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HorrorNights93

HorrorNights93 HHN 2011 review

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Ok so i now have time to write a full fledged review on my HHN opening weekend experience. There are a few things i loved about this year and something's i didnt so i dont know if i can call this the BEST year yet. Ok well lets start. Around 6:30 after getting through traffic and making alot of stops we finally arrived up to universal. Now usually Opening weekend is a tradition to go the first day but one thing i never seen normally on opening weekend kind of killed the experience. The lines were LONG ! and i mean they jumped up from 5mins to 30mins and farther beyond that in a matter of minutes so its like i was struggling to get through everything as quickly as possible. I've never seen opening weekend this packed and i can see that HHN has grown ALOT ! well technically thats not universals fault but standing in 70 mins lines on the first day came to a surprise. And i arrived later than i usually do on opening night so i was kinda forced to the back of the line. Still i was able to make my way to the front for the opening ceremony. Boy how excited i was to finally be back my heart was racing so fast.The opening ceremony was nice and once the fire went up and the clowns were unleashed everyone took off. I always set myself to hit the lower lot first before lines get to out of control down there so my first destination was hostel.

Eli Roth's Hostel: Hunting Season

What a GREAT way to start off the night and luckily i was one of the first ones down there. I loved how the reapers basically scared you into the maze line and how the hostel girls were utilized to draw you in. there were even certain code names you could say to receive a card from them. The maze's facade was nothing less than AMAZING. i liked how the shadow gag was used and the facade really was structured as if you were entering a factory. The scare actors did a amazing job from start to end in my turn through. The costumes looked awesome and the scares were executed perfectly. Loved this maze but it went for 2nd on my list. the final scare wasn't a big scene but i did get scared a few times throughout the maze. My next trip was to WTMN.

Grade: A

Rating:10/10

Scares,enviroments,effects : 9/10 only because the re-used boiler scene.

Alice Coopers: Welcome To My Nightmare

Personally walking in this maze i knew nothing to expect which made the anticipation even greater. Well i knew of the overall theme and all but as far as alice cooper ? i knew nothing of the guy and his music...well still dont. None the less this was my FAVORITE maze of the night. I set my expectations low for this maze so maybe thats why. Scene by scene as you walk through the maze you realize this is all things that can be put into a nightmare and they were done rather correctly. Great use of effects, puppeteers and the scenes and atmosphere fit perfectly into the mix of things. Im glad this maze exceeded my expectations and was pulled off really well. I got scared alot and the SA's did a great job in here to. Im glad they didnt over do his music but still kept it as a element throughout the maze. The facade wasnt the best i've seen this year but it did come out nicely.

Grade: A+

Rating: 10/10

scares,enviroments,effects : 10/10

Well after these two mazes it was time to hit back up to the lower lot. As i traveled up the escalator i did dread the fact of having to hear alice coopers voice and music. i personally liked rob zombie playing on the escalator better but thats just me. It was time to head to the rather overly hyped Thing maze and see what it had going.

The Thing: Assimilation

it was only around 7:30 and this maze had already jumped to about a good 20mins. No biggie we had hardly wasted anytime on the first two mazes and looking at the facade just got me super stoked to enter. Standing outside i can feel gust of cool air coming out of the maze which was rather weird because the tempature said otherwise in the maze. So it was time to finally enter the maze. The first hallway into the first room with the ice block seemed kind of blank well for me actually the whole maze felt that way. Awesome puppeteers though. This maze just didnt meet up to my expectations sadly. Murdy definitively over hyped this maze into something it wasn't.First off didn't murdy say they would be using all the vents in this maze to make it extra cold ? as i walked through it it was rather humid. i was even wearing a sweater and it got hot to the point i had to take it off. that was the first sign. I would walk from room to room just watching victims be consumed by the thing and acting out crazy and some scares i didnt get to see from behind me or getting the tail ends. To me it seems that not that many SA's were in there from the get go. Most of the scares were based off the puppets work and the final scare wasnt that good. It was actually something you see in the first room of the maze and i wont spoil it for others.My most anticipated part i was really looking forward to was the pitch black room. Which wasnt too dark because i could clearly still see everything and it was done poorly not one scareactor in this scene. just a bunch of noices. Im guessing i might of went at a wrong time because some people are telling me different so ill try this over and fix my rating for it after but as of now it was a disappointment probably because my expectations were set to high on this maze.it was ranked forth on my list....for now hopefully.i even went sat. and decided to skip over it instead of waiting in a 60min line

Grade : C-

Rating : 6/10 for effort i guess

Scares,enviroments,effects: 7/10 there were some detailed rooms and than the rather blank and repetitive rooms with nothing in them. Some of the effects were nice though.

