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WB Studio Tour Hollywood 2018 - "Horror Made Here: A Festival of Frights"

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Well it all depends on when you go & when you hit the different offerings. Considering the free Neibolt House experience in Hollywood last year to promote "IT" got up to 2+ hrs, i'd say expect the same like any other haunt or theme park attraction. Of course, there is always the "VIP" option which gives you one-time "front of the line".

 

I'd suggest doing "Arkham Asylum" first, out of everything, THAT will have the longest waittime of the night. Then do either "IT" or "Conjuring". After you have those 3 mazes done, THEN do the "Nightmare on Camp Crystal Lake", which leaves you time to enjoy The Exorcist 4D, the Fangtasia bar, Carnival scarezone/entertainment & the Devil's Drop Tower ride.

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I'll wait for reviews. If the experiences at the end of the wait aren't mind blowing that's a hard to justify purchase. 

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1 hour ago, Alucarda said:

I'll wait for reviews. If the experiences at the end of the wait aren't mind blowing that's a hard to justify purchase. 

Last year, since it was their first official "test" to see if what they're doing this year could be done. They only sold roughly LESS than 1,000 tickets (something like 800 or so). Waiting for reviews to justify the price for an experience is not the best route to take (which is a very unfair way to judge something because while it might be "mind blowing" to some, others might think its total shit). It can sell out. And if you miss out on something great, you'll regret it. If you do it & it isn't "mind blowing" to you, at least you experienced something "NEW".

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Yeah but I could "waste money on an overpriced haunt" with "nothing the other reasonably priced haunts in SoCal don't have." 

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If you attend HHN, then you already waste money on an over-priced haunt.

 

Anyway, attended the auditions today for the event. A little similar to how HHN does their auditions, only much more efficient and professional. They do it like an actual studio casting for a film/tv production. The talent that I saw today was amazing. One girl pretty much was so on point for Harley Quinn/Harleen Quinzel, it was mind blowing. Then she also did an epic Regan from Exorcist. If she isn't cast, I will be shocked.

 

The process they used was you had to choose from their list of characters they'd be featuring for the IPs you'll experience (yes, even Exorcist 4D will have scareactor talent). Each group of 6 people would be taken out to do a warm-up exercise to channel their character they were auditioning for. Since you'd possibly be asked to do a 2nd character, it was best to choose two. After that came the actual audition. Unlike HHN, they actually filmed the entire thing. Instead of a cone, they had a tri-fold wall. The casting director would have the people become their characters & then react to certain situations IN character. Then each person performed their character one by one, but were also asked to do other things as that character or another character. It was very efficient.

 

They only had two days of auditions. This is not going to be a "meh" haunt. This will be a legit performance based event rather than the cliche "Boo & skadoo" tactic you see elsewhere.

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I do love improv theater in haunts, when it is done well. 17th Door, Creep, hell even how Dark Harbor meshes the two makes for a beautiful experience. Hopefully these active waiting scenes don't come off like awkward riddleless escape rooms with Harley Quinn cosplayers hosting the party.

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As someone who's been trained in, directing and teaching acting for nearly 2 decades now, I am an absolute stickler for acting in haunts. I've never seen it genuinely "good." 98% of the time it's been awful with the other 2% being passable. Including anything at HHN. I understand if GP or casual fans are into that thing and can forget about it, but there's too many layers to a performance for me to just turn my mind off to it without critiquing. This is why I love Haunts with elaborate sets, sound design, make-up, etc. because my focus is more on that. And probably why I love HHN so much, because they usually pop out and go away without too much acting-performance (at least not dialogue). Generally the performers outside the mazes or the one-off scareactor in a zone have been at most tolerable but generally crappy. And anytime a monster at KSF opens their mouth to say anything, suddenly any amount of fear or immersion I had is completely gone because now it's been ruined. So if something is relying on or leaning into the "acting," then chances are I'm not going to like it.

 

The other aspect to it is, these performers have to be "on" 7 hours a night. Even interchanging with another actor, that's still 3.5 hours, which is a long time to genuinely stay in character, be in the moment, and in the zone. And then they have to do it night after night, same small scenes over and over again, plus interaction. I always feel bad for the victims in HHN mazes who have to pretend they're being murdered for hours and you can tell they're exhausted and not into it at all, trying to give their 100% but it's coming off as only 25% selling it, which is nowhere near enough IMO.

