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Fright Nights 2019 - Spoilers

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All things spoilers for Fright Nights 2019 are discussed here!

 

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I attended Press Night tonight, and I'll give some brief spoilery thoughts about the mazes. However, it's very hard to judge the mazes based on run-throughs of tonight; I experienced them in such small groups (and on more than one occasion, alone), making it unfair to judge.

 

Creek Freak Massacre

This will get a very good reaction from the masses. It's very well themed, has lots of good effects, good opportunities for the actors to scare you, and of course chainsaws. There's some multi-route aspects and I encountered 3 chainsaws during my goes. And, importantly, this doesn't feel like a Thorpe's attempt at Chop Shop; it feels original.

 

The maze is quite long (probably the second longest, behind Platform) which is good too.

 

I have concerns about the reliability of the effects (not that these detract from the experience in fairness), the reliability of chainsaws (they require regular petrol changes) and how this will cope when the park is busy. I hope those fears are unfounded, but for now, the jury is out.

 

Terror at Amity High

Just a flash mob/dance routine, with actors interacting with the crowd in between performances. However, this is really well done, and a refreshing change from all of Thorpe's angsty characters in the past.

 

Do or Die

Seen some changes this year, and the theming within the 3 containers you go in is largely very good. Outside them is basically the same as last year and doesn't feel great.

 

There's a very cool sequence in one of the containers. However, I don't know how it will work in the long run with larger groups. So again, I'll wait and see.

 

Blair Witch

Very dense forestry and very good layout given the space, but the actors' script is a bit weak. Fun and different, but nothing special.

 

Platform 15

Has a new ending, which I'm sure will go down well in big groups and be a hit with the public. I wasn't a fan of it though. Actor numbers felt a bit sparse but I hear they will improve.

 

Living Nightmare

Same as last year but with a slightly different ending. Probably the best themed ending they've done, but not all that scary.

 

Containment

Rooms 1 and 2 are different this year. I hadn't done this for a couple of years, so had forgotten that it's pretty decent. Would recommend if you haven't done it for a while.

 

Parkwide Theming, Audio and Lighting

Minimal. Didn't notice anything aside from a couple of hanging bodybags and some zombies. Colossus apparently has some stuff but I hate Colossus so didn't pay attention.

 

 

Verdict

For now, it's safe to say that this year's Fright Nights is significantly better than last year. Though that was not very hard to achieve. Every attraction has seen work to try and improve it, though some attractions have missed the mark for now. As ever, I can't give a fairer review until I've done the mazes in a more normal condition.

 

Creek Freak will hit the spot it needs to for the park are it'll go down well. I enjoy aspects of it, though in reality it's not completely my cup of tea. I just hope my operational fears are unfounded.

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21 hours ago, JoshC. said:

All things spoilers for Fright Nights 2019 are discussed here!

 

---

 

I attended Press Night tonight, and I'll give some brief spoilery thoughts about the mazes. However, it's very hard to judge the mazes based on run-throughs of tonight; I experienced them in such small groups (and on more than one occasion, alone), making it unfair to judge.

 

Creek Freak Massacre

This will get a very good reaction from the masses. It's very well themed, has lots of good effects, good opportunities for the actors to scare you, and of course chainsaws. There's some multi-route aspects and I encountered 3 chainsaws during my goes. And, importantly, this doesn't feel like a Thorpe's attempt at Chop Shop; it feels original.

 

The maze is quite long (probably the second longest, behind Platform) which is good too.

 

I have concerns about the reliability of the effects (not that these detract from the experience in fairness), the reliability of chainsaws (they require regular petrol changes) and how this will cope when the park is busy. I hope those fears are unfounded, but for now, the jury is out.

 

Terror at Amity High

Just a flash mob/dance routine, with actors interacting with the crowd in between performances. However, this is really well done, and a refreshing change from all of Thorpe's angsty characters in the past.

 

Do or Die

Seen some changes this year, and the theming within the 3 containers you go in is largely very good. Outside them is basically the same as last year and doesn't feel great.

 

There's a very cool sequence in one of the containers. However, I don't know how it will work in the long run with larger groups. So again, I'll wait and see.

 

Blair Witch

Very dense forestry and very good layout given the space, but the actors' script is a bit weak. Fun and different, but nothing special.

 

Platform 15

Has a new ending, which I'm sure will go down well in big groups and be a hit with the public. I wasn't a fan of it though. Actor numbers felt a bit sparse but I hear they will improve.

 

Living Nightmare

Same as last year but with a slightly different ending. Probably the best themed ending they've done, but not all that scary.

 

Containment

Rooms 1 and 2 are different this year. I hadn't done this for a couple of years, so had forgotten that it's pretty decent. Would recommend if you haven't done it for a while.

