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Zachary

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Sep 23, 2009
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Blackout is a Kings Dominion Haunt house that opened in 2016. It originally debuted in the Haunt warehouse located within Twisted Timber's infield as a replacement for Club Blood. For its second season, 2017, Blackout was relocated to Planet Snoopy where it replaced Doll Factory to make room for Blood on the Bayou.

Official Description (July 2018):
Are you frightened of the monster that lurks under your bed? Do you ever have the feeling that something bad is about to happen? Are you worried that there is a boogie man in the closet? The things that go bump in the night are waiting for you in this darkness filled realm of nightmares. Will anyone be there to hear you scream? What you can't see might hurt you... and in this case it will!
 
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Aug 15, 2014
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Blackout the first year I thought was done very well (until they added an extra strobe light). It was creepy, had different paths to avoid too much stacking and the people with the nightvision goggles were so scary!

When it moved to the old dollhouse location it lost it's spark. The maze had no clear path and i actually ended up in a backstage area. I hope it is better executed this year!
 

mtorange

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Jul 26, 2014
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To be quite honest, this is probably my least favorite maze that the park has right now. While I was VERY hyped up for it when it was first announced in 2016, I ended up being very let down with both versions. The park had advertised it as a pitch-black experience (99.9% or so...), but there were many moments where I could easily see where I was going. The strobe lights did not help at all, even though it did give us a cool scene with a monster being far away and then being right in your face with the next flash (this was my favorite part of the maze even though it still goes against the whole "pitch-black" thing). The monster at the end of the 2016 version, while cool, seemed out of place and wasn't even added in the 2017 version if I remember correctly. The only notable change for the 2017 version was having stuff on the walls to feel your way through. I liked that they were trying to make it more like Kings Island's version. I hope that things are improved this year, but I wouldn't be surprised if 2018 is its last season.
 
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Nicole

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I agree that the maze needed to be darker (although the first week of the first year it was essentially pitch black). That said, I think the strobe may be partially intended to prevent your eyes from adjusting to the dark.
 
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Sep 29, 2009
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I think the first time I heard rumor of this maze was in 2013 or so. I remember thinking it was a bad joke of what would happen when the park had absolutely nothing else to do. I couldn't believe it when this actually became a thing. I think 2017 was a good attempt, except I could see everything.

It's probably the same to KD as Catacombs was to BG: cheap and easy to maintain. That's probably the only reason it's still here. I don't think it has the same staying power as Catacombs, though. I really hope it doesn't because I want to see something new.
 

Zachary

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Sep 23, 2009
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Blackout has been a long string of disappointments for me. Here are a few points of disappointment I've encountered relating to this house...
  1. The description of the house when it was announced
  2. Learning that it would replace Club Blood
  3. Experiencing the house for the first time
  4. Learning it would return for 2017
  5. Discovering that it would replace Doll Factory
  6. Going through the house in 2017
  7. Learning it would return for 2018
Frankly, I hate this house. Last season I actually realized that walking through it made me angry. Not only is the house depressingly lazy and completely uninspired, but it also provides an environment in which other guests believe they can get away with anything. I have run into the absolute worst examples of humanity in this house.

At its best, the house is an annoying-to-walk-through bother without much opportunity for scares at all. At its worst it's a breeding ground for awful teenagers to push, shove, elbow, grope, and whatever else they want to do with near impunity.

I want this house to vanish forever. It's one of the worst Halloween attractions I've ever experienced. The event would be better if it were just struck from the lineup. Put that extra staffing and money towards the houses that actually matter.

I suppose I should just be glad that Blackout, Haunt's apparent angel of death, didn't decide to inhabit a new location again this year. Hopefully it'll stay in Planet Snoopy until it eventually disappears forever. No house should have ever died to make room for this atrocity. Hopefully it will never happen again.

/rant
 
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mtorange

Grand Carnivale, Haunt, and WinterFest Aficionado
Jul 26, 2014
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I personally think they should trash this and replace it with “Whiteout” for WinterFest 2019.

Jokes aside...

Funny story about this maze. In my first walkthrough for the 2017 version, for some reason there was a guest that got lost and was somehow walking backwards through the maze. I would’ve slammed into her if it wasn’t for me telling her to go the other way. Not sure how the monsters didn’t catch this and coerce her to go the right way... and I’m not sure how she got lost at all because it’s not even pitch-black and there are arrows!!!

It’s a very good premise, but the execution is awful and I agree with Zachary’s post completely. I hope it is drastically improved this year but I highly doubt it will happen.
 

Nicole

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Jul 22, 2013
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My recollection is that the arrows are not set to show you the way out. In fact, I recall feeling as if I was going the wrong way last year, because the arrows pointed in the opposite direction. I vaguely recall their being for emergency exits.

Additionally, having gone through it first thing the night it debuted, I can’t say I am surprised they added some ambient light. We were unable to see our hands in front of our faces, because it was so dark. It was neat, but I’m certain it would have become a capacity nightmare. I imagine there would have been injuries, as well. I accidentally bumped into at least one actor, whom I could not see. I think inevitably people would have falllen or hurt themselves or the monsters in some other way.

I’m not arguing for or against the house; I’m just sharing observations.
 

Zachary

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Sep 23, 2009
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My recollection is that the arrows are not set to show you the way out. In fact, I recall feeling as if I was going the wrong way last year, because the arrows pointed in the opposite direction. I vaguely recall their being for emergency exits.

This is my experience as well. Guest flow often went against the arrows last year so, either everyone was going the wrong way throughout the nights I was there, or the arrows are for something else (almost certainly emergency exits like @Nicole said).
 
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Apr 5, 2011
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So far the best acted of the night. There was too much light do it was too easy to see them to make the gimmick effective, but I felt the actors made up for it.
 
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