Chapter 3: Demons and Warriors  
I was gifted with wings. And for my impertinence I was damned. (Raziel)

Harry This is the last article of our three days special on The Legacy Of Kain: Soul Reaver 2. Developed by Crystal Dynamics and published by Eidos, the game carries to the Ps2 one of the most fascinating series of the Psx era. If you are interested, you can to read the previous two articles about the Story and the World of the game. Just follow the links at the end of this page.

In his relentless pursuit of Kain, Raziel has to face hordes of enemies, from living dead and vampires to humans. In the new episode, fights and battles are often necessary to proceed in the game. While in the first Soul Reaver most of the time the player was able to avoid an enemy shifting among the material and the spectral plane, in Soul Reaver 2 certain creatures possess objects required to solve puzzles and proceed with the story.

The combat system has been improved in many ways. First of all, the Soul Reaver can be imbued with one of the magic powers existent in Nosgoth, and each of these powers have a different effect according to the enemy Raziel has to face. But Raziel can't always use the Soul Reaver, because if used excessively the sword drains the energy of the one that possesses it. For this reason you can steal your opponents' weapons throughout the game. Many of these weapons will let Raziel perform special moves - for example impaling a vampire. Controls are more refined, shaped to give the player a new freedom in the movements, also thanks to a special targeting system. Pressing the R1 button the player can target an enemy. As long as the R1 button is pressed, Raziel moves around the enemy thus making complex actions like dodging more intuitive. The A.I. of the creatures has been drastically improved too.

This improvement was already evident in the demo included in the Summer Jampack 2001, released this summer in U.S. and included in the latest (November) issue of Sony Ps2 Official Magazine in Europe. If you don't want to continuously shift from one plane to the other, it's necessary to have a strategy made of attacks placed in the right moment and of a constant measured defence against the blows of the enemies. The opponents react to Raziel's movements in an absolutely believable way. They are fast, skilled and dangerous. When you kill a vampire, you can reave or let the soul pass to the spectral realm. If you let them pass, they will appear again the next time you visit the area.

Speaking of characters and enemies, the first Soul Reaver was a rich game. Legacy Of Kain: Soul Reaver 2 features an even greater number of different creatures that populate a wonderful fantasy world. We'll take a look at two of them, through a few great screenshots.

Sarafan Knights

The Sarafan Knights are an ancient order founded centuries ago with the purpose of fighting and defeat the vampires. For this reason, they are skilled warriors and they know how to attack and kill a vampire. They are armed with different weapons - short range swords and long range spears. The ones equipped with spears are more difficult to handle: they will continuously try to hit Raziel in the heart or to impale him.

The Sarafan Knights will often attack you in groups
Take a look at the marvellous details in their armour.</ font>

The Sarafan Knights are brave and skilled warriors but their physical strength is nothing compared to the powers of a vampire. For this reason they'll often try to fight Raziel in groups, usually surrounding him and attacking from different directions. This is a dangerous move, but fortunately, Raziel can escape with ease with an high jump. When possible, it would be better to steal one of their spears. It's an excellent weapon to attack and kill them.

The demons are powerful creatures gifted with an extraordinary physical and magical strength. Many of the most difficult enemies Raziel has to face during his journey are demons. These creatures can posses objects useful to proceed in the game. Bigger demons are not too agile. You should be able to dodge many of their blows, since Raziel is gifted with an unnatural nimbleness.

There are different types of demons you can encounter during the game. Here are a few images that show many of them.

Demons from The Legacy Of Kain: Soul Reaver 2

We have come to the end of our brief introduction to Soul Reaver 2. If you have read all the articles, the reasons of this special feature should now be evident.

A complex fantasy story, a unique gameplay and first of all deep characters: the legend of Raziel, Kain and of the Soul Reaver is one of the most powerful and imaginative creations in the history of videogames. An epic tale, made of violence and humanity, of sorrow and courage.

The story of the Soul Reaver Series is the story of an hero and of his quest for the truth. From a blind vengeance to the need of a meaning in the existence, Raziel's journey is the voyage of a modern hero.

Thanks to Kjell at Eidos for the support.

- Harry (4 Nov, 2001)