- "Avernus was a religious autocracy, with the Cathedral as its dais of power. Though the city lay in ruins, the Cathedral remained untouched. The demons knew better than to bite the hand that feeds them..."
- ―Kain — Listen (file info)[src]
Avernus Cathedral, also known as The Great Cathedral of Avernus, was the focal point of the city of Avernus and the centre of worship for the religion of the inhabitants. Unknown to most, the catacombs beneath the cathedral were home to a different type of worship, that of Hash'ak'gik Cult. The Cathedral was a playable location in Blood Omen: Legacy of Kain and Legacy of Kain: Defiance.
- 1 Profile
- 2 Environment and Layout
- 3 Development
- 4 Apocrypha
- 5 Notes
- 6 Gallery
- 7 See also
- 8 References
- 9 Browse
Avernus Cathedral was first seen in Blood Omen: Legacy of Kain in the chapter Defeat Azimuth when Kain went after Dimension Guardian Azimuth to cleanse the pillar of Dimension in the events of Blood Omen. Originally advised by Ariel that he would have to "rise and fall and find [his] salvation in between" Kain travelled to Avernus to find the city in flames and being attacked by Demons, but none of the devastation outside touched the Cathedral itself, which was apparently the source.[Blood Omen][Blood Omen/8][Blood Omen/7]
Kain entered the Cathedral to find that it was split into several realms which were navigated between by teleporters - Alongside the normal Cathedral interior was a murky alternate realm, a 'heavenly' realm which was decked with bright cloud imagery; and a 'hellish' realm which was dark and foreboding with a bloody, skeletal theme. Hidden inside the catacombs, Kain also found Hash'ak'gik's altar and his first clues as to who was responsible for the corruption of the Pillars.[Blood Omen][Blood Omen/8][Blood Omen strategy guide]
In the Heaven dungeon, Kain ascended through a series of cloudy rooms and stairways, finding and claiming the legendary Soul Reaver Blade. Afterward he descended down through the underground chambers of the Hell dungeon, ultimately finding the Wraith Armor.[Blood Omen][Blood Omen/8][Blood Omen strategy guide]
Returning to the main area of the Cathedral, Kain was finally able to enter Azimuth's chambers to confront the Dimension Guardian. Both of the items he had recovered from the Cathedral would come in useful against Azimuth who - unaware of the presence of both devices in her Cathedral - summoned Demons from bloody runes to combat Kain. When she was within range, a single strike of the Soul Reaver was sufficient to Kill Azimuth. Defeating Azimuth, Kain claimed her Third Eye Pandant pillar token and along with it found a time streaming device she had stolen from Moebius in order to gather demons from other ages. Kain immediately understood what Azimuth had been intending to do with the device, but did not realize that she had used it already, or why it was his salvation.[Blood Omen][Blood Omen/8][Blood Omen strategy guide] Kain would subsequently use the time-streaming device to escape the Battle of the Last Stand in Stranded in Time,[Blood Omen/10] while the Soul Reaver went on to become Kain's iconic weapon.[Blood Omen][Soul Reaver][Soul Reaver 2][Blood Omen 2][Defiance]
The Cathedral returned in Defiance where Raziel travelled through the events of Blood Omen and on the advice of Vorador arrived at the cathedral looking for the Heart of Darkness so that he could resurrect Janos Audron, apparently shortly after the visit of the younger Kain. Exploring the Cathedral Raziel found Ancient vampire ruins and was able to enter the Earth Forge and ultimately imbue the Wraith Blade with elemental Earth, forging the Earth Reaver. This allowed Raziel to summon Earth platforms so he could reach the higher balconies of the Cathedral where he could discover the Dark Scripture. Using the scripture on the altar opened a portal leading to the 'hellish' Avernus Catacombs, where he found evidence of Hylden involvement in the secret religion of Avernus and their side of the Elder Wars and 'dual champion' prophecy.[Defiance][Defiance/10][Defiance strategy guide]
