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"My lurking friend was nowhere to be seen, but I found these ruins even more intriguing.
I recognized these arcane symbols from the chamber beneath the Pillars, and realized that this shrine, too, was sealed to all but the bearer of the Reaver."
―Raziel — Listen (file info)[src]

Through the Swamp, or Chapter 3: Through the Swamp, is the third "level", or chapter, of Soul Reaver 2. It followed Raziel in the history preceding Blood Omen as he explored the Swamp, uncovered the secrets of the Dark Forge, and encountered Vorador and the Elder God. The chapter opened with Raziel emerging in the Swamp, and concluded with him returning to the mysterious sealed opening at the Great Southern Lake.



Raziel emerges in the Swamp

Raziel emerged from the caverns of the Subterranean Ruins into the dense canopy of the Swamp. Surveying his surroundings he recognized a long abandoned Time-streaming chamber and caught a brief glimpse of the being who had been observing him since he emerged from the Sarafan Stronghold - the vampire Vorador - watching him from a high balcony. Searching through the Swamp for a way to reach the area, Raziel found a passage into the mountains which was too high to reach, before finding his way to the high terrace, with Vorador now nowhere to be seen.[Soul Reaver 2][Soul Reaver 2/2][Soul Reaver 2/3]

Investigating the ruins behind, Raziel found that they were sealed to all but the bearer of the Reaver and that the building itself was apparently built by the blue winged race. Inside he found murals once again depicting the ancient war Before Nosgoth's recorded history and imagery relating to both the Reaver and the elemental principle of Darkness. Realizing that the building was built as a Dark Forge, Raziel completed the puzzle of the forge and thus imbued the Wraith Blade with elemental darkness - creating the Dark Reaver.[Soul Reaver 2][Soul Reaver 2/3]

Raziel imbues the Dark Reaver

Recognizing he had seen the symbol of elemental darkness before in the Great Southern Lake, Raziel elected to return to the lake and investigate the structure there, but before he could progress he was interrupted by Vorador outside the Dark forge. Curious about Raziel, Vorador quizzed him on his appearance and his actions in this era, perhaps hinting at prophetic roles associated with the corruption of the Pillars, but soon realized that Raziel was ignorant of any such destiny. Resigning himself, Vorador lamented how his unheeded advice had led to the creation of Vampire hunters which now had the vampires nearly eliminated. Deriding the the murals as "fairy tales", Vorador revealed that the ancient race had dwindled until only one - Vorador's creator Janos Audron - remained, apparently awaiting the arrival of Raziel and the completion of the ancient prophecies, but he had been murdered by the Sarafan five centuries earlier and they had also stolen the Reaver. Reflecting that they were all "out of luck", Vorador teleported away.[Soul Reaver 2][Soul Reaver 2/3]

Raziel's meeting with Vorador

Reflecting on Vorador's words and deciding that Janos Audron was crucial to his journey of revelations, Raziel resolved to infiltrate the Sarafan Stronghold again and make use of Moebius's Time-streaming chambers within; however with his passage blocked he would need to find a way to open the doors of the stronghold to reach them. Believing he would find a way in the Great Southern Lake's mysterious shrine, Raziel returned there after briefly debating the truth of the ancient race with the disapproving Elder God in the Subterranean Pillars Chamber. Finally reaching the lake, Raziel was able to use the Dark Reaver to unseal the door and enter the ancient forge within.[Soul Reaver 2][Soul Reaver 2/3]


The Swamp[]

The first clearing in the Swamp

Raziel began inside a darkened room in the Swamp having just climbed up from the Subterranean Ruins. Initially he could collect one of the Torches from the room and continue north out to the first Swamp clearing, where he would activate a checkpoint and encounter a Vampire hunter swordsman. Defeating the swordsman Raziel could reach the entrance to the time streaming chamber on the opposite wall and attract the attention of a Vampire hunter pikeman. Evading or defeating the hunters, Raziel could head out of the clearing using a passage to the northeast and follow the trail as it curved to the south, using the platforms to jump across the muddy swamp water which would slow his progress.[Soul Reaver 2][Soul Reaver 2/3][Soul Reaver 2 strategy guide (Prima)]

Passing through the rusted door and catching Vorador watching from a high balcony, Raziel was able to pass further along the trail, jumping between platforms and fallen ruins to avoid the swamp water and battle three more hunters as the trail turned in a wide arc to the north again below a circular ruin. Following the trail to a second large clearing, Raziel could reach a Save altar to the east and dry land. Following the wide trail northward, Raziel could enter a third longer clearing where two hunters and an Vampire hunter attack dogs|attack dog awaited.[Soul Reaver 2][Soul Reaver 2/3][Soul Reaver 2 strategy guide (Prima)]

