievably take over. It was only later that he realized that vampires were important to the Pillars, and he used that to justify his decision; if he had sacrificed himself, the world would have been worse off.
In other words, in that moment, he realized he was the most powerful being in Nosgoth. He had the Soul Reaver, he was immortal, and being that he was last guardian left, anyone who would've been powerful enough to stand in his way was dead. The temptation to take over Nosgoth was too great for him to resist. Also, he was probably a bit spiteful after having been jerked around so much by the guardians, so his attitude when Ariel infromed him of his duty was basically, "Why should I?"
Building on this, one thing that's easy to overlook is that Kain is corrupted by Nupraptor's Madness, just the same as the rest of the circle. He has been since birth. His "take over the world" gameplan is likely a product of that corruption; he is no better than the rest of the Circle, and when his back was against the wall, he took the selfish option just as they did. It wasn't until he was older, wiser, and had spent a great deal of time staring into the timestream in Moebius' chambers that he started to care, not in the way that a hero cares about the world, but in the way that a king cares for his subjects.
Or maybe even he just got really furious that moment. He had to die and then do all that hard work, that is with destroying the most powerful people in the world only to learn, that his reward for all of it is to die? And that's when he adapted to and started enjoying his new vampiric self. Learning that he was manipulated practically from his very birth and that his destiny was to be the Balance Guardian, essentially the ruler of the world, but now he cannot fulfill it and has to die must have been really frustrating for Kain, so he decided to correct the destiny's mistake and take over Nosgoth himself, while telling Ariel to f herself and keep moaning at the Pillars for manipulating him.
Also, it's suggested that the decision kind of had to be made right there on the spot. I somehow doubt he could have just told Ariel, "Hang on a minute, let me go turn a couple people and then I'll be back to off myself", even if he could pass on his vampirism.
And, for the record, why did Kain change his outfit between Blood Omen and Soul Reaver? I mean, sure, it looks incredibly badass, but how practical is it? One of the ways to truly kill vampires is to impale them, so wouldn't it be significantly harder to impale Kain if he had kept his full armour than how he is now with about 95% of his chest bare?
Considering Kain's armor didn't do much to stop him getting impaled the first time around...Of course, it's also possible that that carapace he has for skin is harder than most armors would be anyway, and as self-appointed ruler of the world (and having already demonstrated that he could kick the ass of anything), what were the chances of anyone even getting close enough to try it?
My guess - the armour didn't fit but and/or he didn't need it any more, since he is virtually the strongest being in Nosgoth. And I suppose it could have been uncomfortable during evolution/methamorphisis - remember, he was waiting for wings. On a side note - impaling a vampire doesn't kill him - once the object is removed from his chest his soul comes back to his body.
I'm fairly sure it is stated somewhere(I'd have to check) that as he evolved, Kain's skin hardened to the point it offered greater protection than a man-made suit of armor, and allowed him to maintain maximum agility and mobility.
Rule of Cool. The man can pull off wearing leather pants, and pull it off well. Besides, as outlined above, he was the Emperor of Nosgoth, surrounded by generation upon generation of his progeny and armed with the most powerful weapon to ever exist. He can turn into mist and teleport at will, in addition to throwing people around like ragdolls with his mind. He is functionally immortal in every sense of the word. Sarafan poke at him all the live-long day in Defiance, and it doesn't bother him at all. In short, screw your stupid armor, I'm Kain and you can effing deal with it.
Pride, plain and simple. Kain is many things, but one of them is a vain, narcissistic creature. A bare chest is a dare to the rest of the world to try something. In Kain's mind, armor is for the weak and the cautious, and he is neither. His lieutenants follow suit.
Take a good look at his skin - he doesn't need to wear an armor, since his skin has become tough and provides him with more protection than any armor ever could.
Why, in Defiance, after centuries of a deadlock, did the Elder God just up and allow Raziel to freely move about the underworld after jumping through some minor hoops? Sure, he tried to stop Raziel from leaving, and put a stop to simple, clean, conduits to the material realm, but if I were in his position I'd have let Raziel rot there for a few more years.
He didn't up and allow. Raziel up and accepted. He was refusing taking up the Elder God's offer to resume his duties as Reaper of Souls because he was afraid, then finally realzied that hiding out here isn't going to help him, and pretended to accept the Elder God's terms, then escaped. As for why the Elder God made the offer? He was hungry.
Also take into consideration Raziel's accusations in SR2 that the Elder God's claim of mastery over Raziel is highly exaggerated.
More than any of that... if Raziel didn't leave the underworld, then he couldn't have ever ripped out Kain's heart. Remember, pretty much every action Raziel takes in Defiance was orchestrated by the Elder God, the Hylden Lord, and Moebius. Why let Raziel escape? Because it serves his purposes.
How exactly do the metaphysics in the Spectral Realm work? Soul Reaver 1 already established that when a person travels into the Spectral Realm, time becomes frozen from their perspective, and their surroundings become non-mutable (for example, Raziel could use falling rocks as stepping stones, but not open doors). Is the Spectral Realm the same for every one of its inhabitants? Does it suddenly change to accommodate objects moving in the Material Realm whenever Raziel passes through? And how does the Spectral Realm suddenly become much less static in Defiance, where the Elder God clearly destroys some architecture in the Spectral Realm while trying to keep Raziel from escaping?