Now virtually convinced he was the Hylden champion, Raziel ran into Mortanius who was conducting a ceremony worshipping the unseen Hash'ak'gik over a murky pit along with a group of Cenobites. Curious to see the entity, Raziel approached the edges and was telekinetically dragged into the pit with to find his monstrously devolved brother Turel - periodically possessed by several Hylden and used as the voice of 'Hash'ak'gik to command their disciples. Battling with possession by the Hylden, Turel vaguely explained the circumstances of his capture while various Hylden struggled to communicate with Raziel and warn him of the coming of the Vampire champion. Believing he needed Blood to gather the strength to get rid of the Hylden influence - and not aware that Raziel was no longer a creature of flesh and blood - Turel attacked his brother but was defeated: finally gifting Raziel the Amplified Force Projectile or Enhanced telekinesis ability. Afterward Raziel got the chance to talk to Mortanius, intermittently possessed by the Hylden Lord, who told him that he had placed the Heart of Darkness inside Kain to turn him into a vampire in the first place, believing he was creating the vampire champion.[Defiance][Defiance/10][Defiance strategy guide]
The Elder Kain, however, had travelled through time, worried about what would happen if Raziel found the Heart and followed Raziel inside the Cathedral. As Raziel left, he found Kain entering the Cathedral. Supposedly fulfilling the prophecy of the champions final battle, Raziel attacked Kain and won, tearing the heart out of Kain, blasting him through a portal between realms and leaving him to die before returning to Vorador's Mansion to use the heart to attempt to bring Janos back to life.[Defiance][Defiance/11][Defiance/12][Defiance strategy guide]
Kain would later wake in the Demon Realm, finding himself in Turel's pit assailed by demons. He was able to escape and return to the Material Realm and after battling his way out of the Cathedral, Kain returned to the Vampire Citadel, feeling the pull of the Spirit Forge.[Defiance][Defiance/13]
Environment and Layout
The Main Cathedral and the Alternate Dimension
The main area of the Cathedral appeared as a number of square and rectangular chambers linked by door - which were mostly locked - and numerous Teleporters. Many of the rooms appeared to be evocative of medieval cathedral architecture.[Blood Omen][Blood Omen/8][Blood Omen strategy guide]
The initial area of the Cathedral is effectively mirrored in the first 'alternate' dimension area, with the layout resembling a selection of small square and rectangular rooms joined by doors and Teleporters that led to different realms. Most of the details of the Cathedral were reduced to bare rooms with creme walls and with floors resembling dark cloudy skies, while The Wall buttons were made of a material like stained glass and the Black mages of the Material Cathedral were replaced by Giant demons.[Blood Omen][Blood Omen/8][Blood Omen strategy guide]
When the Cathedral returned in Defiance it was given a much more open and traditional Cathedral appearance with a large open area surrounded by naves and a high vaulted ceiling concealing two second floor balconies. The area was dominated by a tall series of organ-like pipes above an altar upon which the Dark Scripture could be placed. A hint of the complexity of the previous Cathedral remained with a number of side doorways and a sinlge set of branched pathways that joined behind the altar in from of the Earth forge portal room.[Defiance][Defiance/10][Defiance/13][Defiance/13]
The Heaven dungeon
The Heaven dungeon was one of the apparent alternate realms of Avernus in Blood Omen: Legacy of Kain and the first of the themed dungeons of the cathedral visited by Kain. The realm contained much 'heavenly' imagery and featured a slow 'ascent' apparently through the clouds into the sky. Kain's progression through the realm led him to discover the legendary Soul Reaver blade within.[Blood Omen][Blood Omen/8][Blood Omen strategy guide]
The Hell dungeon
The Hell dungeon was one of the apparent alternate realms of Avernus in Blood Omen: Legacy of Kain and the second of the themed dungeons of the cathedral visited by Kain. The realm contained much gory 'hellish' imagery and featured a slow 'descent' down into the underground. Kain's progression through the realm led him to discover the Wraith Armor within.[Blood Omen][Blood Omen/8][Blood Omen strategy guide] The underground nature and theming potentially linked the area to the Avernus Catacombs.[Defiance][Defiance/10][Defiance/13]
Hash'ak'gik's altar was a secret area within Avernus Cathedral, visited by Kain during the events of Blood Omen. It was a perverse, occult shrine to the god Hash'ak'gik, and contained Battle artifacts and a tome recounting his commands to human worshippers. The altar could be visited in Blood Omen: Legacy of Kain.[Blood Omen][Blood Omen/8][Blood Omen strategy guide]
