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"Avernus lay in ruins before me. Whatever hand slaughtered its people ravaged the city as well."
―Kain — Listen (file info)[src]

Avernus was a major city in Nosgoth that was visited as a playable location in both Blood Omen: Legacy of Kain and Legacy of Kain: Defiance. The walled city was dominated by its large Cathedral .

RoleEdit

The city was once ruled by the Matriarch of Avernus, Azimuth, who upon becoming tainted by the corruption of the pillars, began summoning Demons from other dimensions (presumably the Demon Realm ) to attack the city, by the time the fledgling Kain ventured there, the city was in flames and much of the populace had been slaughtered by Demons, who avoided attacking the Cathedral itself, as this was the lair of Azimuth. Once within the Cathedral, Kain was able to find and claim the Soul Reaver blade (and the Wraith armor ) to defeat Azimuth and her demons. Within the walls of the Cathedral he also uncovered the first clues as to the true nature of the corruption of the pillars in the Avernus Catacombs, in the shape of Hash'ak'gik's altar .

In Defiance, Raziel was directed to the city, in search of the Heart of Darkness . Kain; advised of Raziel's progress and shown an image of Raziel overlooking the city in flames; was sent to a time period shortly after his visit in Blood Omen to confront Raziel. They both arrived at the Cathedral, though by the time Kain had arrived, Raziel had uncovered the catacombs, and found out some of its secrets regarding the Hash'akgik cult and Hylden history. Kain and Raziel were to battle in the Cathedral, believing they were enacting the champions' final battle. With Raziel claiming the Heart of Darkness and victory, he left the apparently dead Kain, who had been blasted through a portal to the Demon Dimension and continued his quest to revive Janos Audron . Shortly afterward, Kain managed to escape the Demon Realm and he too left Avernus for the Vampire Citadel . The City was presumably engulfed by the flames and completely destroyed shortly after.

BO1-Render-BatFlight-Avernus

Avernus aflame viewed from afar (BO1)

EnvironmentEdit

Design and LayoutEdit

Main CityEdit

Ruined CityEdit

Avernus CathedralEdit

Main article: Avernus Cathedral
Main article: Avernus Catacombs
Main article: Heaven realm
Main article: Hell realm

BackgroundEdit

The Avernus Cathedral and Catacombs in Defiance had several areas removed from the game before completion due to timing and budgetary constraints, with some of of these deleted areas visible in concept art and Bonus materials. Ultimately the Defiance version of Avernus Cathedral and Catacombs is left as a much smaller area than the Blood Omen version of the Cathedral, and one of the smallest areas in the game.[1][DEF][DEF-C10][DEF-C13][BO1][BO1-C8]

ApocryphaEdit

The destruction of Avernus was mentioned in the backstory to Nosgoth with the background of the Lost Seers of Avernus revealing them as descendants of a divinatory order of Cenobites known as "the Prophets" who had fled Avernus in shock at Azimuth's actions - taking rare treasures and artefacts from the cathedral and catacombs as they did.[NOS-Official][2]

The origins of the Prophets mean they are related to the religious groups and Cenobites seen in Avernus, particularly the Fire mages and Black fire mages seen in Blood Omen: Legacy of Kain and the Cenobite acolytes and Cenobite summoners seen in Legacy of Kain: Defiance.[NOS-Official][2][DEF][DEF-C10][DEF-C13][3] They are also related to the Witches and Witches' coven deleted from Blood Omen: Legacy of Kain and the Demon worshippers removed fron Soul Reaver 2.[2][BO1-Cut][4][5][6]

Notes Edit

  • Avernus appears to be named after a volcanic crater in Cumae, Italy; believed to be the entrance to the Underworld in Roman mythology and later known a synonym for the underworld itself.
  • There is evidence that some of the other events of the series may take place in Avernus: Mortanius ' punishment of Malek is shown in a darkened room where Malek's body is left a chained skeleton - this closely matches a scene Kain discovers in the catacombs of Avernus; Mortanius' offer to Kain also takes place in an environment that resembles the catacombs.
  • Avernus is one of the largest areas in Blood Omen and is listed under several different map designations in files. The main area of the city and its interiors are labelled under "Map 0035", the regular Cathedral interior is "Map 0036", the Heaven realm is "Map 0037" and the Hell realm is "Map 0038" and the secret altar of Hash'ak'gik is "Map 0009" - with the final areas of the Cathedral listed under the "Map 0005" designation used for bosses (specifically "Sect 11", "Sect 02" and "Sect 13"). In Defiance the cathedral areas are split into several distinct map areas, with "Avernus 99a" relating to the main area of the Cathedral, "Avernus 1a" referring to the main Cathedral as it appears in the Raziel/Kain boss battle, "Avernus 2a" relating to the Earth forge warp gate room. The areas from "Avernus 3a" to "Avernus 6a" all refer to the Avernus Catacombs, with "Avernus 3a" refers to initial corridors and trails surrounding the first clearing area, "Avernus 4a" refers to the corridors and trails surrounding the second clearing area, "Avernus 5a" refers to Turel's pit and Mortanius's chambers, and "Avernus 6a" refers to the Demon Realm alternate of Turel's pit.
  • The presence of the Earth forge underneath Avernus Cathedral suggests that the Cathedral and possibly the city itself were built on the existing Ancient Vampire ruins.
  • The Religion of Avernus is unknown, but much like the rest of Humanity in Nosgoth it appears to have lots of imagery that relates to the Ancient Vampires and may be descended from their worship of the Elder God . Avernus was also the focal point for Nosgoth's alternate religion - the Hash'ak'gik cult and it was likely Cathedral was a front for this darker worship that eventually led to the possession of Mortanius and the corruption of the pillars themselves.
  • When surveyed much of the Blood Omen's geography does not exactly match up to the scale shown on maps. Avernus is a special case in that it is very much larger on the inside than the area afforded to it on maps, though this is hardly surprising given that it was Dimension Guardian Azimuth that held sway here.

GalleryEdit

AppearancesEdit

See alsoEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. Wiki-Icon-TLW Avernus Cathedral Deleted Areas at The Lost Worlds (by Ben Lincoln)
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 Nosgoth-Promotional-Logo-Official 'New Human Class - The Prophet, aka The Lost Seers of Avernus at the Nosgoth official blog (by George Kelion) preserved at Tales of Nosgoth/Nosgothic Realm
  3. Icon-Prima Prima Games / JDP and Gerald Guess. Prima's Official Legacy of Kain: Defiance Guide. (2003)
  4. Wiki-Icon-TLW Blood Omen Scripts at The Lost Worlds (by Ben Lincoln)
  5. Electronic Gaming Monthly, August 2000 issue
  6. Wiki-Icon-TLW Vampires (Soul Reaver 2) at The Lost Worlds (by Ben Lincoln)

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