The Spectral Realm probably doesn't have hard and fast rules; for example, in gameplay, time doesn't move in the spectral realm, but between the ending of SR2 and Defiance, Raziel was stuck in it for over 500 years. The Elder God is a being that exists in both physical and spectral realms simultaneously, and has some degree of omniscience, so he can manipulate the material realm while watching what's going on with Raziel in the spectral realm, for instance.
Time just moves really slowly in the Spectral Realm.
This (the stuff with EG existing in both worlds) plus EG is shown to at least have some (I'd say vast) power over time, death and who knows what else. He could simply swipe his tentacles in the physical world and fast forward the time a bit. Then again, who knows how the spirit world reacts to sudden changes made in the physical world.
Why does Kain maintain the same appearance he had when Raziel was cast into the Abyss when Raziel returns? The game specifically states that Kain is evolving just like his lieutenants (indeed, up until Raziel gained wings, he was changing faster than any of them); why was Kain not some sort of gigantic monstrosity like the others by the time Raziel got back?
Probably because Kain has better control over himself than the others, or he'd already reached a "peak" of his own evolution. That's why Raziel evolved "before" Kain...Kain was done evolving. Afterward, he let the others evolve as they did because he was just biding his time until Raziel returned.
Maybe the Heart of Darkness somehow limited the devolution. Or because he used part of his soul on them, only they devolved.
Maybe he traveled forward in time with the Chronoplast to avoid it. It would also explain why in Defiance he accepted the offer to travel to the future instead of just waiting.
I believe it's this. Kain did say in SR2 that he only needs to pass the time until Raziel fulfils his destiny (or something along these lines), so I guess, when vampire Raz grew wings, Kain threw him in the Abyss and went forward in time (probably "stopping" every decade or so to give out some commands to his lieutenants) to meet him when he comes back. Either that, or Kain's evolution was not physical but mental (or soul or something).
Kain's offspring rapidly evolved due to the corruption in Kain's soul. Word of God says it doesn't affect Kain in the same way; he's still evolving, just not in the same way or at the same rate as those he sired. Kain's apparently a bit more normal; Vorador didn't visibly change for five hundred years. And if I remember correctly, vampire evolution doesn't happen at a constant rate, rather every now and then they go into stasis and come out evolved, stay that way for centuries until it happens again. Kain may just be between intervals.
Supporting the theory that Kain traveled forward in the Chronoplast, he actually probably DID NOT stop every ten years or so to give out orders to his lieutenants. When Raziel emerges, the Empire is in ruins, the lieutenants have devolved in hideous ways and seem actively malicious of each other, humans are starting to overtake parts of the Empire such as Dumah's territory, and Kain can't really be bothered to give a shit about any of it because the only thing that matters is his and Raziel's destiny. The whole thing suggests that Kain more or less abandoned his empire at some point after Raziel was condemned to the Abyss, leaving the lieutenants to fend for themselves.
Kain is the same in the cutscene at the beginning of Soul Reaver as he is centuries later when Raziel came back while his lieutenants degenerated into monstrous forms because Kain is a different kind of vampire than they are. Kain was created using the Heart of Darkness, thus is of the same line of vampires as Vorador, who also retain their human forms for the most part (despite the fact that Vorador is apparently several millennia old) and have only a slight weakness to sunlight, but can still be killed by conventional means. Kain's lieutenants on the other hand were created by a different process that Kain probably just made up on the spot, as such they are a very different type of vampire that can only be killed in a few particular ways and degenerate into disgusting creatures after a thousand years or so. In short, Kain's lieutenants eventually became monstrosities because they're bad copies of the kind of vampire Kain is, while Kain is the perfect specimen.
At the end of Soul Reaver 2 after Raziel kills his Sarafan self, thus ensuring his revival as a vampire, Kain comes along and prevents him from being absorbed from the reaver. However, if Raziel's wraith blade is effectively himself after being consumed by the physical reaver then released into him when the reaver was shattered on him, then wouldn't that mean that he would no longer have the wraith blade as he was never consumed by the blade in the first place, and further more, the Kain that saved Raziel apparently took the reaver with him afterward, which means past Kain wouldn't have the reaver at all, thus it wouldn't have broken against Raziel. So, how is it that Raziel keeps his wraith blade despite the events occurring that would prevent him from having it... Oh no I've gone cross-eyed.
The fact that Raziel still has the wraith blade is meant to show that, though he was saved at that point, him going into the Reaver was inevitable. That's why he's stuck in the spectral realm til the beginning of Defiance: He's scared shitless of it happening, and figures the only way to avoid it is to keep his ass away from the reaver.
This must be a very old entry, because Raziel willingly enters the Reaver at the end of Defiance. There's no conflict here. Obviously at some point the Soul Reaver finds its way back to Moebius's hands to be given to William the Just, and from there to the Sarafan stronghold to be restored by Raziel, and at some point beyond that to Avernus to be picked up by Kain. As for Kain taking the Reaver, the planned ending for Defiance had Kain going back to lay it back in King William's tomb, so we can presume he got around to that eventually.
