November 22, 2017, 01:38:12 PM
News: Visit a haunt in Virginia this season!
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 11 
 on: October 24, 2017, 03:44:11 PM 
Started by NCHadmin - Last post by NCHadmin
The Haunted Mill
Date Attended: 10/20/17
Submitted by: mjones
 
Scare Factor: 5/5
Well, I think every single person in my group jumped, canít do much better than that!  I would put this one more toward the fun side of the scare spectrum than the truly hardcore, but seeing as how this haunt shares space with a miniature golf course, you can understand why theyíd want to strike a slightly more family friendly tone.  When you couple that with the relatively tight footprint for the entire building, it means the scares are all about placement and timing, and thatís where this one makes its bones.  The scares are really well thought through for the space they occupy, so they function much better than lots of trails that just try to be as gross and extreme as possible.  The Haunted Mill is a study in being effective rather than just being there.
 
Actors: 5/5
I get the impression that this is an incredibly well trained troop of actors. As I mentioned above, this haunt centers on the timing of the scares, and these actors knew their roles, knew their best scare spots, and then were comfortable enough to chase and pursue whenever the opportunity arose.  For a trail that relies this much on younger actors, this is no small feat!  Kudos to whoever wrangled all that.  Special points to the contortionist girl we met in an early hallway!  Everybody just stopped and watched her for a second, and then I think she got Screaming Diana like a dozen times after that.  It was great!  Also the kid who asked if he could kill our mom, that was good!  Donít think Iíve ever heard THAT one before!  We laughed about that all night!
 
Set Design/Props/FX: 5/5
I know I keep coming back to the tight spaces here, but it really is a challenge for a haunt in a somewhat urban setting like this, and itís all the more impressive that they do such a good job with that!  You never feel the lack of anything with it all being indoors, and even their plastic walls feel more study than your usual trash bag variety.  My favorite set was the outdoor/indoor part with the old Victorian lamps on the wall.  There wasnít even a major pop scare in there, it just looked great!  Again, well thought out and executed!
 
Length: 3/5
Hereís where the lack of space really shows up, though again they do a pretty masterful job in maximizing what they had.  I swore they had added onto the building, but they didnít.  It was just that well conceived.  It isnít as long as many trails, but somehow it really doesnít suffer too much from the lack of it!
 
Value: 4/5
$16 is very reasonable, and there are packages if you want to play putt-putt after with blacklights and such.  I was totally satisfied with the value of this trail, and I think itís price is totally reasonable!
 
Overall: 4/5
I really enjoyed this trail.  It strikes a nice balance between intimidating scares and a fun, carnival atmosphere.  I also like that it just doesnít feel like other haunts in the area; it has a bit more civilization around it, and everything about it feels unique.  There are no stock characters, and every scene is designed for the space available and the feel it needed.  It had been a couple years since I visited the Haunted Mill, and to me it feels twice as good as it was before!  If youíre in the market for something different than all the campgrounds and haunted forests you find around, this is the place for you!  Plus, they can open rain or shine!  Youíll have a good time here, I feel very safe in saying that no matter what!

 12 
 on: October 23, 2017, 10:12:38 PM 
Started by NCHadmin - Last post by NCHadmin
The Haunted Mill
Date visited: 10/20/2017
Submitted by:  packbacker

Scare Factor: 5/5
I'm a hard person to startle.  In fact it hadn't happened all season until I visited The Haunted Mill.  I fully admit that a well timed scare got me to jump which no other attraction has done this season so kudos!  The Haunted Mill delivers a lot of action in a small space.  Rooms are fairly crowded, hallways are narrow, and the actors/props are well spaced accordingly.  The actors have a good sense of timing and also don't just settle for an easy startle scare.  Every member of our group jumped at least once and there was some running at the end of it all! There are also a few props that will shake, rattle, and roll to elicit more screams from patrons.  The scare that got me was simple yet well placed and I didn't see it coming. 

