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Amusement Park of Doom

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The Joker: Well, it's garish, ugly, and derelicts have used it for a toilet. The rides are dilapidated to the point of being lethal, and could easily maim or kill innocent little children.
Estate Agent: Oh. So you don't like it?
The Joker: Don't like it? I'm crazy for it.

An Amusement Park without the amusement, unless you are amused by Everything Trying to Kill You. Maybe the place has been abandoned for years, everything covered in filth and on the verge of falling apart. The rides are old, rusty, and creak eerily in the wind; if they still function at all, they are horrifying deathtraps. Or maybe the park merely has been… refurbished by a new owner or owners; the place seems quite normal until the roller coaster brakes fail and the monster house turns out to be filled with lethal traps or real monsters... or both.

Whatever the case, there is something unspeakably wrong with that amusement park, except of course if you happen to be a Monster Clown, Serial Killer, Clown Serial Killer, or some variety of Eldritch Abomination, in which case you can go right ahead and make yourself at home. Even better when the Abomination IS the amusement park.

May have started life as Souvenir Land before it went deadly. Brother trope to Circus of Fear. Expect some Creepy Circus Music to enhance the experience.

Truth in Television to an extent, since abandoned fun parks are eerie on a level usually reserved for abandoned hospitals, prisons, and asylums and likewise suggest a terrible or supernatural presence lurking in wait for the unwary.

Sub-Trope of Pleasure Island. Compare Abominable Auditorium, where the theatre is either broken, dangerous, or all of the above. Contrast with Crappy Carnival: it might still be creepy, but the only thing that's dangerous there is the food.


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    Anime & Manga 
  • Friend Land in 20th Century Boys, though the "doom" isn't from the ridesnote  but the whole place being a brainwashing facility.
  • In book 8 of Battle Angel Alita, the final lair of Desty Nova, Granite Inn, looks like an amusement park, but of the nightmarish kind. The attractions, constituted by his experiments, are alive — for example, the horses of the roundabout are real horses, pinned by the metal poles going through their bodies, but still living.
  • In Bobobo-bo Bo-bobo, A-Block Amusement Park is run by Jellly Jiggler and the Hair Hunters who are after the title character; same goes for Halekulani's Hallelujah Land who destroys attractions if they aren't making profits especially with people inside. Then Neo Hair Hunt Land MAX which is the battlefield for the Bo-bobo gang against the former Hair Hunt generals of the previous era.
  • In the horror-centric Cowboy Bebop episode "Pierrot le Fou", the titular mad assassin arranges a showdown between himself and Spike in one of these. Features, among other things, a dangerous-looking indoor roller coaster and cute giant robots that don't mind trampling people who get on their parade route. However, the theme park is a regular affair which wouldn't look too bad if it was working as it normally would — Pierrot just happened to be controlling it at the time.
  • The eponymous Deadman Wonderland is this, though the doom is generally reserved for the employees and prisoners rather than the park-goers. Unless the Wretched Egg were to get in the wrong place...
  • A few Doraemon movies:
    • The 2005 special edition OVA short, The Genius Nobita's Airship Amusement Park have Doraemon and friends visiting the titular location, an amusement park built into a Cool Airship. Unfortunately, the villain Jester and his Robot Clown army invades, hijacks the facilities and kidnaps everyone.
    • Doraemon: Nobita and the Galaxy Super-express have an amusement park planet going haywire, where the rides are ready to kill everyone in it, thanks to being sabotaged by the ruthless Yadori Aliens as part of their Assimilation Plot.
    • Jara's amusement park from Doraemon: Nobita in the Wan-Nyan Spacetime Odyssey, where his hidden noradium processing plant is located, which he intends to use and hijack the entirety of the planet's resources and abandon all his kin in the inevitable cataclysm. The final battle notably takes place on a roller coaster.
    • Pockle-Land from Doraemon: Nobita and The Space Heroes appears to be a fun fantasy land on the surface, but it's a front for Lord Ikaros and his alien underlings to construct an underground superweapon siphoning energy from Planet Pokkoru, which the heroes must uncover and stop in time.
  • Franken Fran features an amusement park that is a mostly harmless (if boring) Souvenir Land...unless the animatronics malfunction. Then everything goes horrifically wrong.
  • Guardian Fairy Michel has the amusement park in episode 14. It's probably a nice enough place in the day, but Kim's there at night, and happens to be facing off against the Fairy of Light and Dark.
  • In the short manga Jet Coaster, the amusement park employees take a sick delight in watching people suffer and/or die... so in the middle of a roller-coaster ride, they suddenly stop the coaster, at the top of a loop at that, and warn the eight passengers to hold onto the safety bar before dropping their seats out from under them. The eight people must try to hang on for dear life, falling one by one to their deaths until only one remains. And all the employees are in on this, so no one is coming to help them. Also? It's not the first time this has happened.
  • In JoJo's Bizarre Adventure: Stardust Crusaders, Mannish Boy's Stand, Death XIII's sends whoever is sleeping near him into an enormous, brightly-coloured amusement park dream world with various rides and roller coasters. The real danger is that nobody is able to summon their Stands, and getting killed by Death XIII will also kill them in reality.
  • Exaggerated for Kemono Friends' main setting, Japari Park. Once a beautiful touristic attraction full of nature and diverse ecosystems, the park is now on a state of despair and decay with collapsed bridges and abandoned buildings abound. And that's not counting the threat of the Ceruleans.
  • Two episodes of Science Ninja Team Gatchaman are set in closed amusement parks that are actually fronts for the Galactor organization. (Both were also adapted for Battle of the Planets.)
  • Shinzo: In season 2, the main characters stumble onto a silver amusement park in the middle of nowhere and don't find anything fishy about that. The entire thing is actually the liquid-metal body of Eilis, one of the Co-Dragons of Lanancuras.
  • Episode 2 of the three-part OVA Amuri in Star Ocean has the three heroines stumbling across one of these places in a space junkyard. Just the sight of said park triggers a Heroic BSoD in one of the girls, while the other two have to fight off an army of Murderous Mannequins.
  • In Yu-Gi-Oh!, Kaiba puts Yugi and his friends through "Death-T", a section of his "Kaibaland" amusement arcade laden with deathtraps, as revenge for the Penalty Game Kaiba was put through in his first appearance. The threats include a game of laser tag against hired mercenaries with guns that give fatal electric shocks (Yugi and his friends have useless toy guns), a Ghost Train Ride that kills with Electric Chairs anyone who screams, a booby-trapped haunted house with a Child Murderer running around, a sealed pit where giant Tetris-like blocks fall from the ceiling, and a rigged game of Capsule Monsters where the loser is subjected to a Fate Worse than Death.

