The weapons in Soul Reaver 2 are numerous and varied. I would say this, but then I would be lying. There are two basic types:
swords and pikes, and they work pretty much the same, although they vary in speed, range, and power. In
addition to these there are, of course, your claws and kicks, and the Soul Reaver itself. Now for a bit of info about what
each one is:
There are various swords located throughout the game. Some examples are the falchions dropped by many of the modern-day vampire
hunters, the short swords dropped by the Thralls, and the Sarafan's longswords. Despite the fact
that these swords differ so much in reality, in this game they all have the same range and damage capability. Funny, huh?
The short sword has the same range as the longsword. Oh well. Every game has its quirks, I guess. Swords,
regardless of type, are not as fast as claws, but they dish out more damage. While a sword is equipped, you can press square
or triangle while standing next to a stunned enemy to have him beheaded. Gratuitous decapitations, anyone?
The pike family of weapons includes pikes, tridents, spears, and halberds. Also included in this family of weapons are the
axes that you find once in a while. Again, while these weapons vary greatly in the real world, they are the exact same in
this game. The only variant is the axe, which is slower but deals greater damage than other pikes. The pike family of weapons
all have the same range which, incidentally, is the longest of any weapon in the game (unless you consider Reaver Bolts a
weapon). They are slower than swords, of course, yet cause more damage. These weapons finishing moves are also executed by
pressing square or triangle next to a stunned enemy, whereupon Raziel will proceed to impale them for a moment or two. Note
that this move will cause your weapon to be dropped, so don't go running off without it!
OK, now comes the really pathetic part. Torches can be used as a weapon, if you are in such dire straights that you must have
a weapon but don't want to pick up any of the exceptionally numerous weapons that can be had from the
vampire hunters, demon hunters, etc. which are located around every corner. Torches function similar to swords, but don't
have as much range or damage dealing capability. For better results, throw said torch at your intended
victim and use your claws to finish the job. The finishing move for torches, which work the same way as the other two, causes
Raziel to ignite the poor victim. This ruins the torch completely, so just leave it behind and find
yourself a decent weapon.
OK, claws. Basically, you punch people. And then you kick them. After that, punch them some more. Your natural weapons are
the fastest in the game, and much better to use in battles than, say, a torch. At times I think they are
perhaps the best weapon you can have. They don't deal as much damage as a sword or pike would, but they work. Their greatest
benefit is their incredible speed. The finishing move for this weapon causes Raziel to "Janos Audron" someone, ripping their
heart out of their chest.
The Soul Reaver really deserves its own section, but I don't feel like making another section, so it'll just have to deal
with it. Alright, what can the Reaver do? Well, a better question would be what does it not do. Properly
charged, the Reaver can kill enemies in a single hit, break down doors, light your path for you (so that you don't need to
resort to using torches as a weapon), lure enemies closer one at a time, plus it is the only weapon in the
game that can take care of those dratted Sentry Eyes or follow you into the Spectral Realm. The Reaver's range varies from
sword distance, to pike range, to far across the screen. With all of these great benefits, you must be
thinking: "What's the catch?". Glad you asked, or you wouldn't make it very far in this game.
While in the first game the Reaver could only manifest in the Spectral Plane, and could only be brought to the Material Plane
when Raziel's health was full, shortly after this game begins it gains the ability to manifest when
and wherever Raziel pleases. In exchange for this power, the Reaver becomes a devourer of souls. So, if you kill an enemy
with the Reaver, Raziel cannot regain health by reaping the soul. For those of you who attempt to be clever
and switch weapons before dealing the finishing blow, the Reaver has already planned for that. The health that you will regain
from a soul decreases with every hit you deliver with the Reaver.
Not only that, the Reaver now has a mind of its own. It is in charge, not Raziel. See that nifty little circle slowly working
its way around the health spiral? Well, if it manages to form a complete circle, the Reaver takes
control and saps Raziel's health, returning him to the Spectral Plane. You need not worry about the Reaver in the Spectral
Realm. The overabundance of energy there manages to satiate the hungry blade. Raziel must exercise
caution when using this weapon, else his soul will be the one reaped.
As you proceed through the game, you will enter Forges, sacred places where the wraith-blade may be imbued with elemental
power to assist Raziel in his
quest. There are four forges: Dark, Light, Air, and Fire. Here is what the Reaver can do with each elemental power:
The Dark Reaver: Reaver bolts fired while the wraith-blade is charged with the elemental power of Darkness can blind
Sentry Eyes for a short period of
time, allowing Raziel to pass by without getting fried. The blade itself can activate Shadow Bridges.
The Light Reaver: Bolts fired while the Reaver is charged with Light will activate those crystals you find above so
many doors, thereby unlocking them. It also illuminates an area around Raziel similar to a torch. Note that the
blade can be summoned while gripping another weapon. Having light will not force Raziel to go hungry.
The Air Reaver: One of the most useful powers you will find. Bolts fired from the Air Reaver can destroy weakened doors.
It can activate Air Plinths, creating updrafts that will allow Raziel to have a greater flight time while gliding. Last but
not least, the power of Air allows free movement in the Swamp, so there is no more need to leap from stone to stone.
The Fire Reaver: It creates a torchlight effect just like the Light Reaver, and activates Fire Plinths. That's about
it. Big deal.