 

If WB can even have ONE character living under imaginary circumstances TRUTHFULLY, then it'd be a job well done. Because I have not seen that anywhere else.

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Well I can assure you, if they cast the girl I saw as Harley/Harleen (or hell even Regan), she will be perfect. Her ability to snap between the two were flawless. Here's another big difference between other haunts and WB's... People actually sent in audition tapes! (no joke). Also, rumor has it, they might be looking at casting more people than originally planned.

 

So while, we all know that Universal and other haunts like to go for the "At Capacity" route when it comes to tickets. I've heard the number for WB being around 3,000-ish. Which is NOT a lot of people for each night and allows you to fully enjoy your time there without waiting 5+ hours for one maze.

 

They will be going all out with the "Nightmare of Camp Crystal Lake" terror tram, they will be fully utilizing the jungle set location to its full potential (it even has a "lake"). Also, it seems like The Conjuring will be completely different from what was presented last year. Actually, from what I heard, its apparently been said to forget anything/everything you heard/seen about last year's "trial run" because this year will be completely different and much bigger. 

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My game plan as of now is...

Arrive SUPER EARLY

Hit Arkham Asylum to be first in line (10 minutes)

Run to Conjuring (50 minutes?)

Studio Tour - if it's dark by than (not sure how this will be ran, 30 minute wait with 30 minutes to do?)

IT (if not dark already, swap with Studio Tour - 70 minute wait, maybe)

Eat

Tim Burton exhibit

Exorcist 4D (at most, will wait 30 minutes)

Drop Tower (at most, will wait 40 minutes)

Arkham again (at most, will wait 60 minutes for hitting a repeat)

Conjuring, It, or Studio Tour repeat for whichever of those I like most

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What?... No drink at the Fangtasia bar? No game play in the Lost Boys Arcade?

 

Thats the one thing I find interesting about the event's Carnival Circus scarezone/midway... we don't know the full details of its offerings. I wonder if they'll bring back the "IT VR school bus" again just to offer something else. I believe they mentioned live entertainment of some kind, maybe a DJ like last year too.

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I'm the type that only drinks if it means to get DRUNK. And considering it's LA, I'm sure those prices will be steep for drinks. I'll at most stroll through the arcade, reminisce about an old game for 5 seconds and then keep going. And live-entertainment usually has little interest to me unless it's a full on show with a plot. There could be a man playing the banjo with his arms on fire and I'd probably just walk by and go on with my day.

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3 minutes ago, DTH316 said:

There could be a man playing the banjo with his arms on fire and I'd probably just walk by and go on with my day.

well at least we know you've been to Hollywood Blvd

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So I recently found out some interesting info regarding this year's event. While we found out at the MSS panel that the one lady used to work for Dark Harbor, apparently, WB also was able to snag someone else. Don't remember the name of the guy, but he used to do scenic for HHN Hollywood, before it became cheap budget-cut black wall hell. This due is responsible for creating great set details for mazes, now he's at WB this year. It seems we should be seeing some great movie quality sets for this event (plus they even stated during the panel that they have the actual props/sets from these films to use as well)

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Oh my god, the poor woman who has to scream at the top of her lungs as the uninterested conga line goes past sleepy Jason. 

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From the videos I’ve seen, the sets and costumes look amazing, but there aren’t too many scares. I’ll be there in a few weeks to see for myself. 

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I attended the event on 10/5/18.  I was debating between going to WB and HHN and maybe I chose poorly... I'll cut WB some slack, I know this is their 1st real event. The sets and costumes were amazing, but I got absolutely 0 scares.  The Conjuring Universe was the whole reason I wanted to attend. It was an "interactive" maze, they split people into groups of less than 10. I ended up waiting in line for 2 hours to do this maze. When it was over everyone in my group exclaimed, "That's it?". I found that was the case with most of the mazes; something felt missing.


The most frustrating part of the event was I almost missed the Camp Crystal Lake attraction (their version of the TT). It was advertised to close early, 10:30pm. My husband and I were there a little before 10pm, but the line attendant was refusing to let anyone in at that point. She said they were set to close at 10 that night and it was above her pay grade to discuss this change. People were angry and refusing to leave. Eventually a manager came over and reopened the line.


Highlights for me: Camp Crystal Lake and It. 

 

Takeaway: I had fun and if you are interested in going, you should. I enjoyed seeing all the sets, the quality was amazing. Just don't expect to be scared. Also, the food was terrible and cold, please eat before you go!

