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Nov 14, 2009
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Williamsburg, VA
Do you prefer the defined "scare zones" like in the past, or the new, random, unpredictable scares?

Personally, I think I liked last year's method better. Knowing where the scare areas were built up anticipation as you approached them and then the pay off was sort of scurrying through (like running a gauntlet). I just think it was more fun.
 
Sep 28, 2009
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It doesn't matter to me. I am scared no matter what. I am actually afraid of large crowds see; so I am already on edge by the time I am in a scare zone. :s
 
Aug 4, 2010
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Shafor said:
Do you prefer the defined "scare zones" like in the past, or the new, random, unpredictable scares?

Personally, I think I liked last year's method better. Knowing where the scare areas were built up anticipation as you approached them and then the pay off was sort of scurrying through (like running a gauntlet). I just think it was more fun.

I liked that too, I really miss when they had the werewolf reserve..
 
Sep 23, 2009
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I can't really see that much of a difference between the old system of scare zones and the new "scare everywhere". I guess the only thing that's different is the people in ghillie suits that move around the park. I've never even been startled by them though, all I ever see them doing is crawling around on the ground.

The rest of the park is essentially made up of pretty well defined scare zones. Well, except for Oktoberfest, which has nothing.
 

Zachary

Administrator
Sep 23, 2009
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In my opinion, the difference is simple: The Story

With this "Scare is Everywhere" thing they get out of coming up with good names and storylines for their scarezones- basically, they can put anything, anywhere they want just as long as there is something. They also dug themselves into a hole with the claim. Over-hyping an event is, in my opinion, one of the worst things you can do. Getting the general public excited to see something that isn't there is just going to backfire. All of my friends who have been to Howl-O-Scream have been telling my how disappointing the event is.

This brings me back to what I said a few months ago: The park is at a crossroads. They can't keep marketing the event as something it's not. Every year Haunt is getting more and more intense (from what I can see) while BGW's is staying about the same (or, dare I say it, getting worse). If they are going to have "KIDsiderate" shows like Jack is Back, then they need to make the park family-friendly. If they are going to have un-marked scarezones, then they need to cancel the "KIDsiderate" shows and maybe even make it a separately ticketed event. Basically, the park needs to decide what they are, stick to it, and then run a marketing campaign that really says what they are. They can only beat around the bush for so long. Every year they do, the General Public is getting less and less impressed with the event (at least the people I talk to).
 
Nov 14, 2009
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Just like last year, the scare areas seem hit or miss. When we were there Friday, we didn't see a single cast member in Italy. Sunday, there were tons. >shrug<

Quite frankly though, I find the way they're doing it this year to be a bit annoying. You're just walking along chatting with each other and you wind up with a couple of these guys in your face. It's like: "I get it already. Now get out of my way." We liked it much better when you knew it was on a certain bridge or down a certain path. You were more geared up for it.
 
Jun 22, 2010
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Shafor said:
Just like last year, the scare areas seem hit or miss. When we were there Friday, we didn't see a single cast member in Italy. Sunday, there were tons. >shrug<

Quite frankly though, I find the way they're doing it this year to be a bit annoying. You're just walking along chatting with each other and you wind up with a couple of these guys in your face. It's like: "I get it already. Now get out of my way." We liked it much better when you knew it was on a certain bridge or down a certain path. You were more geared up for it.

I dont think you could have said it any better than that, i agree totally.
 

BBW

Jun 10, 2010
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I thought I would feel like Shafor described, kinda "alright already" but I ended up liking the "scare is everywhere" concept better. I was really surprised -- it was fun to have the scare actors more spread out.
 
Sep 5, 2010
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I've not yet been (going tomorrow), but I think the concept of scarezones is a much better idea. It gives you a chance to enjoy your time, get pumped up anticipating the zones, and stay away when you're not in the mood.

