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Nicole

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Jul 22, 2013
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Official description (2021)

Welcome to our Haunted Trail, where classic fairy tales leap off the page and lunge at your throat. Experience the three terror-filled stories, straight from the twisted minds of the Brother’s Grimm. Over the river and through the woods, we hope you make it out alive.
 

Nibbins

Resident Rat - They/Them
Sep 3, 2019
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This one was a bit boring compared to the other haunted houses.
It's very spread out and you can see most of the actors from quite a distance away. Still got a few good jumps at us though.
 

Nicole

Administrator
Jul 22, 2013
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Arlington, VA
This ”maze” was absolutely my favorite attraction on Sunday at Haunt. That said, I don’t think it is really a “haunted house.” Clearly, it is more narrative than a traditional scare zone, as well, however.

In my opinion, we need a third category. We are seeing an increasing number of haunt attractions that seem to have elements of both, like a crossover. GrimmWoods, Uprising, Tollway Terror, and Sea Dog Cemetery are a few examples of haunted walk- and drive-throughs that have strong storytelling and are set in isolated paths, but lack more traditional house design elements, like hiding places for jump scares. They seem to share Halloween Horror Nights’ approach of scaring through atmosphere and narrative, rather than creating fear like more traditional SEAS, CF, and SF houses.

Acknowledging that this is purely a matter of personal tastes, as someone who prefers houses that create anxiety through sound, lighting, storytelling, and stalking, I much prefer attractions like GrimmWoods. I really hope we continue to see more of these creative approaches to haunt attractions going forward.

I wonder what we should call them? Scary Tale Trails?
 
Mar 18, 2017
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I've been to enough independent haunts that I expect the little houses to be walk through. Did see a couple jump scares on the people right in front of me. Also they said stuff but it was difficult to hear, between the volume and walking away.
 
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Nov 1, 2012
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This ”maze” was absolutely my favorite attraction on Sunday at Haunt. That said, I don’t think it is really a “haunted house.” Clearly, it is more narrative than a traditional scare zone, as well, however.

In my opinion, we need a third category. We are seeing an increasing number of haunt attractions that seem to have elements of both, like a crossover. GrimmWoods, Uprising, Tollway Terror, and Sea Dog Cemetery are a few examples of haunted walk- and drive-throughs that have strong storytelling and are set in isolated paths, but lack more traditional house design elements, like hiding places for jump scares. They seem to share Halloween Horror Nights’ approach of scaring through atmosphere and narrative, rather than creating fear like more traditional SEAS, CF, and SF houses.

Acknowledging that this is purely a matter of personal tastes, as someone who prefers houses that create anxiety through sound, lighting, storytelling, and stalking, I much prefer attractions like GrimmWoods. I really hope we continue to see more of these creative approaches to haunt attractions going forward.

I wonder what we should call them? Scary Tale Trails?
I've heard the term Haunted Trail used for this type of attraction. So now 3 basic categories: Maze, Scare Zone, and Trail?

I think Grimm Woods is of such a large scope, and a first for KD, that it certainly will be expanded and tweaked in the years to come.
 
Apr 22, 2019
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I like the creativity of this one and since I'm not one for tons of jump scares this was a good one for me. There was one jump scare that got me. But mostly you see the monsters ahead of you jumping out at others. It's too open for that. But I didn't mind. I liked the atmosphere.

However I really hope they can figure out a way to have this but also have Grizzly open. No Grizzly night rides SUCKS.
 
Oct 22, 2019
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I liked this as well - I definitely think it's possible to still be jump scared, but there's a finite number of opportunities depending on how fast people are moving through. Someone with some type of fan definitely would have gotten me if I wasn't mostly nonplussed by jump scares: felt the wind in my face, but just kind of kept walking. Always feel bad disappointing them.

But yeah, to me the story function of this is far more interesting to me as a form of heavy theming than the houses themselves.
 
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Zachary

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Sep 23, 2009
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Yeah, there are still only three stories: Little Red, Hansel and Gretel, and Briar Rose.

That said, the set improvements here are WILDLY impressive. There are new, enormous tree trunks on the path in the Little Red section, there's a huge, multi-story set in Briar Rose, etc. Scenic at atmospheric quality here is NUTS. The sets in particular are probably the best you'll find outside of Florida or California parks. So, so good.

That said, last night it really only felt like Little Red's section was working as it should. We got all the main story hits from actors walking though there, a few attempted scares, etc. Hansel and Gretel and Briar Rose felt a lot less narratively developed. Hopefully interactions between the cast and guests will improve in the coming weeks because in a house like Grimm, that completely makes or breaks the experience.

I'll also add that I'd still like to see this house perform in a more sophisticated way too. A story-based house like this lends itself well to potential distraction scares—a scare payoff while you're distracted by a character actor. I'd love to see more of that here to help with the houses "scare-free" reputation.
 

Nicole

Administrator
Jul 22, 2013
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Arlington, VA
In my opinion, GrimmWoods relies on very different types of scares than houses like Bayou and No Vacancy. Because of the setting, it is difficult to create a sense of being trapped in a constricted space. It is also harder to manipulate the atmosphere with lighting. Moreover, it is not a natural fit for jump scares. For those reasons, I believe it is much more dependent on storytelling and character interaction. I also think, by extension, this house has the potential to be much more sophisticated than a house that relies primarily on startles.

For me this maze lives and dies by the skill and prevalence of the actors. They need to make you feel threatened. They need to interact with guests in ways that causes fear and a sense of vulnerability. As you walk through, I believe you need to feel that you are alone with no way to escape the creepy and malevolent characters you encounter. This does mean jumping out and saying, “boo.” It requires dialogue and stalking and other such tactics.

Obviously, the setting, atmosphere, and storytelling also are critical aspects of this maze. I think it works best, when you feel alone on a dark, heavily wooded path, with the sense than anything could be lurking around the corner or just beyond the tree line. The sound and lighting need to be precise, and other guests can completely the experience (this happened to us last night).

All of this is to say that I think this house may not be as well appreciated, as it deserves. I think it is conceptually sophisticated and I love that it exists.
 

belsaas

Professional Shitposter
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On my visit I decided to head through GrimmWoods as it had the shortest queue. Can't agree enough with @Nicole here—this is a maze to absorb atmosphere and feel a sense of place. It's sort of like watching The VVitch instead of Saw or Friday the 13th. Slow, dreadful build of tension and vibes are strong here—jump scares are not. I really enjoyed my walkthrough!
 

Alpentheon

howl-o-scream enthusiast
Apr 27, 2022
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this was so bad this year. uhm i like didnt like it at all.. they never got me once and it looked empty..
 
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Mar 18, 2017
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I would have gotten a jump scare, sort of saw the guy an instant first, but then after jumping out he said "oh, the leader changed" and went off to scare someone else behind me instead. Typical of my experiences this year. I used to love Haunt but now I just feel disrespected.
 
May 23, 2021
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I did not do GrimmWoods opening weekend - as my family likes to save a maze or two as something new to do on following Haunt weekends - but walking through GrimmWoods tonight, during the second weekend... Wow! I'm impressed with all the additions added this season.

Between all the giant tree trunks added towards the start of the maze, in the Little Red section; finally giving the scare actors something to hide behind. To all the trellis's added to the final bridge section. To the excellent relocation of Briar Rose to the end, with all the new building facades, funneling down traffic to narrower sections. Along with the amazing animatronic (no spoilers) at the very end -- again, wow. Truly impressive!

As mentioned previously in this thread - the maze is definitely not intended for jump scares. But as a pure atmospheric-type maze, I'm loving the attention the park is giving to this one, and what they've managed to evolve it into.
 
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