COMPLETE 2007 REVIEWS ARE BELOW
Ahh…..Halloween Haunt 2007! We’re in store for a great year! The maze lineup has been released, the shows have been announced and all of the monsters are gearing up to scare thousands and thousands of people! With this first update for the 2007 season on Ultimatehaunt.com, we thought we would bring back a feature we debuted last year that people really responded positively to and have requested we bring back.
Now that the information has been posted, we thought it might be fun to provide an analysis on the new mazes and shows, etc. before the event begins. Don’t worry…we will still provide our October update for you once we have been through the mazes and attractions, but for now, perhaps some thought put into the event prior to attending may assist those of you who are planning to attend at the beginning of October.
Now, please realize, the information below is simply our opinions and definitely do not reflect Knott’s Berry Farm. We do make predictions but these are truly guesses. If they happen….cool….if not, oh well.
So, let’s go ahead and get started…..
KILLER CLOWN KOLLEGE – XCELERATOR – PREDICTION
Hmmmmm….well, the clowns are back by popular demand, right? In Haunt Maze Designer Daniel Miller’s interview, he did indicate some “favorite themes” will once again rise. What can we expect from this maze? Well, we predict that the maze will be a mish-mosh of Carnival of Carnivorous Clowns in 3D and Hatchet High. But will it kick butt? Perhaps….
There is something regarding the design of this particular maze that makes it very, very unique. We can’t tell you about it now, but perhaps we’ll tell you later on in the future. And no….it’s not the fact that the maze location is underneath Xcelerator.
Speaking of which….the clowns return to their little corner of the Boardwalk. You may recall that the debut of Carnival of Carnivorous Clowns in 3D was housed underneath the defunct “skeleton” of a roller coaster. It will certainly be interesting to see the magic of Knott’s Berry Farm put the space underneath Xcelerator to good use. So, what can we predict? Not too sure other than….keep an open mind. There’s a chance that this may be a dark horse.
REVIEW – Hey! This maze was FANTASTIC! We loved it! The space was used great and this maze (at least to us) had a very “old school” Haunt feel to it. Yes, props from both Hatchet High and Carnival of Carnivorous Clowns were used, but so what? Many other new rooms and props were created and absolutely killer! AND the monsters were AMAZING!! We loved them! We won’t go into too many details for those of you who have not been through the maze yet, but definitely make this a MUST SEE!! We hope you enjoy it as much as we did!
THE DOLL FACTORY – WILDERNESS DANCE HALL – PREDICTION
Ahh, the Doll Factory. A brand-new maze from scratch! For starters, if you’re afraid of dolls, this may not be the maze for you….However, what about the rest of the audience? If the maze depends solely on the sight of dolls for the impact, we’re not sure that the maze will be a huge success. On the flip side, if disturbing imagery and crazed monsters are part of the final equation, perhaps this maze will be a real punch in the face!!
At this point in time, the Doll Factory is such an “x” factor, it’s very difficult to predict where Knott’s will go with the theme and what angle they have decided upon. This one is one in which we’ll sit back and wait to see what unfolds…but if we had to decide a winner sight unseen, this might be it.
REVIEW – One word to describe our experience through the Doll Factory: WOW. This maze has it all!! It’s crazed, twisted, creepy and the talent were on fire!! We know that throughout the month of a particular run of Halloween Haunt, a maze can (and usually will) have its ups and downs. We were very fortunate to have witnessed the Doll Factory what apparently is “on their game”. In our “pre-Haunt” preview/prediction, we asked the question as to whether or not those who were fearful of creepy dolls would be affected by this maze. The answer is that we feel that if you are not afraid of dolls, this maze will still kick your butt. And for those of you out there reading this who have a doll phobia….well……you set foot in this maze and you’re pretty much going to be cooked.
PYROMANIAX – LOG RIDE – PREDICTION
Good-bye Red Moon Massacre and hello Pyrmaniax!
Ever since first coming to Haunt as a guest, we’ve always been HUGE fans of the Log Ride. It is SO great to have a new theme inside the Log Ride for the 2007 Haunt and we’re really excited about it. Let’s dig in and talk about Pyromaniax…
Going off the name alone conjures all sorts of fun ideas as to what might be taking place inside the mountain this year. Obviously the first thoughts that come to mind are regarding the lighting and fire effects. I bet we can count on a ton of fog and red and orange lighting. As far as the fire effects, what can we expect? Perhaps effects like we see in Disney’s Pirates of the Caribbean…? Who knows?! It’s anyone’s guess at this point.