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For a first (or second depending on how you look at it) year event this was decent. People forget how little there was to do at HHN in 2006. I think if the cost was lower, it wouldn’t be getting trashed online as bad as it has been. WB is currently involved in a dispute for hiring non-union construction workers. This has caused a lot of their social media to be flooded with bad reviews so I wonder if this may also be the source of some of extremely negative reviews. 

 

There’s a decent number of scareactors wandering around the lot, but due to the lack of a dedicated scarezone, they felt spread thin. Aside from a Georgie and some bullies from It, they were mostly generic clowns. This was kind of disappointing as the videos from the media preview showed Pennywise, Freddy, Jason, and some Batman villains mingling with the crowd and posing for pictures. Either we missed them all or they’ve cut back. The DJ was mostly ignored and the Lost Boys arcade was tiny and not every game inside was 80s. Love tester machine stole my quarter. Food didn’t look appetizing mostly because there didn’t look like there was anywhere to sit down and eat. I would have liked to try the soup in a bread bowl, but who wants to walk around this type of event with a bowl of soup. We did have multiple drinks in Fangtasia and that was good, although oddly when you pay with a card there wasn’t an option to tip your bartender. 

 

One thing they did get right was a lot of great photo ops. This is something I’ve wondered why other attractions (aside from Disney) haven’t focused more on. It’s so hard to get good photos at a lot of these events due to low lighting and the fact that the characters don’t stick around. I would have paid really good money to have had a picture with Sam at HHN this year, for example. WB has a ton of great photo ops. Lots of people were buying. Places like Universal and Knotts already have the infrastructure in place to do this, so I don’t understand why they don’t make it more of a focus. 

 

Now on to the maze/attraction reviews. 

 

Devil’s Drop Tower - There was no line all night. They sent workers around to the other lines trying to talk people into riding it. We skipped it. Just thought I’d mention it. 

 

The Conjuring - Half hour line with Losers Club VIP. I actually had a lot of fun in this house and got some good scares. That said, I would absolutely sacrifice the guided tour aspect to alleviate the long lines. 30 minute VIP line and 2+ hour standby is crazy for this event. There was nothing that would not have worked as a standard walkthrough maze except for the finale which could easily have been moved to the beginning and run as a preshow like Knotts does for many of its mazes. The Conjuring doesn’t deserve the hate it’s gotten in some reviews, but should have been a regular maze. 

 

Nightmare on Camp Crystal Lake - Being a movie buff, I kind of liked that they did a mini tour of the sets you drove by. I remember when Universal kind of talked a bit about the studios’ history on Terror Tram before giving up and just playing a theme video each year. I think our first tour guide just wasn’t into it. The guy that drove us back was great. The maze itself was fun and given the small number of people per tram, you really felt alone and exposed in the forest. Scareactors were OK interacting and posing for photos. Not sure where I read it, but on another review someone said this was what they wished Terror Tram would be and I agree. The one scare a lot of people hyped up was not there when we went through though. Jason is my favorite slasher so I’m likely super biased. We spent around 45 minutes in the museum afterwards. 

 

IT - If this was at HHN, people would be calling it the best maze of the year. It’s a great maze. My only complaint is that all the guys playing Pennywise must have called in sick. The only Pennywises we saw were projections or mannequins. There were generic clowns inside, but no Pennywise. I’m wondering if the actors didn’t show up and they grabbed some of the generic clowns from outside and stuck them in the maze. 

 

Arkham Asylum - Guys taking your mugshot at the entrance we’re kind of rude. Not sure if they were in character or just rude. Best actors of the event worked this house. It was fun, but very light on scares. This could have worked and been a great way for WB to differentiate themselves from other haunts, but the very anti-climatic ending was a let-down. 

 

Exorcist - The crowd reacted very well to this. As it was ending I was hearing a lot of people commenting that they were surprised how well the movie has held up. For me, most of the scares were just from being able to watch scenes from a well-made movie. Everything else was kind of disappointing for me, but probably awesome of the people sitting next to the effects. Try and get within the first few rows for this. Absolutely nothing happened near us in the back, but I could see how some of the effects that happened in the front would have been terrifying up close. 

 

Overall, I liked the event, but I’m not sure I’d do it again in the near future unless they either added much more to do or slashed the price dramatically. While there is plenty they can improve on, I do not understand some of the negativity towards the set design and costumes. Those were the two stronger aspects of the event in my opinion. 

