This year I've done a record number (for me) of scare attractions - Europa Park, Thorpe's Fright Nights and now Screamland. Out of the three, Screamland was the one I was most looking forward to. The teaser images that they released on Twitter looked amazing and I've heard good things about Atmosfear (the creative company). Male Jordan and I arrived in Margate about 4:30, 90mins before the Screamland event had opened. The horizon soon lit up when we saw the Scenic operating and looking fab with it's white lights. We killed the next 90mins talking to Lofty, looking around the shop (which has some fab tat btw - take lots of money!) and figuring out how to deactivate my car alarm. When 6pm rolled around we, and about 200 others, were let into the park to try everything for free. Before doing the scare attractions, we did the two coasters (Scenic and Apple coaster) as Jordan had cred anxiety. Anyway, on with the show! May contain nuts and spoilers. Sorry for not taking many photos (and you can't take photos in the mazes) - Jordan's report will have more when he posts his thoughts. The first scare labyrinth we did was Festino's Forgotten Funhouse. Right from the off it was superbly themed. The batching and explanation area set the scene. Upon entering, there is a bit of crouching to be done, which is a bit awkward if you are following somebody you don't know. Having a 16 years old girl's arse a few inches from my nose was not how I planned to spend the evening. After that, it opens up and you start to appreciate the set. Every scene was well themed with uneven floors, things hanging from the ceiling - it felt eerie. This attraction did not scare me and I don't recall any memorable jump scares. However, it freaked me out! There were some awesome scenes such as the checkerboard man (that was so freaky and my top highlight of this maze), the scary clown face corridor with the freaky dwarf, the woman who ate turds and the camp mermaid. There is also a bit of audience participation, for which I was picked - "come in my box" said the actor... The finale scene was amazing! That was the only time I felt on edge. Overall FFF, was a good maze to start the event with. It's not scary, just freaky. I think if I had done it after the others, I would have found it underwhelming scare wise but the atmosphere would have still been electric. Number of Underwear Changes Required: 2 Max Time I'd Queue For It: 30mins The two signature mazes were our next port of call. You cannot do one of them - you have to do them both. First up was The Final Cut. The queue was only about 15 people deep but we had to wait about 20 mins before we could enter but boy was it worth it! The indulgent briefing area was well themed, lit and atmospheric. The attraction begins with a revolving door which everybody has to enter one-by-one. Losing sight of my group and feeling alone got my heart pumping. Once the group was together, an actor well dressed as an usher told us the storyline in a comical and cheesy manner - exactly what I'd expect. Before the scares begun, we walked from the "lobby" to a comical and incredibly well themed confectionary counter with an actor playing the type of person you'd expect to see selling popcorn at a cinema. I loved the attention to detail such as the spiders crawling out of the popcorn and the smells - the use of scent cannons were genius. It is the flowing story line that makes The Final Cut fantastic. So far I'd entered the cinema, bought my ticket, got some popcorn and was about to take my seat. In the theatre, there are rows of zombies sat watching a movie and before you know it, the screen splits and you walk through it. Behind the screen are some claustrophobic air cushions which seem to go on forever! I lost sight of the person in front of me and the person behind; I was isolated. Trapped. Anxious of what would greet me when I emerged. What follows are scare scenes from famous films (or generic film ideas). The one I found most memorable was the screaming woman on the tilting gurney. Argggghhh! I wanted to get out immediately. The finale was fantastic - I actually did a nervous fart when the room lit up due to a sparky thing in a cage which revealed a woman with a knife stood beside me. Number of Underwear Changes Required: 4 Max Time I'd Queue For It: 60mins Upon exiting, there is a small courtyard that smell of damp (I'm not sure if t's real or another scent canon) where you wait to enter Dead & Breakfast. The facade of the guest house is themed to a war torn 1940's Margate B&B. It's here that you wait to enter the next maze. My queue line experience was slightly spoiled by a young lady who kept boasting about how she has done loads of scare mazes before and nothing frightens her. She was annoying. To make it worse, she was leading the group so whenever she led us into the room, she would position herself in the middle so she could have the best experience whilst those at the back missed out on the initial scare. Thankfully the actors noticed that those at the back couldn't see so in the story rooms they encouraged the annoying