- "I had no choice but to act purely on blind faith.
There was no way to tell what era this device was tuned to, and I had neither the knowledge nor the means to set the machine myself.
I hesitated only briefly... then, throwing the switch, I hurled myself into oblivion, and relinquished my will to the hand of Fate."
- ―Raziel — Listen (file info)[src]
On to the Past or Chapter 7: On to the Past is the seventh "level", or chapter, of Soul Reaver 2. It opens with Raziel exiting the Air Forge in the Post-Blood Omen era and follows his progress as he travels back to Nosgoth's early history, reaching Janos Audron's Retreat at the conclusion of the chapter.
- Name: Chapter 7 - On to the Past
- Classification: Soul Reaver 2 chapters
- Game: Soul Reaver 2
- Protagonist • Raziel
- Objectives: • Return to the Swamp • Gain entry to the Time-streaming chamber • Explore Nosgoth's early history • Return to Janos Audron's Retreat
- Setpieces: • Uschtenheim (Post-Blood Omen era) • The Swamp (Post-Blood Omen era) • The Swamp (Nosgoth's early history) • Uschtenheim (Nosgoth's early history)
- Era: • The post-Blood Omen era • Nosgoth's early history
- Timeline: • The third timeline
- Objects: • N/A
- Preceded by: The Air Forge (chapter)
- Followed by: Vampire Interview
Having completed the puzzle of the Air Forge and imbued the Air Reaver, Raziel discovered that the enhancement could shatter Cracked doors. Returning through the mountains and Uschtenheim to the Swamp, Raziel was able to use this ability on the compromised door of Moebius's Time-streaming chambers and enter the edifice. Inside Raziel discovered a chamber similar to those he had seen previously in the Circle's gathering-room of the Sarafan Stronghold, however this time Raziel had no aid and means to set the device to the appropriate era and was thus force to rely on "fate". Hesitating only briefly, Raziel activated the device and was propelled through the Time-stream[SR2-C6][SR2-C7]
When he emerged Raziel recognised the banners of the Sarafan and realised that the device had - somewhat suspiciously - delivered him to exactly the ear he sought. Cautious of deception, Raziel ventured out to explore Nosgoth in its early history. Finding the gates to the stronghold sealed shut by ice Raziel pressed further northward - back into the mountains and Uschtenheim - encountering and facing the rank-and-file Sarafan warriors in combat for the first time.[SR2-C7]
Raziel began the chapter in the mountains nearby Janos Audron's Retreat having completed the Air Forge and gained the Air Reaver in the previous chapter. As he exited the forge he would be confronted by several Demon hunter swordsmen and a Demon hunter axemen, with the battle further complicated by the presence of a Sentry eye on the outside of the forge that could instantly send Raziel back to the Spectral Realm (or disintegrate his enemies). Defeating or evading these enemies, Raziel could jump down the cliff next to the Dark Reaver font to the lower level where he would be confronted by two more swordsmen. Heading further south and dropping down another level he would be confronted by two more axemen or Fire demon summoning a combat barrier. After defeating these enemies Raziel could progress further to battle another axeman as he reached the Light Reaver font on the cliff above the lake outside Janos Audron's Retreat.[SR2][SR2-C7]
From here it was necessary to jump across the platforms on the lake to reach the path heading south. Jumping straight across to the platform directly east of the cliff he could approach from the north to crouch-jump up to the staircase and from here jump and glide across to the next platform to the south, before using that to jump to the southern bank and the path to Uschtenheim.[SR2][SR2-C7]
Heading south away from the lake, Raziel would soon be confronted by a group of axemen with a Lightning demon warping in as he approached. Defeating or evading and continuing Raziel would next be met by a swordsmen, but he too would be ambushed as two Lightning demons warped in on approach. Pushing on, Raziel would soon find himself on a high ledge overlooking a wide clearing below where a cannoneer, two swordsmen and an attack dog waited below. Defeating or evading them, Raziel could continue on to the climbable wall in the south-west where an axemen was positioned and three Acid demons would warp in as he approached. Defeating them (and if necessary returning from the Spectral Realm via the planar portal on the southern cliff) Raziel could climb the southwestern wall and reach the gates of Uschtenheim.[SR2][SR2-C7]
