- "Look around you, Raziel – see what has become of our empire. Witness the end of an age. The clans, scattered to the corners of Nosgoth...
This place has outlasted its usefulness – as have you."
- ―Kain — Listen (file info)[src]
Kain's empire was a vampire-ruled faction which rose to power in Nosgoth during the era following Blood Omen. It was conceived by Kain, the vampire Guardian of the Pillar of Balance and last survivor of the Circle of Nine, in stark defiance of the human machinations he fell victim to in his youth. He ruled alongside his six lieutenants, who formed the Council. Over the centuries, the empire's boundaries expanded to encompass the majority of Nosgoth, with only a handful of human realms remaining independent of it.
After Kain resurrected the six Sarafan commanders as vampires, each lieutenant began to turn vampires of his own, which assembled into six Great Clans. Within a century, the Clans had subjugated Nosgoth's human population and had begun shaping the land to suit their purposes over the ensuing millennium. By the events of Soul Reaver, the decay of the world had fully set in, and Kain began to forsake his empire, instead exploring other means to "challenge the Fates".
Kain's empire played a major role in the multiplayer spin-off Nosgoth set in the events of Soul Reaver. Kain and his empire were mentioned extensively in background materials relating the lore of Nosgoth, and it was ultimately backed up that Kain was treated with god-like reverence among the vampires, but had allowed the empire its 'intrigues' - tolerating rivalries and even assassinations, but forbidding outright warfare among the clans.[NOS] Nosgoth also suggested that Kain had vanished in the wake of Raziel's execution, implying that he had travelled forward in time to meet with Raziel upon his resurrection - and this had caused a break-down of order within the empire, leading to a Vampire civil war that almost wiped out the Razielim and ultimately gave way to the War for Nosgoth as the Humans of the era rallied and became a resurgent threat, forcing the clans to band together or risk annihilation.[NOS]
Membership and hierarchy
Kain resurrected six Sarafan warrior priests (Raziel, Turel, Dumah, Rahab, Zephon, and Melchiah) as vampire lieutenants, whom he viewed primarily as a way to achieve his ultimate destiny. Their exact duties are never stated, however.
The Six Vampire legions
During Kain's first attempt at an empire, he had Vorador raise a large vampire army for him to lead, and as he devastated the Human Kingdoms, a new threat arose. A resurgent Sarafan Order, led by the Hylden Lord under the guise of the Sarafans leader, the Sarafan Lord. This army was defeated and scattered before the remnants were wiped out by the Hylden/Sarafan or joined the Cabal and were killed in the time between the two hundred years of Kain's injury-induced coma.
After defeating the Hylden Lord and the Hylden/Sarafan, Kain turned his attention to Voradors progeny and destroyed them before eventually learning to breath his soul and create his own children.
He began with defiling the tombs of the Sarafan Warrior-Priests and breathing his soul into them, reanimating their corpses and creating the Six Vampire Lieutenants, his sons. And from them, six clans rose and formed the base of his army, the Six Legions of Kain.
In order of strength and importance to Kain:
- Razielim Clan: Raziel's Legion
Raziel inherited the strongest portion of Kain's soul, and his descendants were likely the most powerful vampires in Nosgoth, apart from the members of the Council. They possibly would have been Kains special forces as, before Raziel's execution and their devolution, they were described as Artisans, Philosophers, Spellbinders, Tacticians, Blood Bankers, and manipulators.
- Turelim Clan: Turel's Legion
With Turel being the second lieutenant raised by Kain, he inherited the strongest portion of Kain's soul after Raziel, and his descendants were among the most powerful vampires in Nosgoth, particularly noted as the "physically strongest" of the clans even before the downfall of the Razielim and were described definitively as "the most powerful vampires in Nosgoth" after. They would have been the elite shock troops of Kain's Legions, possibly used in storming the most powerful Human strongholds that Kain would not risk the Razielim on. They were described to be Warrior experts with Siege, Engineers, Distance attacks, and weaponless combat (Physically strongest).
- Dumahim Clan: Dumah's Legion
With Dumah, the third lieutenant raised by Kain, the Dumahim inherited a strong portion of Kain's soul and these descendants were initially among the most numerous vampires in Nosgoth. However after the attack on the Dumahim city and Dumah's staking, the clan was much reduced in stature and were only recognized as "the most common vampires in Nosgoth". These vampires would have been the rank-and-file troops of Kain's Legions, the most disposable and, therefore, the most easily replaced. They were described to be Warriors, experts in weapon combat. Primary ground forces.
- Rahabim Clan: Rahab's Legion
Rahab was most likely the fourth lieutenant raised by Kain and, though one of the weakest Clans, they are described as Artisans, Explorers and Special forces. It is likely they have been used as scouts to spy on the humans in their cities, as one fledgling Rahabim is found by Raziel in the water reservoir of the City. They could have been the aquatic assault force in Kain's Legions. They were described to be Artisans, explorers, special forces.
- Zephonim Clan: Zephon's Legion
Zephon was most likely the fifth lieutenant raised by Kain and the Zephonim are one of the weakest Vampire Clans in Nosgoth. However they are extremely quick and agile, in their devolved form they are even able to climb walls with arachnid like bodies, they may have been scouts and stealth forces in Kain's Legions. They were described to be Spies, alchemists, assassins.
- Melchahim Clan: Melchiah's Legion
Melchiah was the last lieutenant created by Kain, and the consequence was that his powers are the weakest of all the clan leaders - so much so that his flesh moldered. Melchiah would often pick the most beautiful humans and skin and don their flesh to cover his putrescence. His children did the same to help hold their own rotting carcasses together. The Melchahim were the weakest vampires in the desolate Nosgoth, but were threatening enough the way they were and may have been used as the Rank-and-file troops like the Dumahim or simply as fodder to direct the enemy's attention. They were described to be Scientists, Necromancers, and Blood manipulators.