A Sneak Peek at Halloween Horror Nights, Universal Orlando Resort

Written by Eric Davis. Posted in Features, Orlando Parkhopper, Universal Halloween Horror Nights, Universal Orlando, Universal Orlando Podcast, Universal Studios

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Published on September 12, 2013 at 3:05 am with 16 Comments

Universal Orlando is pulling out all the stops for Halloween Horror Nights 23, with new technologies, a park wide “Walking Dead” theme, and a vomit room.  So get out your chainsaw, because this update is full of Walkers.

Event Overview

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For the past 23 years, Universal Orlando’s Creative team have been putting on what has become one of the preeminent Halloween events in the country.  With a the title of the “Best Halloween Event” in the world for the past 8 years, the Creative people at Universal Orlando have to challenge themselves, year after year. This year they have pulled out all the stops with their fantastic scare zones, scary mazes, and brand new effects that have never been used before anywhere.

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Scare Zones – Guests will see people turn into Walkers

Last year, due to massive park wide construction with Transformers, Springfield USA and Diagon Alley (so much has happened in a year), the park did away with with scare zones and instead made the whole park a single zone with roaming hoards of monsters. However, that just didn’t do it for a lot of fans of Halloween Horror Nights. This year, Universal is trying something new.  There will be scare zones, but a unified theme will be implemented park-wide for a more coherent story. For people familiar with the hit AMC TV Series, The Walking Dead, you will instantly recognize the themes and settings from Seasons 1 and 2. Guests will walk the streets of Atlanta, with a full sized tank in the streets, discover camps, and find Hershel’s farm, where you will walk through a burning barn.  Guests not familiar with the show, will recognize, that the zombie apocalypse has happened at Universal Studios, and now they are a part of it, with no escape in sight.

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Lora Wallace, the Show and Entertainment Director who was in charge of the scare zones concept this year, commented that she wanted guests to feel trapped and that there is no escape from the walkers. Adding to the concept is that guests will be able to see people turn into Walkers (or Zombies) before their very eyes!

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Shows and Entertainment

This year, Universal will bring guests 2 major shows. The first one is Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure, which will lampoon and parody pop culture from the past year with hilarious antics. The second show is a Rocky Horror Picture Show Tribute.  For guests who are fans of the film, this 30 minute tribute will be fun way to escape the undead wandering beyond the safety of the theater.  For the uninitiated, this is a great way to get introduced to the cult of Rocky Horror.  Both shows this year must not be missed!

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Here’s a hint at this year’s show. . .

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The Mazes

Universal Orlando is building mazes at a size and scale not seen before. With mazes (or “Houses,” as they are called in Orlando) based on original concepts, and ones based on popular movies, TV shows and video games, this year is sure to have something for everyone.

Spoiler Alert:  While we are not going to reveal any spoilers about the mazes, we are going to show pictures of costumes, and explain the general stories behind each maze. So, if you want to remain unspoiled, we suggest you scroll to the bottom and leave a comment without reading the rest!

Resident Evil

03_Resident Evil at HHN 23

This maze will be based on the video game Resident Evil 2 from 1998. It takes place in Raccoon City, a Midwestern American mountain town where everyone has been transformed into zombies. The game is a fan favorite, so Universal’s creative team is pushing the envelope with construction of this maze. Guests will enter a fully realized police station and encounter a life sized helicopter.  Guests will also get to experience life from inside the game as well, experiencing what it is like when a game is “Paused,” using new effects and tricks.

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Evil Dead

04_Evil Dead at HHN

Based on the 2013 remake, of the same title, Evil Dead will take you to the cabin where true evil takes place. New tricks and effects have been created, as they have created a “vomit room” where guests will relive an iconic scene from the movie. This house is going to be intense, it is going to be gruesome, and it is going to be awesome.

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La Llorona

07_La Llorona at HHN 23

This will be a Universal original house based on the Urban Legend of La Llorona. When the Creative team in Orlando went out West and saw this house, which showed for two years at Universal Studios Hollywood, they knew they had to bring this one back East!  Guests who visited this house out at USH will recognize the first half of the house, which will be identical to the one at Hollywood’s Halloween Horror Nights, but the back half is all new, and from the sound of it, terrifying.

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Cabin In The Woods

06_Cabin in the Woods at HHN 23

Based on the 2012 film written by Joss Whedon and directed by Drew Goddard that brilliantly parodies the horror genre (while at the same time being an incredible horror film) is being brought to life by Universal Orlando… with clowns, unicorns, ballerinas, and the elevator scene. So be prepared to scratch your head as you say “What the…”

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Havoc Derailed

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Designed as a sequel to the popular Havoc house in 2008, Universal Orlando is bringing back the deranged super soldiers. But this year they are transporting them via train, until something goes wrong.  Guests will climb through fully built rail cars as they try to avoid these super soldiers who can’t stop killing.