 

Parkwide Theming, Audio and Lighting

Minimal. Didn't notice anything aside from a couple of hanging bodybags and some zombies. Colossus apparently has some stuff but I hate Colossus so didn't pay attention.

 

 

Verdict

For now, it's safe to say that this year's Fright Nights is significantly better than last year. Though that was not very hard to achieve. Every attraction has seen work to try and improve it, though some attractions have missed the mark for now. As ever, I can't give a fairer review until I've done the mazes in a more normal condition.

 

Creek Freak will hit the spot it needs to for the park are it'll go down well. I enjoy aspects of it, though in reality it's not completely my cup of tea. I just hope my operational fears are unfounded.

I am going to start off is the conductor on the ceiling like on the first year for platform.

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Went tonight, better than last year still a lot of improvement required.

Creek Freak, intro was rushed not giving a background to the story. The maze was fun however I didn't find it very intense despite making contact with one of the chainsaws. Themeing was cool though.

Platform 15, good new ending however I think it could be executed better.

Do or die, good fun however the groups are too big resulting in less scares.

Amity high was excellent, the actors were having great interactions with guests and the flash mob was something different and what the park needs as a filler. 

 

Didn't do the others as was enjoying the rides.

 

Here's my issue, what is sold to the public through online POV's from press night, being batched in small groups of under is very different to what you get with a group size of 15, where the experience seems rushed and more about getting people through the attraction, so yes the event may be 10 times better than last year however would last nights reviewers have the same opinion on the attractions on a peak Saturday night? Probably not but we shall see how the park handles the crowds in the coming weeks.

 

Overall its good and I would still recommend a visit, however I think its time for an over-hall and bring back at least 1 hands on shoulders maze for old times sake.

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What was Platform 15's ending? Shoved into a shed as an actor mumbles some questions, then someone bangs on a window and a strobe light goes off. Then everyone slowly walks out confused. Did something go wrong on my run or something? It was incredibly bad.

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7 minutes ago, Wumbamillio said:

What was Platform 15's ending? Shoved into a shed as an actor mumbles some questions, then someone bangs on a window and a strobe light goes off. Then everyone slowly walks out confused. Did something go wrong on my run or something? It was incredibly bad.

My experience...

 



Actor gives some talk about something, a planted actor who joins your group at the end of the tunnel starts coughing up liquid, strobe light goes off, actor bangs on window, you're encouraged to leave, then an actor is waiting in the second room for a final scare.

 

If it goes down like that regularly, it'll go down well. It's probably the least bad ending Platform has had, but not my personal favourite.

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That sounds much better, but in such a small space with so many people in there (presumably there were far less people in batches on the press night you went) then nobody will be able to see it. Leaving it just as a flashy light and some banging. It just doesnt make up for the long tunnel of nothing that comes before it, even though the middle part of the maze I really liked.

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2 hours ago, Wumbamillio said:

That sounds much better, but in such a small space with so many people in there (presumably there were far less people in batches on the press night you went) then nobody will be able to see it. Leaving it just as a flashy light and some banging. It just doesnt make up for the long tunnel of nothing that comes before it, even though the middle part of the maze I really liked.

I agree about the space issue (and I think that's the same problem for Creek Freak's pre show as well). The issue with a small group is that it was easier to notice what was going to happen; it depends on a large group to be successful.

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Fright nights was much better tonight than on previews Friday.

Creek freak was intense being split off and made to do the maze alone, which involved actors all over me and hair in my mouth. Also got my first kill operating the saw in the middle that was a cool interaction. I also saw a guy in a  headlock, @Platform15fan this is why I guess they tell you not to film as well your phone could break! And I imagine your mates Iphone 3 must be worth a bit of top dollar nowadays so I would not recommend. People were running out and panic attacks were occurring so its clearly doing its job.

 

Blair witch was vastly improved, its just a shame it took them 6 years to bring it too potential.

 

Living nightmare is meh and weak with cool themeing. Boring same old same old.

 

Last niggle is group sizing's, the queue is 10 mins, why not double the queue length and halve the group size to 10 so those in the group actually get a good experience, it shouldn't be a squash to get in Creeks door. 

 

Overall this years event is highly recommended on an off peak night. 

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16 minutes ago, Glitch said:

Oh and then despite the short queue times today there seemed to be quite a few enthusiasts on park abusing the RAP queue to go round the mazes over and over again. Why not have a break in between and join the 10min main queue line?

I can’t help but feel you are referring to myself and my group here. I have a genuine reason for having a RAP and we use the system properly. We did the attraction, and waited for the allocated time on the card before re-entering. If that is ‘abusing the pass’ then please tell me how I’m supposed to use it. 

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4 minutes ago, MilesK said:

I can’t help but feel you are referring to myself and my group here. I have a genuine reason for having a RAP and we use the system properly. We did the attraction, and waited for the allocated time on the card before re-entering. If that is ‘abusing the pass’ then please tell me how I’m supposed to use it. 

