STORY / GAMEPLAY
Cunning and relentless, the vampire Kain battles the oppressive agents of Fate that seek to destroy him. For centuries, he has ruthlessly pursued a singular ambition — to take his rightful place as Balance Guardian in Nosgoth, thus returning Nosgoth to vampire rule. And Raziel, he believes, is the key to fulfilling this goal. Armed with the legendary Reaver blade Kain seeks to reclaim their true destinies from the wreckage of history.
The story begins with Kain searching for a way to hold back the forces that want to take over Nosgoth, and Raziel searching for a way out of the spectral realm. The games plays out in chapters, alternating between the two characters. While Kain and Raziel control much the same, their chapters play quite differently. Raziel's chapters mainly focus on puzzle solving, with little combat aside from boss fights. Kain focuses more on combat, with occasional puzzles to solve. Both Kain and Raziel have abilities that allow you to send out a power pulse that knocks enemies around. They can also lift their enemies and throw them in a direction. Kain will suck the blood of his victims and recharge his health meters, while Raziel will devour the souls of the slain. The game had a massive improvement over the previous installments in the way of gameplay, the fighting is much better and the plot is engaging. But a major issue here is the camera which cannot be manually adjusted, and stays fixed on your character, with a limited ability to pan it left or right. There are moments during battle, where it can become stuck behind an object limiting visibility, or extremely close up making it impossible to see your enemies.
The graphics in this game are pretty astounding. The characters are all highly detailed, the lighting is spot on, and the framerate is smooth, most of the time. The levels range from dark crypts to furnished mansions and gothic cathedrals. Each environment is distinctly different from the last and all of them stunning to behold. Character models are very rich, with moving cloth. The lighting effects are superb, from torches on the walls to the glow of the rivers and the reflections in water.
The sound effects are well done too, producing different sounds like footsteps, splashes, weapon hits and ambient stuff. The music ranges from calm exploration themes to soaring orchestral battle themes, with the music rising and fading as appropriate. Also the vocal acting fits extremely well with the dialogues.