Haunts And Mazes: Real Life First Person Exploration Games

Tonight, I’m doing something nifty twofold: I’m meeting some online friends in person for the first time, and we are all going to Knott’s Scary Farm.

The last (and only) time I went to Knott’s Scary Farm was back in 2008. My partner and I went with friends, and I had an unfortunate experience that has kept me away in the years since. We went into our first (and only) maze and, at one point during the walk through, a scare actor got in my face and wouldn’t move. And I don’t just mean he or she wouldn’t move for a moment, they wouldn’t allow me to pass. I tried to go around and they kept getting in my face to the point we started to hold up other patrons behind us. I said to this person, “Please get out of my face.” They didn’t. I finally said I was going to have to find a manager to deal with the situation and only then did they move.

The experience bothered me so much, I didn’t feel like going through any other mazes, and the night turned sour for me. For the past nine years, I’ve allowed that one unfortunate occurrence to keep me from going to other haunt-type attractions.

This year that changes.

I adore horror movies and I love the concept of mazes. I like seeing the creativity involved. What I most appreciate is the atmosphere.

Side note: I would love going through a maze with a Minotaur coming after you. I think that could be really well done.

Anyway.

This makes me think of what many people refer to as “walking simulator” games.

First of all, I don’t care for that term. I feel it trivializes the genre. I’ve long since referred to them as “first person exploration” games, as I feel it better describes them.

Going to Knott’s Scary Farm is like playing a first person exploration game in VR…only in this case I suppose it would simply be R.

I’m super nervous about going, honestly. All I have is that one negative experience from so many years ago to draw on, but I’m hopeful this time is a far better outing. There is one particular maze called Trick or Treat: Lights Out where you are given flashlights that are synced to the attraction. A friend who goes to haunts religiously told me it was her very favorite and we should beeline straight for it once we get inside.

A heck of a recommendation.

I looked online at the mazes and there are only a couple that don’t interest me. Most are intriguing and I can’t wait to team up to go through them. My friends have offered to put me in the middle (to, “baby penguin” me was their term) so I am buffered, and I’m super appreciative. I’m excited to “conquer” these mazes since they have psyched me out for so long.

As much as I love horror movies and novels, horror games have always been able to get to me a little. Movies and books are passive experiences, games are not. You are responsible for moving your character through the environments. There is something inherently more unnerving about that.

Now magnify that exponentially and that’s how I feel about haunts.

I’m sure I will be freaking out and exclaiming swears right and left, certainly at first, but I hope, by the end of the evening, that I’m taking them in stride and, dare I say, enjoying the experience rather than dreading it.

Have you gone to any haunts or mazes this year? If so, where? What did you think? Or will you be going to one this weekend? I’d love to hear all about it!

Also, what will you be playing this weekend? I will be playing more South Park: The Fractured But Whole, and diving in to either Wolfenstein 2 or Assassin’s Creed: Origins.

What a year for games!

Please be safe out there friends. Cheers!

4 replies »

  1. I went to the Carnival of Horrors last weekend with family. I enjoyed it; they use AHS as a backdrop for two of the four houses. It gets better every year, imho! I traded in Uncharted; just wasn’t feeling it. Plan to finish off TT’ Batman series; see what flash sales are upcoming while I wait for the next entry in the COD library.

    Liked by 1 person

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