Edited. Comment removed, not necessarily there are other previously banned forum members, who were users who are using it constantly.

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4 minutes ago, Glitch said:

Edited. Comment removed, not necessarily there are other previously banned forum members, who were users who are using it constantly.

Oh no yeah, there are definitely enthusiasts out there who do abuse RAP’s who really don’t need them, I just want to clarify that the comment wasn’t directed at myself, as we were re-running Creek a fair bit, but I do genuinely need a RAP at the moment and we use it correctly. It’s such a flawed system, but that’s a discussion for another time...

 

In other news, Fright Nights is honestly great this year. Will write out a review post it in this thread tomorrow!

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35 minutes ago, Glitch said:

Fright nights was much better tonight than on previews Friday.

Creek freak was intense being split off and made to do the maze alone, which involved actors all over me and hair in my mouth. Also got my first kill operating the saw in the middle that was a cool interaction. I also saw a guy in a  headlock, @Platform15fan this is why I guess they tell you not to film as well your phone could break! And I imagine your mates Iphone 3 must be worth a bit of top dollar nowadays so I would not recommend. People were running out and panic attacks were occurring so its clearly doing its job.

 

Blair witch was vastly improved, its just a shame it took them 6 years to bring it too potential.

 

Living nightmare is meh and weak with cool themeing. Boring same old same old.

 

Last niggle is group sizing's, the queue is 10 mins, why not double the queue length and halve the group size to 10 so those in the group actually get a good experience, it shouldn't be a squash to get in Creeks door. 

 

Overall this years event is highly recommended on an off peak night. 

I have no intentions to film I seriously don't want mine broke @Glitch and I don't want to be band from the park lime ally law 

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OK, so I have tried all the horror mazes (just the mazes alone) from this weekend and seen what the first weekend of Fright Nights 2019 had to offer as a regular guest, not as a celeb VIP vlogger who gets offered social media trinkets alongside an upgraded/unrealistic experience of the mazes by the Merlin bobs. 

 

As a whole, I gotta start saying there is no doubt that compared to last year, there is an overall improvement in the event in terms of how it was delivered, but be under no illusion that the improvements are very, very minimal. I still walked around the park at night getting very similar vibes to the disaster of 2018, from the over-use of too many bright white floodlights, to the inconsistent audio management, lack of proper park-wide theming and still some questionable mazes. It's better than last year, but still riddled with faults and here's what I observed and think of each area of the event.

 

I stress this is my experience of the night and acknowledge runs through each maze are different for every guest:

 

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Park & Ride Theming:

I would say the level of theming is pretty much the same as 2018 park-wide, though there were some odd exceptions in place which I liked.

 

For example, Colossus's station looked fantastic, especially at night where the ceiling lights had all their bulbs changed to a glowing red and the spotlights underneath the train a vidid green, which meant not a single white light was present anywhere inside. To top that, there were plenty of hanging skulls, cobwebs, hand-painted signs everywhere too and there was a really effective smoke machine pumping smoke everywhere in the station underneath the centre of the train. I thought this set a really, really nice atmosphere at night and reminded me of when Colossus' station used to look during Fright Nights pre-2010 and I loved it.

 

But then, if you look at any other ride or coaster in the park? Nothing. Absolutely nothing. Not a single other ride was decorated for the event which confused me, as it seemed as though the park went all-in with Colossus but then couldn't be bothered with the rest of their rides after that point and so gave up. It's a real shame because the difference that made to Colossus was substantial and really added to the atmosphere inside. Hopefully the park will do more changes like this as I thought it was really nice and effective.

 

As for park theming, it's almost non-existent. There's the usual Walking Dead props near the entrance bridge, Swarm's pathway and Old Town, but nothing which stood out. There were also white body bags splattered in blood hanging up in the trees and supports around Saw and Depth Charge, though the illusion was ruined when 20mph gusts of wind were blowing them around everywhere. Also, the Dome at night was filled with smoke and a spotlight moving around the ceiling too. Not quite sure what the purpose of this was, but hey, I liked it.

 

Overall, whilst there still wasn't that much, I do hope the park in the future will start theming their coasters and rides like Colossus because that was a great move.

 

Audio Mangement:

It's pretty much identical to last year - inconsistent, inconsistent, inconsistent.

 

All the coasters were playing themed audio to Fright Nights in their stations such as Nick Hutson's audio on Colossus, Stealth and Inferno, to Charlie Clouser playing on Stealth's loading, or the FN WWTP playlist again after 3pm (ugh), but amongst all that, once again, the majority of rides were playing their usual themes with Detonator being by far the worst example with it's obnoxious "chirp" noise playing across the park every few minutes, depending on whether the staff member remembers to stop it before it plays as the carriage drops. That eliminated any potential dark or spooky atmosphere across the park, and this mix of FN audio mixed with regular audio sounded really sloppy.

