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JDW

JDW's reviews

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Ok I headed back right now so I'll make this quick.

TWD was 60 min wait during ap party. Passed it up.

Went to La Llorona... 25 min. Great facade great sets. Way too dark. Hard to appreciate. Will have to revisit.

Afterlife. 30 min wait. Decent. Not as good as in between but definitely decent. Some cool effects. Really tight in there. My wife hurt her wrist and I tripped over the bench in the execution room.

Havoc too light. Cool train facade. Took 4 rooms to build up to the crash. Should have been 2. Severely lacking intensity.

Skipped ED for the shorter line in AWIL

AWIL.... WOW. Those wolves are scary and amazing. Very true to the movie.

ED.... huge line. Odd entrance backstage. Pretty intense. Cats are really gross. Someone slapped me in the face with one... combined with the smell bout puked. Very cool sets. Overall light on gore. Didn't notice the blood rain.

RE big open sets. Pretty ligh. goofy costumes... goofy puppets. Overall some good scares but too gimmicky and over the top.

CITW... CRAP that is a walk.

Very cool sets. Great scares. Very intense.

Then did streets. Very crowded. Light on zombies. Plus you see a zombie you seen them all. Great sets. Some awesome effects.

TWD said 75 min wait. But was like 20. Honestly not so bad. Major improvement over last year.

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OK so now that I've been twice, and done the UMTH tour (and recovered a bit) I want to write my feelings about the event as a whole and then break down each area. I will try my best to eliminate any spoilers.

So on the whole I enjoyed the event. Yes it was incredibly packed. Yes I dislike the zombie aspect of TWD but overall I really enjoyed everything I saw.
I do not care for RHPS at all nor do I like B&T so I did not see them (and really did not have the chance to).

Houses:

TWD: 7 out of 10
This house is well executed. The sets are good quality. The "duck down" scene I think is better than last last years version. The alternate path for disabled guest does not bypass this either and does still give a nice scare. The guest activated scare is a nice touch (and the only one at the event) as well as the alternate path that makes you feel you could get lost.

The house confuses me in its chronology. It is exactly reversed to the show. For the life of me I can't see a logical reason to do this. The facade is the arena (mid-season) but yet the house starts with the final episode. People in line were perplexed as to what the facade was as well. It isn't an iconic scene really and seeing as the prison is plastered everywhere in advertisement and is the most iconic image of the show it would only make sense to be the the facade.

The zombies do break character in their actions but that I believe helps the maze tremendously. Romero zombies are not scary. They are slow and feeble. But I wont open that can of worms. Suffice to say the change fixes the issue and only the most die-hard of the show would care.

I gave it seven for it's execution and for my lack of interest in the subject matter.

La Llorona 7 out of 10

I love the facade and the scenes. I love the story and the costumes. There are some awesome smells in here.
It is exceedingly short. Overall though it is just missing something else.

Now in fairness the first time it was so dark I couldn't see anything. The second run through several scare actors (including the finale scenes) were missing. But I can't pin down what makes this house fall from one of my favorites.
So 7 out of 10 for great sets and story but missing something. Hoping successive runs (if I get them) will help move this up. I really want this house to be awesome.

Afterlife 8 out of 10

I The facade is fairly weak comparative to La Llorona but is reminiscent of Dead Exposure.
The sets are very stylized with lots of neat effects. I Liked the costumes and the scares were pretty good.
I don't think it beats out "The In-Between" but it lives up the the idea that it is a spiritual successor.
As with "The In -Between" and P&T I think the house is much better without the 3D glasses. It feels like a bad acid trip (or at least how I perceive one).
The house is very tight the first time my wife was sans wheel chair and she was holding onto me to make it through. At one section I turned a corner and it hurt her wrist. In the execution room I tripped over the bench and nearly face planted the floor. The house is very hard to maneuver in a wheel chair.

Overall a great house that is a nice addition to the 3D niche. Better than P&T not as good as "The In-Between". 8 out of 10.


Havoc 4 out of 10

Oh Havoc. This house is inherently flawed to me. It spends so long with the build up the that the payoff is barely there. It is a very short house which surprises me seeing as TWD was so big and grandiose (set-wise) last year. The train effect is very cool and the crash was neat. But outside of that... It was like I was looking at props in the Disaster queue. I knew when I heard the fighting would ensue amongst the rubble of the train that I was going to be disappointed. To me, It has no story... just exposition. The story is what happens after the train crashes and it just spends way too much time on the train.