 

They need to decide what they want to be. If they want to compete with HHN, they need to add a whole lot more to do and become more like a traditional haunt. If they truly want to be an alternative, they still should add some more, but also play to their strengths. They could go fully immersive, have longer mazes, add escape room elements to some of the mazes, branching paths, and do other stuff that Universal and Knotts (which have to revert back to family friendly theme park during the day) can’t do. Make this the event for people that don’t like huge crowds and techno music. 

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I went last night (Sunday 10/21) on a whim.  I had previously decided not to go due to the not good reviews.  This review comes from someone who has never been to the WB lot before.

 

I enjoyed the event quite a lot.  It felt like the very early days of HHN or Haunt.  I'm talking pre-2000 days.  Before the masses.  It's also VERY important to note that when I went it was completely dead.  No crowds to speak of.  Longest wait was 30 min for standby, and that peaked around 8:30.  After that EVERYTHING was walk on.  By this I mean you could go through alone if you liked.  And you could stop in any room and spend several minutes there, taking in the atmosphere without someone dressed in black urging you on through.  So this was an experience like no other that I have seen this decade.  My take would have been very much like Clipper's had I experienced 2 hour waits.  I need to stress that again - there were NO blackout ops in any of the houses.  No one with a flashlight urging you on.  It was unreal.  As far as walking goes, you can walk from any attraction exit to any other attraction entrance in 2 under minutes.  They are that close together.  

 

First, for those who have never been, you will be stunned by the small size of the event.  It is miniscule.  How small?  Picture the HHN backlot.  You are entering the HHN backlot via Holidayz in Hell.  This is about the size of the entrance to the WB event.  It consists of a junkyard of carnival props and a very short fog filled walkway.  Back to HHN - as you exit Holidayz in Hell, you turn left and see the queue for Purge.  Take everything from the Purge queue to Poltergeist and its associated worst case queue.  Add Blumhouse and its queue.  And that is about the size of the whole WB event.  Of course, WB also has their version of the TT, which I will get to.  The "weenie" of the WB event is Devil's Drop, which is a carnival drop tower I estimate to be 70 feet tall.  It's free to ride, is brightly lit and is impossible to miss from anywhere inside the event.  Around this centerpiece are all of the attractions: It, Exorcist, Arkham Asylum, Conjuring.  There are also a couple of It themed photo ops, including the curb sewer and the Neibolt house.   Kinda easy to miss are projections utilized in windows of facades.  Above the Little Shop of Horrors is a projection of Audrey feeding.  Freddy also appears as a projection.

 

What is nice about all of this is that as a whole, it looks like a highly detailed and themed event.  And it should.  Aside from the lighting, this is close to what it looks like most of the year.  It's kind of like how it would feel if HHN rebooted with a tiny event and held it in the BTTF Courthouse square, with the surrounding facades hiding the houses.

 

WB is trying very hard to make this a party atmosphere.  If you are in line for Arkham, It, or Exorcist, the only thing you will hear is the DJ blasting his music, and the occasional screams from Devil's Drop.  The Conjuring queue is far enough away to drown the sound.  Alcohol is aplenty.  There are bars at the four corners of the event that serve shots and wine, and Fangoria that serves hard drinks.  By 11pm on this very empty night, drunks were aplenty.  I did not see any attempt to cut people off or limit them.  You need a wristband to drink, and it would have been nice to see hole punches limiting sales, but no.  As a result, some guys were staggering drunk.  There were lots of security but no one being led out.  There is a "Lost Boys Arcade" that has a bunch of arcade games from my youth.  They are all set to free play.  The games are in decent shape for the most part, but the trackball in Missile Command did not work.  

 

Food & Restrooms: Snack food is widely available, but if you want something more substantial you have two options: The Crave Inn Cafe (get the pun?  Read it a few times.  Hint: Freddy projections in the window above).  You can get pizza and hot dogs here.  There are plenty of tables set up for you to eat at, but I imagine these are not available on Fri or Sat.   The other place is Central Perk at Stage 48, which is a big WB museum that is open most of the event.  If you want to eat in a more quiet area, this is the place.  And they have real restrooms - not rows of porta toilets like the HHN backlot has, which is what you will find in the WB event.  

 

So let's talk about the attractions.  Remember, these had at most a 30 min wait part of the night but were a walk on most of the night.

