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Greater Thralls were the strongest of the Thrall variant enemies seen in Soul Reaver 2. As with other thrall variants, Greater Thralls were undead warriors, re-animated and tasked with eternally protecting the sacred places of the Ancient vampires against intrusion, rising from underground to confront Raziel as he approached[Soul Reaver 2 manual][Soul Reaver 2 strategy guide (Prima)]. Visually Greater Thralls were large green-skinned, heavily decaying humanoids that wore a dark grey and red armor and chainmail, as well as a distinctive helmet design[Soul Reaver 2].
In combat, Greater thralls were the strongest of the Thrall variant enemies, able to deal more damage and defend themselves better than lesser thrall enemies, but slower and easily sidestepped. Greater Thralls often led other Swordsmen thralls and Sorcerer thralls in battles, but the lesser thrall troops would retreat if the senior Greater thrall was defeated[Soul Reaver 2 strategy guide (Prima)]. Greater thralls were armed with Scimitars and usually either a Reflector or Emblem Key which they used as 'shields'. Once defeated, Raziel could recover these 'shield' items and use them to open emblem doors and solve forge puzzles[Soul Reaver 2][Soul Reaver 2 manual].
Because of their role, Greater Thralls were only seen in the shrines and forges sacred to the Ancient vampires. They were first encountered in the Light Forge in the Pre-Blood Omen era and were seen carrying the golden Reflectors which were necessary to complete the Light Forge puzzle (by reflecting light beams around the forge). Greater Thralls would again be encountered in the Air Forge in the Era following Blood Omen, where they would be seen with the blue air symbol-shaped air forge Emblem keys, which were used to open special Emblem doors. Greater thralls would be encountered for the final time in the Sarafan era inside the Inner sanctum of Janos Audron's Retreat, where they were one of the few enemies encountered inside the retreat; on this occasion they were unaccompanied and held one of several red Emblem keys, once again needed to open special emblem doors through the retreat[Soul Reaver 2].
Notes[edit | edit source]
- Greater thralls are most often seen carrying a 'shield' (an Emblem key or Reflector) which ultimately is used in the completion of various puzzles in the respective forges; though they appear to do little for the defensive capabilities of the thralls in combat[Soul Reaver 2][Soul Reaver 2 manual].
- The Greater thralls are notably absent form the Dark Forge, with Emblem keys in this forge held by Swordsmen thralls instead. They are also absent from the Fire forge, which has no enemies; in the rest of Janos Audron's retreat, the Greater thralls in the Inner Sanctum are the only material realm foes faced[Soul Reaver 2].
- Thralls are noted as "undead warriors" who are "charged to eternally guard Nosgoth's ancient shrines"[Soul Reaver 2 manual][Soul Reaver 2 strategy guide (Prima)] but the method of their re-animation is not elaborated. Given the places they guard, it would seem likely that the Thralls were Ancient vampire creations, though the thralls themselves, although humanoid, do not visually appear to be Ancient Vampire remains[Soul Reaver 2]. In Legacy of Kain: Defiance, similar Ancient Vampire locations would be protected by Feral Humans and the similarly 'animated' statues Vampire Golems and Guardian Constructs [Defiance].
- Several early designs for Greater thralls can be seen in concept art and an early version can be seen in action in some trailers decked in golden armor.[Soul Reaver 2]
- Historically, Thralls were slaves in the Viking age of Scandinavia (and the root of the word "enthrall").
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