The Avernus Catacombs
The Avernus Catacombs were an underground area beneath the Cathedral that was seen in Legacy of Kain: Defiance and was briefly seen in Blood Omen: Legacy of Kain with the Hell dungeon potentially being part. The Area featured many underground chambers populated by Demons and their worshippers. At it's heart, Raziel found a pit housing the dark god 'Hash'ak'gik' being worshipped by a cult, and also found chambers used by Mortanius.[Defiance][Defiance/10][Defiance/13]
The Earth Forge Portal room
The Earth forge was a sealed chamber within the Vampire Citadel where the Wraith Blade could be forged with elemental Earth to imbue the Earth Reaver. Like all the forges of Defiance, the forge was linked to the outside world via a secret warp gate in a sealed room. The warp gate for the Earth forge was hidden in an underground chamber of bare rock hidden behind the altar of the Avernus Cathedral. [Defiance][Defiance/10]
Azimuth's chambers were the last area of the Cathedral visited by Kain and positioned behind the central locked door behind the main altar. The chambers opened with an area containing a large stained glass window of the confrontation between Malek and Vorador after the latter's Slaughter of the Circle in Nosgoth's early history. The Chambers consisted of a number of smaller rooms eventually emerging in a large rectangular chamber with a raised marble plinth on which Azimuth stood, summoning purple ogre Demons from bloody runes on the ground.[Blood Omen][Blood Omen/8][Blood Omen strategy guide]
In Blood Omen: Legacy of Kain, The main Avernus Cathedral areas were listed under the "Map 0036" designation in game files, with "Map 0036 Sect 00" representing the main Material Realm area of the Cathedral.[Blood Omen][Blood Omen/8][Blood Omen strategy guide] Several other areas could be reached from here:
- The main doorway led outside to the lower cathedral exterior map area, southern section ("Map 0035 Sect 16")
- Teleporters led to the Alternate Dimension ("Map 0036 Sect 01") and teleporters there led back to the material realm.[Blood Omen][Blood Omen/8][Blood Omen strategy guide]
- The initial doorway led through to a room containing a Save altars ("Map 0036 Sect 02").[Blood Omen][Blood Omen/8][Blood Omen strategy guide]
- The top left doorway led through to the Heaven Dungeon areas (at "Map 0037 Sect 10").[Blood Omen][Blood Omen/8][Blood Omen strategy guide]
- The top right doorway led through to the Hell Dungeon (at "Map 0038 Sect 43").[Blood Omen][Blood Omen/8][Blood Omen strategy guide]
- The top middle doorway led through to the Azimuth's chambers. The first chamber with the stained glass window ("Map 0036 Sect 10") led through to a chamber with a save altar ("Map 0036 Sect 11") and onto a smaller chamber where Azimuth first met Kain ("Map 0005 Sect 11"). The main boss arena ("Map 0005 Sect 02") was followed by two square chambers containing a Time-streaming device ("Map 0005 Sect 13") and a final Save altar chamber ("Map 0036 Sect 03") with a teleporter which led outside the southern exit of the city (to "Map 0001 Sect 56").[Blood Omen][Blood Omen/8][Blood Omen strategy guide]
- A secret doorway in the southern wall of the top-right side chamber of the cathedral led through the top bridge of the 'descending shaft' chamber in the Hell dungeon ("Map 0038 Sect 52") to a winding passage ("Map 0009 Sect 01") which led into the altar of Hash'ak'gik ("Map 0009 Sect 00").[Blood Omen][Blood Omen/8][Blood Omen strategy guide]
In Legacy of Kain: Defiance, the main Cathedral areas are listed under the "Avernus" designation in Debug menus and game files, with "Avernus 99a" (and "Avernus 1a") representing the main area of the Cathedral.[Defiance][Defiance/10][Defiance/11][Defiance/12][Defiance/13][Defiance strategy guide] Several other areas can be reached from here:
- The main Cathedral doors lead back to Vorador's Mansion for Raziel and the Vampire Citadel for Kain.[Defiance][Defiance/10][Defiance/11][Defiance/12][Defiance/13][Defiance strategy guide]
- The passages either side of the altar lead through to a sealed door leading to Earth Forge portal room ("Avernus 2a"). A warp gate here leads to the Earth Forge.[Defiance][Defiance/10][Defiance/11][Defiance/12][Defiance/13][Defiance strategy guide]
- The central Earth plinth spawns Earth platforms allowing Raziel to reach a high balcony containing the Dark Scripture.[Defiance][Defiance/10][Defiance/11][Defiance/12][Defiance/13][Defiance strategy guide]