It's a real shame because some of the audio playing in areas works well and when this is overshadowed by the regular stuff, it kills the atmosphere. Really hope the park can finally get to grips with this system because audio for Fright Nights has been a mess for years now. So overall, it's still a mess with inconsistencies present everywhere left, right and centre still. Still hoping Midnight Syndicate will make a return to the park eventually just like in the good ol' days of this event, but realise it's likely not gonna happen because of licensing costs, or something (apparently).

 

Lighting and Atmosphere:
There have been some improvements to the lighting used across the park in places where gone are those disgusting rainbow-changing LED light rigs from 2018 and the randomly placed lights from X on the entrance bridge, so the lighting was overall less jarring, but again, there are so many areas of the park vividly lit in blinding white lights that it feels more like walking on a driving range than an actual theme park. Where are the colour filters? Really hope at one point someone at the park can eliminate all if not most of these white lights, especially the one at Platform 15's entrance where it's too friggin' bright to read the sign at night still, similar to Dead Creek Woods last year with the same lighting problem.

 

Mazes

Walking Dead: Do or Die:

It still baffles me as to why this maze still actually exists given how poor it was last year in my view, because this was by far the weakest maze at the event. It's had a slight re-work on the route whereby you go through more of those shipping containers, and the route winds back and forth more, but it's still the same thing in almost every area.

 

Some differences noted are the outside walls are both black and white this time with some blood-spattered cloth for decoration, the audio in the maze was consistently louder with rock music playing throughout, and the ending had a new scene with shrines and names written on the flooring and walls (will refer to this scene again in a bit).

 

The actors themselves? 6 in total were what I encountered from start to end, not the 10+ all the vloggers were capturing in their YouTube videos, so be aware of this false presentation they are giving that there are loads inside. Apart from that, it was very similar to last year - dull, boring, plenty of black walls again and lacking any scares. Weakest maze of the night.

 

3/10

 

Walking Dead: Living Nightmare:
Nothing much to say on this as it's the same as ever. The only real change has been in two areas. The first is when waiting in the tunnel, there is a pre-recorded voice of Negan telling the guests the safety announcements which was a nice touch and the other was the ending, where you walk through some foliage with a few actors hiding behind them jumping out at you. I've not watched the show to know who these characters are, but I've heard they are the 'Whisperers'. Either way, the ending was pretty decent, despite everything else being the same.

 

4/10

 

Platform 15:
I gotta say, despite some reviewers saying this year was so much better than before because of the new ending, I thought this was the weakest run-through I have ever had on Platform 15. The first reason is because when confronted with the Canada Creek Railway train, the fire which shoots from the chimney usually fires up similar to a flame gun for a couple of seconds and looks really effective.

 

However, the effect only emitted a single, pathetic small puff of fire into the air and that was it, thus not startling guests as much as it used to. There was only one actor in this area too which irritated me, as there's usually at least 3 typically (again, do not think VIP press night videos are accurate to the real thing a guest will experience, as they showed loads in this bit online!)

 

Anyway, as we approached and walked through the house, one thing stood out to me - where's the audio? The house was dead silent with the speakers turned off, and the unsettling creepy audio used in there in previous years was now gone, along with the incredibly potent smell pods, which really took away the unsettling atmosphere inside. There was only one actor in here also.

 

Finally, the tunnel at the end. Pretty much identical right until the end, although there was a very serious problem with the light leakage this year, as there were more tears in the roof of the fabric than I have ever seen before, and this was a real tension-killer as the group could see ages ahead any actors hiding. But before long, we approached the exit and new ending, which appeared to look like an old station office I think? We were told a mini backstory and as we walked through, an actor jumped out from the wall with the timing of the sound effects and strobe light starting before walking outside and that was it.

 

I would say the ending is definitely an improvement on last year's embarrassing version, but the rest of the maze before it fell short in many areas sadly, so the overall package I would say is less compared to 2018, even if it has a new story and better ending.

 

4/10

 

Blair Witch:

I have never been the biggest fan of this maze every time it's been at the park, but holy heck, this year I really thought it was brilliant! The new route it takes through the woods was really effective and nicely routed and is far, far longer compared to 2018 with more confined spaces through the foliage. But the best part for me by far was the use of lighting or lack thereof, because there were only half a dozen of very dim lights in the whole attraction, all of which were coloured blue. In-between these areas, it was pitch black in so many areas when walking through that I had to shield my eyes many times in the fear something was going to grab me out of nowhere, whether it was an actor or more foliage. Seriously, it was very well done at making the guest feel unsettled and on edge whilst walking through.

 

As for the ending, the same tunnel you had to crawl through was there, followed by the shed at the end, which had been narrowed down with wall either side with hand prints all over them with writing, followed my a much dimmer strobe light hidden with actors in the smoke. This was so much better than last year's embarrassing excuse of a overly-bright techno-rave RGB LED light used.