The Dark Forge facade in the Swamp

Defeating or evading them, Raziel would comment on the fallen tree to the north then it was necessary to turn to the southwest corner of the clearing where a swordsman guarded a scalable wall in the side of a ruin. Defeating the hunter, Raziel could climb the ruins and jump down the other side, attacking or evading the canoneer waiting on the ledge and dropping down to dispatch the two pikemen on ground level, before following the trail as it rose steeply and headed back towards the south. Following the southern trail and jumping up to the raised ledge, it was finally possible for Raziel to reach the top-level terrace balcony where Vorador had been. Passing along the balcony (without disturbing the crows) and heading north to the checkpoint, Raziel could use the Wraith Blade to open the sealed door into the Dark Forge.[Soul Reaver 2][Soul Reaver 2/3][Soul Reaver 2 strategy guide (Prima)]

The Dark Forge (Soul Reaver 2)[]

The entrance chambers of the Dark Forge

After entering the forge Raziel could follow the corridor as it turned west, confronting his first Swordsman Thrall at the end of the corridor in front of an Emblem door. Defeating the thrall allowed Raziel to pick up the Emblem key it carried and place it into the door, opening the way into the wider forge. Following the corridor as it turned to the north Raziel came across a gate barring entry and requiring him to shift into the Spectral Realm and Phase through the barrier to progress. Upon entering the open chamber beyond Raziel would be attacked by several Sluagh which he could battle or evade before pushing northward through the archway into a wider chamber with a collapsed bridge and an unusually marked sun door ahead.[Soul Reaver 2/3][Soul Reaver 2 strategy guide (Prima)]

Turning to the opening in the east flanked by two torches, Raziel could descend down a small staircase to a high room containing a disk marked with the same unusual pattern at the top level - here he could use a planar portal to return to the Material Realm. Returning to the first open chamber Raziel would be ambushed by four thralls before he could climb the nearby Scalable walls and reach the top balconies of the chamber. Surveying the murals and following the balconies back to the north, Raziel would be confronted by a Sorcerer thrall firing projectiles before he approached the fallen bridge on the top level. Jumping and gliding across and using the broken parts of the bridge, Raziel was able to reach the top level opening above the sun door and enter the darkened activation chamber beyond.[Soul Reaver 2/3][Soul Reaver 2 strategy guide (Prima)] From here Raziel could choose from two routes to complete and activate the forge:

The forge activation chamber

  • Rotating the Reflector in the middle of the chamber to face the eastern doorway shined Sunlight onto the doorway, opening it and allowing Raziel to pass beyond. Following the corridor east, Raziel would be confronted by three thralls before the passage turned north and was blocked by a gate. Shifting to spectral, Raziel could continue onward as the corridor turned east at a Fire brazier and opened into a wide courtyard with a tree at the center. Jumping onto the raised platform at the east end of the room Raziel was able to switch back to the Material Realm at the planar portal and after evading or dispatching the thralls that ambushed he was able to then climb the walls on the north and south of the chamber to reach higher platforms. From here Raziel could jump and glide to the platform in the branches of the tree at the center and switch back into spectral - causing the tree to morph up to a higher position. From this vantage point it was possible to glide to the high opening in the east and continue down the corridor there. Reaching the small corner room with the planar portal, Raziel would be ambushed by a shield-carrying swordsman thrall and blocked in by a grate descending behind him. Defeating the thrall to recover his emblem key, Raziel could use the artifact on the emblem door in the northern wall and open his way to progress. Passing through the narrow corridor opened led into the eclipse room beyond, where four obelisks were placed around a central platform containing a large rotatable reflector, with four sun-like symbols on the walls.

    The Eclipse puzzle room

    Firing a Reaver bolt at the Reaver symbol on the ceiling opening a hatch which allowed a light-beam to stream down onto the central reflector. By pushing the southwestern obelisk (marked with the rings and eclipse symbol) north to the center of the platform and rotating the reflector so it shined on the western 'total eclipse' symbol cast a shadow pointing at the symbol, causing it to dissolve into a circular passage way. By climbing on the piece of broken obelisk in the northwest, Raziel could then crouch-jump to the top of the obelisk and then glide to the opening, following it through to the top level of the earlier higher chamber; where he was able to reach and obtain the Sun Disk artifact. Jumping down, Raziel could then return to the bottom sun-marked door of the activation chamber - which opened automatically with the presence of the Sun Disk - and place the artifact in the holder in the alcove at the far north of the activation chamber.[Soul Reaver 2/3][Soul Reaver 2 strategy guide (Prima)]