Props/Sets/Fx: 5/5
The Mill is well appointed.  Of particular note are some cool projections in the queue area with animated portraits, books, and more to entertain guests as they wait in line.  These are well tuned to deliver a seamless look.  The long hallways are often made up to resemble Victorian England with subtle flickering lights.  There is a decent amount of gore in certain sets as well as some larger animatronic props. For an attraction with very narrow spaces they pack in the visuals.  The actors have great makeup and costumes as well as some sliding capabilities...   It's often difficult, in my opinion, to take an entirely indoor attraction and make it suitably scary.  The Haunted Mill does this with aplomb with very little space allowing you to see you're in a regular building. 

Actors: 5/5
The Haunted Mill has well spaced actors.  While they don't feature a cast of hundreds there's just the right number for the surroundings. These guys had a great sense of timing with the ability to hold off on the scare until the middle or tail end of a group.  Some good verbal interaction was had with the group with one actor asking the young child with us "Is it okay if I kill your mommy?".  For the record she said yes as long as they left her alone.  One actress had a great contortionist bit that was truly freaky and the clowns at the end were really into their schtick.  Most actors also rarely settled for a pop scare but rather electing to pursue the screamer in the group.

Length: 3.5/5
There is limited space here due to the attraction being housed completely indoors.  That being said, they send you back and forth, to and fro, and around again trying to maximize their space with the entrance on the side of the building and the exit in the front.  Allow fifteen to twenty minutes to complete the walk through. 

Value: 4/5
Tickets are $16 with packages available for mini golf and fast pass access. 

Other:
Parking is $3.  The Haunted Mill also offers an escape room experience, blacklight mini-golf, and more.  A food truck and hot dog cart were on site the night we visited as well as a guest appearance from Butch Patrick from The Munsters fame.

Overall: 5/5
The Haunted Mill gave me everything I was looking for.  It had an ominous vibe to it, some great visuals, and I finally jumped this October. The fact that the haunt is homed in a 120 year old reportedly haunted old mill is just the icing on top!  The projections out front were something I haven't encountered at other haunts and really were eye catching.  Everyone in our group remarked how slick the whole thing felt from the sets to the actors to a few notable props.  The family that accompanied our group through said they had a remarkable time as well.  Props go out to the Mill staff for not playing down to a kid but rather giving it their all.  We appreciated it and I think in the end the kid did too as she knew she had survived one of the scariest indoor haunts around!

 13 
 on: October 22, 2017, 03:11:48 PM 
Started by NCHadmin - Last post by NCHadmin
The Haunted Mill
Date Attended: 10/20/2017
Submitted by: Screaming_Diana

Scare Factor:  5/5
The Haunted Mill has really upped their game over the past couple years.  I hardly recognize the inside due to their overhaul of the haunt.  They have excellent use of lighting especially down their dark narrow hallways.  The subtle flickering lanterns give it the eerie feeling that I love.  Scares are totally unpredictable and I think everyone in our group was scared or startled at least once.  One member of our group is extremely hard to scare and even he got startled and jumped.  I noticed subtle temperature changes throughout the haunt especially down the hallways.  I don't think this is artificially produced which makes wandering through the mill even creepier.  I'm often annoyed by being placed in a group that has children attending as I fear, and often experience, the actors being lenient and less scary to avoid terrifying the children.  I was very pleased to see this haunt continued on with their regular haunt without making exceptions for the parents and child placed with our group.  If they had the opportunity to scare you they'd give it their all no matter how young, old, scared, or brave you were.  The mill is 120 years old and is said, by paranormal investigators, to be truly haunted.   

Actors:  5/5
There's a mix of pop scares and stalking with this bunch.  It seemed a few actors missed their timing and never reacted as the group passed by but then again I'm not sure if those were live actors or just props.  It was very difficult to tell who was real and who wasn't.  A lot of haunts have actors that are front focused leaving the back of the group void of scares but these guys could hold a scare like no other and I find that terrifying.  I expect to walk into a room and someone or something jump out.  I did not experience much of this here.  They let you enter and slowly walk through wondering where in the world the monsters are and exactly when are they going to appear.  They give you just enough time to get very anxious about the set before jumping out and scaring the pee outta you.   Several of the actors spent time interacting with the group and even made special mention my friends beard as he ventured through the haunt.  Actor make-up, masks, and costumes were well done.  A special shout out to the twisted backward walking exorcist looking girl.  You were freaky. 