- The Dark Scripture opens a portal to the Avernus Catacombs ("Avernus 3a"-"Avernus 6a") when placed in the main altar. Subterranean corridors ("Avernus 3a" and "Avernus 4a") lead on from here to Turel's pit ("Avernus 5a"), where a portal leads to the Demon Realm ("Avernus 6a").[Defiance][Defiance/10][Defiance/11][Defiance/12][Defiance/13][Defiance strategy guide]
As with other recurring areas, The design of Avernus Cathedral areas in Legacy of Kain: Defiance was heavily influenced by the appearance of the rooms seen in Blood Omen: Legacy of Kain. Art Director Daniel Cabuco elaborated:
The architecture of the Avernus was acknowledged to have been greatly influenced by medieval Cathedral architecture in the real world and included a combination of various French, Italian and Spanish influences, with items identified from several real-world Cathedrals such as "Florence Baptistery doors, Notre Dame Paris Cathedral rose window, Palau de la Generalitat in Barcelona fasade, Pere Lachaise cemetary figures". The catacombs beneath Paris were also used as an inspiration for the Avernus Catacombs. Cabuco commented:
Search with the term 'French catacombs under Paris' and you'll
A) Freak out what's under Paris and
B) see some cool reference we used. ..
and if you're like me
C) Re-freak out when you see what's under Paris."
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.[Defiance][Defiance/10][Defiance/13][Blood Omen][Blood Omen/8]
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.
The origins of the Prophets mean they are related to the religious groups and Cenobites seen in Avernus, particularly the mages and Black mages seen in Blood Omen: Legacy of Kain and the Cenobite acolytes and Cenobite summoners seen in Legacy of Kain: Defiance.[Defiance][Defiance/10][Defiance/13][Defiance strategy guide] 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.[Blood Omen/Cut content]
Naming and Designations
- Avernus Cathedral is simply referred to as "The Cathedral" in Blood Omen dialogue and stage directions in scripts,[Blood Omen][Blood Omen/8] and is names using this title or "Avernus Cathedral" in Silicon Knights' Blood Omen FAQ The Complete Guide To Legacy of Kain. The official guide Blood Omen: Legacy of Kain—Official Game Secrets gives the full title "The Great Cathedral of Avernus" and also uses derivative variants like "the Cathedral".[Blood Omen strategy guide] Title screens, dialogue and stage directions in Defiance refer to "Avernus Cathedral" along with the usual "the Cathedral" derivatives, with Raziel on occasion referring to it as a "The Great Cathedral of Avernus" or a "great cathedral" generally.[Defiance][Defiance/10][Defiance/13] Legacy of Kain: Defiance: Prima's Official Strategy Guide refers to the Cathedral area alternatively as "Avernus", "The Cathedral" or simply "Cathedral".[Defiance strategy guide]
- 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 dungeon is "Map 0037" and the Hell dungeon 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.[Blood Omen][Blood Omen/8]
- The Cathedral areas under "Map 0036" are specifically listed as: "Sect 00" for the main cathedral area, "Sect 01" for the alternate dimension, "Sect 02" for the first save altar, "Sect 10" for the stained glass room, "Sect 11" for the save altar before Azimuth's battle and "Sect 03" for the final save altar after Azimuth's battle. The Azimuth boss areas under the boss designation "Map 0005" are specifically listed as: "Sect 11", "Sect 02" and "Sect 13" for the introduction area, main battle arena and post-battle collection areas respectively. Notably only the 3 areas directly around Azimuth listed with the boss designation - the rest are included along with the regular cathedral in classifications.[Blood Omen][Blood Omen/8]
- The main areas of the Defeat Azimuth chapter of Blood Omen are listed under the "OL7" section in the Developers' level select. The entries within led to the start of Avernus Cathedral ("AVCL"), the initial area of Avernus ("AVCI"), the Heaven dungeon ("HEVN") and the Hell dungeon ("HELL"). Other entries leading to Avernus Cathedral included "AZ" under the "BOSS" section - which led to Azimuth's chambers and her boss battle - and the Secrets ("SECR") number "38" -which led to the altar of Hash'ak'gik.[Blood Omen]