What about the characters/victims? Plenty of burn victims, right? How about the backstory of what happened to bring the flames to the maze? Very, very interesting and this new idea/concept for the 2007 Log Ride has certainly peaked our interest! The question is: Will it be better than Red Moon Massacre?
REVIEW – A bunch of hillbillies making moonshine with the wrong ingredients and BOOM…the mountain is on flames. The fire department is doing their best to save the mountain and in doing so, they unfortunately fall victim to the flames and become undead and stalk around the hills. The idea is killer! A couple of awesome things are present with this attraction and a couple of very, very disappointing things are present as well.
Let’s start off with the positive….the Log Ride is at least open!! Maintenance has been working long hours to open the Log Ride up as it has been closed for months. It is now open and it’s nice to be able to go back onto the Log Ride. Another positive factor is the concept….A couple of very ambitious props are located in this attraction that are very cool!! We won’t ruin anything…but we do have to say that the helicopter is really, really cool! Lastly, the monsters were great and looked really creepy!!
Now with the bad…Apparently, due to the delay of the Log Ride functioning correctly, the theming for Pyromaniax is far too light to stand up as a Haunt attraction. It simply doesn’t cut it in our opinion. We understand the problem(s), but that does not change the fact that compared to the last 20 years, the Log Ride is the weakest we have ever seen it in theming. Oh well. You should still go on it just to go for a cruise through the Log Ride!
BEOWULF LABYRINTH INTO DARKNESS – THE LAKE – PREDICTION
So, Terrorvision is no longer at the Halloween Haunt and is now replaced by the next movie maze, “Beowulf Labyrinth into Darkness”. Just as Grudge 2 was last year, it is very difficult to predict how a movie maze at the Halloween Haunt will do. If the studios are flippin’ the bill, we can certainly expect to see incredible visuals inside the maze. As far as the actual theme for Beowulf….that’s another story….well, at least in our opinion.
Does the storyline for Beowulf really lend itself to a good Halloween Haunt theme? On the surface, it is certainly fantasy-based as opposed to horror-based. Characters exist within the story (Grendle) that are ghoulish, but is that enough to carry the maze as far as the characters go?
Remember, when the news for the Grudge 2 maze was released in 2006, it was very difficult to picture what the maze was going to be like (also considering the fact, just like Beowulf, that the movie was not out prior to the opening of the event). Now for 2007, Beowulf (the movie) is not set to be released until November, meaning that the maze truly is a living breathing commercial for the movie and visitors of the park will have no other reference other than movie trailers to go by while walking through the maze.
That may or may not be a good thing….For example, if the maze is loaded with subtle movie references, there is a chance those items won’t make sense to the average guest.
The bottom line is that the maze will probably look spectacular and even creepy at parts….but will it be as scary as Grudge 2? It’s our opinion….probably not. However, we love to be proved incorrect in this case!
As mentioned before, the actual movie is not supposed to be released until November. For those of you out there who do not know the entire story of Beowulf, we are attaching a link here to allow you to read about it. We ourselves did not know the complete story and found a website “Beowulf for Dummies” that is a funny, but informative, summary of Beowulf. If you don’t know the story, this webpage will help you understand what you may see inside of the maze. CLICK HERE to visit the website.
REVIEW – Hmmmm…..this is VERY weird to review. It is sort of bitter sweet. There are some definitely cool things about this maze and some weird things as well. No matter what, this maze is GOOD…..We’re just not sure if it’s GREAT.
The sets are amazing. The monsters….are creepy, but not as scary. This maze, in our opinion, is far more like a Universal Maze or something one would see at other big budget haunted attractions. Universal mazes are more set and character-driven while Knott’s mazes are (typically) more scare-driven (i.e., Asylum, 13 Axe Murder Manor, Doll Factory, Grudge 2). Universal being a move company are known for their elaborate sets. However, compared to Beowulf, the Universal mazes still have Knott’s beat in set decoration (again…in our opinion!).
