"Time for a shakedown."
The Howling Abyss bridge is located in the Freljord and serves as a gateway to the Frostguard citadel. It replaced the Proving Grounds during the Freljord event and later became the first map for the official ARAM game mode.
- is an ancient Iceborn ally that fought against the Frozen Watchers at the battle of the Howling Abyss.
- Avarosan warmother. is Avarosa's reincarnation and
- first lore makes him Professor Lyte's nephew.
- Frostguard warmother. is the seeker for the Frozen Watchers and
- was taken in by the Frostguard.
- constructed the Bridge above the Howling Abyss.
- travelled to the Frostguard citadel through the Howling Abyss bridge.
- Winter's Claw warmother. is Serylda's reincarnation and
- serves the Frostguard.
Tale of the Bridge
"This is more than just a bridge, you know. Maybe it was once a simple thing of stone and mortar, but now it bears the weight of the entire Freljord on its back.
"The fate of this land was decided here, ages ago, in a long and brutal battle. Just look around and listen, that noise is more than the wind - it is the cry of the vanquished, thrown howling into the abyss!
"Everyone's forgotten whothis bridge and why. Everyone's forgotten the war that gave this place its scars. Everyone, but me. I was there! I saw the battle! I died here, and I never left this place! I was bound here to stand guard and sound my if our enemy ever returned.
"And now, now the howling grows louder, and I sense something evil stirring in the abyss, my hand reaches for my war horn. This place will soon see a battle again. One that will shape the Freljord for all time. And if the Freljord falls, so too will the rest of the world.
"Yes, this is more than just a bridge." -
The Seeker's Tale
"The Howling Abyss. A bottomless crevasse surrounded by an ancient fortress carved into a glacier. No one remembers who built this place. No one knows its purpose. No one but me.
"Long before peaks, before the swallowed Shurima, it was the time of the Three Sisters. We were so young back then; Avarosa, Serylda, and me, Lissandra.and , before shattered the broken
"Back then the Frozen Watchers lived here. I do not know where they came from, but I know they were powerful. They gave us gifts, shared their magic, made us immortal. They named us 'Iceborn'.
"In return, we gave them whatever they desired. This mighty fortress, a vast empire, our loyalty, these were a small price to pay. Avarosa did not see it that way. Like a spoiled child she cried out for freedom. She demanded choice. She sowed the seeds of rebellion and betrayal.
"This place is where it happened. On one side, the Frozen Watchers, on the other, Avarosa and her Iceborn horde. Many Iceborn died that day, but in the end, the Watchers fell. Avarosa drove them howling into the abyss.
"I never forgave her. I had my revenge... but that is another story." -
- Bridges of the Iceborn: There are numerous bridges spanning the abyss, such as the Bridge of Sorrows, Bridge of Shadow, and Bridge of the Lost. At its lower ends True Ice and its variants Dark Ice can be found.
- Spiked Barricades: At key points throughout the Howling Abyss, gigantic spiked barricades of stone and iron were set into the walls by the Frostguard, many thousands of years ago. One day, when the Watchers reawaken, these meager defenses may buy some precious time for those above to prepare for the final battle.
- The Hall of the Nine, located there and constructed by the , serves as the protective barrier that seals the Watchers. Every year, several Frostguard climb down its icey walls to get to the Hall of the Nine in order to inspect the barriers state. The Howling Abyss was the location of the last battle that sealed the Watchers several millennia ago.
are the mysterious, magical, and most-loved creatures originating from the Howling Abyss. Poros are equal parts truth, valor, and innocence. The colour of their fur is described as “very light blue, like Freljordian snow”. They have a heart-shaped underbelly because they're made of love. A poro's horns perk up when it's excited and droop down when it's scared. Poros paddle through deep snow with their front paws. Some believe that poros are indestructible—though at one point we animated poros to keel over and twitch if they ran into the Abyss' fountains. Poros stick their tongue out because they are incredibly warm. This is why they can survive the harsh cold environment of the Howling Abyss. are frosted with Freljordian ice crystals and are a favourite treat of this creature. The leader of the Poros is known as the .
