I left a very negative review here in May so I thought I'd update it after my trip on the 21st-22nd October
Overall the park was fantastic.Lighting
I haven't been to Scarefest since 2013 so I'm glad to see that the horrible floods have been replaced with the LEDs with coloured gel filters. Lighting is vital for a night time event so its nice to see them putting a bit of effort in. The park was covered in a yellow rope light with white leds every metre or so. They're absolutely everywhere and I personally didn't mind them but it would have been nice of they were a little more ambient.
Wickerman, however, was lit beautifully with the red leds along with the large fire dome things in the centre. Another small detail was some of the large led fixtures were actually flickering between red and orange giving a lovely fire effect.
The station of wickerman had some quite amusing fixtures too. They're using moving heads in the rafters of the stations with gobos but I've never actually seen them move. They're often several hundreds of pounds each and the exact same effect could be achieved with a light a fraction of the price!Queues
We did very well with the rides. We managed a decent amount of rides without using any kind of passes. On the Monday between 10 and 11am we did Rita x2 and Thirteen x3 all as walk on. it seems that the first hour is perfect for DF and then running round to FV is the next step. Under 20mins for Nemmie and GalacticAir.
I went into detail on how disappointed I was with the ride times system last time and I'm happy to report that they are now being used very effectively. Only once or twice was the queue over the estimate. On CRR the queue said 25mins and we reached the platform in 25:16. Most rides actually overestimated times which was a lovely surprise. Its important to get a nice balance between overestimating to please the guest when they finish and not going too high so people perceive the park to have ridiculous queues. I'm so pleased they've sorted it because I don't mind waiting 80mins as long as I know before hand.
Also we arrived at the entrance at around 9.50 and we managed to pick up tickets and be in the park by 10. Impressive compared to the sham in May.Rides
- Nemesis - Nice to see both trains on. It's keeping queues down and I love it. Found it rather smooth and a little forceless this trip though. Maybe I'm getting used to it?
- GalacticAir - Good as usual. They're batching from the old photo kiosk and sending a large group at a time down to one station or the other. I think it works well. No VR on the second day. I prefer it that way because it keeps queues down and it's rubbish anyway.
- Duel - Might have been my first ride since the refurb, not sure. It's good as always but is very loud. I obviously wasn't scared by it but I could see why people might be. A lot jumps out at you.
- RMT - Alright as usual. Did not appreciate the children who had climbed the fence and were playing on the mining theming
- CRR - Got a nasty splash. Noticed inconsistencies with batching. Some couples were left alone in a boat and it annoyed me because it slows things down but we were put with a group of 3 boys. not complaining really they were perfectly well behaved. There were no new boats on - I presume that's coming next year.
- Th13teen - Got a front and back row ride. Back row over the first drop is underrated. I think its the first time I've ever seen the tesla coil on so that was pretty cool. Also its the first time I figured out why there's a ladder before you walk into the building - its bad luck.
- Rita - This is the first time I've realised just how rough it is. The launch is still a little thrilling but after that its a bit meh. On the Sunday we did Rita first before Thirteen. We then headed back to Rita to find it had broken down already. At 10.30 in the morning!
- Oblivion - Fantastic operations. between 0 and 15mins all day as both stations were being used effectively. It was my first time actually queuing for it after using RAP or a breakdown pass in the past - its quite a trek!
- Hex - My first ride since the refurb. Excellent! I forgot how effective each element of the experience is. The madhouse works so well and all the effects were great. My mum is convinced that the walls in the vault were changed in some way during the refurb but I'm pretty sure they weren't? I haven't done DBGT but I'm proud to say Hex is my favourite dark ride in the country.
- Wickerman - Wow. Almost everything about it is perfect. I've already talked about it enough so I won't here. They're batching it wrong now. They're stopping the queue at the preshow doors rather than before the baggage hold leading to many hold ups and issues in the station and the automatic door trying to close on a lady in a wheelchair! I got my first back row ride yesterday as well as a backrow night ride later on. I feel a little bad because we were asked to move to the front once we were in the 'pen' and we said we really wanted the back and were told it was fine we could stay but it turns out it was so a disabled guest could have our spot. Whoops. They got on straight after us though so its ok. It was incredible on the back at night with all the effects working and we came off saying how it's definitely not a family ride. Loved it.
- Kellogg's were giving away free Squares samples on the Sunday. I personally approve of this sponsorship because there's no way I'm paying Towers' prices for snacks.
- We ate at Eastern Express because they offered a vegan meal. My mother enjoyed it and was pleased she didn't have to have jacket potato and beans like usual when eating out. We planned to eat at Explorers' but there was no vegan option as all they do is pizza and pasta and the price had risen drastically since we last checked. I also recommend the cheesy chips from Forest Feast
- Smoking. Its even worse than my last visit. Its actually infuriating. In GalacticAir's queue I saw a lady stood next to a no smoking sign having a fag. It's not just against park rules, its against the law. It was difficult to walk anywhere without having a cloud of whatever the trendiest vape juice is in your face. Its disgusting and needs to stop, The park aren't doing enough to keep it to designated areas. It completely ruins the exciting family atmosphere and makes me want to throw up at times. Anyone caught smoking/vaping outside of a designated area (especially in queues) should be removed from the park. Its just plain horrible without the fact that its bad for the health for everyone around them.
- Couples - So many couples. They remind me that I'm ugly and will be alone forever!
Sorry it was a bit long. I had a brilliant time but it was a shame I couldn't see you all for the event.
Those festoon led lights don’t look great in the day do they? But they do look georgeous at night IMO
I’m a vaper, I don’t do it in queue lines, I sometimes have a quick suck, not enough to blow anything out, but that’s it... However, I do not use the designated smoking areas either. I use e cigarettes as a form of harm reduction, and have been doing for many years. I.e I do not want to breath in the umpteen carcinogens in smoke either, so I’m not going to go into a smoking area to do something that I can legally, and safely, do indoors at pubs, restaurants and shopping centres :-k
As for actually smoking outside the designated areas, it happens a lot, and I don’t think it will ever stop. What exactly makes you think it is illegal though? Unless you’re talking about indoors.