So, in other words, Beowulf, although good, falls short in big budget set design (compared to other parks) and the talent are more character driven, which is what we feel, is not what Knott’s is or ever has been about. Knott’s is supposed to be SCARY and TERRIFYING. Beowulf is neither. Let us know what you think!! Do you agree or disagree??
Long story short….Knott’s needs to stay with the scary and away from relying on fantasy-based sets. It doesn’t work. Knott’s needs to stay with what they have established for themselves over the past 35 years: Terrify people. Let Universal and the other parks rely on the heavy sets…they need them…..Knott’s doesn’t.
BLACK WIDOW’S CAVERN – MINE RIDE – PREDICTION
Fun! Just like Log Ride, we love to see a new theme in the Mine Ride. But….is it really a new theme? Well, sort of.
The last couple of years have been building up to this particular theme (spiders). Well, let’s see what happens when Knott’s takes the theme full force. What will be in the glory hole? A huge spider or a ton of small ones??! Who knows. It’s fun to think about and there is no doubt that the
Mine Ride is a wonderful place for a theme like this.
It’s definitely time to bring back the Mine Ride as a powerful force at the event. Perhaps 2007 is it!
REVIEW – Great!! We loved the sets and the spiders!!! If you hate spiders….you HAVE to go through this attraction!! You’ll beat your phobia and have a great time losing it! Definitely hit this attraction early as the lines will be very, very long!!
LORE OF THE VAMPIRE – BALLOON RACE
Wow…..this maze is the Energizer bunny of Halloween Haunt…..it just keeps going and going and….
Now, the theme of the vampires should certainly stick around, possibly forever, the Halloween Haunt. However, the current theme is a mixture of many things and has become quite stale in our opinion. We started of with Lair of the Vampire and then to Dominion of the Dead. After that, we went to Gothic Graveyard and thereafter went to Lore of the Vampire.
Lore of the Vampire started off as a look at vampires through different time periods. Nowadays, that particular theme is not quite clear as it once was….it starts off gothic and jumps to the futuristic “Lost Boys” section and a bit of “Blade”.
SO, this year….shall there be any changes whatsoever? We don’t know, but quite frankly, we don’t expect too many (if any at all).
On the flip side, if you like the current theme, it’s our opinion that this may be the last year for Lore (not vampires), so enjoy it while it lasts.
REVIEW – Sorry Vampires….time to GO!!! Just when you thought it couldn’t get any worse….!! We love the Vampire Queen and we love the devoted Vampires who have put so much heart and devotion into this maze over the years. This review is not directed to the monsters…..it’s directed to their home. We feel it’s time for the Vampires to get a new home!! Keep your fingers crossed…..err……maybe we’ll stay away from the crosses and just hope, hope and hope some more that the Vampires are relocated next year.
ASYLUM – GHOSTRIDER 1 – PREDICTION
This maze is a major powerhouse in the world of Halloween Haunt and there is not too much that we can say here that we haven’t said before. The prediction for this year for the Asylum is that we feel it will continue to be consistently consistent! Since its first year, the maze has kicked a lot of butt and we feel it will continue to do so! If you want more information on the Asylum, visit our tribute section of the website.
REVIEW- Could this maze kick any more butt??? We were once blown away by the Asylum!! The monsters were amazing and the layout was different (or at least it appeared different) than what we have seen in the past. We’re not too sure about the building that houses the maze now because it takes away the ominous look of the Asylum, but once you’re in, it’s amazing. It’s our opinion that some of the other mazes can take a close look at the Asylum to learn from….the Asylum has some sort of magic to it that simply clicks year and year! GREAT, GREAT & GREAT!!
RED BEARD’S REVENGE – MAIN GATE -PREDICTION
Wow….this maze has seen better days. You should go through it if for no other reason than the fact that it is after all, a Halloween Haunt maze! As far as a prediction goes, wow…..not really sure what we can expect. Perhaps the talent will step up and make this maze over the top…? Who knows.
Unless pirates are your thing and you have never been through this maze, our tip is: Certainly don’t wait in too long of a line for this maze!
REVIEW – There is good news and bad news about this maze. The bad news first: It’s basically the same ‘ol maze that just sort of keeps tickin’ along. The good news is that the monsters in the maze are the BEST we have ever seen in this attraction!! For that alone, definitely give this maze another try. If you have never been through the maze, well….you’re in for a treat.