 

Overall, it's the same kind of experience as last year, but a lot, lot longer with more confined spaces, a far improved route, much better use of lighting and SFX and an improved finale. Definitely the best outdoor maze experience I have had at any Fright Nights yet.

 

7/10

 

Creak Freak Masacre:

And now, the newest maze everyone is bound to be speaking about this year and after trying it, it is clear this is going to be the standout attraction of 2019 and I thought it was the strongest maze by far at the event, really liked it!

 

The maze itself is quite noisy inside with rock music playing again similar to Do or Die and once you step foot inside the first room where the pre-show, you know this is going to be such a level-up from all the other mazes at Fright Nights. There was smoke bellowing everywhere inside immediately, you are separated down different routes after being introduced by an actor. In my instance, I had the tunnel which was quite confined and had a slight elevation at the start before lowering back down again, similar to the tunnel Experiment 10 used to have.

 

Once you leave the tunnel, the route mostly consisted of going up and down where Loggers Leap's old cattlepen queueline used to go, all lit up in red with lots of themed walls and actors hiding behind corners and walls, all with pretty good makeup I thought. Before long, you encounter a few rooms, the first from memory being a scene where someone with a giant electric blade is slicing another person in half who is screaming for help. Quite a nice effect I thought, especially with the interaction of the actors and use of lighting effects. Soon after, you encounter a room with bodies hanging from the ceiling and there was a podium in the middle, presumably for the actors to stand. The yellow lighting in here was nicely with an actor with the first chainsaw and was the first moment where my heart really began to race as I couldn't see them through the hanging body bags.

 

After this point, there were a couple more corners before you approach a strobe maze section which had very loud rock music in there again, only this time, an actor pointed me a route through either 'Goodwood' or 'Badwood'. I got Badwood and what I was faced with was what I can only describe as a miniature version of The Asylum's chickenwire fencing strobe maze, rammed with shed loads of smoke. To add to this, there are in fact dead ends in places, just like what The Freezer used to have in it's first couple of years I believe, so this made it quite unnerving for me knowing I had to find my way out through some incredibly disorientating strobes with the familiar sound of a revving chainsaw teasing me in the corners of the room!

 

And as predicted, whilst still in the strobe maze lost, a guy with another chainsaw appeared out of nowhere and honestly made me leap from my skin because I was so disorientated by the strobe lights that I couldn't see him properly. This was undoubtedly the biggest scare in the entire maze for me and I haven't been on edge that much in a maze since first doing the Chop Shop at Tulleys Farm. Very, very well done!

 

After you finally make yourself out the strobe section, there is one final scene where another actor with a chainsaw jumps out and chases you from the exit through the flaps and the maze is over.

 

Overall, this is a really, really nice maze and I don't know if this is true or not, but I've heard the team who designed this were the same ones who work on ScareFest at Alton Towers. But regardless, commendments to the team who created this maze as it was really refreshing to see once again another original idea executed very well, similar to Big Top, Experiment 10 and The Asylum. In terms of ranking, I still prefer Big Top and Asylum to Creak Freak Masacre, but I would put it above Experiment 10, but it isn't their most extreme maze yet to me as the park claim.

 

So yeah, job well done!

 

8/10

 

--------------------

 

As an event, I will give credit to the teams who pulled off a great new maze and I really hope this one actually lasts a few years and doesn't suffer the same fate as the Big Top. But overall, Fright Nights 2019 as a package still is not there at the moment as being a great event. It's an OK event still in my books. To me, to be a great year, the park needs far more than just a single great maze to save its skin. Besides the Terror at Amity High lot, there were no other roaming actors this night and things such as park-wide theming, atmosphere, lighting and audio matter hugely in my view as there's more to a Halloween event than just horror mazes. If the park can finally get to grips in these areas in addition to giving us more mazes like CFM (indoor ones), they are back in business.

 

For now though, 2019 is better than 2018, but still not great just yet. We are seeing small improvements in places to bring it back to the golden years of 2007-2009 once more, which fills me with some hope at last. Let's just hope the park can continue on this trajectory.

 

One last thing I want to add quickly to those thinking of going - if you have been watching videos on YouTube from all these vloggers lately with POVs through all the mazes and them saying how "sick" this year Is when they were at the VIP press night, I warn you now, as a regular guest, a lot of what they experienced that night you will not experience yourself as I had. Whether it's getting shoved into a cubicle on Do or Die or having 10+ actors in every maze. I can't stress enough to be very wary of what you see from that night online and not to be mislead thinking x, y and z will happen in the mazes. These people are clearly in Merlin's good graces (especially when the park put a picture of Sickstone inside Do or Die on one of the shrines in the final scene as a really poor version of an Easter egg...... yes, really) so please treat what you see with some caution.