Set Design/Props/Fx:  5/5
The haunt is set in an actual old mill.  This year projections of the old mill workers and eerie images were displayed by the haunt entrance.  It was a little creepy seeing actual footage of people who once worked there many years ago and to know that they could possibly still be haunting the place.  Their new projections were fantastic and used in ways I haven't noticed at other haunts.  The lightening and sounds of thunder set the mood for a scary good time.  The black and white tunnel room was a standout for me and was very disorienting.  It's a simple yet very effective scene.  They demonstrate very good use of subtle lighting that gives off just enough glow for safety and provides a nice ambiance for a haunt.  The scenes are set up in such a way that actors can easily camouflage themselves or make themselves appear to be a stationary prop.  I had the hardest time figuring out if things were props or actors and often I didn't know until I was eye to eye with them and either they launched toward me or I was able to pass without screaming.  Either way it's terrifying because I was so nervous from the unknown.  A lot of work and detail has gone into their props.  Again this year you enter the haunt from the side and exit through the front which I feel adds length to the haunt.  The queue line isn't just another boring waiting point.  It's equipped with line actors and fun projections of the mill giving you a glimpse of the scary things that await you once inside.         

Value:  5/5
Tickets are $16 for adults and $10 for kids 12 and under.  You get a lot of scares for your dollars here.  They also offer combo tickets for the haunt, mini golf, and escape rooms.  Fast pass tickets are available for $35 for adults and $20 for kids 12 and under. 

Length:  5/5
The haunt seemed much longer this year.  It's a decent length with a lot of scares and cool things to see.  You can make a night of it and stay for 3D mini golf or try out their escape room.  The length of time you spend here depends on the number of activities you decide to participate in. 

Other:
There is a small parking fee of $3.  They have a food truck outside with different food/snack options available.

Overall Impression:  5/5
The Haunted Mill continues to get better and better every year.  The changes they've made have greatly increased the scares and the overall enjoyment of this haunt.  They often have special guests making appearances at the mill.  The night we went Eddie Munster (Butch Patrick) from The Munsters was there. The highlight of the night was hearing an actor ask the small child behind us "Can I kill your Mommy?" to which the child responded "sure, just leave me alone."  It was brilliant!   I also loved watching the clowns at the exit fist bump a small child and congratulate her on making it all the way through then immediately rev up their chainsaws and chase after her.  They showed no mercy and it was beautiful.  I thoroughly enjoyed visiting The Haunted Mill this season and look forward to seeing what changes they make for next year.  Check them out you wonít regret it.

 14 
 on: October 20, 2017, 10:09:18 AM 
Started by NCHadmin - Last post by NCHadmin
Hacker House
Date attended: 10/14/2017
Submitted by: k2quiere

Scare Factor: 4.5/5
As always, Hacker House is one of the most entertaining haunts in the area. While there were others in our group who felt the startles and the fear, it wasn't there for me, and that may be because of how jam-packed we ended up ever from early on. Clamzilla got me, more than once, so that was a positive, and the characters and sets are phenomenal.

Actors: 5/5
Hacker House's actors are the best, hands down! They never break character and stay true to whoever they decided to be that night. It's amazing. Some of them were old friends, like Digger and Bunny Rabbit, while others were either new or reworked, and they all just worked so well together! Even after the last victims went through, the actors remained in character to bid a fond farewell to their friends.

Set Design: 5/5
If you have never been to Hacker House, just be prepared because the location is one of its greatest assets with natural fog nearly every night. The entry is naturally eerie, and the Pumpkin King is so amazing, I'm in awe every time I see it. The plant room was spotlight for me this year. It was new and fresh, and spectacular to take in! I seem to be lucky with finding my way out of the maze quickly the past few times I've been, but it is very easy to get lost within the darkness. The swamp bridge and the witch are always one of my worst favorite sets...I'm afraid of heights, so being on a bridge in the dark that moves, freaks me out a bit every time.

Value: 5/5
It's definitely worth $20, and if you go on an early weekend, $15 is the best deal anywhere. When my daughter decided to drive in from Asheville to go to a few haunts with the Review Team, her immediate choice of which haunt she had to see was Hacker House.

Length: 5/5
While the trail may not be as legitimately long as some of the larger haunts, it is so jam-packed with things to take in and deal with (actors, props, animatronics, sounds, etc) that it always feels just right. Even though I've been numerous times, I am always surprised by how right the length feels because there is something new or distorting they add in or change to keep you guessing.