    Comic Books 

    Comic Strips 
  • Tickle Town in the Doctor Who Magazine comic strip "Welcome to Tickle Town" is a Crapsaccharine World version; it looks like a high-tech Souvenir Land (based on the cartoons of Tobias Tickle) until you try to leave, and the holomatronic cartoon characters stop you. If you persist, you're put on a horrifying ride that supposedly shows you how terrible the world outside is, to a parody of ""it's a small world" After All":
    Oh, the world outside is a scary place,
    It's a big fat grave for the human race.
    There's no hope you'll survive,
    When the plague rats arrive,
    It's a mad, bad world outside!

    Fan Works 
  • Coreline: An All There in the Manual fact is that, in the aftermath of When Dimensions Collide, Robot Hell (from Futurama) has manifested beneath Action Park in New Jersey. Jurassic Park has also manifested near Costa Rica, but it's double-subverted: the Park's management has spared no expense (at all) in making the park safe, but Animal Wrongs Group teams have made it their prime target and thus Bad Things still happen. On the other side of things, the Park's clientele is nowadays mostly comprised of daredevil-types that don't give a damn about all of the danger.
  • In the Left 4 Dead 2 mod "Journey to Splash Mountain", Disneyland also becomes this thanks to a zombie apocalypse.
  • In Kill or Be Killed, the final act takes place in one. Hyoyeon, Donghae, and Yoona all die on rides (and all by falling off of said rides), and Leechul dies on a deadly carousel.
  • In The Last Son, Lloyd Webber, aka Arcade, sets up one named "Murderworld" with the help of the Joker, as a way to get back at the Bayville students who mocked him.
  • In Tales of the Hunger Games, the narrator clearly states that the 21st Hunger Games (won by Bluebell Janssen) takes place in abandoned theme park. The rides are described to be rusty with some having parts breakable enough to be used as weapons (Bluebell uses a rollercoaster chain as a whip), jaguars patrol the area looking for tributes to kill, all of rides near a river (the only source of clean water) collapse on most tributes by Gamemaker intervention, and the the final battle takes place on top of a broken roller coaster with Bluebell's final opponent plunging down to his death from it.