As far as what some others have been saying about the park maybe needing to decide whether it's supposed to be terrifying or kid friendly, I don't really see it that way. I think that what Busch Gardens gets right and King's Dominion gets so very wrong is the concept of HALLOWEEN. Yes, Halloween is supposed to be scary, but just like there's a difference between a spooky Halloween movie and a SAW movie, there's a difference between a Halloween themed park and a giant haunted house. My wife and I go to HOS every year because we like the atmosphere much better than what's at KD. Sure, I'm not terrified, but I don't really want to be...that still doesn't mean I want it to be Disney's Not So Scary Halloween. I like having fun with the Halloween theme, just getting a little edgy and creeped out...not checking over my shoulder every three minutes to see if yet another generic "bloody killer" is lurking up behind me.
 
Aug 27, 2010
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doctormoneymd said:
I've not yet been (going tomorrow), but I think the concept of scarezones is a much better idea. It gives you a chance to enjoy your time, get pumped up anticipating the zones, and stay away when you're not in the mood.

As far as what some others have been saying about the park maybe needing to decide whether it's supposed to be terrifying or kid friendly, I don't really see it that way. I think that what Busch Gardens gets right and King's Dominion gets so very wrong is the concept of HALLOWEEN. Yes, Halloween is supposed to be scary, but just like there's a difference between a spooky Halloween movie and a SAW movie, there's a difference between a Halloween themed park and a giant haunted house. My wife and I go to HOS every year because we like the atmosphere much better than what's at KD. Sure, I'm not terrified, but I don't really want to be...that still doesn't mean I want it to be Disney's Not So Scary Halloween. I like having fun with the Halloween theme, just getting a little edgy and creeped out...not checking over my shoulder every three minutes to see if yet another generic "bloody killer" is lurking up behind me.

But see, that's what people like me want. Really, if KD is doing that for you then I guess they are doing their job. If they arent scaring you at Busch, why go? To look at the Halloween Decorations? There is a difference between creeped out and scared, and I go to events like these to get scared. When they dont scare me, Im disappointed. Im sure im not the only one. The atmosphere at KD is scary, Busch looks "cool" and Halloween-ish but it simply doesnt scare me. It's been the same green lights in the trees, the same ghost over scotland, the same scarezones with props off the path and people you can see for the most part... KD is scary.
 
Aug 27, 2010
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It is "Good" as far as howl o scream goes I guess. The scarezones still arent really scary though. Bitten was amazing this past weekend, but that was probably because I was in the second group or so to go in. There was no line stacking inside the maze like there normally is and I enjoyed the maze that much more. Same with Hunted. Actors everywhere, a few in locations I didnt even know were there, but alas, because Im so used to how they place their scare actors they didnt scare me.
 

BBW

Jun 10, 2010
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youhow2, truthfully, yea, I go to HOS to just enjoy the atmosphere, which is kinda spooky here, kinda festive and party-like there, and mysterious and thrilling but not scary in a slasher-flick way. Like Dr. Money, M.D. said he/she wants. So, yes, I guess you could be extreme and call that simply "looking at the decorations" (and the shows and the mazes) but that IS what some people want, just as folks like you want the more intense scares. I think it's all good in that there are places to get both types of experience. I think Busch must be doing Halloween well in a lot of people's eyes given the reports of sellout crowds, at least on Sat.

I don't know any official numbers but my husband's colleague/friend said he went to KD the first weekend in October and it was practically empty by his self-report -- walk-ons for everything (he and his family like the big thrills and have been several times this year for I305). Now, that was early in the Halloween season of course and they may be packing it in by now, but truly there are people who enjoy Busch's level of scare/thrill/atmosphere.

I feel like I've ended up being a HOS apologist, which is ironic as I'm not someone who gets really excited about HOS (except that I love fall weather and am glad the park is still open, at least on weekends), but I've had such a good time this year I've really felt compelled to defend what BGW puts out there for Halloween.

Sheesh, I wonder if I'll end up liking Christmas Town after a few years? :shy: (I was disappointed in the inaugural event, but that's another thread of course.)
 
Aug 27, 2010
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Well I've Been hearing KD has been packing out their park as well...


