The Wheel of Life was an artifact used by Kain in Legacy of Kain: Defiance. Discovered at the far end of the main courtyard within the Vampire Citadel shortly into the chapter Explore the Citadel, the item opened the way to the forge areas, allowing Kain to reach a Warp gate to the Light Forge.
The Wheel of Life was a quest item in Legacy of Kain: Defiance that was utilized by Kain in the chapter Explore the Citadel. Discovering the Vampire Citadel in the previous chapter, Kain was able to more fully explore the area in Explore the Citadel but initially found much of the citadel access blocked, with only a long curving courtyard around the central chambers accessible and all other doors locked or sealed - including one at the start of the courtyard area with a notable circular lock.[DEF][DEF-C7]
Following the courtyard along through several partially blocked corridors, Kain was able to reach the end of the passage where it terminated into an open area where the Wheel of Life was placed on a pedestal surrounded by several Feral humans who waited to ambush Kain. Defeating them allowed Kain to recover the the 'Wheel of Life' item.[DEF][DEF-C7]
The Wheel of Life itself was a circular disc of a faded golden color apparently made from a metallic or stone material. The face of the disc was marked with a distinctive design featuring several concentric circles inside a thick rim around the edges. The second circle inward notably featured eight eyes marking the octants of the disc with each 'supported' by a straight line heading directly inward - the lines facing directly upward, downward left and right went in two layers to the central circle, while those in the diagonals only went in to the next layer inward. The central circle was filled with a swirling turquoise and teal design with another eye at the center.[DEF][DEF-C7]
Returning back through the curved passages to the start of the courtyard, Kain could use the Wheel of Life item on the circular lock to open the way to the ancillary structures of the Citadel. The gate unlocked allowed passage through a small connector area to where Kain could jump to reach a sealed tower where a warp gate allowed him to access the forge areas within beginning with the Light Forge.[DEF][DEF-C7]
- The Wheel of Life is explicitly named as such in the inventory and its name is reiterated in the official guide.[DEF][DEF-C7] The artifact is labelled in game files as "cit_artifact_one" and its final holder is listed as "cit_lock_one".[DEF][DEF-C7][DEF-C9]
- The Wheel of Life notably bears a similar name, design and motif to the Wheel of Fate - suggesting that the artifact was related to the Elder God and its worship within Ancient vampire culture.[DEF][DEF-C7][DEF-C9][DEF-C10] Similarly to the Ornamental Shield, the Wheel of Life has a number of eye symbols on it which are likely to be related to the Elder God - unlike the shield however, this is probably due to direct worship of the creature rather than an indirect allusion to the underworld generally.[DEF][DEF-C7][DEF-C2][DEF-C4] The eight marked octants also notably recall Compass-like designs, while the nine eyes - eight in a circle around a central hub - could be considered to relate to the Pillars of Nosgoth.[DEF][DEF-C7]
- Like the other quest items in Defiance, the Wheel of Life appears in the secret "artifact1a" room.[DEF]