- The official Blood Omen guide Blood Omen: Legacy of Kain—Official Game Secrets labels the main part of the Cathedral under the heading "The Great Cathedral of Avernus". It also lists the Heaven dungeon and Hell dungeon as "Stairway to Heaven" and "Highway to Hell" respectively - probably referring to popular songs by Led Zeppelin and AC/DC. The final areas of Azimuth's chambers are simply labelled as "Azimuth". Hash'ak'gik's altar is listed here among the main Cathedral areas and is given no special treatment or designation.[Blood Omen strategy guide]
- 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.[Defiance][Defiance/10][Defiance/13]
- The official Defiance guide mentions the Avernus Catacombs in passing but refers more to Avernus and The Cathedral as the main start points of the area - in contrast to other areas of the game the only individual room areas listed are "Cathedral", "Earth Forge Portal Room" and "Turel's pit" (which includes Mortanius's chamber and the demon realm variant of the room) - all of the other catacombs chambers are listed as under the single title of "Connector". The main Cathedral area, Earth forge portal room and Turel's pit are the only areas which have maps provided.[Defiance][Defiance strategy guide]
The Hash'ak'gik cult
- The correct usage of the term "Hask'ak'gik" is notably kept somewhat vague throughout the series. It is initially implied (but not categorically stated) that the Dark Entity confronted at the end of the Blood Omen is the demon "Hash'ak'gik" with it also taking on the image from the floor of Hash'ak'gik's altar at the end of the game.[Blood Omen][Blood Omen/8][Blood Omen/11] Later titles however cast doubt on this: showing that the Hash'ak'gik cult actively worshipped the Possessed Turel as "Hash'ak'gik";[Defiance][Defiance/10] showing a different explanation for the transformation of flesh seen at the climax of Blood Omen;[Defiance][Defiance/12][Defiance strategy guide] showing the Dark Entity was a Hylden (the same individual as the "Sarafan Lord" from Blood Omen 2) and addressing him specifically as "Hylden Lord" and not "Hash'ak'gik" - with him not one of the trio controlling Turel.[Defiance][Defiance/12] The Defiance design team addressed the complication as follows:"Hash'ak'gik" is the name the human worshippers use for their god. The actual Hash entity is a leader among the Hylden, who has his own agenda. In Defiance, he possesses Janos. In Blood Omen, he uses the transformed body of Mortanius as a vessel. In Blood Omen 2, he appears as the Hylden Lord (AKA Sarafan Lord). When Raziel meets Turel, Turel is actually being possessed by a number of other Hylden (not the Hylden Lord). Many different Hylden did so in order to command their disciples.―Amy Hennig
Within the story only Turel is directly addressed as "Hash'ak'gik"[Defiance][Defiance/10][Defiance/12] and it is ultimately unclear whether "Hash'ak'gik" is the actual name of the Hylden Lord, a story created by the Hylden to inspire worship, or an actual myth or legend adapted and co-opted by the Hylden. Some sources do however actively refer to the entity controlling Mortanius as "Hash'ak'gik".[Defiance strategy guide]
- The origin of "Hash'ak'gik" and the Hash'ak'gik cult is similarly kept vague with it suggested by texts in the Library of Willendorf that the cult was present in Nosgoth "ages" before the events of Blood Omen.[Blood Omen][Blood Omen/9] It was suggested by developers that Azimuth and Mortanius unearthed a "power" beneath Avernus that may have led to the formation of the cult, though what exactly this was was never specified. It was also mentioned that Azimuth had used the Time streaming device she had possessed in Blood Omen (or the Chronoplast) to summon Turel from the far future of the events of Soul Reaver (or beyond) - therefore she at least was likely aware that Turel was simply a mouthpiece for the true leadership of the cult.
- Before Crystal Dynamics obtained the Legacy of Kain intellectual property, Silicon Knights had different plans for what they described as the "Blood Omen series". Although these plans would not come to fruition, their next game, 2002's Eternal Darkness: Sanity's Requiem, focused very heavily upon a grimoire dedicated to a dark god and found in a secret room - the Tome of Eternal Darkness. It seems possible that Hash'ak'gik's altar was originally intended to serve as a "teaser" for a potential sequel to Blood Omen: Legacy of Kain, and that this concept was absorbed into Eternal Darkness: Sanity's Requiem when Silicon Knights lost control of the Legacy of Kain IP.
