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Ohio Valley Haunts
Halloween Haunt
at Kings Island
Category:  Professional EVENT
Reviewed 9/26/15
Photos: 2015 2014 2012 & '11 Classic Fearfest
Slaughter House 6 Minutes 20
Urgent Scare 5 Minutes 18
KillMart 4½ Minutes 25
Blackout 7 Minutes ?
Delta Delta Die 6½ Minutes 25
Wolf Pack 3½ Minutes 8
Tombstone Terror-tory 6 Minutes 21
Madame Fatale's 5½ Minutes 16
Board to Death 4 Minutes 16
CarnEvil 4 Minutes 15
Cornstalkers 3½ Minutes 10
ANALYSIS: Halloween Haunt features 11 seasonal attractions, 4 scare zones, and 3 entertaining performances.  New for 2015 is Blackout, a fairly self-explanatory lightless maze, where groups enter into total darkness, and test their fear of the unknown while feeling their way along neighboring walls in desperate search of eventual freedom before sensations of helplessness turn to panic. 

Slaughter House has a new home in Rivertown, and is one of 5 attractions that begins in a special Skeleton Key room.  Here, a brief entrapment results in an all-out ambush when a sudden power failure leaves you at the mercy of blood-soaked butchers and their merciless chainsaws!  Narrowly escaping with your limbs still intact exposes more carving and meat grinding as the course navigates claustrophobic passages and tilting hallways into the carnage of human flesh being suspended in mid-air by hooks and chains, and even sawed in half pending processing into hamburger!

In addition to Slaughter House, KillMart; Urgent Scare; Madame Fatale's Cavern of Terror; and Delta Delta Die also feature special Skeleton Key rooms for Fright Lane purchasers, where the best, most horrific scares of the night are housed. Killmart's mandates digging into the "stomach" and "intestines" of a sliced-open sufferer in search of a swallowed key necessary to unlock the path of escape! Urgent Scare's witnesses a group member being placed inside a coffin-like box, and rolled into an incinerator, while Madame Fatale's subjects cornered individuals to spiders and hissing snakes!  Delta Delta Die's selects someone at random, and sneaks them away to involve them in an upcoming scare directed at the remainder of the group.

Outside these special rooms, KillMart delves into a zombie outbreak that's taken over various departments of a local convenience store; Urgent Scare explores various catastrophes within a lethal hospital; Madame Fatale's investigates atrocities inside a museum where humans are dipped in flesh-consuming wax;, and Delta Delta Die is everything you might see inside a college sorority house, where the party never ends! Board to Death brings monopoly, operation, and other favorite games to life; Wolf Pack presents an excursion through a forest infested with werewolves, CarnEvil is a twisted take on corrupted clowns; Cornstalkers is occupied by living, breathing scarecrows amid foggy terrain; and Tombstone Terror-tory is a darkened journey along a desolate path inhabited by various undesirables.

Aside from the aforementioned special rooms, memorable scares include the crossfire of Battleship gun turrets at Board to Death;  a werewolf cannibalizing the contents of a refrigerator, then viciously kicking the door shut at Wolfpack, where mechanical canines also come to mind; living walls at Madame Fatale's; secret closet passage, asylum door CGI, and TV screen surprise at Delta Delta Die, an animated giant rat as well as a bungee surprise along Tombstone Terror-tory; mechanical surprises at KillMart; and just about everything not already discussed at Slaughter House, which is by far the best, most visually stimulating attraction at Halloween Haunt.

Scare Zones are brief walk-throughs that complement the paths between attractions. Nightmare Alley is decorated with spiders, enticing street lights, oversized eyeballs suspended from trees, and showcases a pair of Halloween Haunt hearses between International Street and the approach to Action Zone. Cemetery Drive adorns International Street with tombstones, caskets, and the presence of the undead én route to the Eifel TowerBackwoods Bayou is a swampland of sorts that debuted back in 2013 along the entrance to Rivertown between Backlot Stunt Coaster and Diamondback.  It's inhabited by gators, chirping crickets and a resident Ghilliemonster, while Freak Street features outlandishly attired roaming characters and a mechanical clown-head surprise just outside of CarnEvil near Planet Snoopy.