I supposed that makes sense, it'd also explain why the wraith blade doesn't go berserk on you in Defiance like it does in Soul Reaver 2.
What makes sense? The fact that the blade didn't go berserk when Raziel entered by choice in the end of Defiance instead of resisting like he did in Soul Reaver 2? It may be true. But still doesnt explain why the "sense of displacement and distortion" that its normally associated with paradox by having two Soul Reavers together doesn't appear in the Defiance bit in the end. After all, you can't say that it didn't happen because it was meant to happen anyway because guess what? That time when Raziel was supposed to kill Kain in William's Chapel and the imprisonment of Raziel in the Reaver later on were ALSO meant to happen as the timeline wanted.......but they didn't happen. Yet somehow the distortion is missing in Defiance, developers being lazy much?
There wasn't a soul in the Reaver at the end of Defiance until Raziel went into it—and even if there had been, Raziel's soul was profoundly different by that point, not the same as the insane wraith blade on his arm.
Lets recap on the possession of the Reaver: First, it was taken from Janos Retreat to the Sarafan Stronghold then it was found by Raziel who used its power to kill all his human brothers and his Sarafan self, The Reaver turns on Raziel after the Spectral Reaver manages to manifest in the real world after being away from Moebius' staff, and if it wasn't for Kain, Raziel would have been trapped in the Reaver (as expected). Kain now holds The Reaver until the end of Defiance where he accidentally stabs Raziel with the Reaver and becomes purified. For some reason, the blade doesn't go berserk again even if it's the same one as the last time.
It went "berserk" on him the first time to force him to stab himself. The last time, he was already stabbed of his own accord. Why would it go "berserk" when the objective of going berserk (to stab Raziel) has already happened?
How about the Avernus fight of Kain and Raziel? Before having his heart torn out of his torso by Raziel, he accidentally started to absorb Raziel into the Reaver. The question is, why didn't the Reaver go berserk there? Think about it: everyone expected Kain to die at least in this timeline in Avernus and if we count that the Reaver is basically the best method of dealing with guys that can't stay day for 2 seconds (like Raziel or Kain) then having the Reaver act that way would have made sense....... except it didn't for some reason. It didn't take long in the SR 2 finale for the Spectral Reaver to engulf itself on the Reaver and go berserk, so why not in that moment where everyone seemed to make all their bets on Kain dying?
Because history didn't dictate that Raziel get absorbed into the Reaver at that point in time.
I think the OP question shows a misunderstanding as to what happened when Wraith Raziel kills Human Raziel with the Blood Reaver (which is understandable; like everything in the series it's VERY complicated). When this happens, there are three of Raziel's souls in play: the human Raziel's soul, the wraith Raziel's soul, and the the Soul Reaver Raziel's soul currently bound to Wraith Raziel. When Wraith Raziel kills Human Raziel, Human Raziel's soul bonds with the Blood Reaver which perhaps because of them bonding with the Soul Reaver Raziel's soul seconds later, perhaps not, turns it into the Soul Reaver. Then Moebius gets his staff far enough away from the two at that very moment, which causes the Human Raziel's soul and the Soul Reaver's to start bonding together, and in their mutual insanity and ravenous hunger to turn on Wraith Raziel to consume him, which if Kain hadn't shown up would have resulted in the three souls merging together and becoming the Soul Reaver Raziel's soul that would bond with Wraith Raziel, which would have eventually ended up in the young Kain's hands, starting things all over again. When Kain removed the Soul Reaver from Wraith Raziel seconds before the process would have been completed, the Soul Reaver's Soul and Wraith Raziel's soul would have remained together instead of getting stuck in the Soul Reaver while the Human Raziel's soul would have remained in the Reaver, powering it's soul stealing quality from then on. After the events of Defiance presumably Kain would eventually leave the now purified Soul Reaver for his younger self to find, thus starting the loop in a different manner, unless Kain found a way around that too.
This troper is a trained vet who worked for three years at a wildlife shelter in New Mexico, and thus knows enough about bat wings to know that the way Kain ripped the bone structure off of Raziel's wings is simply impossible. The bones in a bat's wing are very fragile, and the skin very tight, even if Kain was able to rip them out in one piece, expect a lot more damage to the wings' surface than seen in game. If a bat breaks the wrong bone in the wrong place, its entire wing can rip in half under its own weight. Even if Kain was able to rip off the entire bone structure in one piece without tearing them, then the wings still wouldn't be in one piece, each section would fall to the ground without the bones connecting them. In short, the most Raziel would have is a very short flap of tissue at the very base of his back.
Yes, but while Raziel had bat-esque wings, he's manifestly not a bat. He's a super-evolved vampire. Big difference, there.
Still, it's fair to assume that they'd work the same way right?
They aren't structurally identical, they fold upwards for one thing. Also, the skin was tough enough to survive the abyss when his jaw didn't, so perhaps what Kain did is possible.
And hell, it could have been the Elder God that managed to retain Raziel's wings, though if that be so, why it didn't just repair them completely is another boggle completely.
Well, if it could fix wings that lacked BONES when Raziel was thrown into the abyss, why not fix his entire body? My guess is that the Elder God took what it could and kept Raziel in one piece as much it could.