- It is unclear whether the tome on Hash'ak'gik's altar was supposed to relate to the Dark Scripture in Legacy of Kain: Defiance. The maroon, leathery covers of the tome and the Scripture greatly resemble each other, but they were discovered in what seemed to be very different areas of the Cathedral.[Blood Omen/8][Defiance/9]
- Mortanius's chamber and Turel's pit in Defiance bears a resemblance to the area where Malek was punished by Mortanius in the initial cutscenes of Blood Omen[Defiance][Defiance/10][Defiance/13][Blood Omen][Blood Omen/8][Blood Omen/1] A similarly appearing area with a golden circular floor symbol and nearby pillars is also seen in the final area of the Hell dungeon in Blood Omen with a skeleton chained between two pillars - the skeleton is referred to in the official guide as Malek's remains, however the guide also claims the remains in Malek's Bastion as his - as does Malek himself.[Blood Omen][Blood Omen/8][Blood Omen/4][Blood Omen strategy guide] It is ultimately unclear if the areas were literally intended to be the same area or just similar chambers.[Blood Omen][Defiance] Similarly the throne seen in Mortanius's chamber in Defiance bears a remarkable resemblance to the throne Kain is seen sitting on in the bad ending of Blood Omen - perhaps hinting that Kain found the catacombs and took it before toasting his victory at the pillars.[Blood Omen/12][Defiance/10][Defiance/13]
- Turel's Pit in the Avernus Catacombs has the dubious honor of being one of the only places in the entirety of Nosgoth that is seen in the Material Realm, Spectral Realm and the Demon Realm, allowing something of a comparison between the realms and their effects - and one of the few places in the series where the Demon Realm is directly seen. This highlighted that the Demon Realm was even more warped than the Spectral realm, featured a large amount of wispy smoke, a distinct orange hue and several deep red cracks. It did not strictly mirror the other two realms with the area above the pit appearing to have a much lower ceiling and the areas above the pit appearing to be entirely absent of completely changed. Later developer interviews confirmed that the Demon Realm only intersected with the other two in certain weak areas like Avernus.[Defiance][Defiance/10][Defiance/13]
Dimensions and Dungeons
- Potentially because of the dimension associations of the area, the exact divisions of the areas of Avernus Cathedral are unclear with some potentially being in separate dimensions, or greatly different elevations, and there may be a certain amount of crossover between them. Potentially this could implicate as many as six different dimensional realms making an appearance within the Cathedral (if one counts the Material Realm, 'alternate' realm, Spectral Realm, Heaven dungeon, Hell dungeon and Demon Realm as separate) or as few as three (if they are considered to overlap and only represent variants of the Material, Spectral and Demon realms:
- The 'alternate dimension' could be considered to represent the Spectral Realm or another unexplained dimension. It is specified as an a different plane of existence or alternate dimension in Silicon Knights' Blood Omen FAQ and the official guide although it's exact nature is not elaborated upon.[Blood Omen][Blood Omen/8][Blood Omen strategy guide]
- The Heaven dungeon could also be considered to represent the Spectral Realm. It could be seen as an outdoor area high in the clouds or simply rooms decorated as such. It could be seen as a separate dimension or simply decorated rooms of the same cathedral and could also literally be Heaven.[Blood Omen][Blood Omen/8][Soul Reaver][Soul Reaver 2][Defiance]
- The Hell dungeon could be seen as an underground area of the Cathedral or part of the Catacombs. It could be considered to represent an alternate dimension - perhaps even the Demon Realm - or simply decorated rooms, and could even be considered to literally be Hell. The altar of Hash'ak'gik could also be considered to be located here.[Blood Omen][Blood Omen/8][Defiance][Defiance/10]
- The Avernus Catacombs appear to be another part of the underground area beneath the Cathedral - as with other they could be considered to represent an underground area or different dimension. They could be considered to represent an updated version of the Hell dungeon and could be considered to house the altar of 'Hash'ak'gik'.[Blood Omen][Blood Omen/8][Defiance][Defiance/10]
- A notable stained glass ceiling is seen in Blood Omen just before Azimuth's battle which depicted the battle between Vorador and Malek just after the Slaughter of the Circle in Nosgoth's early history.[Blood Omen][Blood Omen/8][Blood Omen/1][Blood Omen/6][Soul Reaver 2/1][Soul Reaver 2/9]
- The design of the statue at the bottom of the altar in the cathedral in Defiance is repeated in a statue in the garden of Vorador's Mansion.[Defiance][Defiance/10][Defiance/13][Defiance/8]