Fright Nights 2019 - 5/10

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11 hours ago, Glitch said:

Last niggle is group sizing's, the queue is 10 mins, why not double the queue length and halve the group size to 10 so those in the group actually get a good experience, it shouldn't be a squash to get in Creeks door. 

Now this is an interesting one. At what point should they start reducing the group sizes? And at what point should they start increasing them again if the queue becomes too long? 

 

It's something that has no clear cut answer, but I'd be interested to know what Thorpe's take on it is. The park want to get as many people through the mazes as possible to increase maze 'ridership' (and we see that especially during half term when the mazes struggle to cope), so it makes sense to keep group sizes the same in that respect. That number is going to be one of the most important numbers to them.

 

But then, generally speaking, small groups = better experience (not always, but often). The park should want to give better experiences and improve maze satisfaction and guest scores as much as possible. But how many people are going to notice (or care) that they're getting a better experience for waiting slightly longer? People are more likely to moan about a longer queue time than they are to praise a really good experience.

 

My guess is the park try and just make it so a maze is effectively a walk on before batching smaller groups. Internally, it will make for better numbers (more people going through the mazes quicker) and reduces the risk of complaints.

10 hours ago, Platform15fan said:

@JoshC. What's different in containment room 1 and 2 I am getting my booking through next week for the 21st 

Room 1 is the same basic principle, but with new theming. Room 2 is completely different and has a completely different phobia as it's theme.

 

9 hours ago, Marhelorpe said:

Still hoping Midnight Syndicate will make a return to the park eventually just like in the good ol' days of this event, but realise it's likely not gonna happen because of licensing costs, or something (apparently).

This intrigues me. Midnight Syndicate are royalty free as far as I know; all they need is permission and to have a notice somewhere saying they use the music. Presumably it's not as simple as that and that could be hidden issues, but the park never seemed to have said issues up to 2015 (and then 2016/17 they used IMAscore).

9 hours ago, Marhelorpe said:

Platform 15:
I would say the ending is definitely an improvement on last year's embarrassing version, but the rest of the maze before it fell short in many areas sadly, so the overall package I would say is less compared to 2018, even if it has a new story and better ending.

 

This is a shame. Platform had been one of my favourite mazes in 2017 and 2018, though I thought it was a bit flat on Thursday. I had hopes it may have been the actors just needing more of a chance to get into the groove of things. Hopefully it grows as the event goes on.

 

Quote

Creak Freak Masacre:

Overall, this is a really, really nice maze and I don't know if this is true or not, but I've heard the team who designed this were the same ones who work on ScareFest at Alton Towers.

The Towers team were involved, as were MMM (the first time the company's higher creative team have been involved in a Fright Nights attraction since Asylum I believe, since they usually only work on main rides). I also believe that Theme3 (who were involved in Experiment 10 and Cabin in the Woods' theming) were involved with the theming of the attraction.

 

Creek Freak had a very big budget this (definitely one of the biggest a single maze has had in recent years), and I think that shows. I hope that Thorpe realise that by putting the money in, they've reaped the rewards out with a maze which, so far, has received very good reviews.

 

If we had 4-5 mazes of Creek Freak's quality, I don't think anyone could complain about the attractions. 

 

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Short Review from Saturday:

 

Creek freak was very short imo. Great acting and theming nonetheless, definitely better to get sent down the crawling tunnel first as you get a more isolated experience being in a smaller group. Great maze and definitely the best at this years FNs.

 

Do or die was great but purely because I was alone from the first container. I only had one run thru and can see why some people weren’t rating it as groups were very large.

 

living nightmare was decent like usual and shortens the other Qs

 

blair was great and provided consistently effective jump scares. Not sure how it’ll cope on busier days though.

 

Ummm... let’s not talk about platform this year.

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On 9/30/2019 at 1:22 AM, Marhelorpe said:

especially when the park put a picture of Sickstone inside Do or Die on one of the shrines in the final scene as a really poor version of an Easter egg...... yes, really

This guy is gonna grow up and realise just how much he was played as a puppet for a company that gives no four letter words about him.

I also think it really showed the difference (compared to efforts in recent years) having Towers/MMM guidance on the new maze. Shows you don't need to blow on an IP to get a popualr and effective maze, you just need good ideas and little bit more spending to make it work. It was a very decent maze for Thorpe!

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8 minutes ago, Wumbamillio said:

This guy is gonna grow up and realise just how much he was played as a puppet for a company that gives no four letter words about him.

I also think it really showed the difference (compared to efforts in recent years) having Towers/MMM guidance on the new maze. Shows you don't need to blow on an IP to get a popualr and effective maze, you just need good ideas and little bit more spending to make it work. It was a very decent maze for Thorpe!