I think that the problem here is that while the Vet who brought up this issue is apparently an expert on the bone and tissue structures of a bat, he's in a minority which doesn't include the makers of the Legacy of Kain series. I think that the best solution would be to accept that this lies somewhere between a wall banger and bad research, albeit one that can be forgiven for a feature of the series that is more important to the gameplay than the plot, and the plot is definitely among the strongest points (if not the strongest point) of the series.
Rule of Cool, Rule of Cool, Rule of Cool. Raziel's ruined wings are important thematically as well as for gameplay purposes. From the beginning he was supposed to be a fallen angel type character seeking redemption, and from there it sort of evolved into him being a twisted echo of the original elder race that became the vampires who ruled over the Pillars (though clearly not the first vampires, as the Hylden vamp in BO2 seems to indicate.)
Have we taken the healing abilities of a Nosgothic vampire into account? You can see quite a bit of flesh left on the bones after they've been removed, and yet the membrane is still relatively whole. The skin could have been reformed in a matter of seconds, while the bones would probably take far longer.
How, just how is the Soul Reaver possible to exist in the original timeline? This troper put together an entire multi-timeline for the series and the original timeline is causing problems. By manipulating Kain to kill William the Just, Moebius changed the timeline to incite a vampire genocide, making vampires extinct except for Kain, leaving him with two bad options (Although it later turns out that there is an Edge Of The Coin, of course). Fine. So Kain refuses the sacrifice and founds an empire. But did his empire exist in the original timeline? If it did not, then how is the Soul Reaver created, since to become the Soul Reaver, the reaver needs to absorb the wraith Raziel. But if it did already exist, then why was it necessary to change history in the first place? And how would it have come into existence anyway? And why does Kain retain his memories of the original timeline if other paradoxes change his memories, like at the end of Soul Reaver 2?
(By the way, the e-mail address mentioned on the timeline is defunct by now.)
Nosgothic timeline is static, you did take that into account, yes? Right, now since we got that fact we can build upwards:
Since the timeline is static - Kain didn't have a choice at the end of BO1 - he has always chosen to live. But who is to say that he didn't have an empire in the original timeline? Perhaps he had - Kain survives the Nemesis, bands together with the other vampires and leads them to overthrow the Nemesis and take over Nosgoth, perhaps. Or something else ensures that the Soul Reaver is eventually created - Kain may indeed have not had an empire but the vampires were still there in Nosgoth: the Soul Reaver only needs (in very broad terms) a vampire soul that has been long enough in the Spectral Realm and eventually absorbed into the Blood Reaver (that already existed). At any rate, the Soul Reaver existed, it's safe to assume it was created at one point. Perhaps after Kain changes the history, the SR's origin is changed or perhaps it isn't - we don't have the knowledge, but its existence is unchanged. I hope this answers your first and third question.
But if it did already exist, then why was it necessary to change history in the first place? Frankly, I'm not sure what are you referring to here. If you mean the BO1 change, that ensured that the vampires were wiped out (aside from Kain) and so the Pillars were remained corrupted and didn't summon their true guardians. Theoretically, if Kain had sacrificed himself after killing the guardians (and the whole history shenanigan didn't happen) the Pillars would eventually call vampires for guardians thus (hopefully) stabilizing the barrier to the Hylden dimension. That's just a theory though, if there are no vampires to call, the pillars cannot call vampires - Moebius ensured it (maybe even he didn't know?).
Just as a point of clarification, the Pillars call guardians when they're born. As vampires are sterile, they couldn't call vampire guardians even if the place was crawling with'em.
Good point, my bad there. Well, the guardians can still be turned into vampires. Another thought occurred to me - the human guardians weren't exactly clear on what they were guarding and why. Add in the corruption of the Circle, and it's like dangling the key to the prison within an arm's reach of the imprisoned Hylden. Some of the vampires (at least Vorador) probably knew enough to at least give the humans at least a brief summary of their true duties.
Actually, turning the human guardians into vampires is how they did it right after the Vamps were made sterile. Eventually, though, the humans (led by Moebius, I believe) rose up against them and put a stop to the practice.
And Moebius and Mortanius (go team M&M?) the guardians still wouldn't know how to "guard" properly without some tutoring. Even if Kain somehow restores the Pillars and new guardians were called at the end of BO1 and they were turned into vampires, they would have probably only delayed the Hylden invasion a bit. Hence, they'd need Vorador or somebody else to at least give them a Power Point presentation of their duties. That is, ensuring the bitter, hateful, vengeful, murderous, immortal demons to stay locked up.
As for Kain retaining his memories, I always assumed it was due to the temporal distortion - it hadn't yet faded, so that's why Kain knew about both histories - he wasn't meant to but being at the place of the temporal distortion managed to "preserve" his memories. Same thing happens in BO1 - Kain was at ground zero of the temporal distortion, since he was wielding the Reaver (the source of the distortion), which I always assumed made him at least partially "immune" or something.
Word of God: Changing history caused a split in the timeline of sorts. Kain and Raziel would both retain memories of how things played out for them, as well as new, "valid" memories of how things occurred as a result of the change. SR 1 is therefore old stuff, and in all likelihood very little was changed around that time anyways. Kain himself said that history strains to accommodate the new circumstance while changing as little as possible.