To be fair I never saw it at night. But I truly expected the train scenes to be a short build up where we would then see the dogs let loose on a rural community or something.

Aside from the house itself, the first run lack any kind of intensity. Thankfully, the second run was much better but still didn't have the intensity of the first.

Overall very let down by this house. 4 out of 10


Evil Dead 9 out of 10

I don't like this movie BUT I really like the sets in this house. The effects were also very top notch as were the scares. The atmosphere is intense and very faithful to the movie. The final big scene is epic. The Entrance is a little strange with you wandering around back stage for a while but it was a welcome break from the heat. Rather than just a red pattern of light though I think a queue movie would have been far better here.

Great, well-executed house. 9 out of 10

American Werewolf in London 10 out of 10

I cannot love this house more. From set to scare actor everything is top notch and lines up with the movie. The puppets are flat out terrifying.
If I had to say anything I would say the lack of scare actors in the first rooms is a little strange. But I see how they were reenacting the movie. I also love all the little easter eggs.

Amazing house. Amazing achievement. 10 out of 10.

Resident Evil 5 out of 10

The sets are very cool in this house. That's really all I can say that I like. The costumes are goofy and comical, the puppets are silly, and well... more zombies... yay. I don't care for the Game paused room (Don't get me wrong it's cool... just more suited to a gaming convention). There is only one scare that really got me both times. I feel that the translation from game to life is off putting as they kept to how the characters looks in a game... from 15 years ago.

Sorry I don't get it and I liked the game 5 out of 10

Cabin In The Woods 10 out of 10

This house is over the top intense. The sets are amazing and true to the movie. Again I'm not a huge fan of the movie but I really like this house. I love the nods to HHN past. The totem room is so cool. The purge scenes are frighteningly intense. Great house. 10 out of 10.

Scare Zones:

I'm not going to break these down as I pretty much consider them all the same thing. I love the detail of the sets. The barn. the tank, the deer, the freeway corpses, the bonfire, the camp scene, the were all very cool. (I never saw bicycle girl but I heard it was great.)

But zombies is zombies. No matter how many zombies you have they are still the same boring thing. I don't get it. I don't find them interesting or scary in the least. It was a great effort to immerse us in the world of TWD... but I just don't care for it and it destroys the ambient magic of the event for me. There is no story... no icon... nothing to hold the interest of someone who (gasp) doesn't like zombies. I walk through them twice and that was enough for me.

I did see the walker bomb truck once but it was so crowded I couldn't really give a good opinion.

Overall impression of Scarezones: 6 out of 10 for great sets and boring zombies.

Overall impression of the event: 8 out 10 for overall great houses and sets but nix the zombies and bring back icons and back stories.

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I gotta agree JDW you seen one zombie you seen em' all. I watch The Walking Dead show and really enjoy it. I just don't want it at HHN anymore.

It's only been there for two years and feels like it's ruining it. Me and my family come from Houston TX and taking pic's of the and with all the creatures in the scare zones is something we look forward to. Now it's just zombies it really sucks. We can't take pictures or videos in the houses so all we have left is zombies. Are they even scary last year they just shuffled around like they were drunk? Orlando bring back my ICON's and original story lines.....please.

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OK so last night turned into "third chance night" inadvertantly as i was only at HHN for 2.5 hours and only made it through the houses I wanted to be better/were the weakest houses for me. La Llorona, Afterlife, Havoc, and Resident Evil.

La Llorona 9 out of 10

Aside from this house being short. I think it hit perfection for me. It was my first house when we arrived (after picking up my CFO badge) so that we hit is about 9ish. About a 10 min wait. I had not seen the facade pojection before (I had not been during the dark) and It was a nice touch. Every scare was on point, the dripping water I did not notice in the two previous runs (and it was awesome). Going in from the a night transition was optimal and I had no trouble seeing everything. Just a great house.

Afterlife 8 out of 10

First off why did they remove the:

Tall guy gag in 3rd or so room... They replaced them with just normal scare actors in prison outfits


?

The dark also helps this house... as does not wearing the glasses. I like the effects in this house (the knife effect towards the end I must have missed previously) but otherise house is unchanged. Pretty much the same.

Havoc 4 out of 10

Like that this has a queue video... Hate that it is completely drowned out by RHPS. House is better with a night viewing but not enough. It didn't help that many of the scare actors were missing when I went through. I don't think it is their fault that the intensity is not the same as the original... It 's just the way the house is laid out. I still like the effect of being on the train but it takes way too long to build up to the crash in realtion to how surprisigly short this house is. I also still like the crashed train set pieces but they still just feel like set pieces in the Disaster! queue. I would think a crash in a rural city would have been infinitely better with more varied set pieces. I won't be returning to this one (if I even get to go again). Three strikes and I still have no interest.

