Halloween Horror Nights 29: Are you ready to play a totally terrifying game?

Ghostbusters Haunted House, Universal Orlando Resort, Entertainment, HHN 29, photo provided by Universal Orlando Resort
Ghostbusters Haunted House, Universal Orlando Resort, Entertainment, HHN 29, photo provided by Universal Orlando Resort /

Are you, like, ready to scream? Halloween Horror Nights 29 kicked off at Universal Orlando and event was like, totally terrifying, totally.

As the darkness seeps into Universal Orlando Resort and the music rises, it is time for Halloween Horror Nights 29. The theme park’s annual Halloween event might try to play on some deep rooted fears, but the iconic horror characters have definitely come out in force. Do you dare take part in their game?

After attending opening night, this year’s HHN29 seemed to have an underlying 80s, video game-ish feel. As you enter the theme park, glowing ghouls with their wicked chainsaws make you question whether you should just turn around. While the arcade displays tempt, you might have just one life remaining in these video games

Although many guests focus on the big name houses, this year’s scare zones seem to draw people into a more party-like atmosphere. While the chainsaw scares might not have been as sinister, the Zombieland area found that balance between fear and fun.

Whether you know the rules of Zombieland Rules (did you get your cardio in?), this area has a fun blend of the classic Zombieland and the upcoming Zombieland Double Tap. But, just be careful and know your way out.

For music fans, the Rob Zombie Hellbilly Deluxe feels almost like the entrance to a rock concert. With so many photo ops, this area could become the go-to Halloween Horror Nights 29 hang out. Grab a cocktail, watch a show and take a photo in the throne.

Sure the Parent Resource Center would never approve of this music or the dancers, but the vibe of this scare zone is definitely fun. Even if you aren’t a huge heavy metal fan, this area could help you appreciate Rob Zombie music a little more.

The other two scare zones, Vanity Ball and Vikings have a creepy vibe. The allure of body modification and the pursuit of perfection have caused the people in Vanity Ball to go to the extreme. Luckily, these fashions won’t be seen on next season’s Project Runway.

The Viking area is a spot where I wish that I had spent more time. Real life history often has the most terrifying stories. Although Valhalla might beckon, Thor is definitely not in this realm. These Vikings are looking to do some serious damage.

At Halloween Horror Nights 29, the houses – especially the big name installations – draw the biggest crowds. This year’s crop did not disappoint. The combination of original content and intellectual property pieces balanced the scary and less scary parts of the horror genre.

With a total of 10 haunted houses in all, it can be difficult to see all the houses and scare zones in a single night. If you only can attend one night, guests have some options. Express passes are available. Also, the RIP tour ensures that you see everything. Or, you have to prioritize which houses are a priority. With the last thought in mind, these haunted houses were my personal favorites.

Ghostbusters haunted house at Halloween Horror Nights 29, Universal Orlando Resort
Ghostbusters haunted house at Halloween Horror Nights 29, Universal Orlando, photo provided by Universal Orlando Resort /

Probably the most anticipated haunted house at Halloween Horror Nights 29 was Ghostbusters and it did not disappoint. The balance of fright and fun is perfect. More importantly, there are tons of little details that will entice fans at every turn.

From the proton packs on the wall (just like the ones in the upcoming movie) to lines from the original movie (“We came, we saw, we…”), you might be laughing as much as you will be screaming.

That mindset is what makes Ghostbusters such an iconic movie. Sure, Stay Puft barreling down the streets of New York City is ominous, but there is an absurdity to it.

In many ways, that concept is what makes Halloween Horror Nights so much fun. Yes, you will scream. Yes, you will be scared. More importantly, you are going to laugh with your friends while doing it. If the event isn’t filled with fun, you aren’t going to come back.

Another highly anticipated Halloween Horror Nights 29 house was Universal Monsters. Since Universal originated the horror genre, there was a lot of expectations for this house. Some of the scenes were amazingly well done. While I don’t want to give away spoilers, watch how the walls transform from room to room. It is visually stunning.