    Films — Animation 

    Films — Live-Action 
  • Action Point, loosely based on the infamous Action Park (see "Real Life" below), is about Johnny Knoxville suffering Amusing Injuries while testing the rides at the most extreme amusement park in the world.
  • Bean: Bean reprograms a ride at an amusement park to make it more "exciting". The unlucky saps who bought a ticket are subjected to an epilepsy-inducing ride of insanity and some are even catapulted out of their seats.
  • While the climax of Birds of Prey takes place after dark, the weatherbeaten and run-down atmosphere of Amusement Mile doesn't seem like it would be very inviting even in full daylight. And being attacked by Black Mask's thugs doesn't help.
  • In Carnival of Souls a car-crash survivor is drawn to an abandoned carnival pavilion while experiencing mysterious goings-on.
  • The climax of Child's Play 3 takes place in a carnival haunted house ride, which has a giant, uncovered rotary fan in it for some reason and a Grim Reaper animatronic that swings a face-slicing blade.
  • Final Destination 3: The roller coaster "Devil's Flight" breaks and kills a bunch of people, and everything else in the park is a "sign" of the cast's impending death.
  • Hell Fest is a Slasher Movie set at a Halloween Horror Nights-style event where a killer dressed as one of the scare-actors starts stalking a group of teenagers.
  • In House on Haunted Hill (1999), amusement park mogul Steven Price plays with this, having designed a roller coaster that will fling the train ahead of you off the track, making you think you're about to die horribly... only for you continue along the same stretch completely unscathed. He's kind of a sick bastard.
  • Jack the Reaper: After the bus crash, the teens find a carnival in the middle of the desert. When they get there, they find it fully functional but deserted. They start riding the rides, but things soon start to turn deadly.
  • Jurassic Park:
    • Let's bring back some of the most fearsome carnivores in (pre-)history, and mix in a bunch of tourists. What could go wrong? Of course, the park was never intended to be scary or dangerous. The protagonists just got very unlucky.
    • Things go wrong again in Jurassic World, this time with a genetically-enhanced monstrosity (which surpasses every genetically-recreated prehistorical up to this point in sheer ferocity and sadistic streak) roaming the park.
  • The park in KISS Meets the Phantom of the Park is tending this way, in a sort of Westworld-lite kind of way, until Kiss saves the day.
  • The climax of the film noir The Lady from Shanghai takes place in one of these, famously featuring a Funhouse Mirror of doom.
  • The Machinist: When Reznik takes Marie's son Nicholas into the Route 666 "funhouse", which is mostly a terrifying display of criminals being executed for their crimes. Eventually, Nicholas suffers an epileptic fit and Reznik has to abandon the ride to drag him out of there.
  • Nothing but Trouble: "Mister Bonestripper" is a rollercoaster ride through the scrapyard that ends with the passengers being thrown into a machine that strips them to the bone.
  • The titular location in Hong Kong horror film, The Park, an abandoned, run-down haunted amusement park which was closed down ever since a 14-year-old girl fell to her death from the (what else?) Ferris Wheel, followed by the park's owner hanging himself from the same wheel after being forced to close the place down. Most of the film revolves around a bunch of thrill-seeking teens spending a night in the allegedly haunted park, only to find out the rumors are true and they won't live to tell the tale.
  • The antagonists in The Texas Chainsaw Massacre 2 live in a kind of run down theme park.
  • Us has an amusement park as the locus of its Surreal Horror, with the Tethered coming up from the tunnels beneath the house of mirrors. The movie also shows how the park changes over time: at the beginning of the movie, in what appears to be the 1980s, the house of mirrors has a Magical Native American "vision quest" theme, while in the scenes set in the present day, it's been retooled for a more generic Merlin theme - a little more culturally sensitive, but just as sinister behind its facade.
  • Inverted in The Warriors, where (at least for the titular delinquents) Coney Island is the one part of New York City that does not spell doom.
  • Welcome to Westworld, with countless Ridiculously Human Robots for you to interact with! And have sex with, or shoot, or blow to bits with dynamite! Don't worry, we're absolutely certain they're not intelligent, and they're certainly not biding their time, waiting to kill us all!
  • In Zombieland, the main characters face off against thousands of zombies inside an old amusement park called Pacific Playland, which, ironically, was rumoured to be zombie-free beforehand.