I have a YouTube channel and I am trying to build up my popularity to be like him if when I grow up I would not be counting my self as a puppet. 

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I visited Fright Nights on both Saturday and Sunday and experienced each maze multiple times, here are my reviews.

 

- SPOILERS BELOW! -

 

Creek Freak Massacre

The new maze for 2019 has a fantastic presence from the exterior, however the queue-line feels a bit sparse with you being able to see the workings of the sign.  There are theme music and announcements however I couldn't hear these very well due to there only being two speakers towards the end of the queue.

 

Onto the maze itself, it's very good fun.  There is some good theming, multiple routes and the actors really get into their roles.  The maze uses some really ambitious effects such as the heat room, the "blade table" with water and the strobe flash rate near the end is excellent and reminiscent of The Asylum's chaotic feel.  It felt as though some of the effects were not working as intended, for example the blade was just round, did not move and I believe it is supposed to have a lighting sequence on the theming object itself?  Hopefully they are able to rectify this.

 

The chainsaw scares were mixed.  Out of six goes in the maze, I had one excellent one where I encountered three chainsaws; one in a corridor, one in the strobe room and one at the end.  Unfortunately, the first time I saw three chainsaws however the first one wasn't working.  On all four other run-through's I only encountered two chainsaws.

 

I'm not sure whether one chainsaw was broken and they had no spare or whether it depends on how busy the maze is, but I noticed a severe lack of actors (and chainsaws!) towards the end of the evening on Sunday.  We walked thorough many corridors without encountering any actors, with there only being a few in the key scenes.  This was a massive contrast to Saturday evening where the maze was full of actors who took us aside into corners, split us up etc.  The maze is very inconsistent.

 

In my opinion, some more low-level scenic lighting would be beneficial in places such as spotlights highlighting the "good wood" and "bad wood" signs in the first scene as these are currently not visible under show conditions.

 

I feel that the park's marketing let the maze down by building falsely high expectations which the attraction did not deliver.

 

It is not the most intense Fright Nights maze ever - in my opinion.  The maze is not intense; it's well themed with some good effects/scares, but even on the best run-through it felt very calm and controlled with the exception of the short strobe maze section.  Claiming it to be the most intense Fright Nights maze of all time is an insult to the creators of Experiment 10 and The Asylum, both of which were, in my opinion, far superior and much more intense than Creek Freak IMO.  I have also seen it claimed on the park’s website that it’s the UK’s most intense scare maze?  Laughable.

 

Overall, Creek Freak Massacre is a solid addition to the Fright Nights line-up and a huge improvement on anything the park did last year.  I wouldn't consider it a top-tier Thorpe maze and unfortunately it was let down by it being over-hyped, but it's definitely one of the better ones in recent years and there is still room for improvements to be made.

 

6/10

 

 

Platform 15

I felt that Platform 15 was improved on the whole this year.  The actors made much more of the story-line on our walk-through's and there seemed to be a good balance between scripted scenes and scares throughout.

 

Unfortunately, there was light leaking into the long tunnel which completely spoiled the effect and made it far too predictable in terms of where actors were positioned.  I could see Saw: The Ride at one point through a hole in the sheets!

 

The new final scene was excellent on the Sunday run-through and genuinely made our group jump!

 

4/10

 

 

Blair Witch

Again, a lot more scripted talking from the actor during the early scenes and a new addition of going around and around in circles made it... different.

 

I really liked the long periods of pitch darkness from the original version of this maze and it unfortunately feels too illuminated now and therefore does not have the same effect.  With that said, I liked the more creative route this year.

 

3/10

 

 

Walking Dead: Living Nightmare

The maze remains largely the same as previous years but with an improved ending.  The actors were doing a great job during our goes however I feel the attraction misses the mark somewhere.

 

There is some good theming but nothing particularly stands out, it isn't scary and the strobe maze feels poorly executed compared with others.

 

4/10

 

 

Walking Dead: Do or Die

I don't understand this attraction, why are we sitting in a bus, how are we supposed to be scared walking through temporary tarpaulin sheet fencing with bright white floodlights and what are we supposed to be "doing"?

 

The interior of the containers was better than last year and the actors were brilliant once again, but it's just a poor attraction IMO and I really don't think we need two Walking Dead mazes.

 

2/10

 

Overall Event and Park Atmosphere

Fright Nights feels improved on last year with the addition of Creek Freak Massacre and a reduction in poor quality attractions, however the event still feels a shallow rendition of its former self.

 

Whilst we gained a new horror maze, we lost Saw Alive and are down to just two indoor horror attractions.  This is not enough and we found ourselves having to wait until it got dark to walk through the remaining three attractions after doing the first two as both Platform and Do or Die rely on darkness to create a sense of mystery that would be lost during daylight.  The event used to have five full-scale indoor horror mazes, what happened?

