Well, I haven't been through it, but I guess I can share stuff now. Theming is spotty- some areas (especially the outdoor ones) look really great. If you start looking closer though- especially at the interior sets, things begin to break down.
The maze looked nice -- BG is good at that. As a scary place, not so much. I don't know why BG seems to think that strobe lights are themselves scary, but several of their mazes have rooms with strobes, and that's it. No scare actors.
In Cutthroat, they also had an entire building that seemed to be just black plastic chains hanging down that you had to walk through. I don't know what is scary about getting hit with black chains, or what is "piratey" about hanging chains either. They need to learn to use these things as distractions for their scare actors.
Even though this was new, I would not rate it in the top 2 mazes.
I think this is the most important point. Right now the actors are really hyped, and getting into their roles. Once the actors start to lose that new hype (hopefully, they won't), they start to get more creative with using the props and their surroundings. Sometimes scare actors actually can be more destructive to the set than the guests themselves. It seems that Busch Gardens is off to a very good start this year with the actors, I think from here on it should only get better.
So, I have never been a scare actor, but after years on the stage, I can tell you that a performer feeds off of the audience. I'm sure many of you know what I mean. I have to believe that the responses of the guests affect how well the actors do. I have had the same guy startle me from several locations, probably because my response was so gratifying. I go into a house hoping to scared, and I think it improves the experience for everyone (especially the guys with me).
So about this maze... It was alright. You could easily tell it was basically recycled Fear Fair down to the endless strobe hallway with no actor at the end. Prop-wise, there was lots of rope and burlap used. Exteriors felt really cheap with the crappily painted walls and such. That being said, I really liked the interiors even if they reused a lot of Fear Fair stuff.
Actors were decent and the ending is good as usual.
This maze just needed less dead room and more actors. It was certainly better than Fear Fairs opening weekend last year and the year before
This was a pretty good maze. Not the best but I liked it none the less. When I went through it, it was terribly understaffed, but that will be fixed when Howl-o-scream starts to get busier. The strobe light room was very boring, but I just laughed all the way through because I was so disoriented. The outside was themed very well, compared to Fear Fair. I thought it was better than Fear Fair, I liked the Pirate theme much better than the clown theme. They need to organize that queue though. It was so annoying at the Crossroads.
Well as for the wagon I have to go the way of being a traditionalist. I like smart recycling, but not for the destruction of well made classic icons of the park.
Smart recycling to me is using the gargoyles from Castle O' Sullivan for Blood Banquet (that is if they are not damaged due to the weather.) The dismantling of Wunderbarn for use as buildings in Cut Throat Cove. Mr. skull Pirate guy that used to be at the England fountain years back, now guards the entrance of Cut Throat. Heck, I even saw old statues from Pompeii in Bitten walking though.
I consider these- bringing back things from retirement.
The wagon should never have been retired. It's been in the park for so long- I looked forward to seeing it. Now- its glory tis but a memory.
Cut Throat Cove was OK. I would go through it again.
The strobes really went on for too long and I am with Alpen on the numerous chains and things to bash into your face. So gross. One even smacked me in the mouth! The mouth! ::shudders:: I'll probably have the flu next week.
The only other thing I would fix is that it needs more scare actors. Everything else I liked. So that is about 75% of the maze- not too bad for the first year.
I currently work in the maze. After reading your comments, I have to say thank you for your kind words, as well as your areas for improvement.Now let me just touch up on some areas. In the chain room. There is suppose to be scare actors in there, but the main scare, a drop panel broke on the first night, and our scarer was unable to use her spot. Secondly, I understand your heartfelt feelings towards the wagon, but seriously, things come and go. Third, The reason for crappy paintjobs is, for lack of better phrasing, We didnt get any money for the maze. thats why everything is recycled. Also, we are currently in the process of getting alot more scare squad members and in the next couple of weeks, we should be getting more props and people. Despite these problems, the sheer number of people and the number of scares that i have gotten tells me, the maze is definitely not a failure. I would love to see cutthroat cove come back next year, but I dont know if I'd want to be working it next year, simply because, it's my first year of scare squad, and I want to try out everything from maze to terror-tories.
I think CTC looks fabulous. My house concerns have already been addressed by others in previous posts. That brings us to the queue...
As you start down the path towards the entrance you are on the left side of a roped-off two-way path. About half way down, YOU CRISSCROSS TO THE OTHER SIDE!! :shocked: What the hell?!? I let it go and went on to enjoy the maze. Then on the way out it took place again; crisscross from right to left side. Except this time we met a group coming the other way. This could be a real mess during an extremely busy time here. I can only imagine this on the coming Saturdays in October. I HAD to stop and ask the lady standing there why it was this way. She said, very timidly and ashamed, "Entertainment set it up this way.". She clearly had either been asked this already by multiple people, overheard passing comments, or just really thought it was a bad idea. I appreciate her honesty. Wow!! I can only imagine the additional confusion for QQ folks.
Maybe it was part of a HotWheels theme; you know... CrissCross Challenge!!
I actually really enjoyed the layout here. I just felt there were too many times I was walking around enjoying the scenery, but there were no scare actors around. They easily need at least 3 times as many people in that maze.
Also, definitely very evident that this maze was a last minute addition since all of the merchandise says Fear Fair and I didn't see one piece of merchandise with Cut Throat Cove on it.