Classic franchises that helped shape certain genres never quite leave our mind. One of those franchises is Legacy of Kain: Soul Reaver, the spin-off sequel to Blood Omen. A lot of old-school fans have been wanting a revival of the series and according to Crystal Dynamics... it's possible.
In an upcoming interview with Australian outlet Finder, they managed to get some time with Crystal Dynamics' lead designer Michael Brinker, who explained that a new Legacy of Kain is a 50/50 chance of happening, telling them...
It’s a 50/50 chance. We have in-house developers who really want to make that game. It’s interesting because people look back at our history and our franchises and see that we have some really great iconic IPs. So gamers wonder; ‘where are they and what are they doing?’ Well we’re always tossing around and talking about ideas [of bringing them back]. It really is 50/50.
There's no specific reason given in that snippet of an article as to why it's 50/50, but I would imagine it's because that 1: Legacy of Kain isn't a mainstream brand, and 2: only the guaranteed sales for the game would be from die-hard fans.
This isn't the first time discussion about a revival of Legacy of Kain was brought into the discussion. In fact, there was actually a game in the works back in 2012 but it was canned. As has been the case with many cancelled games over the years, someone leaked some gameplay footage of the cancelled title to give gamers an idea of what the title could have been like and what the developers were aiming for with the game.
The Legacy of Kain: Soul Reaver series was a real divergence from the original Blood Omen game, which was actually an isometric RPG where players took control of Kain himself in a medieval Gothic setting.
In the newer Soul Reaver games players took control of Raziel, a disgraced vampire that Kain grew jealous of due to the growth of his wings and his ability to evolve as a vampire. Raziel's body was destroyed, but what little that did survive players had to venture through the spiritual realm to gain enough strength to survive in the physical realm.
The original games used a really awesome technique that allowed players to transform the world from the spirit realm to the physical realm as they pleased. In the revival of Legacy of Kain – the one that was cancelled – a similar feature was also implemented as an homage to the roots of the series.
Legacy of Kain still has a notable following considering that the games were pretty good and offered a nice mix of platforming, puzzle solving and hack-and-slash combat. It was a supernatural spin-off in a sense of the Tomb Raider formula.
The thing is, most AAA games these days seek really big front-loaded sales. The tail-end sales paradigm is an afterthought for most AAA games, so a lot of the appeal for newer titles is huge hype, lots of ads and promo trailers and an easy-to-learn hook to get the casual gamers interested. The thing about Legacy of Kain is that the series' popularity wasn't really built on today's concept of AAA marketing. So I can see how in the mind of Brinker it's a 50/50 chance of a new game happening because it's not an easy sell like Call of Duty, Battlefield or even Tomb Raider.