young lady to move to the far end. Anyway, the entrance to Dead & Breakfast is brilliant. If you've ever stayed in a rundown seaside B&B, you'll recognise it. The group was welcomed by Fag Ash Lil, the B&B owner who set the scene by telling us the only room available was room 13. The hotel was run down because of the war, ghosts were present etc etc. With hands-on-shoulders, we walked through a corridor full of smashed windows, noisy sound effects and actors looking at us, trying to grab us and so on. It was unnerving. The first room we stopped in was room 13 - which was being used by a hooker. She wasn't scary, just funny - the real scare was the man jumping out of the wardrobe. We quickly dashed to the next scene which was the bathroom. Here we were told to get out, evil is around, bombs are falling and all sort of stuff. A man in a gas mask appeared behind the bathroom mirror - freaky! Out of the bathroom and into the kitchen. I found this scene to be quite weak. A chef appears and says there isn't much food about but we all look tasty etc. It was a bit predictable. Predictable is fine if it has a element of cheese to it but I found the pace of the attraction drained a little here. The set was amazing, as was the acting, but it lacked something. After exiting the kitchen, we headed "outside" where an old crone was hanging out her washing. The attraction picked up pace again as we walked through the dirty backstreets (again, fantastic set) pushing away her dirty clothes that were dangling over our faces. The noise here was intensifying - there was an air raid on it's way! Quick! Everybody into the lift down to the air raid shelter! The lift section was great. We were all packed in like sardines, the floor vibrated and the lights went off. The sense of anticipation was brilliant! What I liked the most about the lift is the group order was reversed. The leaders of the group (including Annoying Boasting Young Lady) was now at the back and the people at the rear (me and Jordan) were now leading. We sort of walked around and around in a circle for a few moments, with the odd illuminated scare actor popping up. It wasn't scary, just a bit silly in a good way. The highlight was the air raid shelter scene. It was so well themed. Everybody was told to sit on benches situated alongside the long walls facing inwards. The bombs fell...the lights went off...they went back on! ARRGGH! A scare actor was in your face. This was repeated a couple of time so the actors could change positions. It was terrifying! Number of Underwear Changes Required: 5 Max Time I'd Queue For It: 60mins I loved Dead & Breakfast. After exiting the attraction last night, I thought it was my favourite. However, after writing this report, I think enjoyed The Final Cut more. Even though D&B was excellent, I found the story and creativity in TFC a tad slicker. TFC has a continuous flow with a sustained level of anticipation. D&B dropped very slightly on occasion. I'm being really picky here, as if choosing which of my two parents I prefer the most. Our final attraction was Abramacabre. When Dreamland approached my company to install a mirror maze, the brief stated it must be versatile for a Halloween event. Therefore it was designed with that in mind, hence it's macabre artwork and the layout. Throughout the year it remains a high quality maze attraction but in October, it's transformed for Screamland and I was keen to see how. Before entering the maze, a magician's assistant called Deadie McGee (lol!) explained that a magician is looking for his rabbit that has escaped from his top hat. Simple enough. Upon entering the maze, the lights bathe everything in a blood red. As with a true maze, you don't know what is around the next corner, plus you are unnerved by the illusions and the sense of being genuinely lost. Out of nowhere appears the magician who looks terrified. Where is his rabbit? What has happened to him? He has transformed! The magician disappears and you are left to explore the mirror maze once again. Everybody inside KNOWS that something is going to jump out at any moment but because you're free to explore, you have no idea when or where it will be. What added to the scare was I found myself wandering around on my own. Jordan has taken another route so without somebody to back me up, I was on edge. Out of nowhere, one of the mirrors lit up and an actor dressed in a MASSIVE and scary fanged-rabbit costume started to bang on the glass and make scary noises. It is shocking! I nearly shat myself. For me, it was the best jump scare of the entire evening. Number of Underwear Changes Required: 2 Max Time I'd Queue For It: 20mins Out of the three Halloween events I have attended this year, I rate Screamland as my fave. It had the whole package of variety, strong storylines, excellently crafted sets, memorable scare moments, perfect pacing, awesome use of special effects (soundtracks constantly playing, smells, lights - everything!) and confident actors. My only concern is that Dreamland have made a rod for their own back. How the hell will they top it next year?!