This year's bonus entertainment is provided by Monster Rock, energizing Festhaus with popular hits from the '80's; Blood Drums - a punk rock percussion exhibition mesmerizing the centralized area near the Eiffel Tower and the International Street fountain with its talented drummers, coordinated dancing, fire jugglers, and flashing strobes; and the triumphant return of Hot Blooded to Showplace Theater featuring seductive, on-stage song and dance of everyone's favorite fanged creatures of the night - VampiresGhouls Gone Wild and the acrobatics of Skeleton Crew have gone on hiatus for 2015.

The event is complimented by 20of the park's top Thrill Rides being open as well, including Banshee, Delirium, Diamondback, Drop Tower, Invertigo, Firehawk, Vortex, Flight of Fear, The Bat, The Beast, The Racer, Monster, Scrambler, Viking Fury, Zehhyr, Windseeker, Adventure Express, Backlot Stunt Coaster, Dodgem Cars, and Boo Blasters on Boo Hill

Professional lighting sets an outstanding mood throughout, but sound falters at times, especially along Tombstone Terror-tory (where loud, intimidating music was heard a season ago), and in Cornstalkers and the new Slaughter HouseSkeleton Key rooms are an appreciated novelty exclusive to Halloween Haunt, where acting is strong, but elsewhere represents a noticeable decline in quality for the second consecutive season, consisting mostly of screams, "rah's," and snorts, thus seldom interacting with guests via meaningful dialogue.  Theatrical makeup is a positive attribute of costuming, with very few masks being employed outside of Wolfpack.  Attractions are adequately populated for the most part, but all are quite short from a duration standpoint, ranging from 3½ to 7 minutes in length, with Blackout lasting the longest, and Cornstalkers and Wolfpack stopping the clock on the low end of the spectrum.  Flow issues arise from groups bunched up at times; even early on before the park was crowded.  A better job needs to be done reuniting Skeleton Key purchasers following the separation experienced in the opening scene at Urgent Scare, and of detaining the general admission line at the other attractions (except Delta Delta Die) so Fright Lane customers aren't released into a conga line, and/or disconnected from their original group.  The loss of Club Blood is most unfortunate due to the fact that it was among the most popular attractions.  The decision not to use the train this yearis questionable at best, as its absence produces catastrophic results in Tombstone Terror-tory.  Change is good, but needs to be for the better, not the worse.  Each individual attraction is appropriately decorated in accordance with its theme, but additional high-impact animatronics and actor-tronics should be present at Kings Island. Skeleton Key actor at Slaughter House gave the performance of the night, and should be commended for his efforts.

Cost of admission starts at only $29.99 for an entire night of Halloween related festivities.  That's simply a deal that cannot be beat!  OVH recommends visiting on Friday nights when crowds are smaller, purchasing Fright Lane passes in order to avoid standing in long lines AND to experience the special Skeleton Key rooms where the best scares are located, and beginning the evening by enjoying Fright Feast - an all-you-can-eat buffet consisting of fried chicken, Montgomery Inn pulled pork BBQ sandwiches, hot dogs, corn on the cob, baked beans, pasta salad, chocolate chip cookies, and unlimited Coca-Cola soft drinks.  Then cap the night off by enjoying some of your favorite thrill rides!  Be sure to pick up a 2015 Fright Guide when entering the park, which includes a handy map pinpointing the location of everything Halloween Haunt has to offer. 

Halloween Haunt
6300 Kings Island Dr., Mason, OH  45040
(513) 754-5700 
Fri $29.99 Online ($43.99 at Gate) 6 PM - 1 AM
Sat $39.99 Online ($61.99 at Gate) 11 AM - 1 AM (Haunts open at 6 PM)
Fright Lane (front of line) passes available (includes access to Skeleton Key rooms)
Fright Feast (6 - 8 PM in Picnic Grove) sold separately or as Combo w/Park Admission
click logo at left to visit their website
Mazes Fear Zones Attractions
Killmart slaughterhouse Board to Death Blackout Madame Fatale's Cavern of Terror Urgent Scare Hot Blooded Cemetery Drive Backwoods Bayou
Wolf Pack Cornstalkers Tombstone Terror-TORY Delta Delta Die CarnEvil Blood Drums Monster Rock Nightmare Alley Freak Street
Halloween Haunt at Kings Island