 

Nightmare on Camp Crystal Lake - A 7 min tram ride to a portion of the back lot that has the lake.  Along the way the driver talks about areas of the backlot as you pass them.  They take a very indirect route to the to the lake, so the intent is to add a guided tour to the attraction.  I took the tram several times and the drivers are not subject to a tight script.  They can tell jokes, be impromptu, interact with the passengers.  This was a lot like the very early days of Terror Tram, when it was more fun.  The attraction itself really feels like Camp Crystal Lake would.  I cannot describe how cool it was to see a fog covered lake and Jason - submerged to the neck - walking out of it holding his machete.  This is just simply not possible at Universal, with their conga lines.  The attraction culminates with a walkthru house with lots of Freddies.  The costumes were amazing.  The scares so-so, as the Jasons were not very aggressive.  So how does this compare to Terror Tram?  If you are an out of towner, there is no way in hell anyone is going to keep you away from the thought of walking through the WOTW set, and Terror Tram is larger and sounds like more fun, so for them, Terror Tram all the way.  For the rest of us, who have been on TT way too many times, only to see the exact same thing over and over, it's gotta be WB.  This being said, the next question is: What do you do next year, WB?  because if it's Jason and Freddy again....   BTW, though the guide says last tram is 10:30, Crystal Lake was open till 11 on this empty night.  The tram coming back stops at the museum, so it's the perfect opportunity to grab better food.  The park and attractions remained open till 1AM.

 

Arkham Asylum - This was by far my least favorite, and was the one I was most looking forward to.  It was also the first thing I did at the event, so when I exited it I was muttering "uh oh...".  It's not terrible, but it's not good enough to be one of the three haunted houses at a new event.  That being said, this is another house that simply could not be done at HHN.  The sets are cartoon-like.  This house is about the make-up and interaction with the guests.  The make up is top notch.  We are talking prosthetics, not masks.  The Joker makeup is straight out of the video game.  He can emote. He can speak.  It's great.  Harley, Penguin, Riddler, and more I don't recognize, are all in the house and they all chew the scenery.  From that perspective, this is a great house.  Not great on scares, and not great on detailed scenes.  Again, it's more like a comic book come to life.  During the last two scenes, nothing seems to happen.  I don't get it.  Advice to WB: If you must bring this back next year, get rid of the Intake room with the photos.  It's pointless.  

 

It - I saw this on Youtube and thought it was crap.  Actually quite good in real life.  Don't base opinion on videos.  Pennywise appeared all throughout the night.  The Georgies were excellent, with their weak little voices pleading for help.  Good effects throughout.  This house felt most like an HHN-type house.  It's what I imagine HHN Orlando doing.  It's better than what I imagine Hollywood HHN would do.  The first part of the house is based in a (beautiful) practical set.  It's a sudden and apparent jump from practical set to tent.  I read here that a lot of people complain about the lack of scares in this house.  My rebuttal is this - if this house was being done up the street, it would have twice as many scares - but all the new ones would be Pennywise jumping out of a black box.  Would that make it better?  I argue it would not.  This was a reasonable house.  The scenery drags you in and scares happen where you don't expect them. 

 

Exorcist - I was damned impressed with this, and saw it at least 6 times.  It is a 4-D experience, lasting about 15 min.  Good effects and better scares.  The audience makes or breaks the experience for everyone else.  A few hecklers in the house ruin it.  Here's the thing you don't realize until you've seen it a few times.  There are things in the soundtrack that are put there just to get you on-edge or purposely annoy you.  How many of you heard some moron's cell phone ringing during the movie?  So did I.  And it annoyed me and took my mind off the screen for a few seconds.  Guess what?  It was part of the show.  It's there to take you out of the element.  To distract you.  To make you picture a nun pummeling some guy in the back row.  There are lots of little things that happen in this show.  The more times you watch it, the more you see.  Don't sit in the front or back.  Sit in the last long bench before the narrow front section starts.   For an extra treat, sit in the left most part of that row :D.  Hint: If it smells like poop over there, it's for good reason.

 

Conjuring - Hands down the best of the lot.  I went through this about 8 times.  There are SO many things going on, and I saw new things each and every time - even if I went right back to the entrance and did it again, no two shows were the same.  Another house that is not possible at HHN.  Way better than anything HHN Hollywood has done in my opinion (and I've seen everything they have done).  The Nun scare at the end is an instant classic.  Kids will forever remember that.  It was cool to see how and where the plant joins the group in the Annabelle room.  This, like Exorcist is not something you will see at a typical haunt.  They are more of a "boutique haunt" sort of thing.  And upcharge experience.  Conjuring was a (very) dumbed down version of Delusion.  And Delusion is the best thing going anywhere, so that is not a bad thing.  Delusion relies heavily on a "guide".  There is nothing wrong with a guided haunt experience.  It's just as much a haunted house as anything else.  Fright Dome in Vegas had a guide in every house, but had they not overdone it, it worked.  Without exception every group RAN out of Conjuring and Exorcist.  What more does it take to be a success than that?

