Land of Illusion 2023 Review

Land of Illusion (Middletown, OH)
“A Night of Haunting Entertainment”
By Noah Wullkotte:

Our season usually begins with a visit to Land of Illusion in Middletown, OH. This large Scream Park has 6 creepy attractions. The most popular is the Middletown Haunted Trail, a large haunted trail where you are sure to get scared. You will experience almost any type of scene you can imagine.

The sewer/toxic waste area is invaded by those who have been infected and want to get closer to scare you. Don’t drink the water or else! Area 49 is Land of Illusion’s version of Area 51, where aliens and alligators hide. Cover your ears as sirens blare and gunshots are heard. Land of Illusion features one of the best Michael Myers around. You can find him in the darkness while music from the classic movie “Halloween” plays. Get ready to feel intense emotions and enjoy an unforgettable scary experience!

There’s a lot of variety at Middletown Haunted Trail with scenes that will appeal to a broad audience. The insane asylum is full of crazed patients that want to kill you and the village has witches that are ready to cast a spell. Other scenes include Cherry Hill, a massive pumpkin patch. the pits of hell, a cemetery, a forest with haunted trees, a funeral parlor and so much more. Don’t let them feed you butt cheeks at the butcher shop.

This is a high tech haunt with plenty of animated scares. There’s everything from a double vortex tunnel to a headless horseman that rises up in the air. The acting is improved compared to last season. There’s a reason why Middletown Haunted Trail is the most popular attraction at Land of Illusion. If offers the most scares in nearly 30 minutes. Save Middletown Haunted Trail for last since you’ll be waiting a long time in line unless you purchase a Fast Pass.

Next up on our agenda is Dr. Psycho’s Haunted Estate. This 10 minute haunted attraction combines elements of a haunted trail and haunted house. Much of Dr. Psycho’s has been overhauled. So, you’re in for a real treat if you’re wanting something fresh and new. Once again, the acting has been improved. The star of this attraction is of course Dr. Psycho. You’ll meet him at the end of your journey. Watch as he devours a worm and offers you a bite. A worm a day keeps the doctor away don’t you know.

Dr. Psycho’s Haunted Estate will have you looking around every corner since you never know what’s hiding in the dark. Be afraid, be very afraid. Your journey into fear includes scenes that will make you laugh and others that will raise your blood pressure. Enter the Greenhouse where mutant plant life will get you. The Oakley Asylum is home to the most twisted and depraved patients. Expect the unexpected at Dr. Psycho’s Haunted Estate. There’s nowhere to run and there’s nowhere to hide. A wrecked ambulance features a victim who falls out of the vehicle. If you’re lucky to survive then it’s time to be cremated inside the crematorium.

Dr. Psycho’s Haunted Estate includes typical scenes like a doll room, a laboratory, hospital, a grotesque kitchen, a laser swamp and plenty of detail. Total tour time was around 10 minutes give or take a few. Some of it depends on how long you interact with the various characters and how fast you walk or run.

Next up is Temple of Terror. This is one of the oldest haunts at the scream park. It’s been here since Land of Illusion was known as Middletown Triple Fright. Temple of Terror is dark and mysterious. You’ll start your journey as you enter a mine shaft that shakes as TNT is detonated. This is a fun attraction where the dead come to life. The catacombs have skeletal remains that move as you walk past them. The haunt isn’t drastically different compared to previous seasons, but it’s still quite fun none the less. You’ll explore areas such as a cave full of killer vampire bats, the seance room, a rain forest and many dark hallways where mummies, zombies and more are hiding.

This is the shortest attraction at Land of Illusion lasting around 7 minutes. There are plenty of high tech scares along the way. You’ll be eaten by the 13 foot Impaler Monster and will meet you doom as you come face to face with the creature known as DemonKnight. This 9 foot tall demon isn’t one you want to mess with. Watch out or you’ll be his next victim. The most detailed scene is the rain forest that features real running water and a ghoul that flies above your head. The hallways in between scenes could use some improvement since they rely too heavily on darkness.

(Land of has brightly lit signs and beautiful facades.)

Dysphoria is the weakest attraction at Land of Illusion. It’s a tire maze full of inbred creatures of the night. It’s your job to find your way out. We are notoriously bad at mazes, but we luckily escaped with our heads still intact. We were in and out in 12 minutes, but it could take you longer if you choose the wrong path. Having Tiffany’s I think We’re Alone Now play in the background was a nice touch. This tire maze is fun while it lasts, but it’s just uneventful. There’s not much going on in the way of scenes and scares. The actors do a decent job misdirecting customers, but the haunt ultimately falls a little flat.

Phobia had the second longest line of the night. This haunt plays on your fear of darkness, the number 13, tight spaces, insects and more. My favorite scene is the new alien room that features glass alien pods filled with bubbling liquid. A lot of changes have been made, but you didn’t think we would give everything away, did you? Total tour time was 8 minutes.

Last, but certainly not least is Killer Klowns. The fear of clowns is known as Coulrophobia and Killer Klowns capitalizes on that fear. The best way I can describe Killer Klowns is a fun house gone awry. The clowns are fed up and they’re out to get you. Walls are decorated with colorful art that really pops. You aren’t given 3D glasses, but it’s not necessary since the art isn’t 3D.

This is a creative haunt and it doesn’t feel like they’re rehashing the same scene over and over. You’re trip through terror consists of a clown playground, game of bowling, a shrinking hallway, chain maze, a carnival and tons and tons of killer clowns. There are a few animatronics here and there. The most eye catching props are the 2 vortex tunnels. One looks like it’s made of cotton candy. We were in and out in 12 minutes, but it could be longer depending on how well you navigate through the chain maze.

Land of Illusion is one of the largest scream parks around. They offer a variety of food and drink items that are sure to tempt you. This includes the Creepy Cafe where you can purchase hot dogs, candy bars, caramel apples, popcorn, nachos, soda and more. You’ll also notice other vendors scattered throughout the park where you can get yourself a burger, walking taco, corn on the cob and anything you can think. There’s even the Voodoo Lounge for those wanting to get a cold beer or mixed drink. The mini donuts building and Snowie Snow Cones were unfortunately closed the night of our visit.

If you’re wanting a hoodie, t-shirt, tumbler or some type of Land of Illusion merchandise then don’t forget to stop by Ghostly Gifts. The Stage of Rage features performers throughout the Halloween season. So, grab a seat near the bonfire and enjoy some Midget Wrestling, a musical act and a variety of talented performers. Land of Illusion doesn’t just rely on haunts for entertainment. There’s axe throwing and a mechanical bull you can ride. The large animated gorilla was a nice touch. Don’t forget to pick up your group photo that was taken earlier that night.

Tickets are $50 online and $60 at the gate. Fast Pass is $75 online and $85 at the gate. 1 attraction is $20 online and $30 at the gate. Visit for pricing on Season passes and more. Parking is $7 per vehicle. Don’t forget to visit Land of Illusion’s drive through Christmas Display called Christmas Glow during the Christmas season. Enjoy some swimming at Aqua Adventures during the Summer season. Land of Illusion has it all and it’s very safe. They check to see if you have weapons before entering and alcohol isn’t allowed when touring the haunts.

Land of Illusion has made some improvements for the 2023 Haunt Season and we walked away with a smile on our face. We wish there were more queue line actors roaming around the park and Dysphoria needs a little tlc. But overall, we were impressed with what we saw and we’re looking forward to next year.

Length-8 Design-9 Props-9 Acting-8 Scare Effect-8

Final Stab: 8.4