Overall Impression: 5/5
Whenever someone asks me for a recommendation of a haunt in the area to visit, especially if they can only go to one, my response is almost always Hacker House with very few exceptions. I've been a fan for years.

 15 
 on: October 20, 2017, 10:07:55 AM 
Started by NCHadmin - Last post by NCHadmin
Woods of Terror
Date attended: 10/15/2017
Submitted by: k2quiere

Before I begin, I need to say that there were some bumps along the way in the haunt this night. The power went out in a couple of areas we were in, so there was a nearly 30-minute lull where we were standing in one place flanked by groups of people in front and back with no one from the haunt really explaining what was going on. I say this to explain that while I will try to remain as positive as possible, some of the effects of the haunt were lost due to this unexpected factor.

Scare Factor: 4/5
There were a number of ways I felt that WOT had upped the ante this year. I hate spiders, so the arachnaphobia house was super creepy. It was just inundated with spiders of all sizes, and I spent most of the time trying not to touch the walls of anything. The initial maze was so disorienting and hit sensory overload quickly. My adrenaline was pumping like crazy when we got out of there. It was so unfortunate the next section was where the power went out because they had me eating out of the palm of their hands, and then it all fell apart.

Actors: 4.5/5
The actors were a mixed bag, honestly. The ones in the midway were awesome!!! The guy in the wheelbarrow and his chauffeur were creepy. The dude with the axe was so nimble, jumping between tables, climbing trees, and walking 2x4s. I was thoroughly entertained during our wait. The guy at then entrance to the actual haunt, though, looked and acted like he was not enjoying his night at all. He was rude, and not in a "this is my character" way. The characters in the industrial sections tried really hard to make up for the lack of power, so I give them kudos for that.

Set Design: 4.5/5
WOT is always one of the most visually impressive haunts around. The detail in the sets is awesome to take in. While I was sad to see the screen room of the movie theater gone, the progression through the movie sets was great! It really gave the section a whole new feel. The addition of climbing through to the treehouse was probably one of my favorite additions. I could've spent an hour in the treehouse itself looking at the set like it was a museum. Having said that, I was a bit disappointed with the funhouse. The entry was great, but it fell flat after that, like the 3-D didn't pop as much as I remember in previous years. Also, there were far too many inflatable bags to walk through. After the 3rd one, our group started going "ugh, another inflatable." They were overdone.

Value: 5/5
My score here is based on the length, the initial maze, and overall set design. $25 is a fair price for a haunt of this size and detail.

Length: 5/5
While the deadlock during the power outage put so many groups on top of each other and made a couple of sections feel rushed, the actors in the remainder of the sections did a fairly good job of maintaining the queues in order to separate the groups a little more.

Overall Impression: 4.5/5
The events of the night of our visit were unfortunate. A little more communication and interaction with the staff and those of us stuck standing around waiting would have made the impression higher. WOT is still one of the great haunts in our area, and I will definitely be back again.

 16 
 on: October 19, 2017, 08:50:40 PM 
Started by k2quiere - Last post by k2quiere
Low Gap House of Horrors 10/14

Scare Factor: 3.5/5 This is obviously a small, community haunt, so no big scares here. They do have some very good screamers, though. Good set of lungs on some of the actresses.

Actors: 4/5 I bumped this scores up because of the doctor in the asylum section. He was in your face and actually make me take a step back for a second. His room was the pinnacle of the haunt for me.

Set Design: 4/5 There were some cool elements they put together. The water effect on the ceiling was very cool. The dark room was simply but good. The theme on the outside was spot on, but I wish they would've taken it a bit farther to incorporate the theme throughout. Also, the girl stuck inside the bed was a good effect. Again, this is a small haunt, so don't expect big props, just old-fashion sets, which many of them worked.

Value: 4/5 I'm really torn about how I felt about the value for this haunt. For one person, $10 seems fair, I suppose, but thinking in terms of a family, which would appear to be the intended audience, I'd have been upset to have spent $30+ to take my family to this one.

Length: 3.5/5 It was short, which I expected, but considering we were the only ones there, the fact that our split-in-half group caught up to each other made the relative shortness feel rushed.

