Fright Nights is back and darker than ever before, the master of fear has a new apprentice for this year and The Keymaster has been chosen to rule over Fright Nights for this year’s event! Bringing with him a new host of scary characters, a scare zone and a new scare maze for 2022.
With the loss of Platform 15, Thorpe Park has been hard at work designing and building a brand new maze to take Platform 15’s spot in the lineup. This new maze does not disappoint, The Survival Games is a brand new maze built on the island next to The Swarm. Also new for 2022 is a new scare zone, located next to birthday bash and under the Nemesis Inferno lift hill. Also, a new audio experience, unlike anything we’ve ever seen at a UK theme park event.
New for 2022, The Survival Games beings a new side of Halloween scariness to Fright Nights. This new maze isn't themed like Creek Freak where its main draw is blood and violence, the overall theme of this new maze is social media. When we first saw the video teaser for this new maze we weren't too sure what to expect but stepping into the maze for the first time on press night we immediately said “wow ok, this is cool”! You start off outside the maze where you are briefed that you will be touched by the actors but they will not harm you. Once inside the maze, you are put into a locker on your own or with other people - if it's a busy night. There are two sets of lockers, one on the left and the other on the right, each side has a unique start to the maze. However, you end up in the same main section wandering around for ages trying to figure out how to escape and win that blue tick. The first time we experienced The Survival Games we were probably inside for around 10-15 minutes, we kept getting looped around the maze with no clue on how to escape or where to go. This maze is absolutely huge and you can see why it's the biggest investment the park has ever made. We were so shocked at how good this maze was that when we exited through the secret passageway we couldn't put into words to friends and staff outside the maze what we thought. There are so many routes through this maze that it’s impossible to know where you are going. The maze was full of very talented actors who already knew how to work the room and get the best out of their characters. We've already done the maze 3/4 times each and we're still noticing new details every run-through. We can’t wait to see how this maze beds in over the next few weeks. The Survival Games is the best Fright Nights maze Thorpe Park has ever built!
New for 2022 Death Doors is a new scare zone located under the Nemesis Inferno lift hill with the entrance near the exit of the ride and to the left of Mr Monkeys Banana Boat Ride. This new scare zone takes the idea of ‘Trick or Treat’ and transforms it into a spooky scare zone, where you walk around knock on doors and you don't know what’s behind it, it could be nothing or a Halloween character from past Fright Nights events or something new and different. Our favourite character we've bumped into so far is Halloween Santa! We weren't too sure about this scare zone when we first heard about it, but seeing it in person and seeing other people's reactions is amazing! Deaths Doors is so much fun and the fact that each walkthrough of this experience is different makes it a 10/10 in our book. As we revisit Fright Nights so much throughout the event it's cool that we might not see something until later in the event. Top tip, if you hear a siren watch out as all of the doors open and the monsters come out to play! Since the press night, a few changes have been made to how the scare zone operates, you are now batched into the scare zone and reminded to knock 2 times on each door and not to kick the doors or touch the actors.
Thorpe Park has teamed up with a company called DarkVoid for a brand new experience called The Terminal. Advertised as an audio experience you sit in a pod with a set of headphones on and listen to a story with some effects that go off around you such as lights, vibrations (from speakers) and a slight breeze from a fan above your head. You start your experience as soon as you enter the queue line where staff roam around and say "May your rest be peaceful" setting the tone ready for your cryogenic space travel experience. You are then put into batching groups and put into a lift where you are given a glimpse of what the experience will be like. The lights turn out and your host remains deadly still staring someone in the face, not blinking! At the end of the lift the doors open your lead into your pod where you put on your headphones and your experience begins. Without giving away too much of the story you sit in "pod 98" and your guide tells you to remain seated and that if anything happens you will return to your body as if nothing had happened. Remember... watch out for space pirates that want to drink your brain through a hole in your neck. We really liked the idea of The Terminal, this is the first time we've ever done anything like this and we really enjoyed it, we wish that you could do this without having to buy all of the mazes.
Superspark Cinema is back for 2022 and some of the films showing inside have been updated! Some of the replacements include "Ship Happens" being turned into "Ship Still Happens!" "Seven Dolls" into "Eight Dolls" and our favourite "Trouble in the Bayou" which was "Vulcan Voodoo" last year. This year, the park has taken on guests' feedback last year of the maze not really being scary and has ramped up the spookiness of the maze. During our first run-through of the maze, we were amazed at how intense the maze was this year, in most scenes we experienced at least 2 actors. For scenes like Hell Cell, this really made a difference! The most improved room is Trouble in the Bayou, with the table being removed from the centre of the room there's more room to explore and more spaces for the actor to hide and jump out. The story of the maze remains the same, but it's nice to see the park trying to refresh scenes of the maze already to keep it fresh!
Creek Freak Massacre is back for its final year and it's your last chance to visit the buckwheats and experience the sawmill. It’s time for the final cut, Project Exodus looms over Old Town and the buckwheats aren’t going down without a fight. Our first run-through of Creek Freak Massacre left us in awe of the attraction, everyone had so much energy and we were shocked at how many actors were waiting for us inside, and we won't talk about how many chainsaws were inside! If you turned a corner and there wasn't a chainsaw, something was wrong! We counted 4 chainsaws in total during our run-throughs, with some of them being used in areas of the attraction we've never seen them used before!! (Be aware on other nights there has only been 1 or two seen but they have been changed to electric chainsaws, this may be due a fault somewhere). A clever nod to the new rollercoaster project was done during the preshow for the maze, where the Buckwheats mentioned the project and anyone who smiled or agreed with it was immediately sent down the ‘Rotten Wood’ section. It will be sad to see this maze close, but the park has definitely sent this maze out with a big bang!