The shadow bridge/reflector room

  • Rotating the Reflector in the middle of the chamber to face the western doorway shined Sunlight onto the doorway, opening it and allowing Raziel to pass to a gate which forced Raziel into spectral to phase through and progress beyond. From here Raziel could ascend up a small staircase to a reflector and follow the passage as it turned to the north and opened out into a wider two-leveled room 'Reflector room'. Dropping down into the bottom chamber Raziel was ambushed by three Sluagh and could either kill or evade them before following the walls of the chamber around the back of the center construction to a planar portal where he could shift back into the material realm. Once he shifted and returned to the open chamber Raziel would be confronted by several thralls including two sorcerers and it was necessary to dispatch them before attempting to climb back up the scaling wall in the south. When Raziel reached the top he could rotate the first reflector so that it shined a light-beam across the top of the chamber toward the large reflector at top of the northern end, and by moving the nearby (decorated and ring bearing) western obelisk so it obstructed the beam caused the obelsik to cast a show across the room, allowing Raziel to walk on the shadow bridge across to the top of the northern part of the chamber where another large reflector awaited with four circular markings surrounding it.

    The sundial room

    Aiming and firing a Reaver-bolt at the hatch in the ceiling blast open the hatch allowing another light beam to stream down onto the large reflector in the center of the platform. Rotating the reflector so it faced the eastern 'circular claw' marked opening cast the light beam in that direction, opening the circular passage to the room beyond which could be reached by crouch-jumping. Descending from here down a small staircase led to the 'Sundial room'; where a large sundial dominated the center of the room with reflectors on the ceiling and a hole in the floor at the 12 o'clock position. Rotating the fin of the dial twice clockwise (to the three o'clock position) moved the reflector on the ceiling to and angle to bounce the light from the previous room so it streamed directly down the hole in the floor and by jumping down Raziel could reach the far northern alcove in the activation chamber below.[Soul Reaver 2/3][Soul Reaver 2 strategy guide (Prima)]

With both the Sun Disk in place and the light beam shining on its holder caused the light to be reflected into the activation chamber where it was obstructed and eclipsed by a moon construction, casting a shadow on the forge altar and activating the forge. Approaching the altar Raziel could use the elemental Darkness within to imbue a new Wraith Blade enhancement:[Soul Reaver 2/3][Soul Reaver 2 strategy guide (Prima)]

The completed forge puzzle

Using the Dark Reaver on the new Darkness- attuned sealed door at the south of the room allowed Raziel to exit the chamber into the central forge area where he could backtrack to the south, dispatching thralls if necessary, passing through the now lowered gate into the entrance passages and exiting the forge using the Dark Reaver to unseal the main door, which then permanently resealed behind him.[Soul Reaver 2/3][Soul Reaver 2 strategy guide (Prima)]

The Swamp[]

After exiting the Dark Forge and conversing with Vorador, Raziel could now begin to head back to the Great Southern Lake armed with the Dark Reaver. Heading southwest from the terraced balcony, Raziel could jump down to the first clearing in the swamp, taking care of any hunters along the way and return to the building in the south, where he could jump down back into the Subterranean Ruins.[Soul Reaver 2][Soul Reaver 2/3][Soul Reaver 2 strategy guide (Prima)]

The Subterranean Ruins[]

The Subbteranean Pillars chamber

Following the tunnel south, Raziel could Swim underwater down through the the ascending chamber, following the crystals until he reached the statue room and from here he could surface and climb the scaleable wall in the southeast. Dispatching any shades encountered, Raziel could jump back along the ledges to the southwest until he was able to jump back into the water and swim through to the Subterranean Pillars Chamber. Surfacing and saving at the northern altar room, Raziel would again converse with the Elder God before leaving the chamber and heading up the stairway to the south. Following the stairs west back upto the cavernous area and dispatching the shades present, Raziel could continue to follow the passage as it jinked north then returned west into the intial cavern of the ruins and follow the narrow northern passage to the doorway leading back to the Pillars area, and jumping back up through the wide terrace area and the narrow twisting passage, Raziel was able to drop down into the Pillar clearing itself.[Soul Reaver 2][Soul Reaver 2/3][Soul Reaver 2 strategy guide (Prima)]

The Pillars of Nosgoth (Soul Reaver 2)[]

