|“||"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."|
|— Howling Abyss in-game description (Pre-client Update)|
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.
- For additional ARAM gameplay features, see the ARAM page.
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 on their character pages.
- 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 / eventually led to / '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 Deckard Cain 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 merchant 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.