Overall Impression: 4/5 I went in with minimal expectations, and they met them for the most part. Otherwise, the score would have been lower.

 17 
 on: October 19, 2017, 08:49:26 PM 
Started by packbacker - Last post by k2quiere
Night Watch 10/14

Before I even start my review, I just have to say I was thoroughly entertained before they even opened the doors to the first victims...er...guests!

Scare Factor: 5/5 Like I said, I was thoroughly entertained, occasionally skeeved out (Thank you, spider room), and startled in some of the most awesome ways. Even without the big scares, I thought it was awesome!

Actors: 5/5 The actors were some of my favorites. I loved the birdman and the musicians at the entrance. The actors inside who were hanging from the walls were amazing contortionists. The girl on stilts was awesome. I'm still not sure how she got through the doorways without knocking herself out!

Set Design: 5/5 Inside haunts are either a hit or a miss when it comes to sets because you never quite know from the outside how much space they're working with or how well they will use the space. Night Watch used their space very well. We were upstairs and downstairs, turned around in rooms, and there was constantly something to look at, even in the stairways. It all began with the entryway and the fan of body parts and old-timey inmate trying to escape from the second floor.

Value: 5/5 This haunt was $10 well spent. We drove over an hour to get there, and I would drive it again!

Length: 4.5/5 It was short and sweet by action packed with sensory manipulation all over the place. I wanted it to last longer, but only because I enjoyed it so much!

Overall Impression: 5/5 They made such good use of the lighting and flooring and fog. Everything was just right! And can I simply make mention of the burning man. I stood in awe watching because I could not figure out whether or not he was actually putting his face in the fire...phenomenal!

 18 
 on: October 19, 2017, 08:49:27 AM 
Started by hauntednorcak - Last post by hauntednorcak
Midway Wicked Woods - Statesville, NC
Date Attended: 10/13


Scare Factor: 5/5
Midway continues to be one of the scariest haunts in the state. The location is creepy. The scares start immediately as soon as you get on the hayride and are bombarded by a clown car and chainsaw-weilding clowns coming out of the woods and getting on the hayride. Scares continue in the second queue line area as you wait to go into the actual haunt. We went in as a group of 4 so scares were very evenly distributed through the group. The first house of the haunt is intense. Scares are non-stop, from all angles, and both prop and actor driven. Scares outside of the first house keep the intensity level high. You really do not get a chance to catch your breath because scares are almost constant. The scares dip slightly at the end after the maze- the vortex tunnel could use one last scare to finish the haunt. Scares range from pop scares/screamers to stalking and chasing to prop scares.


Actors: 5/5
The actors here are always intense and in your face. The trail is full of actors and they all get in your face and do whatever it takes to get a scare out of people. They will scare you even harder if you show fear. Actors with speaking roles do a good job of portraying their character and can adlib very well. No actors were breaking character. The actors on the hayride always do a good job of setting the tone for the haunt when they ambush the hayride. The actors in the first building in the queue line do a good job talking with people and getting some scares before the haunt begins. Actors throughout the haunt are devoted to getting a good scare. Actors rarely settle for just a pop scare, they always follow up after the initial scare.


Set Design/Props/FX: 5/5
The clown car is always a really unique prop that starts out the haunt. Scenes throughout the first haunt are heavily detailed and all look great. Sets on the trail are slightly less detailed but still look good and give off more of an old-school vibe than scenes in the first room. Lots of animatronics are found throughout the haunt. One prop scare in the first house is great and can leave you stuck for a little while before you can get around it.  All scenes are full of props and detail. The maze is very dark, long, and hot and will definitely leave you ready to be out of there by the end of it.


Length: 5/5
It takes a long time from the time you get on the hayride to the time you walk out of the vortex tunnel. The actual haunt itself took us about 30-40 minutes with no time stuck in the maze. If the queue line before the haunt is long, it can take a long time from the time you get on the hayride until you finish the haunt. The maze is very dark and confusing so that can add extra time if you get lost. Length is great.


Value: 4.5/5
Tickets are $25 and parking is $2 so it is on the higher end of the price range for haunts in North Carolina but it is definitely worth it for the amount of time and the scare factor provided by Midway. Fast passes are $35 and can definitely be worth it if the line is long, which happens often later in the season.