Universal Monsters, Halloween Horror Nights 29, Universal Orlando Resort
Universal Monsters haunted house, Halloween Horror Nights 29, HHN Team Member Preview, HHN29, Universal Studios Florida, USF, photo provided by Universal Orlando Resort /

Of course, all our favorite classic monsters make an appearance. From the Mummy to Dracula, everyone is out to get you. Just watch out for Swamp Thing though, he can be a little tricky.

Last year, Stranger Things was one of the most well received haunted houses and this year’s version is equally impressive. It is hands down the longest experience of the night. By my calculations, it takes about almost 7 minutes to go through the 14 rooms.

The Stranger Things experience combines both Season 2 and Season 3, with seven scenes from both seasons. The maze starts where last year’s experience left off.

All the characters are back. This house has so much detail inside, you might want to visit it a couple of times just to make sure you see it all. There are hidden gems at every turn and the scare actors definitely capture their characters.

Halloween Horror Nights 29, Stranger Things, Universal Orlando Resort
Stranger Things haunted house, Halloween Horror Nights 29, Universal Orlando Resort, Entertainment, HHN, US, photo provided by Universal Orlando Resort /

Lastly, this haunted house has the largest puppet that Universal has ever done. With three people working it, the character is massive and definitely impresses.

In a similar vein of returning characters, Killer Klowns from Outer Space gets its own house this year. If you aren’t a fan of clowns, you might want to avoid this brightly colored circus freak show. Because this cult classic movie has a very unique perspective on them.

This haunted house has a lot of secrets lurking around each corner. Make sure to look for big red buttons and yes, you want to make sure to press those big red buttons. What surprise might happen? You will have to wait and see, but remember these Killer Klowns can be quite creepy.

Killer Klowns from Outer Space, Halloween Horror Nights 29, Universal Orlando Resort
Killer Klowns from Outer Space, haunted house, Halloween Horror Nights 29 at Universal Orlando Resort, HHN Team Member Preview, HHN29, Universal Studios Florida, USF photo provided by Universal Orlando Resort /

Lastly, the Yeti, Terror of the Yukon is probably the most visually stunning house of the event. The icy lair of the Yeti captures your attention from that first big burst of frigid air. In that frozen tundra, the colors mesmerize you and make you forget that there is a menacing beast around the corner.

This Yeti is definitely not the friendly kind. He doesn’t want you in his realm and he is ready to send you to an icy grave.

Yeti, Halloween Horror Nights 29, Universal Orlando Resort
Yeti: Terror of the Yukon, Halloween Horror Nights, HHN, Marquee Events, MQE, Universal Orlando Resort, UOR, UO photo provided by Universal Orlando Resort /

If you have time to add one more haunted house to your list, Us, based on the Jordan Peele movie of the same name, will give you the creeps. The tethered are prepared to take over. Truthfully, there is one scene in this house that will make your skin crawl.

In addition to these haunted houses, Halloween Horror Nights 29 includes House of 1000 Corpses (based on the Rob Zombie movie), Graveyard Games, Depths of Fear and Nightingales: Blood Pit. These experiences are more graphic, some are slightly more claustrophobic and definitely more intense.

Also, Academy of Villains returns with a new show this year. The show is called Altered States. From the powerful music to the physical abilities of the performers, you will definitely be entertained for the entire time.

New this year, Universal Orlando Resort added a lagoon show. The Halloween Marathon of Mayhem is impressive. From Stranger Things to Ghostbusters to Universal Monsters, all the characters are projected on the walls of water. It is quite visually impressive.

Lastly, if you are looking for a break from the intensity, remember that Diagon Alley is Halloween Horror Nights free. Also, the rides are running during the event. Not every moment of HHN29 has to involve maximum screamage.

Halloween Horror Nights 29 runs now through November 2, 2019 on select nights. It is a separately ticketed event and prices vary.

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Are you ready to play a totally terrifying game? Your token for Halloween Horror Nights 29 is waiting, you just have to push play, if you dare.