  • In Artemis Fowl: The Opal Deception, Opal Koboi traps Artemis and Holly in the abondoned "Eleven Wonders" theme park, which has been overrun by trolls.
  • Il Paese dei Balocchi ("The Land of Toys") from The Adventures of Pinocchio. The boys that come to this playground utopia can have as much fun as they want — but afterwards they're turned into donkeys.
  • A very literal example appears in the short story "The Carnival" by Michael W. Fedo. The rides are designed to kill passengers at random, crews actively bag bodies of dead guests and deliver them to a mass grave, and the estimated chances for survival of guests to the park is a whopping 1 in 8. Considering the story is set in a Crapsack World with an Overpopulation Crisis and the park is run by Populace Control, this is hardly surprising.
  • Clue: Subverted in book 7's chapter "Mr. Boddy's Wild Ride". Mr. Boddy installs "Monsters of the Caribbean", which seems to be one of these, in his Ball Room, and its monsters and other hazards appear to kill five of the six suspects. It turns out everything is in fact all Hollywood special effects, and nobody is actually harmed (in fact, the five who "died" willingly go through the ride a second time afterward and love it). Except for Mrs. Peacock, who was the last one left in the car (besides Mr. Boddy) the first time around and was so distressed by the incident that she spent the rest of the weekend in bed.
  • Implied at the end of the Discworld novel Carpe Jugulum, in which the Old Count Magpyr and Igor are adding a fun-fair to the grounds of Dontgonearthe Castle. As Nanny Ogg says, it depends who's having the fun...
  • The carnival in Doglands looks normal during daytime, however it's a cover-up for thieves who rob rich people's houses. These thieves also steal dogs, either to beat them into their Angry Guard Dogs or use them as bait for other people's Angry Guard Dogs.
  • Played with in Dream Park, where an Adult-rated horror attraction slips a holographic ringer into the guests' group, specifically so her "death" can be staged as part of the display-sequence and make it look like this trope.
  • In Flora's Dare, Flora learns that the Woodward's Gardens & Fun Fair caters to a different sort of clientele after hours.
  • The final book of the The Forbidden Game trilogy has one as the backdrop of the final game, based on the fact these tend to crop up frequently in people's nightmares. It comes complete with people's souls trapped inside the penny arcade games, headless bodies in the water and many more psychological horrors besides.
  • Full Tilt. Survive seven rides, and you get out — not that anybody's ever done so. Fail, and either you're operating the rides for all eternity, or you're dead and your screaming face is somewhere in the scenery.
  • The titular Gas Station Carnivals by Thomas Ligotti are mostly just bad, but the Showman in the sideshows is implied to be some sort of Humanoid Abomination, and has lately been stalking the narrator's friend Quisser. Subverted, as the carnivals never existed, and an artist Quisser insulted had merely been using her "art-magics" to mess with him. Double subverted, when the narrator discovers the Showman is all too real- and is now coming for him.
  • The Goosebumps book One Day at Horrorland and its related media. The ''Goosebumps Horrorland" series also includes information on a second Amusement Park of Doom, Panic Park, which was once located on the same site as Horrorland and actually frightened some of its guests to death.
    • In a tie in video game, you can explore Horrorland in its entirety, and it’s just as dangerous as you’d expect, not to mention you aren’t allowed to leave once you enter. Fittingly, the final ride, which even the staff won’t go on, is named "Certain Death".
  • Fantasy World in the Dean Koontz novel Hideaway. It's been abandoned for years and demonic serial killer Vassago lives there now. And he displays the corpses of his victims in the basement of the funhouse.
  • Laughing Jack: The mother's Nightmare Sequence occurs in a rundown amusement park where everything is black and white, including the prize dolls which hang by nooses and have stitched grins. She walks into a tent playing "Pop Goes The Weasel" and is mauled by a horde of disfigured children before waking up.
  • Richard Stark's Parker novel Slayground features an amusement park closed for the winter where Parker is hiding from pursuit. It's when Parker starts MacGyvering the rides into traps for his enemies that it enters this trope, in a rare example of the protagonist being the one to create the park.
  • The climax of the Relativity story "Master Blankard's Pawn" takes place in an abandoned amusement park that's been converted into a giant deathtrap.
  • Rick Brant: Most of the action in Stairway to Danger takes place in a run-down amusement park that was closed after the rollercoaster proved to be dangerous.
  • Cooger & Dark's Pandemonium Shadow Show in Ray Bradbury's Something Wicked This Way Comes, an evil traveling carnival, replete with witches, black magic, and a merry-go-round that ratchets a person's age forward or backward.
  • Star Wars Legends: Hologram Fun World in Galaxy of Fear. It looks happy and crowded, but as it turns out it's sparsely visited, and with the idea that he can't look like people have lost interest, the proprietor keeps it stocked with holographic crowds... and the Big Bad is testing something there.
  • The Sweet Valley Twins book The Carnival Ghost had one of these where Elizabeth met the eponymous ghost.
  • The Fun Fair in The Unnatural Inquirer. You know an Amusement Park Of Doom is really bad when even the Nightside crowds avoid it like the plague!
  • The thriller novel Utopia by Lincoln Child is set in a futuristic theme park which becomes deadly when a group of terrorists take control of its technology.