Passing the Pillars and heading south to the battlement entrance, Raziel could follow the path south dispatching any hunters present and follow the trail as it curved west to the top bridge of the Shrine area. Dropping down, heading south and battling or evading the hunters, Raziel could continue south to jump down the waterfall to the Shrine itself and follow the trail east to the initial bridge into the Shrine area. Following the trail back eastwards, Raziel could dispatch further hunters and pass back through the stone arch, heading east before turning south into the Great Southern Lake area.[Soul Reaver 2][Soul Reaver 2/3][Soul Reaver 2 strategy guide (Prima)]

The Great Southern Lake[]

The entrance to the Light Forge on the 'inner' Southern Lake

Heading along the western bank, Raziel could reach the Save altar outside the Sarafan Stronghold before jumping into the lake and swimming to the underwater gate in the southeast. Swimming through, Raziel could surface in the inner lake area and activate the checkpoint on the small island to the northeast as well as re-imbuing the Dark Reaver at the font if necessary, before heading to the island with the sealed door in the south. Using the Dark Reaver on this door, Raziel was able to enter the Light Forge.[Soul Reaver 2][Soul Reaver 2/3][Soul Reaver 2 strategy guide (Prima)]



The Swamp area is given some extra details on the (former) official Soul Reaver 2 site, where it is again named as "The Swamp" and it is noted that:

"At the heart of Nosgoth lies a primeval forest – ancient, dense and nearly impenetrable. The crumbling ruins here offer mute evidence that this forest was once occupied by men, but has long since been abandoned to the rising waters that have rendered the forest an uninhabitable swamp. The murky depths of this treacherous swamp offer sanctuary for creatures that have retreated from the world, and its mists cloak secret places long hidden from the eyes of men."

The Swamp area bears many features which reference the similar environment seen in the nearby Termogent Forest seen in Blood Omen: Legacy of Kain, with the forest and swamp terrain, ruined battlements and Ignis Fatuus all observed in the Blood Omen area.[Blood Omen][Blood Omen/6] Much of the architecture of the ruins and the general environment of the Swamp and Dark Forge areas designed for Soul Reaver 2 was inspired by real-world ancient Cambodian temples and the architecture and scenery of the Khmer Empire and Angkor regions; in particular structures such as Angkor Wat and Ta Prohm. Much of the Angkor region is covered by low lying heavily forested swamp terrain, with over a thousand temples in various states of abandonment and repair positioned throughout the area.[2]

In common with its real-world counterparts, the Swamp area in Soul Reaver 2 notably contained many ruined structures and features apparently "abandoned to the encroaching swamp". Of the ruins observed in game, only the time-streaming chamber and the Dark forge were formally identified and many of the other ruins were either too high to reach or otherwise inaccessible.[Soul Reaver 2][Soul Reaver 2/3][3][4]

During the development of Soul Reaver 2 it was planned for areas higher in the Swamp to be playable. The ruins themselves were featured prominently in Bonus materials of the Swamp area with concept art depicting at least one area taking place on high platforms among the trees (somewhat resembling the ewok village in Star Wars Episode VI: Return of the Jedi) and developers would subsequently confirm that a tree-top village populated by Vampires was intended to feature at some point in the story along with a deleted cutscene which would show them treating Raziel with suspicion, telling him that "he was not one of them". It is not known when the scene would have featured in the story, but it is known that the scene was apparently only added after the cutscene featuring the Female vampire was axed from the end of A Reaver in Time/ beginning of Decision at the Pillars due to general disagreements within the team about the role other vampires would play - the village scene was itself cut for the same reasons as its predecessor; with the dialogue deemed imperfect and the role of the vampires in the story questioned.[5][6][7][8]

Raziel gliding over the ruins in the Swamp

The cutscene itself was cut and is not present in the files of Soul Reaver 2, with the tree-top platforms also entirely absent from the in-game area. The high ruins in the swamp hide the few playable remains of this section that were presumably intended to lead to up to the village (possibly in Nosgoth's early history or an earlier period judging by the condition of the ruins). With the use of cheats or hacks to fly (or glide) the high ruins can be explored and stood on as regular platforms, revealing a number of potential routes across the higher levels of the Swamp - many of these are however blocked or otherwise impossible to navigate, appearing to rely on later abilities such as the 'hookshot' of the Spirit Reaver .[Soul Reaver 2][6][9]