Dispatching the axemen at the entrance Raziel found the gate locked, but by crouch-jumping to the second level of the battlements he could find the Lever which opened the gate guarded by two swordsmen. Once they were defeated he could hold the lever to open the gate and jump back down to enter the village. Two hunters patrolled near the church and an attack dog near the fountain, but by eliminating or evading these threats and dispatching the two swordmen guarding the front of the church, Raziel could use the Save altar within. Continuing south to the southern exit of Uschtenheim, Raziel could use the lever at the end of the cobbled path to open the gate to leave the hamlet.[SR2][SR2-C7]
Following the mountain pathway southward, Raziel would emerge on high ledge above a rocky clearing. From here a swordsman, cannoneer, attack dog and two axemen could be seen lurking below. Descending the ramp or jumping down to confront or bypass these enemies, Raziel could continue south and follow the canyon as it curved to the west, jumping up two ledges to follow the trail as it curved around again and reached the top of another large rocky clearing. Two swordsmen and two cannoneers inhabited the bottom of the chamber, but unless Souls were needed to top up Raziel's Health coil, jumping down to confront them was unnecessary and Raziel could instead continue along the high trail along the north wall and follow it until he could jump to the raised ledge in the northeast, dispatching a lone cannoneer along the way. Continuing to follow the trail to the west, Raziel would soon reach the ledge overlooking the Swamp[SR2][SR2-C7]
The Swamp (Post-Blood Omen era)Edit
In the Swamp below a mutant and two axemen awaited with another mutant slightly further into the clearing. After dispatching or fleeing them it was possible for Raziel to climb the wall to the south, crossing over the small battlement to where a mutant waited below. Continuing up the trail, Raziel could follow this as it rose up, to reach the Dark forge balcony terrace as he had previously.[SR2][SR2-C7]
From here Raziel could jump straight down into the clearing below, where two mutants were positioned. Defeating them - and if necessary imbuing the Air Reaver again by jumping on to the fallen ruins to reach the Air Reaver fonts positioned above the eastern building - Raziel could finally reach the cracked door of the Time-streaming chamber and fire an Air Reaver bolt at the door, causing it to disintegrate and allow him access to the structure.[SR2][SR2-C7]
Inside Raziel would be confronted by a wide trench, but a nearby Air plinth allowed Raziel to glide across to reach the other side. From there a long circular staircase led down to the entrance to the Time-streaming chamber itself and the chance for Raziel to go back to the past.[SR2][SR2-C7]
Emerging from the Time-streaming chamber Raziel could return up the rounded circular staircase to the entrance trench and jump across, using the scaleable wall on the other side to climb back out into the Swamp. Confirming the era he was in, Raziel could activate the nearby checkpoint then set off back towards Janos's retreat; first following the northeastern passage under the Dark forge balcony and following the trail through the swamp as it headed through the southern door and curved around the high ruins before heading back north to the eastern clearing.[SR2][SR2-C7]
Using the save altar positioned here and imbuing the Air Reaver if necessary at the nearby font, Raziel could continue northward through the swamp unopposed until he came to the top of the northern clearing, where the tree and climbing wall had formerly been. Instead an Air plinth now occupied the spot and Raziel could use it to glide back up to the ledge and the trail leading into the mountains.[SR2][SR2-C7]
Entering the mountains and the first clearing, Raziel would be finally be confronted by the Sarafan warriors and a group of three Sarafan warrior pikemen and Sarafan warrior swordsmen. After defeating these enemies Raziel could climb the northern wall to exit the clearing and as he progressed along the trail he would be ambushed by a pair of swordsmen and a Sarafan sorceresses, with a third swordsman waiting around the corner as the trail curved. Dispatching or evading them and dropping down two levels to the lower area, Raziel would again be confronted by a swordsman, with two pikemen and a sorceress waiting around the corner in the larger clearing. Once again dispatching or evading the enemies, Raziel could climb the northern wall or ascend the ramp in the west to reach the outside of Uschtenheim.[SR2][SR2-C7]
