Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Knott's Scary Farm Halloween Haunt 2015 review

It's was time for our annual trip to SoCal for another haunt event. Ever since I heard about Knott's Scary Farm's Special Ops (think Zombie Laser Tag shoot em up) in 2014, I've been waiting a whole year to go back to try it out. This is our 9th year going, and our largest group ever. The last two years we've been going to the The Queen Mary's Dark Harbor.It was time we headed back to Knott's.

Ever since SkyMall went out of business I've been taking a pic of the cover of the Southwest The Magazine.

This month's cover is....

What's on the menu today?

Quite the selection.... I like what I see.

I'll have the USDA Prime Jack Daniels & Ginger...medium rare.

We landed around 11:30 am, grabbed our rental and headed straight for the Knott's Berry Farm Hotel. 

Checking in.

Our rooms weren't ready yet, so we checked in our bags and headed straight to Amber Waves Haunted Lounge.  If you're looking for a place to have a few cocktails and snacks before heading to Knott's Scary Farm I highly recommend paying a visit to the Haunted Lounge. I always make it a point to stop by this bar every year in October.

We were at the lounge early. The Haunt Menu doesn't get served until 2 pm and the lights don't go out until like 4 pm.

The 2015 Haunted Lounge Menu. Food on the Haunt menu couldn't be ordered until 2 pm.

But drinks on the other hand were available. I think the Serpent's Bite and Flaming Pineapple is new this year.

I started with Potion No 9 and followed it up with the Dragon's Breath. Let the games commence!

Two Poison Boison, a Jack O Lantern's Revenge and two shots of Vodka.

Peter had beer in this giant frosted mug. Awesome!

Ribs and fries.

Diane is joining us from Portland. She's a first timer on this trip, while John and Robyn are seasoned veterans.

The Night Crawler. Tasted just like chocolate milk.

The Deranged Mango. I believe this one is new this year.

RedRum (Murder). I was trying drinks that had 151 in them. Yes... I'm on a mission to get drunk.

Rabid Dogs. They were okay.

Knott's Slaughter Farm Sliders. Great little sliders. We were snacking lightly because we had the Pre-scare Boo-fet dinner.

The lounge eventually brought out the other Halloween goodies. Nicole and Jack with their glow in the dark fangs.

Jack O Lantern's Revenge. All of the signature Haunted Lounge shots come with a free collectible shot glass.

more Vodka shots.

Nicole and Anh skipped out last year, but they're back for more.

Around 4 pm the lights go out and the black lights go on. The mood is really starting to set in.

Normal without flash.

Vampire Jack & Martial Arts Alex with flash.

then....... there's this guy.

Time flew by very quickly. Around 4 pm I was planning to check on our rooms, but then I saw the line.... nope!

Back to the bar it is, but fortunately for us as I walked back to the bar, I got a message that our rooms were ready. Unfortunately, it was only 2 of the 4 rooms were ready. It was already past 4 pm and our other rooms weren't ready. They must have been really behind schedule. I have stayed at the Knott's Hotel many times and I have never seen them this busy.

On our way to the room, Nicole pointed out the dead flower arrangements they had out on display. I like the little touches they add for the Halloween holiday.

I have a read lot of reviews about Special Ops Infected from the previous year. The way it works is you go into the park and obtain a reservation slip (located at the waterfall by Camp Snoopy) The slip tells you when to return to line up for the maze. I have heard that the reservation slips are all handed out within the first hour of the park opening. People have recommended that we do the Pre-Scare Boo-fet Dinner. Tickets can be purchased online at Knott's Website. It's $26.99 if you buy it online and I think $29.99 at the door. If you do the Pre-Scare dinner you're allowed to enter the park up to 30 minutes ahead of the general public.

Our Pre-Scare Boo-fet reservation was at 5 pm. So we headed towards the park where the buffet was located.

The buffet is located behind Ms Knott's Chicken Dinner Restaurant.

The buffet offered BBQ ribs, two types of pasta, fried chicken, mashed potatoes, deviled eggs, salad, pie, cake, two carved meats, and a few other things. They were all very good. The ribs were really tender and fell off the bone. Fried chicken was awesome. With the price of the buffet you also get a souvenir cup that allows unlimited free refills for the rest of the night in the park.

I wished they decorated the buffet room like they decorate the Haunted Lounge.

Monster do stop by for some photo opportunities.