A Darkness symbol in the Dark Forge

  • Several significant murals are seen in the Dark forge and some relate to significant events and concepts in the history of Nosgoth and the forge itself:
    • Repeated imagery throughout the forge depicts the Darkness symbol, relating to the elemental alignment of the forge. Reaver symbols are also prominent throughout, relating to the weapon it enhances.[Soul Reaver 2/3][Soul Reaver 2]
    • The two murals in the entrance mural room depict the war between the winged race and their adversaries in the period Before Nosgoth's recorded history. The winged race are depicted in flight and on horseback and several structures appear in the background that may represent ancient architecture and the Dark forge itself. Curiously the Reaver blade is depicted in the final image despite apparently being forged after the war; it is unclear if its meaning here is prophetic and related to the role of Vampire champion.[Soul Reaver 2/3][Soul Reaver 2]
    • Murals on the outside of the archway leading to the activation chamber feature crowds of Ancient vampires, above these are a border of other subtle symbols , featuring dragons, Ouroboroses and other idol figures. Most prominently featured is a taller ancient vampire armed with the Reaver, who may relate to the guardian of the Reaver Janos Audron or the prophetic figure of the Vampire champion, revealed later to be Raziel.[Soul Reaver 2/3][Soul Reaver 2][Defiance] The character seems to be virtually identical to one depicted later in murals in the Air forge.[Soul Reaver 2/6]
    • Murals around the inside of the activation chamber also depict crowds of ancient vampires heading towards the back of the room where a single vampire is positioned flanked by two Darkness symbol-bearing gates. Though depicted as winged, the vampire bears a striking resemblance to Kain and may represent the prophetic role of the Scion of Balance.[Soul Reaver 2/3][Soul Reaver 2]
    • Repeated imagery depicts the Sun and phases of the moon, as such these may relate to the elemental association of the forge or the components necessary to complete the forge, particularly to the Sun Disk Light beams and eclipse/shadow methods used throughout the forge.[Soul Reaver 2/3][Soul Reaver 2]
    • Two murals in the sun disk room depict two figures holding clubs, apparently in conflict beneath a dark sun, with differing backgrounds; as such this image may represent the Vampire-Hylden war.[Soul Reaver 2/3][Soul Reaver 2]

      The 'Scion of Balnce' mural in the Dark Forge

    • Two murals in the reflector room depict crowds of ancient vampires at the edge of a chasm. In the spectral realm this changes, showing a bridge extending and a vampire crossing over. This demonstrates the nearby usage of a Shadow bridge.[Soul Reaver 2/3][Soul Reaver 2]
    • The Sundial room contains a mural of a humanoid man that was previously featured in the Fire Glyph Altar in Legacy of Kain: Soul Reaver.[Soul Reaver 2/3][Soul Reaver 2][Soul Reaver] The same area also features an unusual diagram of shapes, flanked by squids, which is similar to the complex triangular symbol seen at the Sunlight Glyph Altar.[Soul Reaver 2/3][Soul Reaver 2][Soul Reaver]



See also[]


  1. 1.0 1.1 Wiki-Icon-SR2.png The Swamp: Crystal Dynamics. Legacy of Kain: Soul Reaver 2 (Eidos Interactive). (2001) The Swamp at the Official Soul Reaver 2 site (preserved at Dark Chronicle)
  2. Icon-DCab.png Various art and plot questions at DCabDesign (by Dubiel), post #2 (by Daniel Cabuco)
  3. 3.0 3.1 Wiki-Icon-NR.png Soul Reaver 2 - Map of Nosgoth at Nosgothic Realm (by Tenaya)
  4. 4.0 4.1 Wiki-Icon-DC.png Soul Reaver 2 - Map of Nosgoth at Dark Chronicle (by Ardeth Silvereni)
  5. Wiki-Icon-TLW.png My Visit to Crystal Dynamics at The Lost Worlds (by Ben Lincoln)
  6. 6.0 6.1 Wiki-Icon-TLW.png The Ruins in the Swamp at The Lost Worlds (by Ben Lincoln)
  7. Wiki-Icon-TLW.png Vampires (Soul Reaver 2) at The Lost Worlds (by Ben Lincoln)
  8. Icon-DCab.png Soul Reaver 2 questions at DCabDesign (by Raina Audron), post #2 (by Daniel Cabuco)
  9. Wiki-Icon-TLW.pngDeleted Elemental Reavers at The Lost Worlds (by Ben Lincoln)
  10. Wiki-Icon-NR.png Soul Reaver 2 - Dialogue at Nosgothic Realm (by Tenaya)
  11. Icon-TAD.png Hide the marmosets in Legacy of Kain: Defiance?! at The Ancient's Den (by Raina Audron/Daniel Cabuco)
  12. Wiki-Icon-NR.png Blood Omen - Map of Nosgoth at Nosgothic Realm (by Tenaya)
  13. Wiki-Icon-DC.png Blood Omen - Map of Nosgoth at Dark Chronicle (by Ardeth Silvereni)
  14. 14.0 14.1 Wiki-Icon-TLW.png Question and Answer with Amy Hennig at The Lost Worlds (by Ben Lincoln)