Legacy of Kain: Soul Reaver

From Sega Retro

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Legacy of Kain: Soul Reaver
System(s): Sega Dreamcast
Publisher: Eidos Interactive
Developer:
Distributor: Halifax (IT)
Peripherals supported: Jump Pack, Visual Memory Unit
Genre: Action

















Number of players: 1
Release Date RRP Code
Sega Dreamcast
US
$49.9949.99[2] T-36802N
ESRB: Mature 17+
Sega Dreamcast
DE
T-36803D-18
USK: 16
Sega Dreamcast
ES
T-36803D-06
ELSPA: 15+ OK
Sega Dreamcast
FR
T-36803D-09
SELL: 16+
Sega Dreamcast
UK
£39.9939.99[5] T-36803D-05
ELSPA: 15+ OK
Sega Dreamcast
IT
T-36803D-13
ELSPA: 15+ OK
Sega Dreamcast
AU
$89.9589.95[8] FLEG02DCS
OFLC: MA15
Sega Dreamcast
BR
197256
Tectoy: 18+
Non-Sega versions

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Legacy of Kain: Soul Reaver is a 1999 action game and sequel to Blood Omen: Legacy of Kain. It was ported to the Sega Dreamcast in 2000.

Soul Reaver was developed by Crystal Dynamics, which had worked alongside Silicon Knights and Activision in the development of Blood Omen. After various disputes covering the direction and ownership of the franchise, Soul Reaver emerged as a property of the company, which was subsequently bought out by Eidos Interactive.

Gameplay

Unlike Blood Omen which is a top-down 2D action game, Legacy of Kain: Soul Reaver is a 3D third-person "Metroidvania" action game, where the player, Raziel, travels across the world of Nosgoth seeking to harvest the souls of the vampires, led by Kain, who betrayed him. Throughout the adventure Raziel obtains new powers and abilities allowing him to access new parts of the map. A mechanic also exists to allow the player to shift between the "material" and "spectral" world.

History

Legacy

Legacy of Kain: Soul Reaver was set to be followed up by Legacy of Kain: Soul Reaver 2 on the Dreamcast, however Soul Reaver 2 would jump platforms to the PlayStation 2 and PC before being released in October 2001.

Versions

Soul Reaver was originally developed with the PlayStation in mind, and for its time was highly regarded for its seamless open-world levels (i.e. being able to traverse from one of the map the other without the need for loading screens) and sound design.

The Dreamcast version builds on what is seen on the PlayStation, running at 640x480 while targeting 60FPS (versus the 512x240 resolution of the PlayStation, where the game would target 30FPS). Draw distances are improved and polygon counts are increased for major characters such as Raziel and Kane (though levels and enemies use the same geometry as the PlayStation).

Textures are generally more compressed on the Dreamcast and exhibit compression artifacts not seen in the PlayStation version, however in other cases (such as on Raziel's character model) the textures were upgraded. The lack of affine texture warping, common in 3D PlayStation games (and the aforementioned increase in screen resolution) generally leads to a better picture on the Dreamcast overall.

Both the PlayStation and Dreamcast fail to reach their target frame rate most of the time. On the PlayStation, busy scenes cause slowdown, with the frame rate dipping to between 20 and 30FPS. On the Dreamcast, a double-buffer V-sync option is used, meaning that when the game cannot handle 60FPS, it immediately targets 30FPS, creating a more jarring experience as it attempts to avoid screen tearing. This affects the Dreamcast most in larger environments, though dips can occur whenever there is too much on screen.

Some effects, such as the snow, are hard-coded to update at 30FPS. Controls are also less fluid than on the PlayStation, due in part to the lack of buttons and second analogue stick. On the Dreamcast, the camera is mapped to the D-Pad, meaning it is more awkward to both move and control the camera at the same time.

While also ported to the PC, the PC version stems directly from the PlayStation original, and lacks the dynamic music of the console versions and higher resolution display of the Dreamcast version. Frame rate is also capped at 30FPS at all times.

A significant amount of content was cut from Soul Reaver, in part due to development deadlines, but also due to technical challenges posed with the PlayStation hardware. The Dreamcast version does not re-add any of the missing content, which means the remnants of these missing features, such as corridors with dead ends, are still present.

Magazine articles

Main article: Legacy of Kain: Soul Reaver/Magazine articles.

Promotional material

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Print advert in Electronic Gaming Monthly (US) #127: "February 2000" (2000-01-11)
also published in:
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Print advert in Dreamcast Magazine (UK) #7: "No. 7" (2000-03-23)
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Print advert in Next Level (AR) #14: "Marzo 2000" (2000-xx-xx)
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Print advert in Dreamcast: Le Magazine Officiel (FR) #3: "Mars/Avril 2000" (2000-xx-xx)
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Print advert in Consoles + (FR) #99: "Avril 2000" (2000-0x-xx)

Physical scans

Sega Retro Average 
Publication Score Source
{{{{{icon}}}|L}} Division by zero.
Based on
0 review
Sega Retro Average 
Publication Version Score
Arcade (UK) PAL
75
[10]
Consoles + (FR) PAL
80
[11]
Dreamcast Monthly (UK) PAL
90
[12]
DC-UK (UK) PAL
90
[13]
Dreamcast: Le Magazine Officiel (FR) PAL
90
[14]
Dreamcast Magazine (UK) PAL
90
[5]
Dreamplanet (ES) PAL
87
[15]
Electronic Gaming Monthly (US) NTSC-U
89
[16]
Entsiklopediya igr dlya Dreamcast (RU)
83
[17]
GameFan (US) NTSC-U
75
[18]
GamePro (US) NTSC-U
85
[19]
Gamers' Republic (US) NTSC-U
91
[20]
Incite Video Gaming (US) NTSC-U
100
[21]
Joypad (IT) PAL
85
[22]
MAN!AC (DE) PAL
88
[23]
Neo Plus (PL) PAL
80
[24]
Next Generation (US) NTSC-U
75
[25]
Official Dreamcast Magazine (UK) PAL
70
[26]
Official Dreamcast Magazine (US) NTSC-U
80
[2]
PSX Extreme (PL)
90
[27]
Revista Oficial Dreamcast (ES) PAL
80
[28]
Strana Igr (RU)
78
[29]
Sega Dreamcast
84
Based on
22 reviews