Does that help you? I hope it does, if not - try clarifying what is it you don't understand so this troper (or somebody else) can focus on it
Here's what we know. Kain always finds the Reaver. Kain always goes back in time and fights William. Can't change those events, can't get around them. What changes is the result of the fight itself. Original timeline, Kain loses or otherwise fails to kill William and is forced to flee, presumably back to his own time. Now, remember, William's only human. By the time Kain's turned into a vampire, William's pushing seventy. The Nemesis will, sooner or later, die of old age, and Kain, being an immortal vampire, will outlive him. The Nemesis' forces don't particularly seem like the type of folks that would maintain a stable regime after their leader's death; his legions would most likely fall apart without him. All Kain has to do in the original timeline is play the waiting game.
Here's the big issue. Hylden General/Sarafan Lord is the same character who was possessing Mortainus/Janos in Defiance. He was able to set his plans into motion by manipulating Raziel into tearing the heart of darkness out of the Scion of Balance— Kain— and putting it back into Janos. He presumably knew that Kain was the Scion(He knew Mortainus put the heart into a vampire he believed to be the scion, which was Kain), and he believed that by tearing the heart out of the Elder Kain, Raziel had killed him. So, while leading his army against the Younger Kain's vampire army, how is it that he thought he could actually win? Kain has to survive to become the elder Kain that Raziel takes the heart from, which is how his plan gets put into motion. For Kain to survive, that means the Hylden General can't kill the younger version. Yet he has complete confidence his plan will succeed inspite of coming into conflict with Young Kain, he is surprised that Young Kain survived their first battle, and has complete confidence he'll kill Kain in their final showdown.
He doesn't refer to Kain by name when gloating over Raziel. It's possible that he didn't know who the hell Raziel actually was, or who the Scion of Balance was. He certainly didn't know that Kain survived having the Heart torn out. Moebius and the Elder God have one thing that he doesn't: temporal omniscience, or at least in Moebius's case the ability to look into the future with the aid of magic.
Word of God says that the Hylden and the Hylden Lord can look into Nosgoth's timestream to see the future, which is how they planned everything out. It's been hinted at that their method is different from the Elder God and Moebius, but the specifics aren't given.
But that doesnt explain how they just forgot to have counter measures for the younger Kain when they could clearly see in whatever means they had of seeing the future that HE will destroy the Hylden Lord and all their plans
They did indeed have a counter measure for the younger Kain: The Nexus Stone. When Kain battles the Sarafan that the Hylden have revived they are defeated and Kain is thought to be dead while having the Soul Reaver taken from him. With that in hand there would be no way for Kain to do any of the timeline chicanery that he ever gets up to. As they were stuck in an extradimensional prison they are likely aware of only the original timeline where Kain takes over the world, creates Raziel and then dies in the future. So by taking the Soul Reaver, wiping out the vampires and then preparing to wipe out all life on the planet they likely figured they had all their bases covered.
The afterlife in Legacy of Kain is a pretty bleak place, isn't it? The Elder God claims he spins souls in the Wheel of Fate so that they can be reborn, but it is implied that he is just hungry. So either you get eaten by a Sluagh or an agent of the Elder God, or you stay out of their grasp, but then you'll be in the spectral realm forever. Just what is gained by getting rid of the Elder God?
Perhaps it would free up the souls to do whatever they want? But anyway, it's not really a matter of the Spectral realm - EG is just a bastard. Because of him (it?) the Ancients died out. Cuz he was just hungry. For all we know, he may have caused the conflict between the Ancients and the Hylden - it's a suitably dickish move for him. He is also at least indirectly responsible for the whole of Nosgoth going to Hell - the Ancients, who are holding some dudes locked away, and the dudes really want to take revenge on all of the world for that, die because EG pretty much tells them to. The humans "rebel" against them, and kill every Ancient that hasn't slit his own throat for the Great Squid One. EG then proceeds to manipulate Moebious into raping history to ensure that his master will have more food. A chain of events that end up with Nosgoth a wasteland and vampires chewing the remnants of humanity. SR2 shows that later on demons (Hylden) show up and continue destroying the humans. Also, if BO2 is to be believed, the Hylden constructed and gave humankind steampunk-y energy source and technology in order to completely murderize them after a while (using the Mass). EG is shown to constantly manipulate everyone, who is so much within six degrees of separation with him, for his own petty egoistic gluttonous ends. And doesn't particularly care about the rest of the world, as long as people keep dieing.
"Perhaps it would free up the souls to do whatever they want?" Yeah, but they don't seem to be very happy there, judging by the lamentations we hear in Defiance. Ah well, at least the material plane might become a nicer place...
What I meant was, that perhaps EG is stopping the souls from going on their way, or something along those lines. They are lamenting mainly because they've been trapped there for an eternity (remember how slow the time passes in the Spectral Realm) but maybe it doesn't need to be that way. Either afterlife or heaven/hell, or something else may have been denied to them.
Another possibility: The Sluagh are not "vermin," as EG refers to them, but the twisted, mutated forms of the creatures that are supposed to be reapers of souls. He obviously views them as competition, which is why he wants Raziel to kill them whenever he encounters them. Though this is heading down a WMG path...
