Greetings internet dwellers.
Chris here. I wanted to discuss something real quick. As some of those who I know personally are aware, a few years ago I walked away from HHN Legacy. I started this little shindig back in June of 2012. I walked away at the end of 2013. After a few months, I decided to bring everything back for HHN XXIV.
Monday, I started to make plans to move on again. In the process of making plans to demolish everything, I decided not to click that button. For now. There are a few reasons why I decided to move on in 2013. I was dealing with a lot of health issues for one. Some may know, I recently had two surgeries. While I am all but healed from those, my back is not what it used to be.
This season of HHN, was exhausting. Perhaps it is just Father Time, telling me I aint 18 years old anymore. The surgeries didn't help much either. I don't think I will need anything else in the future, but we will see.
Another reason I walked away, was the community. Not just just the annoying HHN fans, who have all but tarnished the HHN community these days, but those individual's who run huge theme park websites. In my experience, I've run into, and met a lot of these people. And to put it bluntly, the vast majority of them are tremendous... ahem, not nice.
Without going into huge detail, a lot of my experience this year at HHN, was awkward. Some of these individuals, spent a lot of time talking about me behind my back, blocking me on social media, and treating me like I was some sort of basement dweller.
When you run into these guys throughout the event, at media events, and in the park in general, things get awkward fast. I have never been one for confrontation, and I hate it. I don't know why people just can't be nice to each other.
There is this petty, High School attitude, that permeates that sphere, and I just don't want to be a part of it. HHN Legacy is always done from a fan perspective. This is not a theme park super-site, and I am not media. I am a fan, and will always approach the event as such.
The entitlement mentality that accompanies some of these sites, is sick. Just because you get some behind the scenes treatment, doesn't mean anything in the long run. And you shouldn't look down upon people (myself, or general guests of the event) because they don't. And the amount of clickbait articles that are out there, is vomit inducing. Most of these places, are nothing more than attention whores. It breaks my heart when I see things like this, and then readers are given a plethora of wrong factual information.
I have to call out HHNCrypt.com again here. Full disclosure, when I was asked to cover the media preview for their site, I was shocked. There was a moment, where I honestly thought I was just being toyed with. With the way I was treated by some of these other mega sites, I was flabbergasted that there was someone nice still out there. It came at a time when I was being dragged through the mud by other places.
I think I am pretty nice guy. I don't know what I did to piss off some of these places. I can get very opinionated, but really? Is that the reason? Theme park bloggers are in the business of opinions. And yes, I will defend friends of mine, who are also being dragged through the mud. Especially when false accusations are being tossed around, for the sake of getting someone into trouble.
That being said, I decided yesterday that I wasn't going to walk away again because of this.
In the grand scheme of things, HHN Legacy is a lost tadpole in the middle of a big pond. I do this all by myself because I enjoy it. And I'm not going to let other people ruin it for me. I enjoy sharing my experiences with other people. I enjoy having other people experience the event vicariously though me. I love hearing other people talk about their experiences.
If you visit HHN Legacy, or another theme park site, we all share a common interest. Again, I don't know why people just can't can't get along with each other. And honestly, I really don't care what people say about me. However, sometimes the noise gets too loud, and you want to turn it off.
So for now, I'm not going anywhere. We will trudge forward, and fun will be had by all.
And We're moving on.
No lie. Just like last year, Halloween Horror Nights let guests know via a video the date for next year's event. They also spilled the beans via their blog. The blog itself was written by Mike Aiello, and he thanks all the guests, workers, and masterminds, for making HHN XXV a success.
HHN XXVI will run on select nights from September 16th through October 31st.
Greetings internet dwellers.
HHN XXV has come to an end. Another year, and another event has ceased operation. After more than a month, the fog has stopped spewing, the Scareactor's have retreated into their Boo-hole's for the last time, and daylight has once again taken over Universal Orlando.
So let's talk about this year...
One of the reasons I like to go as much as possible over time, is to see how things progress. Houses change rhythm and flow all the time. Approaches to how they scare people, tactics, and their overall impressions, tend to evolve as the event goes on.
HHN XXV, saw a LOT of changes over the course of its run. And not just in the houses. Actor's in the streets constantly changed their roles, characters were added all over the place, costumes changed... I have never seen so many things change face like this before.
Whole characters were even omitted in certain houses. This was both fun, and weird at the same time. On one hand, it offered something different each time at the event. It became a cool game of spot what's different. Over in the Icons Scare Zone, new characters were constantly being added to the line-up. From The Crypt Keeper, to Eddie; every week, seemed to reveal something new over there.
While I can't fault the event for this, it is something to note. One can speculate all over the place as to why, but I won't do it here.