As Raziel neared the battlements a swordsmen and a pikemen attacked and after dispatching them Raziel would find the gate to the village closed. Crouch-jumping up to the second level of the battlements allowed Raziel to confront the Sarafan warriors guarding the lever above and defeat them to use the lever to open the gate below. Returning to ground level Raziel could enter Uschtenheim and as he advanced through the village he would be confronted by several Sarafan warriors - including at least a pikemen and a swordsmen - until he was able to reach the church in the middle and make use of the save altar inside. Pushing northward through the village, Raziel could be confronted by those warriors not alerted previously before he reached the northern exit where three pikemen and a closed gate barred his progress further. Defeating these enemies, Raziel could use the lever to open the gate and leave the hamlet behind.[SR2][SR2-C7]
As he left, Raziel would be engaged by a pair of pikemen and dispatching or fleeing them allowed him to continue to follow the trail as it curved from the west to the east before dropping down into a large open clearing. Below three pikemen, a sorceress and a swordsmen were positioned, with another swordsmen on a small platform suspended above the southeastern corner - where a planar portal could be found if Raziel was knocked back to the Spectral Realm. Evading or killing these enemies, Raziel could reach the northwestern wall and climb up to the next level, where a sorceress and two pikemen awaited. Dispatching these enemies allowed Raziel to climb the northern wall of this clearing uninterrupted and at the top two more pikemen ambushed Raziel before he could reach the small staircase leading up to the outside of Janos Audron's Retreat.[SR2][SR2-C7]
Players (in order of appearance)Edit
|[Raziel activates the time-streaming device in the Swamp.]|
|Raziel (V.O.):||I had no choice but to act purely on blind faith.|
There was no way to tell what era this device was tuned to, and I had neither the knowledge nor the means to set the machine myself.
I hesitated only briefly... then, throwing the switch, I hurled myself into oblivion, and relinquished my will to the hand of Fate.
|[Raziel emerges from the Swamp time-streaming chamber into Nosgoth’s early history.]|
|Raziel (V.O.):||(suspicious; wary)|
Beyond all hope, and against all probability, it seemed that the device had unerringly delivered me to the era I sought.
For these were Sarafan banners – and these vampires, apparently the victims of their crusade.
The coincidence seemed too convenient to naively ascribe to Fate – but whether my opportune arrival had been orchestrated by Moebius, or some other influence, I didn't know.
If Janos Audron still lived, I would find him – but I was wary of further deception, and resolved to tread carefully.
|[Raziel sees the vampire-victims of the Sarafan for the first time.]|
|Raziel (V.O.):||For all the butchery of Moebius's crusade, this massacre was somehow more chilling...|
The killing fields of the Sarafan betrayed a kind of orderly ruthlessness – the cold-blooded righteousness of the true believer.
Dialogue: The Pillars of Nosgoth/The SwampEdit
|[Raziel sees Sarafan warriors for the first time. They regard him with hostility as he approaches.]|
|Raziel (V.O.):||Here at last, in the flesh, I beheld my former brothers-in-arms – the warrior-priests of the Sarafan order, their lives devoted solely to the annihilation of the 'vampire plague.'|
And while I confess I felt a twinge of longing, a pang of grief for what I had believed was my lost virtue, I regarded them now with none of the reverence I formerly felt.
For I had seen the human face of the vampires – and now I beheld the monstrousness of these men.
Dialogue: The Great Southern LakeEdit
|[Raziel realizes that the frozen lake prevents him from entering the Sarafan Stronghold.]|
|Raziel (V.O.):||The frozen surface of the lake had bound the gates of the stronghold shut.|
The Sarafan surely had some other means of entry, but this was the only one known to me.