Besides, it seems that there is no end in terms of body mass that the Elder God has and the souls may as well be like you and me trapped in the stomach of a large creature and he is just waiting for us to go mad so its enzymes can digest us
Here's a thought, Raziel. You were told to kill off your brothers. Why not raise up an army of humans and take them over? Here's a better thought: Don't. Do. Anything. Just go back to your clan territory and hold up in there because, every move you make? Makes everything WORSE.
A. The humans clearly aren't very good at killing off vampires, as evidenced by the fact that, well, the vampires took over the planet. B. Yes, because Raziel knows the consequences of actions he hadn't even thought of yet. It's only after Soul Reaver 2 that he even sees the results of a lot of what he's done, you expect him to sit around and do nothing at the beginning?
How does that make any sense whatsoever? Why would he go to the human citadel and raise an army when he was perfectly capable of attaining the vengeance he sought all by himself?
Why would the remaining humans rally themselves behind another supernatural, undead being anyway? You think that after centuries of war and being hunted or made the cattle of vampires, they'd put their lives in the hands of some scary blue dude with glowing eyes, claws and no jaw? One human steps up and says, "Wait guys, let's hear him out first." Raziel says, "Well I was formerly a vampire general...". Another guy says, "Oh, so change one detail and we would be your meal?" All hell breaks loose.
Raziel was executed for surpassing Kain in evolution, yet Rahab evolved immunity to water and gets to live. The dialog when Raziel meets him in the drowned abbey suggests that he's not on bad terms with Kain. Is the sunlight vulnerability such a hindrance that Kain overlooked Rahab surpassing him?
Kain got over it. When it was only Raziel changing he was envious. When all his other lieutenants started evolving soon after, he just threw up his hands in frustration and figured there was nothing he could do. One clan of vampires could be exterminated but even Kain couldn't destroy the entirety of the vampire race by himself, even if he wanted to. Later (both in this game, and the "I always knew" retcon for the later games) he could see by means of the chronoplast that Raziel would need to be executed and consume the souls of his brothers in order to play the game of destiny (or cheat the game of destiny, whatever).
It wasn't even a retcon for the later games, it was always planned that jealousy is not the real reason - in the original plans for SR 1, it was planned that Kain executed Raziel out of fatalism, having seen their destinies in the Chronoplast.
Yeah, the "he evolved before me" thing was an excuse, not the real reason. Kain was simply waiting for that change to come, and after he dunked Raziel, it was only a matter of waiting some more, so he didn't care what the others evolved into.
It wasn't that Raziel evolved something "better" than Kain, it's that he evolved before Kain. Vampire evolution doesn't happen gradually; they enter a hibernation every few decades or centuries, and come out of it with a new gift. They do this in order; Kain first, then Raz, so on and so forth, presumably absent their control. Raz happened to lapse into the state of change before Kain did, and that was the problem, even though it was mainly an excuse.
Hang on. If a new guardian is born when the old one dies, and Kain is assassinated at the beginning of Blood Omen, where's the next guardian?
I'm guessing whatever Mortanius did at the beginning of the game kept the guardianship from passing on.
Word of God from Amy Hennig states that the Pillars did not call new guardians because they were not capable of it. When they were corrupted, they could not call new guardians and would not be able to unless and until Kain purified them again by wiping out the Circle of Nine. Obviously, when he let them fall, no guardians could be called at all.
Raziel does his time-hopping thing and finds Ariel by the pillars. Raziel then states "the pillars were subverted by dark forces invited by the guardians themselves". When did he figure this out? Sure Moebius has that thing going with the Elder God, but that deal being the cause seems little more than speculation at that time.
Kain probably told him something about it over the couple thousand years that Raz was his right hand man. Kain probably didn't mean the Elder God, but that...thing that possessed Mortanius at the end of the first game.
Kain going through the Oracle's(Elder God's) time portal in Defiance is an annoying example of San Dimas Time that annoys the hell out of me. Kain could sit around and wait five hundred years and stop Raziel before he ever got to Avernus. Failing that, Kain's demonstrated that he can move around the timeline easily enough, as he did in Soul Reaver 2.
Kain may not have had access to the Chronoplast anymore at that time. Also, waiting around 500 years carries some risks—Kain probably doesn't want to give his enemies too many chances to do him in, for example.
I am actually surpriced that the Elder God didnt shut down the portal as soon Kain leaped into that pool of water WITH the portal on top. It would have been actually pretty funny seeing the Elder God doing PSYCH! With Kain in mid air. Falling that he could just let him be trapped in the time wormhole closing both sides of the portals and problem solved
Elder God's as big of a fatalist as Kain is. He needs to let things play their course along the wheel. Also, it isn't just about Raziel killing Kain; he needs Kain in the future so Raziel gets absorbed into the reaver.
Male Gaze/Fanservice really is probably the only reason. That said, the armor the men wear doesn't really make a ton of difference anyway.
For people who care so much about the cycle of life, death and rebirth, the ancient vampires sure have a lot of undead guarding their forges in Soul Reaver 2, which clearly have souls. Apparently corrected in Defiance, where their Ragnarok Proof security is handled by golems.
