The Walking Dead: Living Nightmare launched as a new indoor attraction at Thorpe Park for Fright Nights this year, along with the outdoor attraction The Walking Dead: Sanctum.
Being located in a permanent building makes it very easy to open at any time unlike many of the other seasonal attractions at the park that are outdoors or housed in temporary marquees.
The Old Town area of the theme park is somewhat lacking in attractions since the demise of the Canada Creek Railway, Logger's Leap and Slammer so it would certainly benefit from an addition in 2018.
An end of season video released by Thorpe Park ends with "We'll meet you at the safe zone in 2018" giving a possible clue for what may be coming to the park next year.
The Walking Dead is a hugely popular American post-apocalyptic horror series based on a world overrun by zombies, commonly referred to as 'walkers'. The brand is very popular and would no doubt offer a solid marketing hook for promoting the theme park in 2018.
It wouldn't be the first time that the theme park has operated a live action horror maze as a year-round attraction, as they previously operated SAW Alive all season in 2010 and 2011, and several years ago the former attraction Freakshow 3D opened for a summer. A current attraction at the park that is led by live actors is the I'm a Celebrity... Get Me Out Of Here! Maze which is managed by the park's entertainment team.
The Walking Dead already operates as a year-round walkthrough attraction at Universal Studios Hollywood and has been part of Universal's Halloween Horror Nights lineup in Orlando and Hollywood for many years.
There is a full range of branded merchandise offered for The Walking Dead so operating the attraction all season would make a lot of commercial sense, with fans of the hit TV show and those who survive the experience eager to pick up a souvenir. The attraction also features a photo opportunity, which much like ride photos offers another income stream for the theme park.
We experienced The Walking Dead: Living Nightmare at the media event for this year's Fright Nights and were impressed with the high standard of the attraction, with significant investment in the themed environment for only seasonal use.
Our first stop was The Walking Dead: Living Nightmare, an indoor free flow horror maze where you must try to escape from the notorious Negan. It is located in the former home of the Cabin in the Woods and although absolutely no effort has been made with the exterior of the attraction, once you are inside it has been completely transformed. We found it to be fully immersive with large scale sets and superb attention to detail throughout. Fans will no doubt love all the carefully recreated scenes from the hit TV show, including the hospital, prison and school bus. We particularly liked the dramatic opening sequence, fully acted to setup the story and with an effective scare.
In the UK The Walking Dead is shown on FOX which is currently airing Season 8.