The Howling Heartstone was an artifact used by Raziel in Legacy of Kain: Defiance. It was discovered by Raziel and could be found nearby the Pillars of Nosgoth in the sixth chapter Find the Location of Vorador's Mansion. The item ultimately activated the warp gate leading to the Air forge.
The Howling Heartstone was a quest item in Legacy of Kain: Defiance. It was utilized by Raziel in the chapter Find the Location of Vorador's Mansion as he explored the Pillars area during the events of Blood Omen.
Finding the sealed Air forge outer chamber among the ruins nearby the Lake of Tears/Vampire Citadel vista, Raziel was able to breach the outer chamber using the Light Reaver and discovered a chamber marked with the Air elemental symbol on the floor with an empty stand in the middle along with two horizontal jets of air and a unique circular plinth with a notable hole.[Defiance][Defiance/6][Defiance strategy guide]
By using the Blocks and Telekinesis mechanisms around the edge of the room, Raziel could block both air jets simultaneously, forcing the air to shoot up through the middle plinth, providing an updraft which shot Raziel upto a high ledge around the outside of the room. On the center of the ledge Raziel discovered a pedestal containing the Howling Heartstone.[Defiance][Defiance/6][Defiance strategy guide]
The artifact itself was a burgundy stone resembling a heart with arteries, veins, atria and ventricles - albeit with three distinct 'chambers' compared to the usual two halves. The heart was decorated with a number of black mark or holes, giving it a perforated appearance.[Defiance][Defiance/6]
Returning the heartstone to the stand in the center of the room, and unblocking the side jets allowed the air to flow through the heartstone, which activated the nearby warp gate which led to the Air forge within the Vampire Citadel.[Defiance][Defiance/6][Defiance strategy guide]
- The Howling Heartstone is explicitly named as such in the inventory and its name is reiterated in the official guide.[Defiance][Defiance/5][Defiance strategy guide] The artifact is presumably named for its heart-like appearance and the 'howling' sound of Air passing through it.
- Game files list the item as "pillars_airartifact_d" or "pillars_airartifactkey" and the accompanying lock as "pillars_airartifactlock". Texture files reveal that the heartstone has a transparent light symbol within.[Defiance]
- The Howling Heartstone is the first of a number of heart related artifacts in Legacy of Kain: Defiance - effectively foreshadowing the discovery of Janos Audron and usage of the Heart of Darkness.[Defiance][Defiance/8][Defiance/12] Another artifact retrieved in Vorador's Mansion, the Heart Seeker, also relates to the Heart of Darkness, being named after Raziel's human state and his quest to retrieve it.[Defiance][Defiance/8]. The Heartstone also recalls the Red heart, Green heart and Blue heart found in the Air forge of Soul Reaver 2, which were similarly aligned with the principle of Air and similarly foreshadowed Janos Audron and the Heart of Darkness.[Soul Reaver 2][Soul Reaver 2/6]. The background of heart-related objects begins as far back as Blood Omen: Legacy of Kain with the initial tales of Janos Audron and the heart of darkness, and the presence of heart of darkness objects[Blood Omen][Blood Omen/2] - these were revealed not to be the actual heart of Janos but "representations of the relic", or the hearts of Janos' victims.[Blood Omen/Cut content]
- The Howling Heartstone is one a number of related artifacts that are found in forge portal rooms and immediately used to access the portals. Other artifacts that are treated the same include the Faceted Orb for the Light Forge and the Obsidian Sphere for the Earth Forge.[Defiance][Defiance/4][Defiance/6][Defiance/10][Defiance strategy guide] Although not containing such 'keys', both the Dark and Fire forges have objects identified as "artifacts" in files that control portal activation, although they are not used in the same way the "key" artifacts are.[Defiance][Defiance/4][Defiance/6][Defiance strategy guide] Game files and textures reveal that the these 'artifacts' are similarly counted as an object rather than part of the room (although not as 'keys') and like the Faceted Orb they all have a subtle Darkness or Light symbols within their textures which are virtually invisible in the course of regular gameplay.[Defiance][Defiance/4]
- Like the other artifacts in Defiance, the Howling Heartstone appears in the secret "artifact1a" room.[Defiance]
- Air Forge (Defiance)
- Heart of Darkness (artifact)
- Heart of Darkness (objects)
- Red heart
- Green heart
- Blue heart