Hello fellow Micechatters. This weekend my boyfriend and I flew down to Southern California and went to Universal Horror Nights on Friday night and then went to Knott's Scary Farm on Saturday. This was his first time going to both events and gets scared very easily, so I was really eager to take him on the experience! We had the Front of the Line Pass, so please bare that in mind during this trip report. I also may mention a couple of spoilers, but I tried not to go too in depth with the reviews.
We got to Universal around 3:30 PM and had dinner at Buca Di Beppo at City Walk. If you're looking for something nice and want to sit down I would suggest Buca. It was about the same price as the one in San Francisco and for two people, you can split one entree. After dinner we went to get in line to get through security. They opened the security checkpoint around 5:30 PM and they made an announcement that they were going to open the lower lot early so you can experience Transformers. The told us to get in line to the right if you wanted in early. I thought this was a great idea because you can get that ride out of the way so we went and waited in line to the right. We were let into the park in about ten minutes, but they kept us from going to the lower lot because there were still guests in the park. We ended up waiting til about 6:45 PM and they finally let us down to the lower lot. If I had known this, I wouldn't had bothered. I don't like to be cramped with a lot of guests for a long period of time.
Within the first hour we were able to accomplish Transformers, The Mummy, Jurassic Park, Texas Chainsaw, and Silent Hill without using our Front of the Line Pass. This is the real advantage of getting to the park for opening.
Silent Hill: This was our first maze and the one I was looking forward to the most. I thought it was one of the best themed of the evening, but I also felt like they could have done more with the characters from the movie and video games. They used hammer head, I believe that is his name, several times throughout the maze. I think he is a great character, but I think they could have utilized a lot more characters from the franchise. This was an awesome maze nonetheless and definitely one to go through!
Texas Chainsaw Massacre: This was definitely the scariest maze IMO. The sets and the scare actors were just amazing! Very well done. I also loved the smells throughout the maze!
Silent Hill Scare Zone: This was definitely the let down of the evening. They could have done SO much more with the area. The actors were great, but the area just did not do it for me. Why not add some props?
Terror Tram and Walking Dead Maze: My boyfriend and I are big fans of the Walking Dead so we were both excited about this. We did the terror tram first. There wasn't a lot of difference from last years terror tram. I love that the walkers are wearing normal day clothes because a walker could be right by you in a group of people and you don't even notice them. Definitely a great scare factor. The Walking Dead maze was amazing though! This was my favorite of the evening! After going through the maze I thought that doing the Terror Tram was a bit lazy for Universal. The Terror Tram just didn't do the franchise justice. I would have rather seen the Terror Tram as something else and use the Walking Dead as a scare zone.
Alice Cooper: This maze just didn't do it for me. The use of the 3D is amazing. The sets were amazing as well. The theme is great. It just lacks. I didn't get scared once in this maze.
Toy and Witch Scare Zones: There is just something so scary about walking through thick fog and not being able to see. These were definitely some of the best scare zones of the evening and I loved the costumes of the scare actors
Monsters remix: I heard mixed reviews about this maze and thought I would go in with an open mind. I loved this maze! I just loved the idea of the remix and the live DJ. It was definitely just fun to walk through. Definitely check this one out towards the end of the evening as the line for normal stand by wasn't long at all.
la llorona: Just as good as last year or even better. I love the story and I loved the new ending! Thanks Universal for bringing my favorite maze of last year back!
Overall: My boyfriend and I had an amazing time and we did everything and left by midnight. We even did Transformers and The Mummy 2 times. We didn't repeat any of the mazes because we didn't want to get burnt out. Last year was my first year going to Universal after going to Knott's for years, but I just thought this year didn't live up to last years. This is a great haunt though and Universal has the advantage of being able to do movie like sets. I would only do this haunt with Front of the Line passes though. I think its also good to note that we went on a Friday and it was SUPER crowded by 11:00 PM. Also the night we went it just seemed like the place was overrun by rude teenagers. I'm 23 and I understand how it is to be young, but the foul language and rudeness was just getting to me by the end of the night and since we did everything I was ready to go.
How Universal compared to Knott's: I think it's really hard to compare these two. I say that Universal puts you in the horror films and mazes whereas Knott's is more like watching the story come to life. I hope that makes sense. My boyfriend who was a virgin to both events said he enjoyed Knott's more because there is more to do and it's not as intense and you can have more fun. I love Universal, but I just think there is not as much to do as Knott's. I would say if you had only one event to do this year, I would choose Knott's. I thought this was one of the best year for Knott's Scary Farm and it being it's 40th year, it's a not-to-be missed event!