Roaming around the park and causing havoc, the Creek Freaks have been unchained and they aren't happy about project Exodus (the Buckwheats aren't very good at words, so they pronounce it Exomobus) and losing their sawmill. Unhinged and ready to put up a fight, they've taken over the new parade float and gave it a true Buckwheat Creek Freaks Unchained makeover, complete with tartan drapes, and bones and filed it with lots of energy. If you are lucky you might even hear them sing around the park. We've only bumped into them a few times and whenever we did they've been terrifying! It's great to see this scare zone return for its final year, it works so well roaming around the park, but we would love to see them turn up outside Creek Freak at set times. Almost like a breakout to mark the opening of the maze each afternoon.
The Crows Of Mawkin Meadow have returned for another year of nightmares, however, this year this small scare zone has been given a huge upgrade and expansion. Previously you would only have 1 route to take through the scare zone whereas this year there are now 2 routes through The Crows scare zone. Route 1 follows the same path as last year, whereas route number 2 takes you through sections of the old Saw Alive queue line. Walking through "Crones Cottage" you come face to face with the village of The Crows, walking through this small village you can see the remains of a cottage and the homes of some of The Crows. We absolutely love the evolution of the crows and it feels like every year the crow cast and story grow stronger and stronger, with the scare zone getting expanded this year. Could we see them feature in a maze next year? Other changes in the scare zone are a huge new sign at the entrance and some new farm-style fences creating a slalom effect towards the end of the maze. There's no escape from The Crows!
Amity High and The Lycans are back for one final year and it's graduation year! This could be the last year of this scare zone and Thorpe Park has thrown a lot of money into this year's flash mob and scare zones. This year's flashmob is the biggest one we've ever seen in the Amity area, featuring a huge lighting and special effects budget this year's show is one not to miss. After last year's love affair between students this year's show concentrates on it being graduation year for students from both schools. This year's music choices and dance choreography are so sharp you could cut blood on them! If this is the last year of Amity High VS Lycan Thorpe they've definitely gone out with a bang. We've watched this show over and over and are completely in love with it, if this scare zone was to be replaced with something new we hope it has a flashmob in it as its been something that Fright Nights has been missing for years and Amity High VS Lycan Thorpe has truly nailed it now! Of course the song Off With Your Head features within the flash mob, the park’s cleverly used a song from all previous years of the flash mob.
Birthday Bash is back for Hatty and Hugo's 21st birthday party, and we don't talk about last year's party... This year's birthday party is very different compared to last year's performance, this year the show is a lot more story based but still includes lots of dancing and singing and the same characters that we all fell in love with last year. The show starts with the crowning of pinata and Moxi and Manu telling them that this year they will be safe from any danger and that they should sit down and enjoy the show! However, he should know by now not to trust Moxi and Manu. This year the characters of the area are more developed, but we can't wait to see how this show beds in over the next few weeks. The first time we saw Birthday Bash last year we weren't too sure about it and at the end of FN 2021 we were in love with it. This year the stage for the show has much more going on with more props for actors to use, last year the stage was very basic and the actors had more space to dance and sing. Birthday Bash is fantastic this year and we can't wait to watch it again and again.
Feast your eyes on Legacy, a light and fire show with perfect music to match. With much more story telling this year, join the Locksmith and open doors to Fright Nights 2022. Each maze/ scare-zone has a nod in this years display, with the help of the screen to show guests what they’re experiencing. The lights, fire and screen all align perfectly with the music and show the audience the story of Fright Nights this year, with some great nods to previous years too. With the use of the old radio player, there’s music for everyone from each decade. We absolutely loved Legacy this year and it’s great to see it have even more of an upgrade from last year, clearly listening to guest feedback.
The most important part of Fright Nights is the music that plays around the park, during the shows and the mazes and scare zones and this year the park has done an amazing job creating music for the park and the new mazes and attractions. The upbeat music that plays outside The Survival Games is amazing and really makes you feel like you are about to enter a gameshow or competition. We haven't noticed any new ride audio yet, but with lots of work that's gone into building mazes and scare zones we expect this will come later in the event.
2022 Fright Nights merchandise has taken a huge leap forward! This year we've finally got a T-Shirt and Hoodie with all of the mazes on it. Something everyone has been asking for over the past few years has finally come through. Along with these new maze logos shirt and hoodie there's a new pin badge, mug, gloves and socks! The park has really looked into what sells fast and listened to guests.
Fright Nights 2022 is a huge year for Thorpe Park, with the event being in its 21st year we didn't think it could get any bigger and better than last year's event but we were wrong. The new attractions and revamped shows for this year have been amazing and so well throughout through. Management really knows what works well and what doesn't. The Survival Games has been a big hit and we can see it being a staple for Fright Nights over the next fear years, out of all of the scare zones and shows we have to say Deaths Doors has been a big highlight, with all of the different characters and the interactivity in it, it's going to be a big hit!
Fright Nights runs from 30th September until 31st October 2022. Maze tickets can be brought on the Thorpe Park website, and annual pass discounts are also available on single and bundle tickets.