- The External area of the Cathedral in Blood Omen conserves memory by using several exact copies of the same map area which appear to be identical but each only contains active elements in the areas immediately around the player - with "Map 0035 Sect 06" and "Sect 07" presenting alternates of the top of the Cathedral and "Sect 16" and "Sect 17" presenting alternates of the bottom of the Cathedral.[Blood Omen][Blood Omen/8] Similar tricks are used in areas such as the ruined area of Avernus town, the main 'descending shaft of the Hell dungeon and the Spirit Wrack Dungeon.[Blood Omen][Blood Omen/8][Blood Omen/9]
- The external appearance of Avernus Cathedral is not presented consistently and even varies within the same title, leaving the actual canon appearance and features of the Cathedral unclear.[Blood Omen][Defiance]
- In Blood Omen the map view presents a large structure with a green sloped roof and a transept with no towers or spires, the bat flight cutscene meanwhile shows no roofs but does feature two tall spires atop the building and several lower down on the sides.[Blood Omen][Blood Omen/8]
- Defiance also has several variants, with concept art presenting a building with two towers atop one front (with a potential third tower in the background) - each tower with several spires atop its corners - an apparently sloping roof and notably a large rose-stained glass window in the center of the face. In game a variant of this view is seen in The Elder's pool within the Spirit Forge which shows an apparently smaller building with two towers which have no spires and sloped roofs on the individual towers as well as on the main part of the cathedral - which retains a smaller rose window. Finally the city can be seen in the background textures of Vorador's Mansion, which show it as with a completed dominated by a single tower or face with no rose window and very little else of the cathedral visible.[Defiance][Defiance/9][Defiance/8]
- Like a lot of Blood Omen, Avernus ' geography does not exactly match that shown on maps. This is especially noticeable in Avernus' case as the outside of the Cathedral can barely fit into the space given for the entire city, let alone considering the internal layout. This could be considered canon however, given that Azimuth the Planar, Matriarch of Avernus, was guardian of dimension and could presumably have manipulated this effect with her powers.[Blood Omen][Blood Omen manual (Windows)][Blood Omen strategy guide]
- In the main Cathedral area in Blood Omen, Kain's main enemies were the priest-like Black mages who wore dark hooded robes and used magic.[Blood Omen][Blood Omen/8] In Defiance, no such enemies are seen and the only human enemies seen were the classes of Cenobites dressed in white robes with golden straps/trim and a golden mask.[Defiance][Defiance/10][Defiance/13] With the Cenobites ultimately fulfilling a similar role within the Cathedral hierarchy to that of the mages, it may be considered likely that the Cenobites were the same people as the mages, only dressed in the more secretive attire associated with the Hash'ak'gik cult. The official Defiance guide also notes this possibility, suggesting the Cenobites appearance in Defiance is the secret face of a "a benevolent priestly order. Outwardly they care for the people of Avernus by providing basic law enforcement, health care and political representation. However appearances can be deceiving.". The guide also suggests the priests ordinarily had a large role in the day to day running and administration of the city.[Defiance strategy guide]
- The history of the Cathedral is murky at best. The Cathedral contained both Ancient Vampire and Hylden ruins on the site, with the catacombs bearing murals depicting the Vampire-Hylden war from the pre-banishment Hylden point of view, perhaps suggesting that it was once the site of a Hylden stronghold, as well as bearing the warp room leading to the vampire-associated Earth forge. It seems unusual that Ancient Vampire and Hylden relics would be seen so close to each other - it is possible that Avernus and its Cathedral may have been built on top of one or both, though for what purpose remains unclear.[Blood Omen][Blood Omen/8][Defiance][Defiance/10][Defiance/13]
- Avernus Cathedral contains perhaps the largest collection of religious themed imagery in the series, with no other building approaching its size or significance.[Blood Omen][Blood Omen/8][Defiance][Defiance/10][Defiance/11][Defiance/12][Defiance/13][Soul Reaver][Soul Reaver 2][Blood Omen 2] The content and practice of the religion is not elaborated upon but superficially seems to bear a number of parallels to Medieval European Christianity.[Blood Omen][Defiance] The introductions of the Hylden and Ancient vampires and their conflict later in the series may suggest a basis for this religion potentially implying that early humans may have worshipped the previous races - like the Feral humans of the Vampire Citadel - with this developing on the mainland into an organized religion.[Soul Reaver 2][Blood Omen 2][Defiance][Defiance strategy guide] Thus the imagery seen throughout the Cathedral may be based upon the appearance and beliefs of the Ancient vampires, Hylden and their demon allies.