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After Life Death’s Vengeance

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This year’s 3D maze is taking a departure from previous 3D mazes.  This house will not be light and funny, like last years “Penn & Teller’s Nuke Vegas” maze.  This maze will be dark and terrifying, while using 3D paint to disorient guests. Be prepared to run for your life as you watch the final days of a Serial Killer whose victims are all now seeking revenge.

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An American Werewolf in London

05_American Werewolf in London at HHN 23

Based on the iconic 1981 film directed by John Landis, this house is going to terrify guests who will explore the streets of London, the London Underground, and come face to face with a fully articulated Werewolf that has terrified even the masters of Horror on the Halloween Horror Nights team.  Be prepared to run screaming for your life.

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The Walking Dead

Beginning September 20, AMCÕs ÒThe Walking DeadÓ will come to life at Universal Studios Hollywood and Universal Orlando ResortÕs Halloween Horror Nights events with all-new terrifying mazes inspired by Season 3 of the critically-acclaimed, award-winning television series.

While Seasons 1 and 2 of The Walking Dead might be the Scare Zones out in the streets, guests who enter The Walking Dead maze will see scenes and locations from Season 3 brought to life, like the Governor’s office (complete with fishtanks), Woodbury, and the Prison. Be prepared to scream, because with close calls, a crouching corridor, and lots of Zombies, this maze takes the real life experience of The Walking Dead to a whole new level.  Listen to my experience as I walked through this maze… (warning: I might have screamed like a little girl a few times).

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That wraps up our sneak peek of Halloween Horror Nights!  To buy tickets visits Universal Orlando’s Halloween Horror Night’s website, the event starts September 20th and runs on select weekdays and weekends until November 2nd.

Come join MiceChat next month at Universal Studios Orlando on October 17th as we visit Harry Potter and stay for Halloween Horror Nights that evening.  We plan on a full night of fun and scares complete with a dinner beforehand, and more.

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If you plan to join us for Universal Orlando’s Halloween Horror Nights you will need to purchase a ticket for Thursday, October 17th for $38.99 that includes the Additional HHN Express Pass option for $49.99 for a total cost of $88.98.  Follow the thread below for updated information and to get in on the dining arrangements made for the group if you would like to join us.

This looks like it is going to be an amazingly original year for Universal Orlando HHN.  With houses like Cabin in the Woods, Walking Dead, Legendary Truth, Resident Evil, Evil Dead and shows like Bill and Ted’s EXCELLENT Halloween Adventure and The Rocky Horror Picture Show Tribute, we are really in for a treat!

Join The List: 
Add your name to our Halloween events list and we’ll email you with all the gory details: MiceChat Nights of Horror Email List – Click HERE

Wait, There’s more!

Now listen to the Unofficial Universal Podcast as they interview Halloween Horror Nights legend John Murdy and talk about what it takes to put on these incredible events year after year.


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About Eric Davis

By day, Eric is in Marketing and Social Media. But on the weekends, he's a theme park addict. Eric is a frequent contributor to MiceChat's Orlando Parkhopper columns and tends to focus his efforts on what's new and what's news at Universal Studios and SeaWorld.

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16 Comments

Comments for A Sneak Peek at Halloween Horror Nights, Universal Orlando Resort are now closed.

  1. Eric! How totally amazing, brilliant work, you’ve managed to ramp my excitement up by another 100%! Thank You

    • Glad you are excited! This year is going to be an INCREDIBLE year!

  2. I’m SO ready for Horror Nights. Have my tickets for both Orlando and Hollywood!!!

    • I can’t wait to scream with you!

  3. Sooo disappointed that I can’t make it to Orlando this year… This looks amazing.

    • Well we will try to bring you some of the sights and sounds…

  4. I wish we were coming it looks like one of the best years ever. American Werewolf, Evil Dead, Resident Evil and Walking Dead would be enough to part me with my money.
    Sadly our trip for this year has already happened, but we will be living the event vicariously through Eric and Darren.

  5. Now that they are making the Fantastic beasts and where to find them movie spin off what will they tear down to make an expansion?

    • Is there something here you are attempting to say?

    • Huh?

  6. CA No, now that their making a new movie i expect universal will in the future build Harry potter 3.0. I was just wandering were they would put it.

    • Oh

    • Oh.

  7. [...] folks over at MiceChat have put together a terrific roundup of the Halloween Horror Nights preview. This year, Universal is taking the scare zone concept to new levels, with all of the scare zones [...]

  8. It has been confirmed that JK Rowling will be writing the script for a fantastic beasts and where to find them movie which focuses on Newt Scamander 70 years before harry potter in New York City. I was wandering if universal would build an expansion based on this.

  9. I went to opening night in Hollywood and was blown away. Insidious and Walking Dead were incredible. There’s already videos online of every maze if you want to check them out.

    http://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLrExANER5uNWTHir0yswUeThs5XtEkR3r

    The first video in the playlist is the Opening Ceremony Purge. It Looks Epic!