Scarefest 2019 got underway at Alton Towers Resort this weekend, with the theme park laying on a whole host of spooks, frights and thrills. TowersTimes was invited to the Resort to experience all that Scarefest 2019 has to offer, as well as unrivalled access inside the scare mazes.
This year’s event has seen the introduction of two new scare mazes to the line-up. The first of these is The Attic: Terror of the Towers which marks a welcome return of the Terror of the Towers universe to the Resort. Located within the Towers Ruins, The Attic takes guests up into the uppermost levels of the ruins to discover the story of the Governess who is said to want to avenge the deaths of her charges by taking the spirits of the living. The Attic is an incredibly well crafted maze, with a high level of attention to detail throughout the attraction, from the queue line which features various items from within the house, the well-done introductory scene which establishes the story of the maze, to the well-designed sets in the interior which help create a high level of immersion. This feeling of immersion is further enhanced with the maze being set on the third floor of the Towers, meaning guests climb several flights of stairs to access the main section of the maze, something which creates the feeling that you are genuinely climbing up to The Governess’ attic. Inside, the maze creates a suitably creepy atmosphere, with the actors giving strong, well thought out performances. All of this contributes to what is another high quality and theatrical addition to the scare maze line up.
Darkest Depths is the second new addition to 2019’s line up and is located in Mutiny Bay Courtyard which was previously home to The Welcoming during 2017 and 2018. Guests are invited to board the infamous ghost ship “The Mutiny” and journey into the darkest depths in search of their piece of eight. Darkest Depths has what is arguably some of the most detailed sets of any scare maze at the Resort. Once inside, you would not be able to tell that you are actually in the Mutiny Bay Courtyard – the sets are so detailed that you really do feel you have boarded the infamous ghost ship, with the combination of the physical sets, lighting and sound effects, and use of scents (including a particularly pungent vomit scent), all contributing to the immersion. Throughout the attraction, actors make full use of the intricate sets to deliver a range of effective scares. The maze also features its own bespoke soundtrack, composed entirely in house, and this fits perfectly not just with the maze, but also the wider Mutiny Bay area. Darkest Depths exceeded our expectations and is, in our opinion, not to be missed.
Returning for its second year is Project 42, the maze in Forbidden Valley which sees guests enter a Phalanx facility in search of a vaccine to a deadly disease. This year has seen a number of changes made to the attraction, all of which have improved the overall experience. The pre-show tunnel has seen the addition of a second screen which means that all the group can see the pre-show, therefore ensuring all in the group know the storyline of the maze. Inside, the maze’s sets have been almost completely re-done, allowing for a more winding route through the maze, and offering more opportunities for the actors to deliver scares leading to a higher level of intensity than last year.