Maps and Screenshots
Concept Art and Bonus materials
Tiles and Textures
- Avernus Cathedral and Catacombs at Dark Chronicle (by Ardeth Silvereni).
- Avernus Catacombs
- Earth Forge (Defiance)
- Azimuth (boss)
- Turel (Defiance boss)
- Raziel (Defiance boss)
- Kain (Defiance boss)
- Azimuth's Eye
- Time-streaming devices
- Soul Reaver
- Wraith Armor
- Dark Scripture
- Defeat Azimuth
- Seek Mortanius
- Return to the Guardian Citadel
- Legacy of Kain: The Plot at SK: The Complete Guide To Legacy of Kain (archived at Dark Chronicle)
- Legacy of Kain Secrets: Page 9 of 9 at SK: The Complete Guide To Legacy of Kain (archived at Dark Chronicle)
- Question and Answer with Amy Hennig at The Lost Worlds (by Ben Lincoln)
- Answers to questions from the Defiance team at the Eidos forums (by Chris@Crystal)
- Avernus Cathedral and Catacombs at Dark Chronicle (by Ardeth Silvereni).
- Amplified Force Projectile at The Lost Worlds (by Ben Lincoln)
- Turel at The Lost Worlds (by Ben Lincoln)
- Map Survey at The Lost Worlds (by Ben Lincoln).
- Defiance - The Debug Menu at The Lost Worlds (by Ben Lincoln).
- Pillars of Nosgoth areas at DCabDesign (by Bazielim), post #2 (by Daniel Cabuco)
- A Few Questions at DCabDesign (by Paradoks), post #6 (by Daniel Cabuco)
- Nosgoth architecture at DCabDesign (by Lexy), post #3/post#5 (by Daniel Cabuco)
- Avernus Cathedral Deleted Areas at The Lost Worlds (by Ben Lincoln)
- '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
- Blood Omen Scripts at The Lost Worlds (by Ben Lincoln)
- Electronic Gaming Monthly, August 2000 issue
- Vampires (Soul Reaver 2) at The Lost Worlds (by Ben Lincoln)
- Blood Omen Developers Level Select Page at The Lost Worlds (by Ben Lincoln).
- Hash'ak'gik and Hash'ak'gik's Altar at Dark Chronicle (by Ardeth Silvereni)
- Chris@Crystal's Greatest Hits at the Eidos Forums (archived at the Square Enix Forums) (by Divine Shadow/Chris Bruno).
- Warp's answers from Amy at the Eidos Forums (archived at the Square Enix Forums) (by Warpsavant/Blincoln/Amy Hennig).
- Ok LOK fans, here's a canon chronology we had during Defiance. Whenever someone new joined the team they were given this to help them understand the timeline. Merry LOKmas! at Legacy of Kain Fans on Facebook (by Daniel Cabuco).
- Legacy of Kain: Funk Soul Brother - A Brief History of Nosgoth, Official US PSM Issue 36/September 2000 (Archived at Baziel-LoKWiki on Tumblr).
- Recreated PSXnation.com Interview with Denis Dyack at Nosgothic Realm
- Silicon Knights. Eternal Darkness: Sanity's Requiem. (Nintendo). Nintendo GameCube. (June 23, 2002)
- GLoK Interviews with Amy Hennig at Nosgothic Realm (by Raziel Fan)
- Blood Omen 2 at DCabDesign (by Divine Shadow), post #2 (by Daniel Cabuco)
- Blood Omen Maps at The Lost Worlds (by Ben Lincoln)
- The Revived and Updated (Almost) Definitive LoK Maps Thread at the Square Enix Legacy of Kain Series Forums (by Baziel, Guilherme Coelho and Tenaya).