Next up was La LLorona. Boy have i been seeing how this would be played off after its fail as a SZ last year. Would the tales of the weeping women leave me weeping in disappointment or will this maze pull through for its make up of last years waste........

La LLorona : Villas De Almas Perdidas

WOW! what a AMAZING MAZE ! so the wait time was already beginning to grow so i guess i got there on time before it went crazy long which it was after i left. I liked how you could here the voice telling you the story as you walk to the entrance and there was even a few posters around the queque explaining the story briefly. IDK how this got ranked third on my list because they did such a awesome job. The facade was the BEST I've seen in HHNH history hands down. and it looks rather nicely lit up at night. Scene by scene you were tooken into different tales of the la llorona character which i liked how they spread it out instead of just sticking to one story. the stilt walkers were utilized nicely and this maze was just so detailed and done correctly. The SA's didnt get me as much as they could have because i got the tail end of scares but just watching them was nice. The dark room and here was done correctly and there were some pretty unforgettable scenes in here. Great job to murdy and his team for not screwing this one up.

Grade: A

Rating: 10/10 and nothing less.

Scares, enviroments,effects: 8/10 the scares didnt get me that much.

Now it was time for us to Scre4m for are life on the TT...or not :huh:

Terror Tram: Scre4m for your life

I never was a big scream fan. i enjoy watching the films but ghostface was always the clumpsy humorous killer to me never scary as to match up with the notorious villians such as michael, freddy or jason. Now does that mean i think he couldnt be used for the TT? hell no he has it written all over him and when it was done not as good as it could of been it came to a disappointment.Theres just so much you can do with this property even only having the rights to scream 4. Ghostface is such a Major marketing icon which is why idk why he wasnt advertised as good as he should of been. was he our main icon ? who knows alot of the other icons come into questioning there. Ok so the TT video wasn't our best but it was still descent and something we can work with. Even the ending video was kind of good but than like WTF?

Ghostface kills the trams guide person but leaves everyone to survive ?

-_- kinda foolish lazy thinking if you ask me. The TT was no different from previous years really. Same route for the most..same theme. Such as the bushmen or the camp props reused at the bottom of the hill for camp crystal. The four fake films was a good way to theme the TT better but they hardly went noticed with me. Well i guess besides Zombiez on a plane. And can we talk about the overload of ghostfaces ? he was literally EVERYWHERE !!! The only thing that really stood out to me was the fence maze and even there i got no scares. Just seemed like a way to take up time and rest your feet a bit while on the tram. Thank god we skipped the mummy tunnel this year.Murdy said this was the TT's biggest cast but it sure didnt feel that way. Felt like the same number from previous years if not lesser. I mean what can we really expect out of the TT that we haven't seen before ? unless we get a different route and actually re-theme areas better such as the WOTW( not always needing zombies) or the psycho house always needing norman bates. The TT needs alot of work done...

Grade: D

Rating: 4/10

scares,enviroments,effects : not gonna rate it. just base it on previous years.

After heading back upstairs i made my way to the wolfman maze.

Wolfman: The Curse of Talbot Hall

Now this wasn't #1 on my to do list but i still had hope in this HoH overlay. I hated the remake perfectly and unlike some it may hard to believe i am glad they didnt waste a full maze on this and through this in the HoH. None the less i thought it could pull off to be a good HoH overlay. Just like it feels like your doing the same thing repetively on the TT it felt the same as in the HoH. Just a whole bunch of wolfmans and random actors thrown in. the mummy and chucky room served as a predictable theme killer rooms. The costumes looked descent and you could tell some of the actors were doing the best they could to keep this maze alive. there was no wait time in this maze which is why i dont know why people wasted there FOTL passes on it. The strobe effects were kind of cool and the second day i actually got one scare in. Not the best HoH ooverlay certainly and i did like how the voice of Sir whats his name :unsure: was talking throughout the maze.

Grade: F

Rating: 3/10

Scares,enviroments,effect: 5/10 for effort.

i didn't mean to be so strict on the wolfman maze but i expected more from it. Now it was time to take my first break of the night to get a bathroom stop and eat at mels diner. After i made my way to the HOTC.

HOTC: in 3D zombievision

Nothing really different from last year. The SA's kind of seemed rather lazier this year though. i got one scare in here none the less. It even seemed as if they took out the final scare room. im not 100% sure about that but the 3D was better than last year to me. At least i got something out of standing in a 70min line.

Grade:B

Rating: 7/10

scares,enviroments,effects: 8/10 same as last year.

It was now time to check out the B&T show for this year.