 

I like how every scare attraction has had an improvement made to it and I have to say that the actors were largely fantastic throughout both days/evenings.  It appears as though the park have taken feedback on-board from last year and tried to make changes where they can, which is great.

 

The Amity High show outside Stealth is brilliant and created a fantastic atmosphere around the area.

 

Lighting around the park is terrible with floodlit queue-lines (and mazes!) and hideous emergency lighting left on around Platform 15’s queue which ruined the effect that the scenic lighting would have otherwise created.  One particular annoyance was that there is a bright white floodlight shining directly onto the Derren Brown’s Ghost Train entrance sign which destroys the effect it used to have with the blue light shining through and illuminating the letters (similar to the effect The Asylum’s sign also had).  How can they build such an elaborate sign only to have such terrible attention to detail a few years down the line?  Will we see bright flood lights shining onto the Wicker Man structure in a few years?  So, so poor.

 

The park did not feel like Fright Nights was running at all, there was none of the smoke effects in vehicles we have seen in recent years and a lack of coloured lighting as mentioned above.  With that said, there was some theming dotted around in places such as old Vulcan Peak queue theming and body bags.  It was a shame to see old Big Top theming dumped in a visible location whilst queueing for Do or Die.

 

Nemesis Inferno looks fantastic with the mist working fully and a new orange light, Colossus’s station has also seen some theming added which is great and reminded me of the event’s glory days.

 

There was some good themed audio around the park, more could be done but what was there was good.  With that said, it was amusing to hear the original upbeat end-of-the-day track on Saturday night whilst leaving the dome!

 

Overall, I enjoyed my visits to Fright Nights this year and particularly enjoyed Inferno in the dark.  Creek Freak Massacre is a solid addition and with improvements could be up there with the best Fright Nights mazes, however I feel that the overall event is still lacking in quality and depth.

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So how does this splitting up in Creek Freak Massacre work? Is it like Cabin In The Woods, where they’d split you off into smaller groups, or do they individually pick people/send them off on their own?

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8 hours ago, Coaster said:

I feel that the park's marketing let the maze down by building falsely high expectations which the attraction did not deliver.

 

It is not the most intense Fright Nights maze ever - in my opinion.  The maze is not intense; it's well themed with some good effects/scares, but even on the best run-through it felt very calm and controlled with the exception of the short strobe maze section.  Claiming it to be the most intense Fright Nights maze of all time is an insult to the creators of Experiment 10 and The Asylum, both of which were, in my opinion, far superior and much more intense than Creek Freak IMO.  I have also seen it claimed on the park’s website that it’s the UK’s most intense scare maze?  Laughable.

 

Overall, Creek Freak Massacre is a solid addition to the Fright Nights line-up and a huge improvement on anything the park did last year.  I wouldn't consider it a top-tier Thorpe maze and unfortunately it was let down by it being over-hyped, but it's definitely one of the better ones in recent years and there is still room for improvements to be made.

 

6/10

 

 

So here's my question. We know parks use hyperbole to talk about their attractions so why do you believe/accept/go along with it?

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1 hour ago, Mark9 said:

 

So here's my question. We know parks use hyperbole to talk about their attractions so why do you believe/accept/go along with it?

Of course parks exaggerate, but to claim that Creek Freak Massacre is the most intense horror maze in the event's history is an incredibly bold claim and there is no room for interpreting it differently (unlike many of their claims) - they have literally guaranteed 100% that the new maze is the most intense scare attraction they have ever created.

 

Whilst I didn't personally expect it to be my favourite ever Thorpe maze, ultimately the way it has been sold by the park is a significant contributing factor to my impression and review of the maze.  It's fun but it does not deliver what Thorpe promised.

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8 hours ago, Mer said:

So how does this splitting up in Creek Freak Massacre work? Is it like Cabin In The Woods, where they’d split you off into smaller groups, or do they individually pick people/send them off on their own?

Bit of both depending on group sizing.

In the first room if the group is massive some will be sent down the tunnel straight away.

However its very easy to be picked on during this maze, put in a corner and left for the rest of the group to go to leave you to do the maze single handed. I had 4 actors on me at one point shoving hair into my face etc. 

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1 minute ago, Coaster said:

Of course parks exaggerate, but to claim that Creek Freak Massacre is the most intense horror maze in the event's history is an incredibly bold claim and there is no room for interpreting it differently (unlike many of their claims) - they have literally said that they guarantee 100% that the new maze is the most intense one they have ever done.

 

Whilst I didn't personally expect it to be my favourite ever Thorpe maze, ultimately the way it has been sold by the park is a significant contributing factor to my review of the maze.  It's fun but it does not deliver what Thorpe promised.

Pretty much like how they set Walking Dead ride up to fail by claiming it was “15 out of 10 on the scare scale” and “the world’s scariest ride” if the parks exaggerated less then people wouldn’t have such high expectations...

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