Frostguard dwell hidden beneath an eternal winter, deep in the ruins of the ancient Freljord. They live among the ancient ruins to the far north, protecting their leader as she watches over the Howling Abyss. A cult shrouded in secrecy, the Frostguard archive of all Freljords archaic history. Though seemingly peaceful, the truth of the Frostguard's allegiance is far more disturbed. The world had forgotten the terrible enemy that ruled the Freljord long ago and was cast into the depths of the Howling Abyss following a long and brutal battle. And now, whilst the ignorant sleep, Lissandra keeps the Watchers at bay and plots to rule over all of Runeterra. Even so, missionaries and healers from the cult are common throughout the Freljord. The trolls and their king, , have allied themselves with Lissandra, while temporarily lived among the Frostguard.
- For ARAM gameplay features, see the ARAM page.
The objective of Howling Abyss is simple: destroy the enemy nexus. In order to do this, champions must traverse down one path (or lane) in order to attack their enemy at their weakest points they can exploit. Both teams have their lane defended by numerous turrets; each turret grows in strength the closer it gets to its nexus and each turret must be eliminated in order to gain access to the next turret in that lane. Cooperating with fellow summoners is an absolute requirement for success, as it is easy for a champion to find themselves ambushed by enemies in the lanes of the Abyss.
The Howling Abyss is a bottomless crevasse located in the coldest, cruelest, part of the Freljord. Legends say that, long ago, a great battle took place here on the narrow bridge spanning the chasm. No one remembers who fought here, or why, but it is said that if you listen carefully to the wind you can still hear the cries of the vanquished tossed howling into the Abyss.
Gregor and Lyte enforce 'limited' shopping, preventing champions from purchasing items after they have left the fountain and only until after they have been slain in combat (the shop becoming inaccessible is indicated by Gregor fading back into his frozen corpse and Lyte waving goodbye before retiring to his tent)
Gregor and Lyte are hostile to each other.
- Their dialogue can be found here.
- The Bridge above the Howling Abyss was built by at the request of the Three Sisters of the Freljord. After the final battle against the Frozen Watchers, placed a spell on the bridge that would seal the Watchers below but, ultimately, weaken the bridge that would have stood forever without her interference. This was the last time interacted with the Three Sisters.
- In The Eye in the Abyss story, it has been revealed that the bridge above the Howling Abyss had many names during its long history, like: the Proving Grounds, the Murder Bridge, the Howling Arch, Citadel Bridge, or Bridge of Sorrows.
- The Howling Abyss has hosted the Featured Game Modes 'Showdown', 'One for All: Mirror Mode', and 'Legend of the Poro King' (the dedicated summoner spell Poro Toss / Poro Dash eventually led to Mark / Dash's creation for regular use)
- The , the , and the all used to belong to (a spectral horn can be seen strapped to his back)
- Lyte and his robot Geeves are respectively named after Jeffrey 'Lyte' Lin and Kevin 'Geeves' O'Brien.
- Running around the map are little horned furball creatures called
who can be fed a (Howling Abyss' 'trinket's) to make them grow in size.
- If all ten players feed the same Poro their Poro-Snaxs it will 'explode' into 10 new Poros who will then proceed to run around the map as well.
- They used to be killed by the Nexus Obelisk and passive lightning bolts (now they simply run away in fear)
- The turrets for each team might be styled after the Iceborn (blue side) and the Frozen Watchers (purple side) with the game mode itself recreating their battle.
- The gap between the purple nexus and its Obelisk features a silhouette resembling Frostguard citadel ruled over by the Seeker) (referencing the purple side being the entrance to the
- The 'Watcher turrets' being purple as well as the Watchers themselves appearing to have a single middle eye might be implying they are related to Voidborn species (he himself is not a Watcher, but a Void rift in the Freljord is likely)
- Standing on the fountain does not grant increased health or mana regen.
- The map features many instances of destructible terrain:
- If a champion is killed near one of the giant statues skirting each side of the bridge, the corresponding one will crumble and break.
- Another bridge in the far background will crumble and fall immediately after any team scoring First Blood.
- Walking past the outermost purple turret will cause a couple of bricks to fall from the crack in the ground nearby.
- Walking towards the left wall next to the blue inhibitor turret will cause the giant pillar nearby to crash downwards.
- Waiting 30 seconds after winning a match will play a monologue by telling the story of the place.