Bill and Teds Halloween Adventure:

This show seemed rather longer than usual. Bill and Ted were hardly even in it lol The videos played before the show began were neat. The parodies were not as good as previous years but there were some enjoyable parts. I wanted to see rebecca black and the hangover 2 get made fun of and it had its scenes . Was a good way to rest my feet from continually running my shoes off all night.

Grade: C

ratings : 6/10

performances : 7/10

Well besides hitting some of the rides (mummy and simpsons) that was my night. I finished everything with 30mins to spare. Not sure if this year met up to par with my expectations but it was fun and enjoyable none the less. Next year we have alot to work on. Starting with these RIDICULOUS price changes and deals. was universals motivation solely based on GREED or aiming towards to better the park ? With transformer coming out next year and having a bigger budget this can mean better quality. Is it possible that well be getting a 7th maze next year? or even our lost forgotten SZ or even sliders? Opening night is always enjoyable but theres clearly things that need to be worked on throughout the upcoming weeks of the event. As far as the SZ's go for this year they were probably at there worst. Zombieville was good and the reapers costumes were cool but without the full decorations or at least adding a few props down there i cant give it the full credit its due. Freakz for a 3rd year is no longer appealing, klownz is still good and they even added more props in but for a second year when WTH didnt even get that ? of course we lost a SZ which made matters even worst. Hopefully with the budget for next year alot of these problems can be forgotten and fixed. Also they had a sells person at every corner of the park -_- $5 for a bottle of water is beyond ridiculous. Well this is my review next year i can only hope for the best :D

Edited by HorrorNights93

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Good review, sounds like you made good time on your first 4 mazes. I think the more we go this year, the more our opinions will change because of expectations will now be what the maze is instead of what we want it to be and we can accept it. For example, The Thing has quite a lot of blank walls and rooms. This disappointed me GREATLY the first run through but I imagine I'll be more accepting of it the next time. As for Scream, I just know I'll be disappointed in it no matter how many times I do it. The idea is strong but the story is poor and the trail is stale and none of those things are acceptable, if you ask me.

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^ My thoughts exactly. I hope they focus more on not having any repeats and young the quality of all of the mazes a bit instead of adding a seventh maze. There are some things that need to be fixed.

Btw, great review HorrorNights93! :) I always lo e reading everyone's reviews to hear what everyone's opinions are on everything.

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Yeah, with the Terror Tram needing much more work, so many bare rooms in The Thing and Hostel, a non existant overlay in the Wolfman and two scarezones that are repeats with another two with no decoration plus the absence of one that is much needed somewhere in the MIDDLE of the park - - a seventh maze is the last thing we need!

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thanks guys ^^ i agree we need to be stable with 6 mazes first before we move up to expand more. I actually just got back from horror nights a little early today and it went GREAT !! alot of my perspectives on things changed. Ok first off La LLorona. I already told how amazing of a maze it was but how it slacked on scares for me and this time around i got scared from beginning to end. The SA's did a awesome job and since my group was by itself it felt so much scarier that i practically ran out the maze. Same goes for the thing. i was so disappointed the first time around but this time my perspective changed. i got ALOT of good scares in here. The pitch black room was actually pitch black this time i think murdy addressed the lighting because i could not see one thing in front of me i even ran into the wall once and it felt like something was touching me. (shivers down my back) well the tempature was a little colder this time around not to much of a change but none the less i got some GREAT scares in this time around. Also if you didnt go opening weeking guys im sorry to say you missed out on the fence maze on the TT. im completely confused why but they took it down and re routed the tram through the original route from last year. The TT actors were more active around this time and i got some good scares in. Especially the bushmen they did a awesome job camouflaging and timing there scares. there were also alot more of them.

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Well actually the lines were MUCH better than last week im talking things were barely approaching the 20 min mark or so around 9 when i checked. I got through everything rather quickly and even had time to re-do some mazes and rides. Kind of got bored so i thought hey i still have 3 days remaining to come back and do it all over again. It actually felt like HHN yesterday for some reason last week i didnt get that feeling. I was in such a greater mood and the mazes improved from my last visits.

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Well i wanted to make a few adjustments to my review thread for a couple of things. Lets start off :

The Thing : Assimilation

First time around was a let down. Not sure because of the timing i went (which was no more than 30mins after the park opened) so i would find that strange but in all it didnt par up to my expectations. After my last visit on friday i can say i was a bit more please with the results. I got scared from beginning to end. I noticed more SA's this time around and the dark room was actually done better as i pictured it should of been. I noticed the SA in there this time around so that was better. All in all it was a good experience this time around.

grade: B+

La LLorona : Villas de Almas Perdidas

Nothing much changed here besides the SA's becoming more agreesive. I was also scared from beginning to end here and being seperated from everyone throughout the whole maze didnt make it even less creepier than it already was. Loved the stilt walkers and all. The grade will remain the same.