FEARY TALES – GHOSTRIDER 2 – PREDICTION
The idea of a fairy-type theme at the Halloween Haunt has been around in the past and Feary Tales is a fun new take on the concept. Last year was a bit of a disappointment when we went through the maze on a couple of different occasions due to the fact that many of the special effects were apparently not working.
However, it’s a new year and we’ll see if some of those loose ends are tied up. It’s our opinion that when it comes to a maze like Feary Tales, much of the concept is reliant upon the “eye candy” that is provided in the sets. If all of the sets and/or props are not working properly the entire theme is
affected. The monsters can run all over the place but its still the set(s) that the eyes are drawn to in a maze like this. Again, since it’s a new year perhaps some of those problems will be fixed.
As far a prediction goes, let’s talk about it: A maze like Feary Tales has the option of changing drastically from year to year. What we mean is that certain fairy tale stories that are parodied can be replaced with different stories.
It would be great to see some different stories represented in the maze this year. However, on the flip side…If nothing changes, this maze may fall quite flat.
REVIEW – Well, this maze did not necessarily fall completely flat, but certainly no changes have been made that we can notice to the rooms. The Fearies (some even bearded!) were as kick-butt as always and very impressive. The monsters inside the Sleeping Beauty room and the final cave (where the dragon is on display) were really cool as well. Some monsters were really having a great time inside the maze while others were simply not present at all. What’s this mean to you as a visitor this year? Definitely go through it (you’ll have to anyway to get to the Asylum) and enjoy the eye candy again. If you have never been through this maze, you’ll probably dig it and have a good time. If you have been through this maze in the past, it’s our opinion that it is basically the same thing as it was last year.
13 AXE MURDER MANOR – MYSTERY LODGE – PREDICTION
Remember, you voted 13 Axe Murder Manor as the Ultimatehaunt.com Maze of the Year in 2005. The sets for this maze are very cool and if anything, try and take the time to dig them. Not very much changed in the maze in 2006, so looking at the trend of Halloween Haunt mazes, it may be safe to say that not much will be changed this upcoming season.
Our prediction is that we feel that the maze probably will not be too different (if any changes are even made at all) than what visitors saw last year. However, this maze has a bit of lasting power, so enjoy it for another year.
REVIEW – We were right about one thing: Not very much changed at all! However, the monsters were very agressive and having what appeared to be, a great time! This maze is now an oldie but goodie and should not be missed!! Enjoy!
THE GRUDGE 2 – FIESTA PLAZA – PREDICTION
Our prediction: There will not be any changes made to this maze at all as compared to last season. However, don’t let that stop you from going through this maze! The Grudge 2 maze was your vote for Maze of the Year in 2006 and since we doubt any changes will be made, you’ll be able to enjoy it all over again….Especially if you missed out going through the maze last year!
To be quite frank, we were surprised to see this maze come back this year. We thought that the concept was a one-time-deal and wouldn’t be back for another season. The buzz of the movie Grudge 2 died out last season, so the maze returning again, was a bit surprising.
Be that as it may, it’s back and now you’ll have a chance to enjoy the details that the design of the maze has to offer.
REVIEW – Very cool!! Nothing has changed within the sets of the maze, but that’s okay! The monsters are totally creepy and very scary! Do not miss this one!! You’ll have a blast!
LOST VEGAS – BUMPER CARS – PREDICTION
Wow….this maze was a bit of a disappointment last year. Let’s keep our fingers crossed and see what happens…maybe some drastic changes will be made to allow the maze to pack a better punch this time around. We will keep an open mind about it and see what transpires.
We can’t say too much other than that regarding Lost Vegas. We will go through it and we think you should as well!
REVIEW – We know that Knott’s Scary Farm Halloween Haunt was voted best Halloween attraction in 2006. However, even the best can miss every now and then. Lost Vegas is a miss. Some people we have talked to have liked it while others have hated it. Which camp are you in? Apparently you either love this maze or hate it.
There ya have it, folks! Those predictions have been made and published on September 18, 2007. The reviews were made on September 29th, 2007. We hope that our reviews and predictions helped you in planning your trip. Let us know what you think!! Do you agree? Do you disagree? How about after you attend the event? Let us know what you think then as well! EMAIL US and let us know!