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Sep 23, 2009
Howl-O-Scream 2013 is coming to a close and it's time to look ahead- hopefully to a darker, more terrifying future. What needs to go? What needs to change? What needs to stay? Currently, even internally, Howl-O-Scream 2014 seems to be waist deep in uncertain waters. Will 2013's only new house survive to see another year? Is it finally Bitten's turn to get staked? Will the Catacombs renovation ever actually happen? Is the original Terror-tories concept even redeemable at this point? Are the "Scare-atories" (yes, I'm calling them that now) of 2013 even worth bringing back?

2013 really hasn't been a very interesting or exciting event- hopefully it is simply a stepping stone to something far superior.
Zachary said:
Is it finally Bitten's turn to get staked?

I see what you did there! :D

I see a complete redo of the terror-tories, and possibly a few scare zones here and there away from terror-tories (like in "in between" areas, i.e. Wild Reserve, maybe New France.) I see bitten going away, and a black forest type house to go along with Verbolten. (I don't know how well the black forest theme would turn out because of our very best friend from 2012! :s) I see CTC getting upgraded a bit, with hopefully a better budget. A 13 upgrade (I can only hope!). If anything, I see Bitten going next year, and maybe a show for the Globe...
Oh! I was thinking the show for the Globe during Howl-O-Scream could be none other than a play originally produced in the Globe itself! Hamlet! Yes I know it is a long shot, but I think it would be perfect for the Globe during Howl-O-Scream! It's one of Shakespeare's more spooky/scary plays and it also goes great with the theming of the Globe! However, If stupid SG tries to "tweak" it with glitter I'd rather not have it in that case.
They didn't get my money this year, will definitely have to improve net year if they want my business. Obviously MSR will be returning in the globe, and hopefully 13, catacombs, and Bitten will all be replaced, Doubt it though. Will most likely have MSR and thats it, and once again I will not go.
If MSR returns then they will have to cut one of the existing shows. I'm in favor of cutting Fiends since that show has run its course.

They should improve Ripper Row but start from scratch with the others. Houses, realistically, should stay the same with the exception of Cutback Cove, make it a great house next year.
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I really hope someone by mistake dropped the plans to bring Monster Stomp Revamped back into a shredder. I still think it's a massive, massive mistake. Not to mention the fact that if it returns and takes up residence in The Globe as was originally planned, it's going to clash horrendously with Ripper Row- the only Scare-atory I actually want to see back.

(Yes, I'm going to continue using Scare-atory till it catches on)
I'd take Fiends 3.0 If that's an option. I'd miss the nurses too much if they were gone completely, but the show needs to be redone. The jokes this year were ehh. And honestly I felt like the only things carrying the show were Igor, Swampy and the Vampire. The three of them were very strong, the other characters... not so much.

Otherwise, I just hope the event is better than this year. I could see the Scare-atory (as Zach really wants that word to catch on.) spreading into Festa perhaps? Going back to the way things were in the early 2000s with clowns everywhere. (It was on par with Ripper Row this year as far as theming, decorations and actors.) Unlike that scare zone Grin & Scare It. (Which was just plain awful.)

I'm not sure if pirates will return or not. Part of me hopes they do, because I enjoyed their acting, but the other part hopes they don't, because they aren't scary.

Also: Blood Banquet needs to stay. Fright Feast needs to change. Outfits are fine, but the story is awful.
The shows are wonderful and the themes added a new look and feel to HOS. But to fully complement the event, one thing is lacking - the traditional scare zones.

While my family loves the execution of Ripper's Row, we felt that HOS is incomplete. The event is named Howl-O-SCREAM (emphasis added) with good reason. By removing the random scares about the park, the number of times that one receives a good scare is drastically reduced.

As I mentioned in a previous post, the gold standard was HOS 2010's "The Scare Is Everywhere". And quite literally it was. Simply genius. Swapping out mannequins which adorned the entrance area earlier in the day with live scare actors fooled even the most on-guard guests. But the large number of ghillie-suited actors coupled with the foliage that abounds in the park produced countless screams.

We even saw one BGW supervisor get caught off-guard while walking through the dark and heavily fogged Wolf Valley area (which used to be one of the best scare zones). And, one ghillie actor actually brought one guest to her knees. That is Howl-O-SCREAM at its best.

Yes, the houses are plentiful and well executed. However, we all know what to expect and are ready at every turn. But I truly believe that it is the unexpected that produces the best scares.

Perhaps, HOS 2014 will be a combination of the Best of the Best! That is something that I would be worth the wait. :)

The only thing that I can't figure out is how in the heck the chainsaw guys can keep those chainsaws so quiet until the last moment?!?
I think the Scare is Everywhere theme failed miserably. It was essentially scare zones that were not listed that only consisted of at most 6 scare squad team members per section. I wouldn't mind it as much if they truly had scares everywhere.

I think the main issue is that the park has tried four different concepts that if combined in certain combinations could make for a perfect event. Personally, I would love to see a mix of Terror-tories, Hordes, and the scare is everywhere concepts. I think if they were mashed together with the perfect planning and organization. I will definitely elaborate more on my concept later.
There is the definite need for some changes, but not everything. Ripper Row needs to stay, and I'll keep deadline and RoaE with the improvements made this year. They really miss out by leaving so much scare free, they need to add in path scares, especially in areas like wild reserve and from Ireland to England, by the stables. You lose the whole Halloween feeling in wild reserve.
On a completely different note, I have an administrative request for next year: I think it would be really helpful if someone were to find, photograph, and post the locations of all of the QQ lines next year.

Finding the QQ lines is always a bit of a game of hide-and-seek, but this year was especially ridiculous. For example, the line for Root started to the right of the Festhaus. Who in his right mind would look there?

I am of course, perfectly capable of asking the already overwhelmed employees where the line starts, but I would prefer not to have to bother them.

Anyway, just an idea.
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