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Has it really been 10 years already? Ten years since Queen Mary’s stale “Shipwreck” finally sank and was replaced by the far superior Dark Harbor? Yes, it’s true, and over the past 10 years, Dark Harbor has consistently ranked among the top Southern California haunted attractions. Still going strong in 2019, they’re celebrating their 10th anniversary by unleashing a brand new maze. Here’s what to expect at this year’s event.

Mazes

New for 2019

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Rogue: A monstrous freak wave has hit the legendary Queen Mary, causing the ship to nearly capsize. The ocean liner is near a full breach and quickly taking on water as she tilts on her side. Chaos has descended as the passengers and crew are left disoriented and confused in the fight for survival, many plummeting into darkness or the tumultuous ocean. The Captain and the crew are hard at work trying to salvage the ship after the Rogue wave…Or are they?

As detailed during the Queen Mary panel at this year’s Midsummer Scream convention, this maze will be full of innovative special effects, including 4D effects. You’ll experience the overwhelming sense of panic, fear, and chaos as the ship begins to capsize. Creative effects will be use to convey the sensation that the ship is actually twisting and turning, until everything is actually upside down. Oh, and you can expect to get wet, too! We can’t wait to see what innovative methods this maze uses to bring the turbulent seas to live in this maze.

Returning Mazes

This year’s event features six mazes. Besides Rogue, the returning mazes include:

  • Circus
  • Feast
  • Lullaby
  • B340
  • Intrepid

According to the Dark Harbor creators, each maze has been plussed up and will offer new surprises to guests. Here are some of the most interesting changes we’ve heard about so far:

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Photo credit: DeviantArt

FEAST: This year, guests going through Feast will pass through the infamous Door 13, leading into the engine room. This is known as one of the the most haunted places on the entire ship. In fact, two men have been crushed to death by the actual door itself. One of these men was Half-Hatch Henry, another iconic spirit from the Dark Harbor event.

CIRCUS: This fan-favorite maze will return with a new layout and alternative paths.

B340: A new ending will surprise guests for 2019.

Retired Maze

Finally, it seems we are saying “goodbye” to the Deadrise maze, which is not returning this year. But if that makes you sad, you can always visit Dark Harbor’s sister attracton, Dark Horizons, in Florida, which is featuring a “Ghost Ship” maze that we suspect is largely made up of old parts of Dead Rise. Reduce, reuse, rescare.

Entertainment and a Bonanza of Booze

Secret Bars

In recent years, Dark Harbor has gone full throttle on their alcohol offerings. In addition to the plentiful selection of bars on the main grounds of the event, there are also four secret bars that some lucky guests will be able to access; this year, there’s The Sidebar, Overboard, The Broken Compass, and The Line Up. These bars are hidden within the mazes themselves. To find the bars, you must collect special tokens given out by the monsters throughout the event. The tokens contain clues to the bars’ locations, but you might have to ask the monsters where the actual doors are, because they’re not exactly obvious.

Entertainment

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The mazes might be the main attraction at Dark Harbor, but they also do a great job providing plenty of other things to keep you occupied for when you need a rest from screaming. Fire breathers, aerialists, slider shows, and DJs and provide free entertainment. For a small upcharge, you can also ride the Sinister Swings or the “Panic 4-D Experience.”

Dates and Tickets

Queen Mary’s Dark Harbor Opens September 26, 2019, and runs select nights through November 2. Prices start at $34, but we highly suggest checking regularly for discounts (such as Groupon and Goldstar), because deals can often be found. And follow The Scare Zone on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook, where we often link to the best haunt discounts.

As always, Scare Zone will be attending Dark Harbor this year, so check back for our full review soon!

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