Certain aspects of the event, never felt completely done. Right from the start, there were REALLY important elements missing. Example: the Freddy's in Freddy Vs. Jason, or the Jack masks in 25 Years of Monsters & Mayhem.
Perhaps this go big for the 25th anniversary mentality, kind of hit the design team in the rear a little bit. After all, the event started a week earlier than originally scheduled, but things should be ready regardless.
That being said, this year really felt like a party. I liked the whole vibe given off this year. Bringing Jack back into the picture, didn't hurt either. Despite my feelings towards him as an Icon, it was the right call for this year.
That being said, let's move on to the houses...
or me, this year saw a wide range when it came to the quality of the houses. You had a few that were awesome, a few that were OK, and a few really bad ones. Really, my top three houses of the year can be switched and moved. They were all really solid. A few just stood out for different reasons.
The majority of the houses this year, were grand. Made larger than life, for the 25th anniversary. While sometimes the "go big or go home" mentality paid off, there were a few times where it didn't. At least they put in the effort.
I did notice a few of the houses that were really solid and intense the first few weeks, lost a little bit of steam towards the end. Body Collectors dropped off a bit in intensity as the event went on. Jack Presents, was a little hit or miss as the event went on also. A few characters seemed to vanish from that house halfway through the run of the event.
Overall, when the houses were working they were working. When they weren't they weren't. A few disappointments are also a given, as it is just the law of averages.
So, without further stalling, my final house rankings for HHN XXV.
9. THE WALKING DEAD: THE LIVING AND THE DEAD
8. ASYLUM IN WONDERLAND 3d
7. AN AMERICAN WEREWOLF IN LONDON
6. RUN: BLOOD, SWEAT AND FEARS
5. THE PURGE
4. BODY COLLECTORS: RECOLLECTIONS
3. FREDDY VS. JASON
1. JACK PRESENTS: 25 YEARS OF MONSTERS & MAYHEM
The Scare Zones this year, were well done for the most part. One of the biggest problems facing the Zones, were crowds. Lots, and lots, of people. While the event as a whole, wasn't as crowded as it has been, I think a lot more people were just hanging out in the streets this year.
Evil's Roots, was almost always crowded, and the Carnage Returns show didn't help much. Putting the stage there was a bad idea.
Another problem facing the Scare Zones: selfies. Selfies with scareactor's should be banned in the future. Not only is it annoying (and rude) when someone just walks up to a character, ruining a photo you were already taking, it compromises scareactor safety.
The selfie opens up issues with getting too close to the performers. Especially when it is spur of the moment. And there is usually touching involved. It violates their personal space, and is a gateway invitation to problems.
5. SCARY TALES: SCREAMPUNK
4. ALL NITE DIE-IN: DOUBLE FEATURE
3. ICONS: HHN
2. EVIL'S ROOTS
1. PSYCHOSCAREAPY: UNLEASHED
The roaming hordes were a very good idea. While they were just generic chainsaw scares, they filled in some of the gaps nicely.
BILL & TED'S EXCELLENT HALLOWEEN ADVENTURE
THE CARNAGE RETURNS
LEGENDARY TRUTH 2015
While I can't say anything really specific, I will say that the experience was really well done. The finale of this thing was INSANE. I still can't shake that final part of the investigation.
I will say this, the way in which the experience was organized, was a total cluster. And in many ways, was a slap in the face to those players who have been playing for a long time. It could leave a sour taste in a lot of people's mouths.
Making this experience so limited, and last minute, was a mistake. The entire thing took us two-hours to complete. And yes, while they warn you it could take a long time, that's a tough pill to swallow for some as well.
I had a good experience, but those who did not get to do it, after returns times went faster than a Justin Beiber concert, well...
HHN XXV, was a very big year. It felt big, and larger than life. While a few houses were not up to par, the majority of them were really fun, or way above par. While every year, there are things that could be improved, this year felt spread out.
There was a lot to do, and the strength of the Scare Zones helped a great deal. I think we may be in for a few changes next year with certain things. With the loss of one, and maybe more venue's pending, it could get very interesting. Overall, HHN XXV was a very solid year. A good time was had by all.
I really hope you enjoyed me sharing my experience this year with you guys. It's been a fun year. I was worried after my recent surgeries, I wouldn't be able to keep up. While I am exhausted, I would do it again in a heartbeat.
I wanted to keep this review a little shorter than normal. Since I ran a running commentary throughout the event, you can get a good idea what I thought of this year.
A huge thank you to all the people I hung out with this year, and to all those new folks I met, hello! Another huge thanks to HHNCrypt.com, for allowing me to get a sneak peek at all the HHN XXV goodies early.
And that closes the books on HHN XXV.
HHN XXV FINAL RATING: 4/5
HHN LEGACY OWNER