Frightmare is a scare event located in Gloucester at Over Farm which has been successfully running for a number of years now. With this being our fourth visit since the event began, Frightmare have advertised a bigger and better event for 2019. With teasers being shown during the 2018 event of something new coming to the event, 2019 brought a brand new maze to bring them up to 6 scare attractions alongside other additions such as more roaming characters, changes to the exsisting mazes & a vintage fun fair!
The 6 attractions for this year include the returning 5 attractions with a slight varation to the storyline. These are; Séance 666, Wonderland: 20/20, Caged: The Battle, Offering: Cataclysm & The Haunted Hayride: Harvest. The new scare attraction is Carvinal: The Killing Booth, located within the vintage fun fair and advertised as something never seen before at Over Farm, we were intrigued to see the new styled scare attraction during our visit.
The vintage fun fair has been brought in with the addition of Carvinal to help bring the circus theme even more so for 2019. Included in the vintage fair was a helter skelter, ferris wheel, chair swings & waltzers. You could also find some side stalls of games within the fair too. With one free ride on any of the vintage rides being included on any of your passes, this side entertainment is a great way of breaking up your time at Frightmare and helps bring the circus atmosphere to the event. With the ringmaster also being found as one of the roaming characters, this helped draw people to the attraction with the actor walking people to the maze entrance.
Carvinal: The Killing Booth
Brand new for 2019, Carvinal is the new circus themed scare attraction which has been teased by Frightmare. Located within the vintage fun fair, this is a different type of maze with the style being something you don’t often see within scare attractions. Carvinal is heavily story based with you entering into the carnival where you meet the last few remaining performers in one of the worst circuses around. Well, the last circus around anyway. Each room contained a short and silly show with a similair vibe to the London Dungeons however, audience participation is extremely heavy within Carvinal. Therefore, the scares were very limited as only the ending was a typical maze style. The themeing was basic in many places however, the storyline was quite interesting and comedic. Our favourite character being the coconut with the coconut jokes, puns and games within the maze. The actors were quite funny however, some of the rooms were overpowered by other rooms and effects making it difficult to hear the story, but most of the rooms the actors delivered the story well. Overall, this is a very unique concept and very brave for Frightmare to pull off however, for us it didn’t really tick all of the boxes we were hoping. This said, we are sure when it likely returns in 2020, we will see some strong changes to make it a much more promising attraction!
Scare: 3/10 – Themeing & Storyline: 7/10 – Actors: 5/10 – Overall: 15/30
Caged: The Battle
Caged is a returning maze but new for 2019, takes on the stroy of The Battle. Visually, the maze has not changed too much from what can be remembered however, it does seem the scares were not as impressive as previous years. With this said, it was still intense through many of sections with the first half being pretty jumpy. The storyline is slightly different to previous years and continously works with the attraction. The minor changes do work in some ways to keep it fresh but also seems to be missing something from before. The actors used the space well but it did seem to be a lack of actors during our run through. Apart from this, they did get a few jump scares out of us. Overall, it’s not the strongest year for Caged with us being a little dissapointed however, we like the continous changes to the storyline and look forward to see how it goes in future years.
Scare: 6/10 – Themeing & Storyline: 7/10 – Actors: 6/10 – Overall: 19/30
Séance : 666
Another returning attraction with an altered story for 2019. Starting with a Seance, you then go through a number of haunted rooms with special effects and multiple actors surround you. The scares are still as scary as previous years with the actors also using the space well and them seeming to be many of them at crucial points as you walk through the series of rooms. The themeing inside is done well with very little of the maze not actually being themed. The storyline is clear, terrifying and haunted. Overall, an impressive attraction still for Frightmare with good use of effects, actors and exploiting the theme!
Scare: 7/10 – Themeing & Storyline: 7/10 – Actors: 7/10 – Overall: 21/30
Haunted Hayride: The Harvest
Haunted Hayride takes on the story of The Harvest for 2019. Based on the The Harvest film, you are given a funny yet informative safety speech which incoperates the storyline before you embark on your journey. A half maze and half tractor experience, this unique attraction has a mix of comedy and horror to create a strong experience. The tractor ride takes you on the story of The Harvest with more comedy scenes as it explains more of what The Harvest is. The actors were the strongest part of this with basic themeing at each stopping location. Half way through, you get off the tractor to enter a shed and you get to meet the family and farmer. This is quite scary with it being far out from the rest of the park and with the special effects, themeing and actors really doing a good job. The scares were strong in this part and everything complimented each other to create an intense experience. A slight change from last year is you get back on the tractor at the end of this maze segment with an ending of the story given, compared to previous years where you walked back with some additional scares. Overall, we loved The Harvest version of the Haunted Hayride. The strongest by far of all of the Frightmare attrations this year for us and cannot wait to see the next installment next year!
Scare: 9/10 – Themeing & Storyline: 9/10 – Actors: 8/10 – Overall: 26/30
A crazy twist on the Alice in Wonderland theme, Wonderland 20/20 is the third rendition of the maze. With the first year having some good elements and the second year being even better, we were upset to see it’s standard drop this year. Many scenes seemed removed or skipped over, a lack of actors in key moments and the glasses seemed fairly worn. The attraction lacked in scares due all of this combining but we did have the odd surprising element within. The themeing is still excellent throughout along with its wacky storyline and characters. The actors did well where possible and we love to the range of the characters with them being a twist on the storyline. Overall, it’s still an okay attraction with some impressive parts however, we have seen better years of this maze.
Scare: 4/10 – Themeing & Storyline: 8/10 – Actors: 6/10 – Overall: 18/30
The Offering: Cataclysm
The offering takes you into the catacombs once more withthe updated story, Cataclysm. Also minorly updated like the rest of the attractions, the maze remains pretty consistant from previous years. The themeing is quite good within the attraction, with the start of the maze requiring you to go through a long air cushion before you enter a narrow, claustrophobic tunnel section. As you go further in, you see that you are the offereing and become a part of the ancient ritual. Seeming shorter than previous years and no massive changes seeming to be made, it continues to be an okay attraction. We think with the really terrifying start, the middle and end could do with picking up to keep this spooky nature and theme it has running through it. The scares were consistent throughout but this was more of an eerie and dark maze then jumpy & scary. Overall, the attraction sits in the middle with us and has done previously.
Scare: 6/10 – Themeing & Storyline: 6/10 – Actors: 6/10 – Overall: 18/30
Overall, Frightmare is really in the middle this year. We loved the unique concept idea of Carvinal and them expanding finally to 6 attractions however, it does seem that this was not executed as well as originally hoped. With some standards slipping throughout the rest of the attractions, it seemed everything went from a high level of scares, themeing and storyline to just an okay level. We can see a huge focus has been put into the idea of Carvinal and the vintage fun fair and we really hope the idea takes off and is enjoyed by visitors overall. We are sure in 2020, Frightmare would have more focus in bringing everything back up to a high standard. With this all said, Frightmare still is a great place to visit during Halloween and with now hosting 6 attractions, it’s becoming bigger and better with improvements made each year. Although we heavily reference previous years, we can’t help but compare due to how intense Frightmare can be and how enjoyable it was in years such as 2018.
We would like to take this time to thank Frightmare for inviting us to come and experience the park this year. Although this wasn’t the strongest of years, it’s great to see how the event adapts and goes from here with now hosting 6 attractions. Although the season has now ended, you can experience Frightmare in 2020 and recommend you keep in the loop with them through the website and social media accounts directly!
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