Legacy of Kain: Soul Reaver

Dreamcast, US
LoKSR DC US Box Back.jpgLoKSR DC US Box Front.jpg
Cover
LoKSR DC US Disc.jpg
Disc
SoulReaver DC US Manual.pdf
Manual
LegacyofKain2DCUSInlay.jpg
Inlay
Dreamcast, UK
LoKSR DC EU backcover.jpgLoKSR DC EU Box Front.jpg
Cover
LoKSR DC EU disc.jpg
Disc
LegacyOfKain SoulReaver DC UK Manual.jpg
Manual
Dreamcast, DE
LoKSR DC DE backcover.jpgLoKSR DC DE frontcover.jpg
Cover
LoKSR DC DE disc.jpg
Disc
Dreamcast, FR
LoKSR DC FR back.jpgNospine-small.pngLoKSR DC FR front.jpg
Cover
LoKSR DC FR disc.jpg
Disc
Dreamcast, IT
LoKSR DC IT back.jpgNospine-small.pngLoKSR DC IT front.jpg
Cover
Dreamcast, ES
LoKSR DC ES back.jpgLoKSR DC ES front.jpg
Cover
Dreamcast, AU
LoKSR DC AU back.jpgNospine-small.pngLoKSR DC AU front.jpg
Cover
Dreamcast, BR
LokSR DC BR Box Back.jpgLoKSR DC BR Box Front.jpg
Cover
LokSR DC BR Disc.jpg
Disc

Technical information

ROM dump status

System Hash Size Build Date Source Comments
Sega Dreamcast
 ?
CRC32
MD5
SHA-1
1999-12-13 GD-R Page
Sega Dreamcast
 ?
CRC32
MD5
SHA-1
2000-01-18 GD-R Page

External links

References

  1. http://www.sega.com:80/sega/catalog/SegaProduct.jhtml?PRODID=240 (Wayback Machine: 2002-02-04 05:49)
  2. 2.0 2.1 Official Dreamcast Magazine, "March 2000" (US; 2000-02-08), page 92
  3. http://www.chipsworld.co.uk/detProd.asp?ProductCode=2315 (Wayback Machine: 2002-09-18 22:05)
  4. https://groups.google.com/g/uk.games.video.dreamcast/c/B3Iglum5F4c/m/N-D9RzKGhsoJ
  5. 5.0 5.1 Dreamcast Magazine, "No. 6" (UK; 2000-02-24), page 58
  6. http://www.micromania.fr/cgi-micromania/tri3.pl?criteria=DREAMCAS;status=1 (Wayback Machine: 2000-04-07 11:43)
  7. http://www.futuregamez.net:80/outnow/dc.html (Wayback Machine: 2001-07-31 23:17)
  8. Hyper, "June 2000" (AU; 2000-xx-xx), page 66
  9. GamePro, "April 2000" (US; 2000-0x-xx), page 70
  10. Arcade, "March 2000" (UK; 2000-02-29), page 90
  11. Consoles +, "Mars 2000" (FR; 2000-0x-xx), page 106
  12. Dreamcast Monthly, "March 2000" (UK; 2000-02-17), page 20
  13. DC-UK, "March 2000" (UK; 2000-02-18), page 20
  14. Dreamcast: Le Magazine Officiel, "Mars/Avril 2000" (FR; 2000-xx-xx), page 78
  15. Dreamplanet, "Mayo 2000" (ES; 2000-0x-xx), page 36
  16. Electronic Gaming Monthly, "March 2000" (US; 2000-02-08), page 143
  17. Entsiklopediya igr dlya Dreamcast, "Izdaniye chetvertoye, dopolnennoye" (RU; 2002-xx-xx), page 108
  18. GameFan, "Volume 8, Issue 4: April 2000" (US; 2000-xx-xx), page 15
  19. GamePro, "April 2000" (US; 2000-0x-xx), page 116
  20. Gamers' Republic, "March 2000" (US; 2000-xx-xx), page 92
  21. Incite Video Gaming, "March 2000" (US; 2000-0x-xx), page 104
  22. Joypad, "Aprile 2000" (IT; 2000-0x-xx), page 64
  23. MAN!AC, "04/2000" (DE; 2000-03-04), page 64
  24. Neo Plus, "Maj 2000" (PL; 2000-xx-xx), page 42
  25. Next Generation, "May 2000" (US; 2000-04-18), page 98
  26. Official Dreamcast Magazine, "April 2000" (UK; 2000-03-09), page 80
  27. PSX Extreme, "03/2001" (PL; 2001-0x-xx), page 40
  28. Revista Oficial Dreamcast, "Mayo 2000" (ES; 2000-0x-xx), page 52
  29. Strana Igr, "Sentyabr 2000 2/2" (RU; 2000-xx-xx), page 21


Legacy of Kain: Soul Reaver

LegacyOfKain title.png

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Prereleases:
Sega Dreamcast
Prototypes: 1999-12-13 | 2000-01-18