Scares,enviroments,effects: changed to 10/10

If the TT couldnt get any worst it did once they removed the fence maze and added in a bunch of soundproof walls. I noticed more SA's and got more scares this time around so that was a plus. Sighs* are Scarezones are becoming lazy. After next year i dont want to see anymore freakz, klownz and zombies..or anything else that ends with a "z" in that case. Reapers was such a let down knowing what they could of done with this concept. It was lazily done and if changing the costumes is enough to convince you its "all new" than hey thats what floats your boat. I except more from all the SZ's next year. Seems like there doing a good job with decorations in 3 out of the 5 SZ's but its old so maybe thats why im bored with the concept. Actually Freakz can deserve more decorations. Zombies was the only one really executed beautifully IMO. Klownz to but hey thats a repeat. One thing i didnt like this year in the SZ's was lack of fog. :/ Hopefully next year it will be back to the method of "not being able to tell whats in front of me." Next year grading the entrance SZ and lower lot SZ im showing no mercy. Theres absolutely no reason why they cant add decorartions and props down there. For christ sakes you did it in 07 so you damn well can do it again. You took one step forward and than two more back universal. Also the front just needs some more props to feel in the gap between there and new york street. And im expecting the return of our 6th sz again next year themed nicely and decorated beautifully. it was a huge let down to see we hopped down to 5 scarezones. John just needs to take a trip to orlando to see how nicely there SZ's are done one year and than maybe he will see what were talking about. Also we NEED sliders to return next year i miss seeing those guys slide up behind you and give you a good scare. Also we have the potential to have many more scarezones. One can be from the side of the shrek venue extending all the way to the bathrooms. Another can be in front of the simpsons. Another can be from the the flintstones bbq to the escalators. Basically what im saying is theres TOO MANY empty gaps !! HHN tries to advertise theres "nowhere to run or hide" but really we have huge gaps of spaces that say otherwise. This is what seperates 2006 from all other years. 2006 was the only year i noticed there was NOWHERE to run. We had scareactors on the escalators, food courts..heck even the bathrooms( not intentionally lol ). Point is all the empty gaps of spaces i just named were covered up believe it or not. Maybe because we only had 2 mazes and a TT so they had more money to buy more SA's. I STRONGLY encourage murdy next year to put just as much effort in the SZ's as he does for the mazes. It can be done . especially with the flow of cash they'll be getting from transformers. It just takes me out of the element personally when im walking from the end of new york street to the lower lot with no scares or anything in particular to keep me in the mood. I think ive written enough so ill save my final closing statement for another time lol

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All your SZ suggestions are fine, except for the Simpsons one which Murdy claims they can't do because they don't like mixing properties or whatever. But as we're saying, one IN FRONT of that area would be fine - - it doesn't even have to touch Krusty's big ol head. It's just ridiculous and I feel the same... from NY street to the escalators, it feels like a normal night at Universal. Something, somewhere in that middle area of the park needs to be filled.

And you know what, honestly, they could still put a SZ right where Western street is. I see no reason not to. Sure, one side of the buildings are gone but it doesn't mean they can't use the space. It just doesn't have to be western themed - - big deal. They're occupying blank space as it is with the lower lot. I never thought I'd miss the Western street scarezone so much when I went this year but I sure as hell did!

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Just a note on fog. It is SO dependent on the weather. It was warm and humid this last weekend and there was PLENTY of fog. So much so they had to shut some of the machines off because it was causing problems.

On cool, windy nights the fog doesn't linger.

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All your SZ suggestions are fine, except for the Simpsons one which Murdy claims they can't do because they don't like mixing properties or whatever. But as we're saying, one IN FRONT of that area would be fine - - it doesn't even have to touch Krusty's big ol head. It's just ridiculous and I feel the same... from NY street to the escalators, it feels like a normal night at Universal. Something, somewhere in that middle area of the park needs to be filled.

And you know what, honestly, they could still put a SZ right where Western street is. I see no reason not to. Sure, one side of the buildings are gone but it doesn't mean they can't use the space. It just doesn't have to be western themed - - big deal. They're occupying blank space as it is with the lower lot. I never thought I'd miss the Western street scarezone so much when I went this year but I sure as hell did!

yea im not sure why one cant be in front of it. hell if there were gonna re-use clowns they should of done it there. Also the western street wasnt our best scarezone but i def. like just having it there for extra possible scares or a way to keep me in the mood. I just hope it comes back next year maybe a western style version based on a silder scarezone :lol:

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