[ Legacy of Kain: The Lost Worlds ]

The Bridge

article by Divine Shadow



[ Concept Art [1/5] ]
Concept Art [1/5]
[ Concept Art [2/5] ]
Concept Art [2/5]
[ Concept Art [3/5] ]
Concept Art [3/5]
[ Concept Art [4/5] ]
Concept Art [4/5]
[ Concept Art [5/5] ]
Concept Art [5/5]
[ Screenshot [1/1] ]
Screenshot [1/1]



It should be immediately noted that despite the name given to the area, there are no literal bridges or bridge-like structures present in the screenshot, renders, or other artwork. There is what could be a the tattered remains of a rope bridge, but the details on this are somewhat unclear.

The Bridge area appears to be a series of outcrops distantly positioned in the vertical cliff face of a mountain. On a number of these outcrops, ornate circular devices appear to be mounted into the rocky walls. In the screenshot, one of the devices appears to be active (with its surfaces emitting a green glow), and is somehow revealing or projecting a tunnel through solid rock.

The concept art and screenshot shows a number of features in the Bridge area: there are a number of sewer pipes with cracked masonry, each pouring an unknown liquid out of the mountain wall and into the depths below. Some of this fluid seems to be forming into a waterfall.

The area has a significant number of rust-coloured pipes aligned horizontally and vertically, with steam escaping in places. There appears to be a climbable wall at the side of one of the rocky outcrops, possessing the same climbable-wall texture used in the Soul Reaver games and Defiance. There are also a number of conspicuous cracked walls, which if shattered would easily accommodate Kain. The entire area seems to be suspended above a cavernous drop, though the media does not tells us how far down this goes.

The various concept pieces seem to show the area at different heights. Whereas some show the Bridge to be a very rocky and barren place, one piece in particular depicts what could be a higher part of area, with the backdrop of exposed rock now replaced with constructed brickwork and artificial structure.

In the screenshot, we can see what might be a star in a cloudy or dusty sky. Alternatively it may be a single snowflake in a distant rocky background.

[ Annotated Image [1/5] ]
Annotated Image [1/5]
[ Annotated Image [2/5] ]
Annotated Image [2/5]
[ Annotated Image [3/5] ]
Annotated Image [3/5]
[ Annotated Image [4/5] ]
Annotated Image [4/5]
[ Annotated Image [5/5] ]
Annotated Image [5/5]


Story Speculation

It seems very likely that this area represents Kain's vertical ascension to the plateau of Malek's Bastion. The area could be accessed by reaching to top of Base Tower One, and then possibly scaled through use of long jumps, shattering cracked walls, manipulation of steam pipes, assailing climbable walls, and activating the mysterious devices that are mounted into the cliff face.

The screenshot and concept art shows us that the "Bridge" is apparently devoid of a literal functional bridge. Perhaps the name is metaphorical, referencing the role the area plays in bridging Base Tower One with presumably the Outer Bastion. Another interpretation to consider is this: In the artwork we can see what may be tattered remains of fragile rope bridges, in which case the name "Bridge" may be historical, referencing a point in which the rocky outcrops were linked by a continuous series of maintained bridges. If we assume that the strange tunnelling devices are an addition from recent history, then these bridges would have originally been the only direct way of mounting the Bastion.

Much of the Bridge area is cracked and in disrepair, raising the idea that the mysterious fluid pouring from the cracked sewer pipes is somehow eroding the area. If we consider historical battlement design, then pipes such as these would traditionally have been used to ferry waste materials and sewage out of the castle above. This waste would have been mildly acidic but not intensely corrosive. However, consider the recent Hylden occupation of the Bastion, and the evidence presented in the other essays suggesting they have industrialised the area to manufacture armours and to fuel the Soul Machine. The sewers, once carrying harmless human waste, could now be pumping highly acidic industrial byproducts out of the Bastion above, thus explaining the significant erosion seen in the area.

What is the function and origin of the devices mounted into the rocky walls of the Bridge? The concept art shows the devices apparently inactive, with a solid wall of four thick vertical pipes in the central eye. The screenshot contrasts this by showing a device in an apparently active state, projecting a grey tunnel through the rocky wall. Given that the concept art shows a ramp leading into the eye of the device, it would seem that they are designed to grant passage to the advancing heights of the Bridge area. The visible steam pipes could be providing a fuel source to these machines. It is unclear if the devices literally cut a hole through the rocky cliff face, or create a teleportation gate that "twists space" as seen in Soul Reaver and Defiance.

There seems to be one major suspect for the origin of the devices: the Hylden. When active, the machine is shown to be lighting up with a green glow, which Blood Omen 2 shows us as being a hallmark trait of Hylden technology. The exposed wiring seen in the device would also suggest Hylden construction, as unlike the Ancients, the Hylden do not hide the function of their machinery in grand and ceremonial architecture. The exposed mechanics and wiring we are seeing here were also observed on the various apparatus within the Hylden facilities in Blood Omen 2.