I Spoke with the producer of HOS briefly and he told me they try to have something for everyone, but the park doesnt seem like it is. I mean, I can see where they try, but Everywhere I go in HOS it still feels like "BGE's HOS" I mean, They really do lack alot of decoration compared to other parks, Even Kings dominion... And I think for a park of BG's Caliber that's saying something... And it aint nothing good.

I truly dont believe the concept of Howl-O-Scream was to provide patrons with a cool, sligthy creepy Halloween decoration fest... That's what any park that does halloween events does during the day. At night it should scare you, It should terrify you. After spending a day in the park looking at the decorations, it doesn't feel like it changes, like it becomes something scary, It's like they turned a few speakers on and a few lights and fog machines.... Everyone on these boards is saying "well Busch is family friendly so they shouldn't be scary" But what about BGT? They are family friendly during the day, and year round just like Busch. BGT is no Six Flags quality park. Yet, When night falls upon them they open up and let the scares come out.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1fmv3-y_rOk&feature=channel

See, Im not quite expecting that from BGE... Then again I would love to see atleast ONE house that looks remotely that scary.

But see, I would love to see scarezones that are actually scarezones... with well placed props, a good theme and plenty of actors much kinda like this:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aYPDLP9Dr9U&NR=1

I'd love to see scare actors scaring like this:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AXqTGWWdODI&NR=1&feature=fvwp

And I'd definetely love to see mazes in BGE with details, execution of a theme, and actors into their roles like this:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2zQohW1Z_k4&feature=related

BTW, KD now has that maze^
 
Aug 11, 2010
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We went Friday night. The Scare is Everywhere thing didn't really work for us. It was too sporadic. One guy walking around with an axe in Ireland didn't really create much anticipation. The chain saw guys are a nice touch. We missed the werewolf scare zone and the clowns on the bridge near AC. (Although I don't think the clowns were there last year either).
What ever happened to that big monster thing that used to roam around near the Fest house?
 
Sep 11, 2010
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BBW said:
youhow2, truthfully, yea, I go to HOS to just enjoy the atmosphere, which is kinda spooky here, kinda festive and party-like there, and mysterious and thrilling but not scary in a slasher-flick way. Like Dr. Money, M.D. said he/she wants. So, yes, I guess you could be extreme and call that simply "looking at the decorations" (and the shows and the mazes) but that IS what some people want, just as folks like you want the more intense scares. I think it's all good in that there are places to get both types of experience. I think Busch must be doing Halloween well in a lot of people's eyes given the reports of sellout crowds, at least on Sat.

I don't know any official numbers but my husband's colleague/friend said he went to KD the first weekend in October and it was practically empty by his self-report -- walk-ons for everything (he and his family like the big thrills and have been several times this year for I305). Now, that was early in the Halloween season of course and they may be packing it in by now, but truly there are people who enjoy Busch's level of scare/thrill/atmosphere.

I feel like I've ended up being a HOS apologist, which is ironic as I'm not someone who gets really excited about HOS (except that I love fall weather and am glad the park is still open, at least on weekends), but I've had such a good time this year I've really felt compelled to defend what BGW puts out there for Halloween.

Sheesh, I wonder if I'll end up liking Christmas Town after a few years? :shy: (I was disappointed in the inaugural event, but that's another thread of course.)

regarding the HAUNT population it must have been the timing because me and some friends went this saturday and it was really packed. which made it more fun because of the environment and the screaming everywhere. in my eyes its go to HOS if u want to get startled and go to HAUNT if u want to get scared out of your mind and see grown men cry. and im serious about that last part, we did see a couple of them lol. :p
 

Fur Dozy

Mayor of Busch Gardens Tampillsburg
Nov 5, 2009
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That "big monster thing" is now tied up at the entrance of New France. Such better use of props. NOT!
 
Aug 18, 2010
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I think that the new method is good if you want to get scarred considering it can come from anywhere instead of knowing where the scares are.
 
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