To infiltrate the fortress, I would need to find some way to release these gates from their icy bonds.
- After solving the Air Forge in the previous chapter, Raziel has used the Air Reaver to blow open the Cracked door on the Time streaming chamber in the Swamp and has used the device to return to Nosgoth's early history - without the knowledge to set the time himself, the device seems suspiciously set to exactly the era sought.[SR2-C7]
- Raziel has discovered evidence of the massacres of the Sarafan and has encountered the rank-and-file soldiers of the order itself. In stark contrast to his initial feelings in A Reaver in Time, he now views these as "chilling" and "monstrous".[SR2-C7]
- Raziel has fought his way northward through the Sarafan troops massed along the route to Uschtenheim and has reached the exterior of Janos Audron's Retreat.[SR2-C7]
Like the Swamp area in Soul Reaver 2, Uschtenheim was also originally planned to have had more playable areas in higher areas, with the roofs of the village appearing to form part of a complicated jumping puzzle along with many solid ledges in the cliffs above the surrounding areas[SR2] and several likewise playable but usually inaccessible small 'aeries' high up in the canyons leading to Janos's retreat. The intended destination of these platforms is ultimately unknown, though it is possible they may have connected to each other, linked to the ruins above the swamp or even led to a deleted Reaver forge. When questioned about the cut playable areas and unused platforms nearby, Daniel Cabuco responded: "there were supposed to be these updrafts that Raziel could use to boost his glide. But we never got it working in a way that didn't cause horrible game breaking bugs".
The 'Urban' area depicted in the early Soul Reaver 2 proof-of-concept, long believed to represent Avernus was also commented on by Cabuco, who revealed that the area in fact represented "Uschtenheim... Supposed to be a lot going on there.. and we cut it because our producer was walking behind us with a baseball bat screaming about teamwork... ". Cabuco's comments also imply that the area was planned to be updated to later hardware and included in the Uschtenheim area featured in Soul Reaver 2, but was ultimately unfinished and cut.
- Soul Reaver 2 is not formally divided into chapters or levels in-game.[SR2] The chapter names and definitions used at the Legacy of Kain Wiki originate from the supplementary Prima Guide, Prima's Official Strategy Guide - Soul Reaver 2
- The dialogue transcripts used in this article are, wherever possible, adapted directly from the Dark Chronicle summary transcripts available in game. Scenes not included in the Dark Chronicle feature are instead adapted from Tenaya's transcript of Soul Reaver 2 at Nosgothic Realm - itself derived from the Dark Chronicle and an official game script provided by Crystal Dynamics' Kyle Mannerberg.[SR2]
- Nosgoth's early history and its inhabitants, the Sarafan warrior pikemen, Sarafan warrior swordsmen and Sarafan sorceresses all make their first appearances in this chapter. The era itself was seen briefly in the introductory and backstory cutscenes of Blood Omen: Legacy of Kain and would be revisited in Legacy of Kain: Defiance.[SR2-C7][BO1-C1][BO1-C6][DEF]
- In contrast to the last chapter dealing with time travel and the other chapters generally, On to the Past features very little plot development: with no Dark Chronicle chapters or encounters with other major characters, no new weapons or abilities and no new locations. The most significant events of the chapter deal solely with Raziel's monologues regarding his usage of the Time-streaming chamber and his reaction to the Sarafan warriors and their massacres.[SR2-C7]