Other: $2 parking. Concessions and merchandise available at the end of the haunt.


Overall: 5/5
Midway is always one of my favorite haunts in the state. Scares are consistent and do not let up from the time you get on the hayride until the end of the trail. Actors are intense and do whatever it takes to get a scare. The scenes in the trail look great. Midway consistently is in my top 3 and I always recommend it to people especially if they have never been. They do change things up a bit yearly so it is worth coming back to see what all has changed at Midway. Midway is a great experience and should definitely be on everyone's list of haunts to visit in North Carolina year after year!

 19 
 on: October 18, 2017, 03:37:37 PM 
Started by NCHadmin - Last post by NCHadmin
Woods of Terror
Date Attended: 10/15/17
 Submitted by: mjones
 
Scare Factor: 3/5
There is a lot to admire about Woods of Terror, but poor line management and some unfortunate technical difficulties sucked most of the scares away for me.  And it should be noted that a few buildings lost power for about a half hour in the middle of my trip through the haunt.  Thereís nothing that can stop technical glitches like that and it shouldnít be reflected in my review.  What is reflected is that while they certainly worked on getting it back up to speed, zero effort was put into explaining or instructing patrons on what to do or what was happening.  Then once we were back on track, zero effort was put into redistributing the by then massive line of people, so I went through the last half of the trail with about 15 groups piled on top of each other.  The upshot of all of this: not very scary.  I have been to WoT and been blown away, but it is not a given.  Itís an inconsistent haunt that you have to hit at just the right time.  It can all work perfectly here, but itís temperamental.
 
Actors: 4/5
This has always been a strong aspect of this trail, and I feel theyíve really gotten even better as a whole over the last few years. The actors in the midway were especially good this year, and I was particularly impressed by the guy with the guy who walked the tables and the zombies with the wheelbarrow.  Very creative!  There were a few sets where I thought there could have been a few more actors in some scenes, but for the most part they were well placed and did a great job with their scares.  Bonus points for year in and year out having the absolute best zombie growls anywhere!  Thereís one guy in the graveyard who gets me every year with just the noise he makes!  Itís a really good group, one of the real stars of the haunt!
 
Set Design/Props/FX: 5/5
This is the best aspect of this haunt.  The campground setting is perfect, the midway is gorgeous, and there are several sets that you just have to stop and admire for a second before entering.  They have the best houses to just walk up on in the woods anywhere.  A few of the scenes were victims of the power outage for us (I lost a laser room which are often my faves!), but for the most part the sets are jaw dropping throughout the trail.  It also might have the best 3-D clown house in the area too!  The sets are really the biggest draw for this trail.
 
Length: 5/5
WoT is really, really long.  As in I felt like it was winding up not once but twice and there was still more to go!  Iíd say itís on the upper end of the scale for trail length.
 
Value: 3/5
They really want every cent they can squeeze out of you at this trail.  Parking is up to $5, and free passes or complimentary tickets have a phantom $2 charge on them, which is kinda inexplicable.  Everything is pay as you go in the midway, but thatís to be expected.  The tickets themselves are on a sliding scale and can get all the way up to $35, so be sure you look about when you go to get the best deal. All the rules and nickel and diming can affect your experience, so definitely be aware of what youíre walking into before you go.
 
Overall: 3/5
WoT has such tremendous natural resources, and the things that are great about it are SO great that itís hard to not give them a great review every time.  But there are a number of management issues that really cut into the things that are great about it.  There are too many needless rules that they spend too much time repeatedly going over.  The groups they send through have always been too big, and Iíve already gone over some issues when the power went out.  But if youíre willing to just roll with some of the corporate issues like those, it can be a really terrific trail. And even at itís worst Iíve never been through it and not found myself audibly gasping at some new set or phenomenal lighting design or something.  In the end, unlike behemoths like Spookywoods, which is literally nothing but a money suck, WoT only dabbles in that kind of thing.  Once you get on the trail itself it really does bring the goods, and though I will always have issues with some of their policies, I would never want to miss it!  Itís a staple of the NC haunt scene, and though it wouldnít be my first stop of the season, itís definitely worth exploring!