    Live-Action TV 
  • Ace Lightning: The Kent Brother's Carnival, a.k.a. 'the Carnival of Doom'. Or, as rendered in a Funny Background Event in an early episode, "the Carnival of Dum", because the original proprietor is apparently something of a shaky speller.
  • Boyard Land: This French gameshow happens in an amusement park that looks like an nice place at first glance, but it still has a sinister side. First of all, the rats, snakes and other creepy-crawlies Fort Boyard is famous for are back in several challenges. Also, the denizens are welcoming enough, but they are based on seriously outdated Freakshow archetypes that nowadays wouldn't be so popular at modern fairs.
  • Doctor Who: In "Nightmare in Silver", the Doctor takes his companion (and the kids she's babysitting) to Hedgewick's World, "the biggest and best amusement park there will ever be." Turns out it's been closed down due to people vanishing into thin air — and what's that ominous stomping noise?
  • Fear the Walking Dead: Alicia and Naomi scavenge for supplies in a water park that has been overrun by walkers. Things get dicey.
  • Funky Squad: In "The Carnival is Over", someone sents Funky Squad a series of taunting messages and then sabotages the brakes on their Mustang. They go running back to the Chief, and some fiddling with the new computer reveals that Elliot Green, sent down by Funky Squad three years ago for sabotaging a fun park, has just been released. Stix and Grant head to the park in question, to find it’s deserted. Later after receiving another mocking phone call, they check out the abandoned, silent, dark fun park in the middle of the night, only for it to suddenly come to life, leading to a final showdown in the Hall of Mirrors.
  • Get Smart: Max and 99 are trapped in a KAOS amusement park in the episode "The Wax Max". Max comments that whoever designed the Tunnel of Love had a lot to learn about togetherness.
  • The 2023 season of Food Network Halloween Baking Championship used this as its Framing Device. The Hanson and Sons Carnival has been beset with many horrible disasters and deaths, and each week two tales of creepy carnival mayhem are used as inspiration for baking challenges.
  • Mouse:
    • Daniel Lee apparently gets killed in an amusement park. Played with since the park itself isn't creepy, but the serial killer chooses it to commit another murder.
    • Jae-hoon kidnaps a child at an amusement park.
  • Mr. Show has Thrill World with the Devastator, a "spine-cracking, soul-shattering" rollercoaster which will literally kill you ("TWO WHOLE MINUTES UNDERWATER!"). The news segment on the horrific carnage that coincides with Thrill World's opening hours treats it as a natural disaster, and is interrupted by a commercial offering those depressed by the news a chance to take their minds off it... by visiting Thrill World and riding the Devastator.
  • Revolution: In "The Plague Dogs", inhabited by a psycho and his attack dogs.
  • The Secret Circle: There is one, described by Faye as "the creepiest place on earth", with Monster Clown statues and murals, dark and dirty rooms, and not improved by the addition of real corpses.
  • Star Trek: In the episode "Shore Leave" the crew visits a planet which will read your mind and cater to your wishes, safe or dangerous, with no safety feature except for a nifty method of body repair that, evidently, resurrects any visitors who die on the premises.
  • Westworld, based on the aforementioned film of the same name. The Adaptation Expansion produces a lot more detail about the park's operators, guests, and robots (called 'hosts') alike, with the promise of danger being one of the main selling points. Notably, it's portrayed as a real-life video game as much as it is an amusement park, with the Man in Black especially being a longtime guest obsessed with uncovering the park's secrets and Easter eggs.

  • "Abusement Park", by Municipal Waste.
    Step right up
    For games and prizes
    For real cool rides
    And a fun safe time
    So I did
    Not knowing that the park
    Hidden behind the tall fences and red curtains
    Was a fate worse than death itself!