- This chapter notably features a small pieces of exchanged or easily missed dialogue. If Raziel heads towards the Pillars and Stronghold then he will meet regard the Sarafan killings at the Pillars and find the Sarafan warrior just beyond on the way to the Shrine - whereas if the player is heading north back towards Uschtenheim and Janos Audron's Retreat they will be encountered in the Swamp and first mountain canyon respectively. heading the opposite way also leads to Raziel giving a small monologue regarding the impenetrable ice covering the Great Southern Lake and the entrance to the Sarafan Stronghold if the player reaches that far - this dialogue is ommited when Raziel returns to the lake with the Fire Reaver in Blade of Vengeance[SR2-C7][SR2-C9]
- Some aspects of this sequence relate to other chapters in the series:
- Raziel's breaching of the Time-streaming chamber in the swamp recalls his encounters with the sealed device in Through the Swamp and A Fateful Meeting - both of which resulted in him identifying and voicing his hope to enter the device. This is the first time that Raziel has been able to enter.[SR2-C3][SR2-C5][SR2-C7]
- This is Raziel's third encounter with a Time-streaming chamber after his encounters in Showdown With Kain/Soul Reaver 2 prologue and A Fateful Meeting - his confusion at operating the device is justified as he has never operated such a device himself; with the device previously operated by Kain and Moebius respectively.[SR1-C11][SR2-C0][SR2-C5][SR2-C7]
- This is the first appearance of Sarafan warriors since Blood Omen: Legacy of Kain. Sarafan warriors had previously appeared in the form of Malek, his warriors and Moebius's summoned warriors in Welcome to Hell, The Hunt for Malek, Threaten the Circle and The Vampire Purges (chapter).[BO1-C1][BO1-C4][BO1-C6][BO1-C7][BO1-C10][SR2-C7] The order had previously been mentioned and depicted in relation to Raziel's discovery of the Tomb of the Sarafan in Tomb Of Sarafan (chapter) of Legacy of Kain: Soul Reaver and the murals in the Chapter House and the rest of the Sarafan Stronghold in A Reaver in Time of Soul Reaver 2 - both of which had given Raziel a positive impression of the order; seeing the persecution the vampires have faced and the nobility of the Ancient Vampires has changed his opinion of the order.[SR1-C7][SR1-C8][SR1-C11][SR2-C0][SR2-C1][SR2-C7]
- The high passage leading from the Swamp into the mountains was first commented upon by Raziel in Through the Swamp where it was seen in the Pre-Blood Omen era, blocked by a fallen tree. It was again commented upon in the Post-Blood Omen era in A Fateful Meeting where the tree was moved, revealing a scalable wall. Here the opening is clear, but an air plinth is the only way to reach the passage.[SR2-C3][SR2-C5][SR2-C7]
- Uschtenheim is now seen in Nosgoth's early history. It was previously seen in Soul Reaver 2 in the Post-Blood Omen era in A Fateful Meeting and was first seen in the Blood Omen era in the chapter Threaten the Circle of Blood Omen: Legacy of Kain.[BO1-C7][SR2-C5][SR2-C7]
- Raziel's comments about the frozen lake and the entrance to the Sarafan Stronghold recall his previous entrances and exits to the building through the dock doorway in A Fateful Meeting. This also foreshadows Raziel's re-entry in Blade of Vengeance and the method used to do so.[SR2-C5][SR2-C7][SR2-C9]
- Post-Blood Omen era
- Air Forge (SR2)
- Janos Audron's Retreat
- Swamp (location)
- Time-streaming chambers
- Nosgoth's early history
- ↑ 1.00 1.01 1.02 1.03 1.04 1.05 1.06 1.07 1.08 1.09 1.10 1.11 1.12 1.13 Prima Games / Demian Linn and David Hodgson. Prima's Official Soul Reaver 2 Guide. (2001)
- ↑ The Roofs of Uschtenheim at The Lost Worlds (by Ben Lincoln)
- ↑ Behind the Scenes - The Aerie at The Lost Worlds (by Ben Lincoln)
- ↑ 4.0 4.1 Soul Reaver 2 questions at DCabDesign (by Raina Audron), post #2 (by Daniel Cabuco)
- ↑ Soul Reaver 2 - screenshots from cancelled PS1 release, internal Air Forge Design documents unearthed at Nosgothic Realm Forums (by Divine Shadow)
- ↑ The Soul Reaver 2 Proof of Concept at The Lost Worlds (by Ben Lincoln)
- ↑ Soul Reaver 2 - Dialogue at Nosgothic Realm (by Tenaya)