 20 
 on: October 18, 2017, 03:37:03 PM 
Started by NCHadmin - Last post by NCHadmin
Woods of Terror
Date visited:  10/15/2017
Submitted by:  packbacker

Scare Factor: 3/5
Woods of Terror is gorgeous with a lot of things to admire as you make your way through the attraction.  It suffers, however, from the problem a lot of successful places encounter.  Popularity leads to crowds which leads to line problems.  The experience became a conga line for the majority of our visit and I find it impossible to become scared when you are at a full stop inside a scene.  You see the scare before you get there so the impact is minimal.  Your mileage may vary and when crowds are light this place amps up the scares like nobody's business!  The scares are a mixture of prop based and actor stimulated.  Certain areas were devoid of actors which also dropped the fear factor.  The screams in the midway were more plentiful and genuine.  You are still entertained by the sheer visual smorgasbord of the sets but scares were few and far between on the night we visited.  As a disclaimer there were technical difficulties but we did experience all the sets fully powered up.

Actors: 3.5/5
Maybe it was just the night we attended or maybe I just missed seeing them but it sure seemed and felt as if the number of actors was markedly decreased this year.  The newer headhunter area had a single actor in it.  The Nightstalkers area had a single actor in it.  The industrial area had a single actor in it.  Other areas seemed almost overstaffed (ie The Purge, the graveyard zombies).  The midway actors were exceptionally talented.  A special mention needs to be given to the actors walking on the tops of the picnic tables but all of them were stealthy and good determiners of who might scream a little.  The actors on the trail proper are a bit hard to gauge.  Customer group size is so large in the attractions that determining actor talent is quite difficult.  They often don't have time to get set or sell the scare.  I'm guessing we just came on an off night as I've seen these folks in larger numbers and displaying amazing talent on past visits.   

Sets/Props/Fx:  5/5
Woods of Terror has some of the most elaborate and well decorated sets in the state of North Carolina.  The initial maze is fantastic with air bags, narrow areas, and vibrating floors that ascend/descend.  There are some great new props in the bus area that simply look amazing.  Woods of Terror does an excellent job with lighting, lasers, and 3D. The 3D, in my opinion, is tops in the state; it's drop dead gorgeous.  Similarly the vampire house, Freddy's glove entrance, and my favorite the "Texas House" replete with chainsaws hanging off the upstairs balcony are just gorgeous.  A new addition after Blackbeard's ship is similarly breathtakingly beautiful as you ascend through the trees into a cannibalistic/shaman area.   The costumes and makeup the actors wear are all top notch with excellent detailing.  The props are also as expected- top of the line.  Things do seem to be air bag heavy at times but that's a small complaint in this visual wonderland.

Length: 5/5
With around twelve various scenes/areas you spend plenty of time travelling through the woods.  Excluding lines count on 30 to 45 minutes minimum to finish the haunt. 

Value: 4/5
Tickets run from $15 plus tax to $50 plus tax based on online vs door purchase, day of the week, and general admission vs fast pass purchase.  Value for me was more in appreciating the sets/props/costumes than the actual experience due to situations described above.  If you're looking for hardcore scares in small groups your value will be lower while if you're looking for a big group experience with friends then you can't top how amazing the Woods of Terror look. 

Other:
Parking is $5, cash only.  Tickets are also cash only on site with a ATM available.  Woods of Terror offers a very large midway area with concessions, two different merchandise areas, side attractions, a live DJ, photo ops, a s'mores fire pit, and picnic table seating.  Various actors roam the midway and they are very talented at popping up here and there to startle guests.  There's plenty to see and do while you're waiting for your group to enter the actual line.

Overall: 3.5/5
You're hard pressed to find a better looking haunt in North Carolina.  Parts of it are truly breath-taking.  The Texas House still gives me goosebumps when I see it each time.  The 3D clown area is world class.  Some new props and the headhunter area are awe inspiring and elicited some audible gasps of amazement from our group. Unfortunately gigantic lines within the attraction and sparsely staffed spots bring the experience down to more of a pretty to look at but decidedly unscary time.  Your mileage may vary as the night I went there were some noted difficulties.  Regardless of the scares it's truly a beautiful attraction and there's plenty to see and do.


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