2018 Halloween Season Roundup – Part Two

2018 Halloween Roundup (1)

Congrats! You’ve made it this far after reading Part One of my Halloween season roundup. Part Two has plenty more to discuss with a wide selection of scare attractions from around the UK. Some were fab, some were mediocre and others were downright awful. It goes to show that everyone has a completely different experience when visiting, from how the scare mazes are portrayed to whether the amount of actors makes a difference to increasing the intensity. I’ll let you decide if you agree with my reviews. Let’s get on with this!

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Okay, I knew this was going to a good event but I didn’t quite realise how good! Being run by the same people as Tulleys, it’s easy to see why this was one of my favourite events to visit. There may have only been 5 mazes compared to 8 at Tulleys Farm, but the quality was not missing here. Each maze had a story to tell and the use of the space for the actors to jump out at you from every corner was perfect. A particular favourite of mine was The Shed – forget chainsaws people, they used a motherfucking leaf blower. If that doesn’t scare the crap out of you simply for the sheer noise then I don’t know what will. Another favourite was The Attic and Squealers Yard. The theming, you just cannot fault how awesome it is and how energetic all the actors were. High praise for The Howl – definitely one to check out when you get the chance.

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I returned to Fantasy Island to experience their Halloween event. Whilst I only spent a few hours here and it was incredibly cold, I managed to go in all 3 of their mazes. First off, I rarely get lost in mazes (unless it is Sub Species at Alton Towers in which case, that’s a given) but with the mazes at Fear Island, I got lost countless times simply for going THE WRONG BLOODY WAY. I enjoyed Psycho Mansion as it told an interesting haunted mansion style story that I felt was incredibly scary for young children – in a similar vein to Creepy Caves Unearthed. Temple of Terror was very confusing for a maze but I did enjoy the UV paint effects and I couldn’t fault the actors. For me, the story was quite weak but the concept was unqiue. Finally, your cliché of a maze, Carnivhell wasn’t scary for me and I think was the weakest maze for me out of them all. Despite that, I did like seeing the Halloween theming around the park including pumkins, skeletons and cobwebs – at least it looked like a Halloween event was on than just the addition of three mazes and a circus show (paid extra and not included as part of the Fear Island wristband). Of course, no trip to Fantasy Island is complete without a ride on The Beast, how a Mondial Top Scan should be operated! 😉

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I am so glad I gave Xtreme Scream Park another shot after the disappointing experience I endured last year. You cannot deny that the awards Xtreme Scream Park won are for a reason. The quality inside the mazes were incredible, from the show experience to the actors to the lighting to the music. Each maze can be a real attack on the senses, especially with Ash Hell Penintentiary and Hoodoo Voodoo. I got some really good jump scares from prisoners calling me ‘my bitch’ to a giant Voodoo doll lurching towards me. There may not be a lot of theming around the park but it was a really good experience. Atmosphere was lacking, and considering it was a busy Friday night, I wanted more – there were barely any roaming actors around but that could be down to the fact that I missed them whilst walking around! Tip: Do The Village first and then work your way back towards the entrance, this was the quickest and most effective way to enjoy each maze. Read my full review of Xtreme Scream Park here.

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I finally got myself to Burton Screamfest this year and honestly, I am still undecided. I don’t understand the hype it receives from other guests as I found other scare events to be more enjoyable and terrifying, from The Howl to Dr Frights to Xtreme Scream Park. I will say this, I bloody loved Dia De Los Muertos. Where else would you find a maze in a cornfield? The booming sound of chainsaws in the distance, a short drive on a tractor truck and a bunch of crazy Mexicans celebrating the Day of the Dead. This was by far the best maze of the night and I wish I had the chance to experience this maze more than once – it was that fab! There are some very solid mazes here but there was something lacking. I cannot put my finger on it as to what was missing. It’s a very small space which made it very crowded at times and again, another evening where I didn’t see many roaming actors – only a young girl who referred to me as a ‘Vampire Clown’ for my bright pink coat. 😉 Read my full review of Burton Screamfest here.

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Scarefest at Alton Towers will forever be a part of my Halloween season, even if just for the scare mazes and night rides on Nemesis and Wickerman (OH MY GOD, IT’S SUCH A BEAUTY!) Sub Species has still managed to maintain the top spot as my favourite maze at Scarefest, and this year, it proved to me that the intensity is still there from its opening year in 2015. I can’t quite put into words how intense it can be having actors throwing you in all sorts of directions to disorientate and confuse you. Even the chainsaw at the end was intimidating! Project 42, the new maze for this year was pretty creepy. I was at the back of the group and got most of the scares – legs were grabbed, arms were stroked and I had many moments of actors creeping up on me then disappearing. It’s a nice addition to the line-up and a good use of the Nemesis Sub Terra building – you wouldn’t think you were in a ride building. I also enjoyed watching the Alton Ancestors on TowersStreet, a great introduction to the Scarefest event but this is where it stops. I really wish the Scarefest theming was taken to the rest of the park – the atmosphere disappears and it ends up being a standard theme park that closes late.

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I have never been to Lightwater Valley before so to have a chance to experience The Ultimate was going to be an interesting feat. And to confirm, I did get bruises on my legs. Of course, with it being half term and Halloween, it is only fitting that a Halloween event occur, Frightwater Valley to be exact. I am not going to brush over this as anything mindblowing because it’s easy to see that there is a severe lack of money here. They had a scare maze and a scare walkthrough – both were horrifically bad. They did have a chainsaw as part of their maze and what appeared to be a ‘scare cam’ set up outside for people to watch those unfortunate enough to experience the maze. It was lifeless and next to no atmosphere, but the park did try to make an attempt. Don’t go in with any expectation and you won’t be disappointed. One thing I will say, Lightwater Valley reminded me very much of the early day Paultons Park from the 90s. If only someone was able to give the place some money and try to rejuvenate the place – considering it has one hell of a crazy coaster that’s iconic for how incredibly OUT OF CONTROL it is.

It has been one hell of a roadtrip – and a good use of my time off work 😉 – I have been through countless amount of mazes, scared by plenty of scare actors and poked, prodded, grabbed and pushed around, I wouldn’t change anything. Next year is certainly going to be interesting in terms of events and where I plan to go. Hopefully I may venture abroad and visit a bunch of European parks and their scare events. Who knows? Until 2019, I’ll be waiting for you, Halloween season… 😉

That’s all for now!

Lottie xoxo

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