Blood Omen 2 Interview at IGN (by Sam Newman)
- November 20, 2002
- By Sam Newman and IGN
IGNcube: Explain the character of Kain to our readers. What is the story for Blood Omen?
Sam Newman: Kain is a classic anti-hero. He is a powerful vampire on a quest for power and vengeance. He begins life as a petty noble, and is murdered and transformed into a fledgling vampire. He quickly learns that he is a pawn in the physical and spiritual power struggle for Nosgoth, his homeland.Since the events of Legacy of Kain: Blood Omen, Kain had become a commander of an army bent on ruling the land of Nosgoth. In response to his rise to power, another faction appeared in the land: The Sarafan, a group of militant humans led by a mysterious and powerful figure, the Sarafan Lord. This war ended with the Sarafan finally triumphant over Kain's army, and with Kain and the Sarafan Lord locked in mortal combat. The Sarafan Lord won this battle, stripped the Soul Reaver from Kain, and threw him off a cliff to his apparent death.
The vampire Kain awakens in a strange city with almost no memory of his former self. Another vampire, Umah, has taken him in and revived him to health after a deadly battle that Kain barely remembers. He is weak, and has lost most of his former power. Worse still, his weapon, the Soul Reaver, is missing. Umah begins to fill Kain in on the recent past, and pieces of Kain's shattered memory return.IGNcube: How does Blood Omen 2 relate to the original Legacy of Kain title for PS1? In other words, where does it fit in relation to the Soul Reaver games?
Sam: The story of Blood Omen 2 takes place two hundred years after Legacy of Kain: Blood Omen, and several centuries before the events of Legacy of Kain: Soul Reaver.IGNcube: How has Kain himself changed since the first title? In our opinion, he seems more flamboyant. Is this intentional?
Sam: Character and dialogue wise Kain is a balance between the young vampire of Blood Omen I and the fatalistic power monger of Soul Reaver. He is still learning things about himself and the secret wars of Nosgoth, but his is also more ruthless and determined in recreating his former glory. Physically Kain is also showing his transformation from human to ancient vampire. His skin is changing, and his clothes are adopting a decadent appearance.IGNcube: When did work begin on the GCN version of the title?
Sam: Soon after Blood Omen 2 for PS2 and Xbox were released games like Resident Evil and Eternal Darkness came out on GameCube and made us re-evaluate the GameCube as a viable platform for games targeted towards older audiences. Within a few weeks we had our first working version.IGNcube: What are some of the things that Kain can do in the game? Does the character gain additional powers as the title progresses?
Sam: Kain begins with many of his powers stripped form him due to his long recovery. He has his superior strength and the ability to adopt an almost invisible mist form. As Kain progresses through the story he will encounter many powerful Vampire opponents. Each of these has their own special vampirism Dark Gift that Kain can steal after defeating them and absorbing their essence.IGNcube: Would you describe the game as gory?
Sam: Absolutely. We wanted Blood Omen to ooze gore out of the box. The entire goal of the project was to make the player feel like a predator vampire. The best way to do that was to drench him in blood.IGNcube: Talk about some of the environments Kain travels through, as well as some of the gameplay objectives.
Sam: Much of the game takes place in Meridian, the capitol city of Nosgoth. Kain will explore the major districts in the city as well as areas outside the city walls. As the game progresses Kain will travel to more exotic locations; the desert Canyon Lands where the mystical Seer hold her secrets and the bizarre Eternal Prison where the forgotten evils of Nosgoth are tucked away.IGNcube: Blood Omen on PS2 had a sometimes-sluggish framerate. In our play so far, the GCN version runs at 60 frames. Can you talk about this?
Sam: Sure, the GameCube has a fantastic graphics chip. We were definitely impressed with the performance increase.IGNcube: What other changes have you made to the game with its transition to GameCube, if any?
Sam: The major changes we made to the game technically were due to the reduced disk space and smaller amount of RAM. Everything had to be compressed then uncompressed on the fly as it was streamed off the disk. Our conversion team did an outstanding job.http://web.archive.org/web/20021122154604im_/http://cubemedia.ign.com/cube/image/bloodomeninterviewgcn440in.jpg
Welcome back, Kain
IGNcube: Does the GCN version of Blood Omen support progressive scan mode or Dolby Pro Logic II? Also, how many blocks of memory are required for saves?Sam: Blood Omen 2 will support Dolby Pro Logic II, but not progressive scan. The save games will take 1 block each.
IGNcube: Finally, what do you think of the GameCube hardware? How would you rate its power versus PS2 and Xbox? Has it been easy to develop for?Sam: The GameCube has its plusses and minuses. Its graphical output is great, but the limited amounts of RAM and disk space were a big challenge for us.