In the Norfolk countryside sits the Roarr! Dinosaur Adventure a large family fun park with dinosaur trail. This the the host of PrimeEvil an event that has been running now for 12 years.
Due to its distance from us it’s been tricky to fit in this event but thankfully we were able to this year and see what PrimeEvil had in store for us.
On arrival you instantly walk into a central food and drink hub. This has music playing and a great atmosphere as everyone relaxes between scares. There are a few roaming actors in this area posing for photos or having a little dance on the stage. It’s definitely a good way to start an event.
We made our way to our first attraction but noticed that it was a little tricky to see the fast track sign. This was a theme across a number of mazes. Due to the normal queue being long it was hard to know exactly where to go and at one time we ended up walking past the whole queue line all together. We feel a few additional signs and rope wouldn’t go amiss to make this a little clearer.
The Crypt – Repent Your Sins
It was at this maze that we first experienced the fantastic introductory actors. All mazes seemed to have these and they worked really well with great scripted bits telling you the rules and checking your tickets. A really nice touch we wish more events would use. Once into the maze we are plunged into darkness fumbling to find our way in the dark. With the tight corridors and winding pathways this maze at times can make you feel quite claustrophobic which works well in an attraction like this. We did however find a little too much reliance on animatronics instead of actors and depending on where you were in the group these scares could often miss as they seemed to be triggered after a few people had walked past.
Insanitorium – Infected
Next up was what we thought to be a traditional zombie strobe maze but on entry we soon discovered there was a twist and we would be putting on silent disco headphones. With a EDM soundtrack now in your ears you are plunged into the strobes. There are areas where you cannot see anything offering a number of disorientating moments. This coupled with a fair number of actors gives the opportunity for some solid scares. We did unfortunately find a number of these scares not landing at times. This may be partly due to being able to see other groups later in the journey or the actors not quite timing the scares with the strobe. We ended up running this maze twice and on the second visit it felt the actors had upped their game. With a few minor changes this maze could become outstanding.
A walk in the woods is always a nice concept as they naturally lend themselves to being a little eerie and spooky. This walkthrough has a hillbilly vibe with a few random purge characters early on. Unfortunately we found this addition to be a little underwhelming. The hooded section was unneeded and didn’t really add anything in terms of scares or enjoyment. Sadly the hooded section also caused a problem where due to people going at very different speeds we ended up joining another 2 groups causing a conga line through the final set of scenes which meant the actors were unable to scare and ended up struggling to land anything with the now large group casually walking through an area with great scaring opportunities.
Circus of Terror – Freaked Out
This maze starts with a really cool concept in the form of a vortex tunnel with a number of actors holding people back and an unexpected element right at the start as you are plunged into the clowns playground. This maze has a great layout with some fun rooms. Our favourites being the ball pit and another room that made us rather dizzy. We however found the actors were not using the space to its full potential, missing great opportunities to scare. The clowns also didn’t have the energy we have come to expect this year after a number of very solid clown mazes. Again this is a maze that could be vastly improved with a little direction and coaching of the actors leading to really solid impact scares and other fun interactions we have experienced elsewhere. It’s a shame as the set features really great ideas that actors could have a lot of fun with.
Mayhem Manor Hotel – Blackout
Again as with all mazes we had some excellent introductory actors who added some lovely humour to proceedings. We also experienced a number of additional scripted bits inside the maze which were good fun. This maze uses haunted lanterns which were given to a number of people on the group. The haunted lantern is able to change lighting effects based on where you are in the maze and can create some solid scares. Unfortunately we found the lanterns weren’t being used to the best of their ability as actors could have easily hidden in the dark spots creating a number of high impact scares. Sadly this wasn’t the case and it feels like a bit of a missed opportunity. The theming throughout this attraction is fantastic and if the actors had a little bit of additional direction this could become an exciting maze rather than the more chilled out spooky walkthrough we experienced.
We both left PrimeEvil with the same word in mind and that’s ‘potential’. Every experience encountered had a huge amount of potential and with only a few minor changes could make a number of mazes really strong. Unfortunately on our visit there was just something lacking; each maze shows promise and has the opportunity to become something quite special. The huge site could enable the event to compete with some of the larger attractions if a few small changes were made. We’re interested to return in the future as this event shows a lot of promise.
If you would like to experience PrimeEvil yourself there are still tickets available for select dates through to the end of October.