Best attraction for Halloween 2011? Already?!
And how can we be so sure? Because we were invited to a special sneak preview of The London Dungeon’s newest fright filled ride – Vengeance, the 5D, laser gun shooting scream inducer.
The night started as we were invited in for horrible nibbles, all served in the dark Victorian street setting that is the main hall of The London Dungeon. We were entertained by ghouls, scared by shrieking maidens and frightened by freakish beings.
The place was filled with green, red and purple light and was pretty much exactly how I want my house to look for Halloween 2011… I may need to invest in more lights… And a bunch of film set props… Oh, and some actors…
Anyway, after the light entertainment we were invited to embark on what is now the full London Dungeon experience. 3 thrilling rides, a whole heap of horrible exhibits and performances plus a few other nasty surprises along the way.
After first being shown some tools of torture by an overenthusiastic dungeon dweller, we were sent to court where judgement was passed on the whole party. We were soon sent to traitors gate using a little boat to navigate the dark, dank tunnels of the maze-like complex.
Surviving that ordeal, we moved quickly out of the vessel avoiding rats and spiders, grateful for our lives. Little did we know that it was a case of ‘out of the frying pan’ for sure.
Someone in the party was looking particularly unkempt, so it was suggested that we take him to a local barbers… You’ve guessed it, Sweeney Todds. And after a close shave (literally) our group was ushered through to the main event, the Vengeance 5D ride.
Vengeance is quite unlike anything that I have experienced before. It incorporates a moving seated area, 3D screens, in-seat effects and of course, cool laser guns.
Set at 50 Berkley Square, one of the most haunted houses in British history, your mission as a participant is to help clear up a ghostly mess after a seance goes awry.
The 3D visuals were amazing. The high definition graphics seemed to reach across the heads of the group as the lasers were fired and sounds and sensations rippled from the seats.
Periodically, the platform under us would whirl around at speed, dizzying the audience and placing them in front of another screen to do some close up blasting. All of these features combined creates a very absorbing experience which is as enjoyable as it is terrifying.
Vengeance is quite a bold move by The London Dungeon as it’s intention to combine so many elements into one ride is quite an ambitious one. I was also somewhat sceptical (though still very excited) about the laser guns and feared that the ride might be more aimed at kids.
It turns out that a great balance has been achieved, and the entire group (none under the age of 18) had a great time with plenty of screams, shrieks and shouts.
Back to (a horrible) reality
To recover from the ordeal and give our trigger fingers some rest, we were treated to more horrors at the hand of our hideous guides, with a trip to Whitechapel in search of Jack the Ripper. And after being sentenced once more by a judge (it just wasn’t our night) we were thrilled by the final ride, the Hangman’s Drop, which is a miniature version of one of those vertical drop rides that you can find at many theme parks. It was also great fun.
Upon our return to the sinister street from whence we had started on this dreadful journey, we were treated to more curious snacks, treats and beverages (including plenty of nice Halloween ideas) and of course a much needed sit down.
It may well be a little early to say, but I find it hard to believe that any event is going to put together an experience that can better this for Halloween 2011.
The combination of real life actors, an amazingly authentic venue and a great combination of rides that stimulate every sense is something to be marvelled at. Every type of horror thrill can be felt here in one place and during one continuous experience.
Central London excursions are famously expensive, but for once I think there is a very good reason to spend the money and if my recent visit is anything to go by, you will not be disappointed.
For more information about the London Dungeon and Vengeance, visit the official site:
The London Dungeon
And why not check out this video showing a bit of the Vengeance ride and the reactions of a few celebs who visited the London Dungeon to check it out:
I can’t think of a better recipient of our new recommendation.
The London Dungeon is definitely on our list of Top Tips for Halloween 2011.