 

"Show" - There are several "make up demonstrations" throughout the evening in a tiny building.  It is by no means a show.  They offer to put some makeup on several volunteers.  No prosthetics, just alcohol based makeup (which they will have a hell of a time removing).  The make up was amazingly mundane, for people trying to show their skills.  You can get far better at an airbrush stand at HHN.  It amounted to young people talking about the movies and TV shows they liked (or worked on) and people in the audience going "ooooh, I remember that one!".  If you miss this, you miss nothing.  The building holds about 30 people max, and most left during the presentation.

 

A word about roaming actors - It appears to me that there are a few roaming actors, like a clown on impossibly tall stilts, that roam all evening.  In addition, when cast members change out of houses, they often wander through the streets along the way.  It's not uncommon to see a nun walking around, and there are a LOT of Georgies.  Sometimes they come to the photo ops.  When Crystal Lake lets out (around 11), Jasons and Freddys roam around.  They will stop for photos.  And those Georgies?  They sure look like kids to me.  If they are over 18, they are doing spot on kid impersonations.

 

How WB is better than HHN:

  • Uncrowded at WB is heaven.  Uncrowded at HHN is still crowded
  • No blackout ops at WB
  • No conga lines at WB, but can severely extend waits
  • NO EMPTY BLACK HALLWAYS
  • Experiences you will never see at HHN
  • NO EMPTY BLACK HALLWAYS
  • Emphasis on acting (and interacting) over pop scares
  • NO EMPTY BLACK HALLWAYS
  • Make up & costumes at WB >> Make up & costumes at HHN
  • NO EMPTY BLACK HALLWAYS

How HHN is better than WB

  • Real rides
  • Far more houses
  • Scarezones
  • Stage show (I use that term very loosely when talking about Jabbawockeez)
  • Food options far better at HHN
  • Ability to buy an all you can eat line pass for houses (i.e. you can buy the perfect evening no matter what)

 

So that was a pretty glowing review of most of the (too few) attractions.  What about the overall experience?

It all depends on what your goal is.  With WB in the lineup, we are at an interesting point in time.

HHN Hollywood is packed these days.  Unless you have a game plan to get there before it starts, you are doomed.  There are "less crowded" nights, but that means 30 min waits across the board.

WB is like the very early days of HHN.  It's either packed or empty.  It's too young for Thursdays and Sundays to get packed, so if you go on those days, you are in for an empty event.

So which would you rather do? 

Go to HHN, which has many more attractions, real rides, and real scarezones, but have 30 min waits?

Go to HHN, which has many more attractions, real rides, and real scarezones, and buy an unlimited Express at the cost of $200+ and do as much as you want?

Go to WB, which has few attractions - but what they do have is unique and NO BLACKOUT OPS - and go on them as many times as you want for << $200?

If WB plays their cards right, the last option won't be available in a few years.  But now it is, and it's something that should be considered.  I think the 25th, 28th, and 31st will be dead.  Go any of those and have a great time.  This is the "golden age" for this event.  Experience it while you can.

Since every review seems to complain about the place being packed and 2-3 hour waits, I'm curious if you would consider WB if you knew it would be empty.

 

My understanding is last year had:

Conjuring (exact same as this year)

It (the same one that was available free a few days before the movie premiered)

It VR (Same one that appeared at ScareLA in 2017)

Freddy (house)

Tram tour (more of a tour with a mini show and no scarezone stop)

 

So 2018 looks like a decent amount of new material for a second year of a new event. 

 

What could they do in 2019 to improve it?

It Chapter 2, since it seems inevitable.  Under no circumstances can it simply be the same as the 2018 house.

Replace Conjuring.  It was fantastic, but if you want to remain relevant, you can't repeat a house three times.  And not a different tale from the Conjuring unless it's a good one.  They already cover Annabelle and Nun.

Fix Arkham Asylum.  Great characters and makeup.  Now build a good house around it with a real story.