A working theory could be this: When the Hylden occupied the Bastion, they (or their slaves) installed the devices into the Bridge area, as a means to quickly ferry slaves and raw materials from mainland Nosgoth below. Given their goal could be to fashion an army of Hylden Armour Wraiths, the Hylden may need a steady link to Nosgoth's raw materials and human populace, and the dilapidated rope bridges would not have facilitated efficient transport into the Bastion. The pristine condition of the devices, when juxtaposed with the crumbling surroundings, would support the idea that they are a relatively recent addition to the area.

Kain may have encountered these devices during his ascension to the peak of the mountain, and manipulated them to grant access to higher areas. If we assume that the Outer Bastion is the next area, then we can predict how the Bridge section may have concluded. In the concept artwork for the Outer Bastion, explicit mention is made to the "entrance from cave". Therefore, it seems likely that the Bridge ends with Kain entering a cave in the highest section, and traverses this to enter the Outer Bastion.

Speculative Map

[ Speculative arrangement of this area in relation to others ]
Speculative arrangement of this area in relation to others
[ Speculative progression through the game world ]
Speculative progression through the game world



These images were found in a number of places. The four pieces of concept art were found in the DeviantArt account of Andez Gaston, and was later published on his official blog. Screenshots are preserved here for historical reference:

[ A page from Andez Gaston's blog [1/4] ]
A page from Andez Gaston's blog [1/4]
[ A page from Andez Gaston's blog [2/4] ]
A page from Andez Gaston's blog [2/4]
[ A page from Andez Gaston's blog [3/4] ]
A page from Andez Gaston's blog [3/4]
[ A page from Andez Gaston's blog [4/4] ]
A page from Andez Gaston's blog [4/4]


Andez and his brother Anderson were freelance conceptual artists hired by Ritual Entertainment in 2004 to work on The Dark Prophecy. Andez confirms his work on the game on their joint portfolio blog site, on his individual portfolio, and in image annotations in his DeviantArt account:

Legacy of Kain : Dark prophecy (cancelled game of 04)

while scoping YouTube I manage to run into a video of a project quite familiar and it brought back memories when we were still young.my brother and I had just been hired at a video game company at the time which was still known as ritual entertainment to work on a game that many people knew very well. though nothing came to fruition that project was to be legacy of Kain: Dark Prophecy for the PS2. for those of you interested in seeing some of the character/creature designs click on the link below


Ritual Enertainment-Legacy of Kain: the dark prophecy(cancelled Game)concept artists (ag/dez) 2003-04


Legacy of Kain : Dark Prophecy concept art

concept art done during our time at the company once known as ritual entertainment. for what was supposed to be the final chapter in the Kain series. the game was later cancelled for reasons unknown if given the chance i would work on this again in a heartbeat.- agartofgastonbros.blogspot.com


Legacy of Kain :Dark Prophecy game art(cancelled) the non interesting stuff about game development art. If you're planning to work in games be prepared to do a lot of breakaway concept art and props.


The screenshot and render of this area were discovered in the online portfolio of Jason Muck in November 2008.

Jason is a former Ritual Entertainment staff member, and was employed as an Environment Artist between January 2004 and September 2005. Jason has recently worked on Red Dead Redemption and its expansions, and now works as a Senior Environment Artist at Big Huge Games. His portfolio is available to view online (as of February, 2012), and relevant screenshots are preserved here for historical reference:

[ Jason Muck's Portfolio [1/2] ]
Jason Muck's Portfolio [1/2]
[ Jason Muck's Portfolio [2/2] ]
Jason Muck's Portfolio [2/2]


Elsewhere on the site, Jason provides us with some insight into his role on The Dark Prophecy and its development timeline:

Environment Artist on Legacy of Kain: The Dark Prophecy - PS2, Xbox, PC CANCELLED

Ritual Entertainment - Jan 2004 - April 2004

Responsible for modeling, texture mapping, and lighting in-game environments while following art direction and maximizing target platform memory limitations.


Legacy of Kain: The Dark Prophecy: Xbox, PS2 CANCELLED

These are screen shots from the playstation 2 version of Legacy of Kain : The Dark Prophecy. It was canceled after about 3 months of production work. These are the levels I worked on including modeling, texture mapping, and lighting. On this project I was not responsible for actual texture creation but working from a library provided by our texture artists. I would then model out the level, create props, map textures, and apply the lighting. All lighting was vertex based and applied in Max.


LEGACY OF KAIN THE DARK PROPHECY: Environment Artist, Texture UVs, Lighting, 2004, CANCELLED


The concept pieces for this area were released with the original filenames kain-maleks-bridgeareabelow-1, kain-maleks-bridgeareabelowclimablewall, kain-maleks-bridgeareabelowclimablewall1-tovent, kain-maleks-bridgeareabelowclimablewall2-tovent, LegacyofKain_07 and LegacyofKain_D_MalekTunnelEntranace. It appears that most of the filenames refer to this area as being officially designated the "Bridge".


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