- Gregor is voiced by Joshua Tomar (who also voices )
- Gregor is the only other person who knows the real history of the Freljord (the other being the
who worked for centuries to erase it and distort it)
- Gregor and "I am Iceborn". share the quote
- Gregor doesn't know murdered Avarosa nor that she singlehandedly rewrote Freljordian history (he assumes the world is ruled by Iceborn)
- "Sorry, fresh out of implies Gregor knows of the Marai (or is just making fun of the Tidecaller) "
- "So you want to hear the story of this place? Of my glorious death? Stay a while and listen, I might tell you that and more" might be referencing from Diablo.
- "You're making me angry! You won't like me when I'm angry" references Hulk from Marvel Comics.
- "This! Is! Freljord!" references 300 by Frank Miller ("This! Is! Sparta!")
- Lyte is trying to decipher the history Frostguard citadel might become factors in (not) warning of the Watchers' return. worked to cover up, and sometimes catches glimpses of the Watchers down below. His senility and his proximity to the
- "Are might be referencing the sand witch I have heard so much about? Hmm... now I'm hungry... " (eventually ) and is a pun on 'sandwich'.
- "Is it true what I've heard about implies there's a relationship going on between the Prodigal Explorer and the Lady of Luminosity. and ... hmm?"
- " might referencing , we could make a... a transforming robot!"Transformers.
- "So many people have died here, I should call this place Murder Bridge... no, no, the Howling Abyss is definitely cooler!" references the announcer sometimes saying "Welcome to the Murder Bridge!" rather than "Welcome to the Howling Abyss!"
- "Its dangerous to go alone... take this!" references The Legend of Zelda.
- "Have fun storming the bridge!" references The Princess Bride ("Have fun storming the castle!")
- "What are you buying... what are you selling?" references the from Resident Evil 4.
Howling Abyss now on PBE!
It's been a while since I first talked to you guys about making ARAM an official gameplay mode, and today I've got something awesome to share with you. For the past few months I've been working with an exceptional team of artists to create a space that's an appropriate setting for both the epic battles that occur in ARAM and within the world of Runeterra at large. As a result, we've completely reworked the Proving Grounds and, in effect, created something entirely new.
Now, instead of fighting on a random bridge over a black void, you'll be fighting on the Howling Abyss, an ancient landmark in Freljord where the Iceborn finally overthrew their oppressors and sent them tumbling into the chasm below. As you might have guessed from these mysterious journals, there's more (a lot more!) our story team would love to tell you about Freljord - but for now, you'll have to wait.
Anyway, work is still ongoing on the map, and it's yet a few patches away from release but we just wanted to invite you guys in a bit earlier than normal to get your thoughts as we begin to polish it up. The environment team will be actively reading the forum and looking for your feedback, so please let us know what you think!
Additionally I wanted to let you guys know that we are actively working on an official matchmaking queue for ARAM and plan to launch it with the map when it's ready. The queue isn't currently enabled on PBE as there's still a good bit of tech work that needs to be resolved to handle the number of players on the environment, but we're fully committed to giving you guys the best experience that we can. So with that, check out the map and explore what we've created; who knows, maybe you'll even find some surprises!
New ARAM Feature: Rerolls
A few weeks ago, I let you know we were working on a matchmaking queue for Howling Abyss, but it wasn't quite ready for testing. Well, with today's PBE patch that's changed! Once PBE comes back up you can try out our new queue and help us test out a new ARAM feature we've added especially for this queue: rerolls.
While the random element is a really fun part of Howling Abyss, we also understand there are times you simply don't want to play a particular champion. That's why we created the reroll feature specifically for this queue. When you're really not in the mood to play your particular champion on Murder Bridge, you can reroll and get a different random character instead.
Here's how it works. As you play matchmade games on Howling Abyss, win or lose, you'll earn points you can save up to purchase a reroll in champion select. You'll earn a base number of points every match, along with some bonus points based on the number of champions you own. While there is a cap on the number of points you can store up, you'll be able to reroll multiple times in a single champion select if you've got the points.And don't worry about wasting your hard-earned points on queue dodgers. If someone leaves your match at champion select, everyone in the game gets a refund except the player who dodged.