Tram Tour - Stage some shows along the way.  Destination is not Crystal Lake.  Make it a Soundstage with an excellent house.

Get rid of the carnival ride - it was a joke this year.  You need a stage show.  How about something skewing pop culture?

I'm OK with Exorcist returning for a second year.  Maybe plus it up even more?

 

 

 

 

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Great review Zombieman. I agree with you that this is a good event and I hope they expand without trying to emulate the other haunts too much. My group all preferred the mazes at WB over the ones at HHN and we did them both the same night. However, HHN had a better energy to us. Part of that I think is just the larger crowd, but also HHN is just more fun at this point. WB just currently doesn’t have enough to do and after a few hours I think the most popular attraction was the Conjuring beer garden. If they want to continue charging what they charge, there needs to be enough to do to fill up a full night without having to rely on the museum, which is admittedly awesome, but will have less and less repeat value in coming years. 

 

I think they should keep a high price point which also has the added benefit of attracting a slightly more mature crowd. They need probably 2-3 more mazes/attractions to spread the crowds out so something unique like The Conjuring doesn’t get slammed. Maybe bring in some carnival games with fun prizes. They had one of those high striker games this year, but there weren’t any prizes on display and I think if you wanted to play you had to buy tickets in the gift shop. Bring in a fun house or carnival dark ride (no way I was going on a drop tower after 3 drinks in Fangtasia). Have food that is actually fun instead of boring pizza and burgers (Reagan’s pea soup was a nice touch). I think with the lower number of tickets they’re purposefully selling they can do some unique things that would be harder for a larger event. Maybe a gun maze like Knott’s Spec Ops or the Resident Evil one that Universal Japan did (actually might be kind of fun if HHN tried this with a Purge theme). They could even do an escape room lite similar to the Saw attraction in Las Vegas. 

 

Someone on another site posted a survey from WB asking for opinions on a number of IPs they’re considering for next year. I got the same survey yesterday. They’re looking at I Am Legend, Westworld, Sabrina the Teenage Witch, and Castle Rock. If I had to guess, I’d say Sabrina is almost a lock as long as the show is successful and Westworld seems likely. There was a limited time Sabrina experience in LA similar to how IT was originally a limited time experience on Hollywood Blvd. I can see them expanding upon that and bringing Sabrina to the event next year. Westworld had a good off site experience at San Diego Comic Con that I can see being adapted for HMH and the concept of the show lends itself so well to this type of event. Don’t really want to see I Am Legend unless they somehow do an awesome superhouse that represents Vincent Price, Charlton Heston, and Will Smith versions. I’m not familiar at all with Castle Rock. 

 

The DC and Harry Potter areas of the museum were off limits during this event. I wonder if that was cost cutting or if it was a contractual issue with Six Flags and Universal respectively as they license the theme park rights for those IPs. They’re ok in the daytime when WB is a guided tour and not a themed attraction. Arkham Asylum might have been ok as it is based on the game. 

Edited by clipper6

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My thing is, I'd definitely go for that price if there were 2-3 more mazes. Even if I didn't like the videos, I'd still be interested. That or the price drops to 40-50, but I'd prefer more mazes. I would maybe even go this year for this price if they had at least double the amount of actors. Pricepoint is such a major thing and a Haunt can live or die by it. I can't convince 10 friends to go to WB if they only have 3 mazes and reviews saying there's low actors or scares for $80. But they will go to HHN to do the same old thing for the 10th year in a row, no matter how bored of it they've become (maybe only one or two of them) simply because the quality, quantity, and stuff to do quotient matches the pricepoint. We're all busy and broke 20-35 year olds, we have no desire to waste our little time and money.

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I get your point DTH.  For me, standing in line has become something I just don't want to put up with.  If there was any such thing as HHN Hollywood with all houses being walk on, I'd do that over WB any day.  But being able to do 5 attractions with zero wait in a small area is a far better value.  I bet just about every negative review of WB was for a Friday or Saturday night.  I'd probably give it one star if it had crowds like that.  

 

And there are 5 attractions, not three.  Agreed Exorcist is not a house, but it's better than just a show.  And Camp Crystal Lake should be considered to be a house.  The structures played a larger role than Terror Tram's did this year.  With the tram drivers providing as much entertainment as they do, Crystal Lake is very repeatable.

 

And one more thing about the WB attractions.  You will not see any empty black hallways.  There is stuff to see everywhere, although some of the hallways in Arkham were pretty sparse.

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