Resident Evil 4 out of 10

Dropped it a point because, while they added a few more zombies in a few places, Nemisis was completely missing! Sure his guns and effects went off... but they were manned by no one. The dog puppet, even though it was goofy, has been missing through the last two run throughs. One of the zombies on a higher elevation (who has a specific role that he does) was just standing there. Last night (minus the hunter who gets me every freaking time) zero scares and a bunch of slow, boring zombies. Done with this house as well. Overall I love the how pretty the sets are. But their vastness seems to detract from the scare and intensity of them.

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Last night was our final night and the crowds were aweful. We grabbed our Jack figure. Noticed the Evil Dead said 45 min wait and headed that way. It took 10 min to weave through the crowd. when we go there it was a 65 min wait. Well I needed the badge so we waited. All the scareactors were on point. The live girl was doing the vomit scene. Great final run.

Went over to my next badge I missed... AWIL 60 min wait. Again another fantastic run. Great house great scare. Love that house.

Final badge required. TWD.

On the way there we saw Michonne's walkers. Meh there were like 50 people in front of them. They seemed to be static props.

Reached TWD. 80+ min!!! We were in this line for 10 min when some kind sould offered my wife and I their Express pass. Wait time became 5 min. Great run of this house too.

That was supposed to be the end of the night but seeing as we dodge at least 70 min of wait and now had the ability to go front of the line... We decided to go on La Llorona one more time. sign said 25 min wait but with the express pass it was again 5 min. Still an awesome house and the scares were all great... sadly missed most of them. My BIGGEST gripe with this house is the tunnel. Whatever fog-like material they are pumping in there in makes me cough uncontrollably. It's ok when you are zooming through but we were stuck for whatever reason. I could not breathe!

and that was it. I saw zero shows and do not regret it in the least. Overall a great year for houses. the crowds brought in by all the IP are nigh unmanageable at times. The streets are pretty boring and forgettable even though they have cool set.

If I said it once I'll say it a 1000 times. ZOMBIES AREN'T SCARY. They are slow bland and homogenous. The Walking Dead house redeemed last years crap-fest but Please Please Please don't bring it back again. I desperately want an awesome over arching theme with an icon, as well as, varied sreet sets AND scare actors. I did the streets once (other than when I had to go through them) and I didn't care for them the first time and never made the effort again. The marketing had so much potential and it absolutely fell flat. It just didn't have that magical feeling HHN usually has and, as a result, leaving last night neither my wife nor I felt we would miss this year. We had fun, we liked the houses, but we did not have that typical sadness of it being over for us.

So...

Houses 10/10.

This years houses turned my expectations on it's ear. My least favorite houses were mostly the originals.

Streets 5/10

Neat sets... Boring bland zombies.

Shows 0/10

Might as well make that NA but I know if I saw either of them I would have either hated them or been bored. Please bring something new and original.

Marketing 0/10

HORRIBLE implementation. PS was a joke. LT was not utilized properly before the event. No Icon, no theme, zombies everywhere. Reusing Hollywood's commercial from a few years back. (what are the monsters running from? zombies? I think there were zombies amongst them. What evil has taken root? i have no idea.)

Merchandise 7/10

Actually kind of impressed with some of it. But the same boring bloody font on the shirts and most products along with the horrible tag line "So this is what fear tastes like...". Love the Jack pin and vinyl but... Why? Why this year?

Overall 6/10

This year I will remember some of these houses among my favorites... and I will try to blot the rest out of the event from my memory.

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I dont even think the problem is that zombies are not scary... but they are not very entertaining either. Their costumes are just regular clothes, they cant talk, they cant act too aggresive, There is a lot of restriction. Now I will be honest, Zombies this year have scared me, so I personally have been scared.

but when you sit down around a zone, it doesn't have that magical HHN feeling that streets in the past used to have. that feeling that even if you didn't get scared, at least the sets and their costumes entertain you because they are so great looking. I think that's whats missing this year. that "ohhh" factor.

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Well I agree. They just aren't interesting.

... and you can be startled by anyting but that doesn't mean anything belongs.

Now, in fairness the house was decent. It's dark, cramped, and interesting. I don't care who's jumping out at me.

The streets are visible, extremely open, and all the same. I saw the zombies lurching a mile away.

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