The buffet was great and getting into the park early was well worth the $26.99 price tag. I highly recommend doing the pre-scare dinner.

We headed into the park around 6:30 pm.

In the 30 minutes that we were in the park before the general public was. We were able to grab passes for Special Ops (our return time was 10:30 pm), and we were able to hit Paranormal, Tooth Fairy and Voodoo.

Paranormal was a great maze. New for 2015. A couple of cool effects. Since there wasn't a huge line yet we were able to go in small groups which was a plus considering how busy Knott's gets.

Tooth Fairy I don't really remember much, but it was still nice to go in small groups.

Voodoo was pretty cool. I really like how it really made you feel that you were in Louisiana. The swamp area was very detailed.

By the time we were done with Voodoo the general public came in and the lines grew quickly.

We took a bathroom break.

Time for a beer break. $10 for a beer... ouch. I still remember when Knott's Scary Farm had a full bar years ago, not anymore. Now it's only beer or wine, but once they I.D you they give you a wrist band and you're allowed to walk around the park with your drink. Which was new to us, unsure when Knott's started it, since we missed them the last two years, but in the past years they would have one specific bar where they would serve drinks and you weren't allowed to leave the bar with your drink. So being able to walk around with drinks was nice and it was nice that they served beer all over the park instead of the one said bar before.

Walking through ghost town.My favorite scare zone. It was so fogged up that I could barely see five feet in front of me.

We were heading to My Bloody Clementine, but ran into the Hanging as it was about to start.

So we decided to watch the show to get it off our agenda for the night.

I always enjoy the hanging. It's always fun to try and guess who they're going to hang for the year. Not going to ruin it for anyone, but the person they hung was totally unexpected.

After the show we re-upped on some beers and waited in line for My Bloody Clementine.

I don't enjoy beer as much as the others, but my choices were very limited.

My Bloody Clementine was meh. I wouldn't put it on my must go to maze. If you have time sure why not. After the maze ride. It was time for more... you guess it, drinks.

Me and my doppelganger.

A quick appearance by Kim. She showed up to the hotel very late so she missed out on a lot of the pre-scare dinner cocktails, but she was playing catch up. Kim was part of the original group that went on the very first Knott's Scary Farm trip back in 2007 that started this tradition. She's missed all the previous years until now.

We were tying to burn time until our 10:30 reservation for Spec Ops. Carnival Games!

Nicole had some fries... I asked her if I could have some, she made this face...

She said I can have two.

A bunch of the guys saw the 3-Point Challenge and decided they all wanted to compete with each other. The highest score for the night was 7.

Being the worst shooter of the whole bunch, they all decided that I should go first. I don't watch sports, I don't play sports, let alone can't even dribble a ball too well. I was expected to score 0.... "expected"

more carnival challenges! video contains drunk profanity.

Jason use to pitch in high school or college I forget which one. The first round he thought it was all about speed. So he was just chucking the balls as fast as he could.. Lol.

After our game shenanigans. It was almost time for Spec Ops!

We were a few minutes early so we just sat around until 10:30 pm.

If you're wondering..... I'm holding up a boulder.... Jason on the other hand looks to be fondling the boulder.

It was finally our turn. At 10:30 we get in line for Spec Ops. Been waiting a whole year for this and have been telling everyone about it. I just hope it lives up to the hype.

I heard that they had new guns for this year. The guns have a health meter, a reload button, LCD display for real time scoring and stats, and the gun also gets perk if you go on a killing streak.

It was finally our turn. We had a group of 16 people and they allowed our whole group to go together.

Special Ops Patient Zero was awesome. I had a great time going through the missions and shooting zombies. Don't miss out on this. The zombies have green LEDs on them, but there was no way to tell if they were dead or not because the LEDs don't change any color. So we just kept shooting even though they were on the floor. We were quite trigger happy. I wish there were more zombies or maybe break the groups to smaller sizes? The front people were getting the most kills, just a few minor tweaks to the maze and it can be really great. Still loved it regardless. At the end of the mission the gun shows your KDS score. Kills, Deaths, Streak. I had K7 D0 S7. For a moment John and I had rapid fire due to our kill streak perks. The guns also vibrate and makes noise every time you pull the trigger. All in all this maze put a huge smile on a lot of our faces.

We rode a few more rides before the end of the night.

Finished the last ride around 1:05 am. It was time to get some sleep.

Tomorrow we're off to Disneyland.

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