Knott’s Scary Farm 2016 – Maze Ratings and Reviews

dscn3704-largeYou know what event has some of the best mazes ever created? It’s Knott’s Scary Farm. I can honestly say that this is the first year, and first event ever, where I was not disappointed with a single maze. Every single one of the nine mazes this #ScaryFarm season were awesome. Let’s get into rating and reviewing them!

How we rate and review:

The four ratings exist of a Length Rating, which relates to the length of a maze, the longer the better. This doesn’t necessarily mean physical length of walking through the maze, but may also indicate there are plenty of different scenes and that the maze felt long. The Scare Rating is exactly what you think it is, how ‘scary’ does a maze get, how gruesome it is, if it creates a bunch of jump scares, etc. The Set Rating looks specifically at the job done regarding the theming of the maze, how immersive the sets are, how many different scenes guests encounter, etc. And then last, but definitely not least… the Experience Rating. Which is mainly based off of the overall feel of the maze, was it a extreme? Did it leave you breathless? etc. The overall experience, combined with the other three factors creates a FINAL SCORE for the maze. (Out of 10, 10 being: “absolutely unbelievably amazing”, 1 being: “Don’t even bother visiting”)

Paranormal Inc.

Length Rating: 9 Scare Rating: 8 Set Rating: 9 Experience Rating: 8 FINAL SCORE: 8.5

Paranormal Inc. was one of last year’s newest and hottest mazes. And this year again it did not disappoint. As one of the longer mazes at Knott’s Scary Farm, this maze combines a pre-show, well-developed story and theme, and a ton of different sets with controlled mechanical effects for some good scares. The maze also features giant animatronic beasts, lasers, and a ton of fog. Everything you need to get distinctively disoriented and lost. I’m glad to see this maze at Knott’s Scary Farm again, it’s one of the new generation mazes that managed to bring this Haunt event to yet a higher level. dscn3705-large

The Gunslinger’s Grave: A Blood Moon Rises

Length Rating: 8 Scare Rating: 7 Set Rating: 8 Experience Rating: 8 FINAL SCORE: 7.75

I loved the original Gunslinger’s Grave, then wasn’t a fan when A Blood Moon Rises came out last year. Luckily that opinion has changed. With less stage lighting and a maze that is long and occasionally challenging to navigate, this is one of those outdoor mazes that perfectly suits the park. Being western themed, the whole maze just screams “Knott’s Berry Farm” from start to finish. Walking in and out of buildings in this western town doesn’t just create an immersive and long experience, it also brings the entirety of the maze together very well, and unlike some other mazes, there’s definitely no maze-identity-crisis. I wouldn’t say this maze is anywhere as good as some of the newer ones, but it definitely suits Knott’s and offers a unique outdoor maze experience. Lines are usually relatively short, and thus it’s great to pay a visit to this maze during your visit. Gunslingers (no background) (Medium)

Tooth Fairy

Length Rating: 9 Scare Rating: 8 Set Rating: 9 Experience Rating: 8 FINAL SCORE: 8.5

Though I personally feel the themes of the tooth fairy and the dentist are very limited, the maze combines almost anything related to these two themes in its sets, creating a very interesting and unique experience. I’m not exactly sure if I like it as much as everyone else seems to like it, as I feel the scenes don’t flow very well. Having said that, I do thoroughly enjoy most of the scenes, from the smells of an actual dental clinic to the torture of children all around the maze. Childhood fears come to life for many to the point that even I had a moment of realization when walking past the dental chair in this maze wasn’t the most pleasant. The maze combines feel-your-way-out scenes with tunnels and collapsing walls in addition to an astonishing amount of very interesting and unique scenes to make one of Knott’s Scary Farm’s oddest, yet creepiest, mazes.


Trick or Treat

Length Rating: 7 Scare Rating: 7 Set Rating: 8 Experience Rating: 8 FINAL SCORE: 7.5

The classic Knott’s Scary Farm maze that has been around for a years always manages to form insane lines. The maze features the famous Green Witch in many of the scenes and it is Knott’s Scary Farm’s take on a classic haunted house. Every year, again they add a few new scenes, and this year’s new scenes definitely didn’t disappoint! Overall the maze felt darker than in years past, making it a tad more frightening. Overall, though this maze isn’t anything to write home about, compared to some other mazes, as it is relatively short, it is a very fun and entertaining maze. Do realize that lines may get incredibly long, and I don’t feel that the long lines are justified as the experience is short. I advise you check out higher-level mazes first, if there’s a long line. dscn3704-large

Voodoo- Order of the Serpent

Length Rating: 8 Scare Rating: 8 Set Rating: 9 Experience Rating: 9 FINAL SCORE: 8.5

