We were very kindly invited to this year's Tulleys Shocktober Fest. Whilst we were given free entry to the event, we have full editorial control of what our review of the event says.
We recently visited Tulleys Shocktober Fest. This scare event has 10 mazes as well as the Circus of Horrors, various game stalls and food and drinks outlets. One our visit the stronger mazes were Creepy Cottage and The Village Coven of 13. Great sets in the attractions and some interesting changes for Horrorwood Hayride. Had a few issues in group size batching and same style of scares and lack of actors.
Top Tips - Interact with every roaming character you see.
Things that bite - Large group batching, same style scares and other small things as mentioned in review below.
Value for money - Yes
Scare Rating - 4/5
Do we recommend - Yes!
Tulleys Shocktoberfest returned for another year of scares this year and of course we had to get down to experience this years event. I’m going to be honest before we go anywhere, we didn’t experience two attractions, Hellements and The Chop Shop due to not feeling well so there will be no review for those attractions.
The atmosphere at this event is off the charts. There is always such a great vibe. There’s live music, great food and drink outlets, rides and of course the absolutely astounding street team of actors they have roaming around the scream park. I have said it time and time again that the street team at Tulleys is one of the best teams in the country and I still stand by it. All the interactions with them we had throughout the night were just fantastic. And don’t forget the Circus of Horrors and the Wastelands fire show as they are not to be missed, but shall we crack on with the mazes.
Let’s start with Wastelands Penitentiary. This maze has been an icon in the Tulleys line up since it started. It’s usually always a highlight of the night but something just didn’t click right when I went through and I went through twice. It lacked its usual intensity and seemed to be a bit light on actors and those that you did bump into were usually getting back into character when you turned up because they were talking to each other. I left both runs feeling a bit deflated as I know what it can be like and this wasn’t it.
Next up let’s talk Doom Town. This attractions sets are stunning and I’m still blown away by it every time I see it. The scares however are very hit and miss and unfortunately they were very focused on the front of the group meaning that people behind the first two were just walking through. The actors seemed to have less vigour and energy this year which therefore meant the scares just weren’t happening. I do have to give special mention to the zombie who accidentally kicked a crate at us and moved it back in character but other than that this maze failed to shine.
Electrick Circus returned for its second year and it seemed to have got more actors compared to last year. My run through was intense with actors really getting in your face. The animatronics worked well and I got a scare from one even though I knew what it was going to do. It was just a lot of fun with some great scares and I was a bit shocked by it.
The Cellar is my personal favourite attraction in the Shocktoberfest line up and after last year being slightly underwhelmed I went in this year being apprehensive about it. Luckily I didn’t need to be as the actors were vile. They hid very well and used the sets to their advantage and really went for it with intensity. The scares were consistent and very well executed.
Haunted Hayride: Route 666 is a reimagined version of their classic Horrorwood Haunted Hayride. It’s got new sets and a whole new feel to it. The sets, like most at Tulleys, are highly themed and really quite impressive. There were less actors coming up onto the trailer which gave it a less personal feel but it doesn’t detract from the overall experience as it still has its great shock moments as well as its usual hilarious comedy characters.
The Island was one of the weakest mazes I’d ever experienced last year and so I went in with extremely low expectations. This year they must have taken note as the actors were on top form. They really worked their spaces well and were climbing everywhere. As always with this attraction there was a lot of dead space and it does feel like you are walking forever but the scenes with actors provided some really great scares.
Coven of 13 is an attraction that I have a history with. Having experienced every year of its existence I’ve felt I’ve grown with the attraction. I’ve seen it at its worst and I’ve seen it at what I thought was its best but I was wrong. Our group did two runs on this and both times were really good. The swamp was a buzz of activity and the scares came thick and fast. The rest of the haunt continued this intense style with screw coming from all angles and directions.
Last and most certainly not least is the events oldest attraction Creepy Cottage. This attraction is usually the one that first time scare experiencers visit first as it’s like a warm up before what is normally a stronger line up but holy christ this maze was on fire. It only may have a small cast but I have never had a run as intense or as terrifying as that. The scares were non-stop. It was an assault and I screamed a lot. It was by far the strongest maze of the night. The actors in there on Friday night should be so proud of what they pulled off.
The attractions that shone were the ones where the actors weren’t following the usual way the actors scare with a bang and then an arm thrust. This style of acting has become predictable at Tulleys and I’m not sure why. It’s lazy and I think the event would be so much better if the actors had free rein to really create characters and use the spaces to their advantage.
With that being said, Tulleys is always a fun night out and it is one event that has to be experienced at some point in your life. Thank you to Tulleys Shocktober Fest for inviting us down. For more information and to book tickets you can visit the Tulleys Shocktober Fest website.