Why, in Soul Reaver 2, does Raziel rush to get the Fire Reaver, open the special door, zoom to Janos's aid, then stand there for 15 seconds while Janos gets his heart ripped out?
They were pretty damn far away. From that distance, there wasn't much of anything that Raziel could do.
It wasn't that far. He was on the edge of the same room that He and Janos walked across in the earlier cutscene. Even if it was too far, the sight of a wraith running towards them may have briefly stopped their execution of Janos. Instead Raziel just stands there, mostly out of sight.
Well, I thought he was shocked by the sight - Janos on the table with his chest sliced open, and the one doing the slicing was himself. It would make me stop myself. Also, they had Moebius' staff with them - Raziel is badass but not really that badass to take several trained vampire killers with his claws alone. Remember that these were the people buried along with Malek himself, not just random footsoldier #5036 who Raz had taken on in dozens already. And even they can give him a run for his money. Not to mention that the fights at the end demonstrated just how hardy the top Sarafan were.
Were the Hylden evil before they were banished? The only concrete facts about them from before their imprisonment was that they fought a war against the Vampires which the Vampires started over the fact that they did not worship the Elder God (Which, since he turned out to be evil, is arguably a point in their favor). Their evil actions don't start until after they've been trapped in another dimension by the power of the Pillars for hundreds or thousands of years. Did their imprisonment make them evil or were they always that way?
The one glimpse into pre-banishment hylden society we get is the Device, a weapon designed to wipe out all intelligent life except for them. Granted the war could have pushed them to extremes. My guess? They were morally grey-to-black bordering on Blue And Orange morality.
Actually i believe that they are more like Well Intensioned Extremists if we consider that the wiping of all living creatures in Nosgoth as a safe way to ensure that the Elder God died and doesnt manipulate anyone forever. The problem with this idea is that i dont know how the Hylden knew that the Elder God isnt a god per se but a creature acting like one to the Ancient Vampires or how they do EVEN know if this plan is going to work. Sure, all creatures will be dead but i am sure that after many milenias the world eventually will have life again or at least the Hylden will become the dominant race that after a bunch of time they will evolve in different races that will replenish the planet.
Here's one for you. In Soul Reaver 2, when Raziel was sent to the future instead of the past like he wanted, Vorador was supposed to be long dead. But when you arrive in the swamp, two of his magical crows can be found, and vanish when approached.
That's a small enough detail that it could be hand-waived as an oversight from the developers, but it's also been speculated that Vorador was never completely dead, or that he had some way to partially regenerate. So, the fact that Kain was never shown resurrecting him before Blood Omen 2 isn't a problem since Vorador had some means of surviving past Moebius' beheading.
We don't know how Vorador controls the crows. Just because he's dead doesn't mean they disappear. They could just linger on, waiting for their master to return.
Why Kain or Raziel they never try to meet their younger selves? wont that create a paradox they need? even if that doesnt work it would be nice to see that. To see how the younger Kain would even react and to see how several acts of this kind actually serves to reinforce the fact that destiny isnt going to give in so easily.
Raziel's never in control of his travel's through time, he just sort of goes along for the ride. And he does meet his younger(human) self. Kain's a fatalist. He didn't meet his older self growing up so he knows he doesn't meet his younger self now. He can't do it because he didn't do it.
That is assuming that the Choronoplast Chamber that Kain used to find out about every predestined event up until now WASN'T tampered by Moebius long before Kain could even consider taking a look there. Think back in Soul Reaver 1 before the final fight with Kain: there are six cutscenes relating some time-visions (or something). Three were past visions of actions that Raziel (and the player) already did and the other three are from "the future" where 1) He confronts Kain in Nupraptor's Retreat 2) Strikes Ariel with the Soul Reaver and it becomes the White Reaver 3) Raziel is standing at the top of the Silenced Cathedral after activating the frequency that killed all the vampires in the world (those last visions are actually what could have been in the game but that is not the point). The point here is that we know that those last three visions WON'T happen at all, but somehow they are ignored and not questioned by Kain or Raziel. The fact that these visions could be false doesn't tip them off to ACTUALLY believe the machine was tampered. Even if it wasn't altered, there is still the fact that even if Kain doesn't remember seeing his older self when he was young, that won't stop Raziel from trying. After all, he has free will and there is nothing he could lose, in fact he could try to visit Younger Kain when he already has the Soul Reaver in his possession to trigger the almost paradox moment that he need to weaken the flow of time enough to warn Younger Kain.
Why the Elder God doesnt try to brainwash Raziel during the many times he could do it? i mean, i know that calling it a god and being able to do such thing is debatable but he HAS some non human minions that return souls to the wheel and you did think that he would do something like that on Raziel
Raziel can't be returned to the wheel. That's what gives him free will; he's removed from the cycle. EG does try to force his doctrine on Raziel by giving him a five-hundred year long Breaking Speech which we see the tail end of in Defiance, but apparently that doesn't work(though Raziel seems to be getting worn down by it).
Actually his free will comes from being a walking mini paradox by having his own soul attach to his arm. And Raziel even question if he is indestructible because of the EG or an unseen force and he is taking credit for.