It’s back and I couldn’t be more excited. If you read our reviews in the past then you know how much I loved this maze. The maze is set up in a soundstage kind of way where guests walk through and around a swampland in the south, where rituals and eery situations present itself to you. Walking through all the little huts, over the bridges and through the forest is really something I like. You don’t get on this maze to really get scared (mind you there’s a good amount of scares for first-timers) but this is one of those mazes that has such an amazing setting that it’s an instant hit. This year guests walk through the old Skeleton Key room on their way in, adding yet two new rooms to the maze. Overall it’s one of the can’t-miss mazes at the event. You’re not going to experience the swamplands and scenery of this maze anywhere else.dscn3711-large

The Dead of Winter: Wendigos’ Revenge

Length Rating: 8 Scare Rating: 6 Set Rating: 8 Experience Rating: 7 FINAL SCORE: 7.25

The Dead of Winter has returned this season, to the surprise of many, and it’s significantly better. Though I enjoyed it a lot last year, as again Knott’s Scary Farm brought such a unique theme to their line-up, it’s a lot better this year. As where the name “Winter” would’ve suited the maze better last season, the name “Dead of Winter” was finally appropriate. With a lot of blood, dead characters and murderers walking around the maze, there was a lot more gore. In addition the maze is significantly darker this year.dscn3715-large

This year’s theme is Wendigo’s Revenge, which added a folktale into the storyline. The better storyline was accompanied by the return of several awesome animatronics from last year, as well as the new Wendigo animatronic. All these animatronics wonderfully enhanced their scenes. Speaking of scenes, my favorite mirror-scene is back as well 😉dscn3716-large

Red Barn

Length Rating: 9 Scare Rating: 8 Set Rating: 8 Experience Rating: 9 FINAL SCORE: 8.5

The first of three entirely new mazes this year was… Red Barn! The theme is very generic and I wasn’t looking forward to it all that much. But… let me tell you this maze turned out a lot better than I imagined. It was very long, used a good amount of mechanical effects, had a ton of gore, very nice lighting (most of which was red), an awesome soundtrack, different types of scenes including a tunnel, and a lot more. The whole barn theme wasn’t overdone, and genuinely felt large, realistic and well-developed. Though the theme, again, isn’t particularly special, the execution was Knott’s Scary Farm quality, and I ended up getting some good scares in there, and enjoyed going through it. I advise you check out this new maze! dscn3701-large

Shadow Lands

Length Rating: 10 Scare Rating: 9 Set Rating: 10 Experience Rating: 10 FINAL SCORE: 9.75

“OMG”. That alone would be a perfect description of this new maze. If you’re looking for one of the best mazes this world has ever seen, you travel to Knott’s Scary Farm this year and get yourself into Shadow Lands. In fact, if you had to choose one single maze to get on this Haunt season, that would be it. This Samurai themed maze combines everything you could possibly imagine in the best possible way. From a pre-show that will leave you terrified to choose-your-own-path sections, to moving walls and characters around every corner. The maze’s theme is very unique and well-developed, in addition to which the execution is beyond anything you’ll have ever seen. Venture through it a million times and you’ll still see new things. Shadow Lands is also very long, combines scare tactics with large sets and beautiful architecture as well as several man-made natural settings. I can’t begin to list all the amazing scenes and effects in the maze, and it’s best you get yourself a ticket as soon as possible and check out Shadow Lands.20160922_213029-medium

Special Ops: Infected

Length Rating: 9 Scare Rating: 9 Set Rating: 9 Experience Rating: 9 FINAL SCORE: 9

Special Ops: Infected has returned… sort of? This year it’s an actual maze with a regular line, in an entirely new world created backstage at Knott’s Scary Farm. Did that make it better? – YES. I wasn’t the biggest fan in years past, and usually asked a lot of people about their opinions before writing the reviews to get a good idea of how others liked it. This year there was no need for that. It was plain awesome! The maze is very long, has awesome scenery (primarily bigger sets) and features non-stop action. No empty dark areas, no stopping every few seconds (besides story-important sections). The scenes are all connected to create an uninterrupted experience where the zombies pop up unexpectedly from every angle. Mind you that you have an interactive laser-gun and shoot at these zombies as you try to escape the apocalyptic setting. Overall this is another one of Knott’s best work ever. Took them two years to get this experience to live up to the anticipation but they hit the nail on the head this year. Can’t miss this attraction at Knott’s Scary Farm.Black Ops Infected Hero image with logo slide (Medium)

dscn3701-largeThanks for checking out this Knott’s Scary Farm Maze Ratings and Reviews! We’ll have a lot more Knott’s Scary Farm coming soon, including Spoiler-free Skeleton Key Room reviews, Shows and Scare Zone Reviews! 😀 

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