11-21-2010, 04:32 PM
I refuse to think this game is not canon because it fits into the current mythos so well, and I'll explain how. Though, there may be many spoilers for this game and others in the series in this post. Just to warn you.
Right away at the beginning of the game you can read Gabriel's entry in the journal. Inside it tells an important thing. He is an orphan who is quite possibly from a wealthy family such as the Cronqvist's.
Lords of Shadow takes place in about 1047. Lament of Innocence, which had previously been the first in the timeline takes place in about 1094, almost 50 years later. In this game a man named Mathias Cronqvist tricks Leon Belmont into killing the vampire, Walter Bernahrd and taking the ebony stone from him. Together with the crimson stone, these are what makes Mathias Cronqvist into what we know as Dracula. My guess is that after the events in Lords of Shadow, Gabriel started a new life with a new identity, using the Cronqvist name. He once again fell in love with a women named Elisabetha, but she dies which drives Gabriel/Mathias over the edge. Thus he seeks immortality as a way to get back at god. (This is told in Lament of Innocence, but it just says he wants to get back at God for taking his wife...which is actually two wives now.)
Also it's important to mention here that the vampire that Leon Belmont kills in Lament of Innocence is breifly mentioned as the owner of the castle that Gabriel goes through to find Camilla. It's mentioned in a scroll you find on a dead brotherhood. There is also a scroll that says that this castle hasen't been able to be mapped due to the fact it seems to always change. So while they don't directly say it, it's to be assumed that this castle is indeed Castlevania.
Another imortant detail connecting Lords of Shadow and Lament of Innocence is the fact that they heavily mention Rinaldo Gandolfi. In Lament of Innocence you meet him in the forest outside the castle. He wants to destroy Walter because he killed his daughter. In Lords of Shadow, you find a scroll that says that Rinaldo had set out to find the vampire that kidnapped his daughter. So it's assumed that in those 50 years, he found out it was Walter and that he had killed his daughter. (Personally, and there is no real proof of this, but I believe that the little girl vampire you meet in Lords of Shadow, Laura is in fact Rinaldo's daughter. After all, she is in Walter's castle.) Also in Lament of Innocence, Rinaldo makes a new Vampire Killer, so the what has happened to Gabriel's vampire killer is still unknown.
Now it would be enough for me if it was just all of that, that fit so well with the canon of Castlevania. But let's talk about the ending to Lords of Shadow and how that connects really well with the cannon and where I think the series will go from here.
In the ending, we see Zobek find Dracula and ask him why he's been hiding. Now, they hint to it, but it's never 100% clear if Zobek is Death or if he is just a necromancer. If he is Death, then clearly he and Gabriel have been working together for almost 600 years. The fact that Dracula attacks him could either mean that he's done this for so long, that he's just tired of it, and is lashing out, or that Zobek is NOT Death, and he is seeing him again for the first time, and is not happy about it. It could be either way, it's hard to say.
As for the ending being modern times, here is my prediction on that. The last real fight in the timeline with Dracula was in Portrait of Ruin. This game takes place in the 1940's. Using the Vampire Killer passed down from the Belmont line, to his own family line, Johnathan Morris and Charlotte Aulin fight and defeat Dracula. The next fight with Dracula is mentioned in Aria of Sorrow, but not shown. It's said that in 1999, a Belmont finally re-claimed the whip and stepped forward to defeat and seal Dracula for good. This was Julius Belmont. The Castle was sealed in inside the lunar eclipse and Dracula was supposed to be gone forever.
My predictions about the ending of Lords of Shadow all depend on exactly what the time frame is. It could be that this is foreshadowing that event that is said to happen in 1999 that we have yet to see in a game yet. If that's the case, and the Devil and Zobek are involved, it's possible things didn't go exactly as Julius tells it. However it's also possible that the game is sometime in the 2000's and Dracula was actually never sealed away, he just went into hiding. If that's the case, it certainly draws into question how Soma has Dracula's power if Dracula is still alive. Either way...it should be pretty awesome.
I refuse to believe the game is NOT cannon. They did so well making sure everything fit into place, that it seems foolish not to have this be a cannon that just turns the whole mythos upside down. Besides what I mentioned here, there are so many nods to other things in the Castlevania universe that are so hard to ignore. Wygol village was the village outside of Castlevania in Order of Ecclesia, and also is in Lords of Shadow. Vincent Dorin is also an abbot from Portrait of Ruin, which might mean he is the ancestor of the Vincent Dorin in Lords of Shadow. Cornell, Camilla....it just all...fits.