I'm not buying that Raziel ever killed Kain with the Reaver when he was historically supposed to. In fact, he walked into that confrontation rather intent on not killing Kain, simply because everyone else was compelling him to do so. He knew something wasn't right, and was determined not to be played. Given that he did not have murder on his mind, I have a hard time buying the massive struggle against changing a history that I say never took place.
This Raziel didn't intend to kill him, that doesn't mean that previous versions stayed their hand. it's very possible that earlier Kains tried different speeches to convince earlier Raziels but failed to. All we see is the one cycle where he does not kill Kain.
Also, destiny is an actual thing in this series. In the original timeline (if there ever was one), Raziel was not aware of the greater picture and simply killed Kain for revenge. Kain averted this fate by goading Raziel along a path that would make him less single-minded by showing him that there were other machinations at work. Raziel would have killed Kain at that point but chose otherwise, but only due to what he had found out. What Raziel had to struggle against was destiny trying to keep to the script, as it were.
Just what was the final boss in Blood Omen meant to be, we know that he was retconed into being the Hylden Lord but when Blood Omen was just a stand alone game, what was he, just a random demon messing with the world for laughs? He just turns up after Mortanius dies and reveals he was behind it all but why, why did he need to posses Mortanius, what was his motive and was there any foreshadowing about him at all? I heard that originally Mortanius was the villain and did everything himself and would have been the final boss so why did they add a random demon to appear at the end? It only makes sense now because of the other games and him being written as the Hylden Lord but what was it originally?
What the original intent was, I doubt we'll ever really know. There was some foreshadowing- in the room with Hash'ak'gik's alter, there's an image on the floor that resembles the final boss. The alter is also in the catacombs of Avernus, where Mortanius was established to work out of, even in Blood Omen- it's were he bound Malek's soul to his armor, which could be found near by. Ariel warns Kain about the "Unspoken" early on in the game. It's possible that whatever Hash'ak'gik was would have been revealed had the Blood Omen series continued on track(Remember, Legacy of Kain was the subtitle at this point).
I think we were supposed to assume that it was just Mortanius going One Wing Angel, and that Mortanius was just a Manipulative Bastard playing with the world for shits and giggles (or as he puts it his theatre of [words I can't spell]).
Even before Soul Reaver was announced (thus mucking up any future story plans from the original developers), Silicon Knights explained on their website that Mortanius was being controlled by an entity (who was in fact the aforementioned "Unspoken") and that his manipulation of Kain was an attempt to counter the efforts of that entity.
I'm mildly surprised this hasn't been brought up already...but how is Raziel able to speak when he doesn't have a tongue or lower jaw?
According to Amy Hennig, it's all in the uvula.
Why should the pillars be 'returned' to Vampire control? The Ancient Vampires are all gone, and their successors are innately bloodthirsty sociopaths who are inimical to all other lifeforms. Unless the Blood Curse can be lifted, it would surely be better to train the Humans to accept their duties responsibly rather than patriarchally condescending them as too naive to ever do the job. On that note, the Ancient Vampires aren't as wise as they thought they were- they built the pillars to imprison the Hylden as part of an unjust religious war they were tricked into by a cosmic parasite. Why would we want them in charge again, even free of the Blood Curse? Finally, since Nosgoth obviously existed just fine before the pillars, why are they so essential to the world's balance at all?
The pillars need to be controlled by vampires because humans are not able to keep them working as well as they should, that's why they were able to be brought down eventually. Vampires are also needed to keep out the Hylden because they want to destroy all life that isn't hylden. The war between them caused so much damage that the pillars are needed to give life to nosgoth as well as keeping the hylden from returning, maybe the Hylden were once good, turning evil due to the war that the vampires started thanks to the elder god but as of now, the best thing for nosgoth is no more Hylden, more vampires and peace betweeen vampires and humans.
Pretty much what it says here. I'd just like to expand on a small note "maybe the Hylden were once good, turning evil due to the war that the vampires started" according to interviews with some of the staff, they would have liked to explore a bit more on the Hylden side and their vision (as much as was shared) was that the Hylden were twisted by their imprisonment and thus turned into the monstrosities wanting to destroy everything. The game might have involved being in the Hylden dimension (either travelling there or maybe as a Hylden character) and showing small band(s?) of Hylden who managed to secure themselves against the corruption of the realm and maintain some semblance of civilisation. And personal opinion now - while it's unlikely the "Normal" Hylden were saints, really neither were the Ancients, I don't think it was a war of "good vs evil" but just...a war. The Ancients win and they are pronounced the good guys...by themselves.
Original question poster here- So we're just supposed to accept a state of affairs where a ruling breed of blood-crazed monsters subjugate humanity and the Hylden alike? If that's the best-case scenario I suggest traveling back to the dawn of Nosgoth and preventing life from ever forming in the first place.
Subjugating the Hylden is needed now that they are evil, maybe they were once good but now its either kill them or they kill everyone. The humans treat other races like crap anyway but at least vampires can keep things in order, its also revealed in Blood Omen 2 that the Hylden advanced the human race from apes for experimentation, so the vampires are the best of a bad bunch, the Elder God is the real villain anyway. Whats needed is at least 9 vampires to keep the pillars up and a load of humans to keep the race going with a few being converted into vampires to be the next guardians. Without the Elder God manipulating them into overthrowing the vampires again, things will stay pretty good.