  • Downplayed in FunHouse: Rudy's Nightmare. While not every ride in the nightmare fun house qualifies for this trope, it still contains several dangers — a haunted roller coaster, a gang of evil clones, and a dunk tank that uses acid instead of water.


    Tabletop Games 
  • The 5th editon Champions supplement Champions: Battlegrounds is marketed as a series of set piece adventures that feature Superheroes confronting Supervillains in classic genre fight locations. The chapter in which Black Harlequin, a Captain Ersatz of both Toyman and the Joker takes over an amusement park is, by an order of magnitude, the deadliest chapter in the book for bystanders.
  • Sentinels of the Multiverse has Madam Mittermeier's Fantastical Festival of Conundrums and Curiosities, which has such attractive attractions as a carousel with undead-looking horses, a mirror maze that shows your alternate selves, and the charmingly named Wheel of Misfortune. It periodically hosts supervillain fights, which probably is not helping the unstable midway.
  • The Happiest Apocalypse On Earth is a Powered by the Apocalypse game set in an un-named, but possibly rodent-related, amusement park, where strange, eldritch and often horrific events happen with distressing frequency.
  • the game Unfair has players competing to make the best local amusement park. Part of the game is sabotaging fellow players with bad press, dangerous rides, food poisoning, and the like.

  • The main setting of Assassins is an amusement park in some sort of temporal limbo, where people from all periods of American history meet and mingle. The reason why it's dangerous? Eight men and women who each attempted to assassinate a President are also there, and they become inspired to kill their targets by the Proprietor of a shooting gallery.
  • Ride the Cyclone has the Wonderville Traveling Fairground, which unintentionally becomes an example. The rides are in such a state of disrepair that a roller coaster car derails, propelling six teenage choir members to their death (and kickstarting the plot). The aesthetics of a murder-y amusement park are deployed in the show's design - though it varies from production to production, the set décor usually features broken roller coaster tracks, grimy concession and ride marquees, and other weatherworn carnival detritus.

    Theme Parks 
  • The discontinued "Cinderella Castle Mystery Tour" attraction at Tokyo Disneyland simulated this trope, presenting itself as a routinely-saccharine Disney tour that got hijacked by the villains. Only timely use of a "magic sword" in the hands of a young guest and tour guide could banish the evil that allegedly was hounding the attendees from room to room, which took the form of the Horned King.
  • Disney's Expedition Everest starts out as a fairly simple ride... until about 1 minute in and the track appears to be torn into tiny pieces. The ride then sends you spiraling down a pitch-black tunnel. Backwards! After another minute, you come across a 20-foot yeti that tries to tear your head off... before around 2007. The animatronic got damaged and can only use the strobe light, and the only way to repair it is to tear the whole ride down.
  • Elvira, Mistress of the Dark dabbles in this for the motion simulator ride "Elvira's Superstition". It starts with Elvira announcing plans to create a "scream park" containing ghoulish treats and rides, before visitors experience a simulation of her favorite ride in the park — The House of Superstition.
  • The proposed Euthanasia Coaster is a roller coaster specifically designed to kill everyone on board "with elegance and euphoria".
  • Some go the whole nine yards for Halloween. The Pacific National Exhibition in Vancouver hosts "Fright Nights" during the last two weeks of October, during which time half the games are turned over to haunted houses, and "roamers" wander the park dressed as all manner of horrifying abominations. They even have a diabolical circus built into the park, for a two-in-one.
  • Universal Studios parks' Halloween Horror Nights. At nighttime, the theme park alters the entire park with their annual horror theme with complex and elaborate haunted houses, street decoration to turn the streets into a zombie apocalypse or a carnival covered in freaks and killer clowns, and various actors (known as "scareactors", rhymes with "characters") who play the part of killers, victims, monsters, and various other horror characters to chase and scare the guests. Even creepier — many of the haunted houses are built in the queue lines of rides. For instance, to get into one, you may find yourself going backwards through the ET ride line, which is darkened to make it look uninhabited. Brrr... Universal is one of many that jumped on the bandwagon after Knott's Berry Farm's annual Knotts Scary Farm attraction, which has been doing the "big theme park converting to a horror-themed park at night" shtick for over 40 years now.
  • A torture dungeon is advertised as being the main attraction of "Dulocland" in Shrek 4D.
  • Some amusement parks invoke this trope on themselves as a means of tongue-in-cheek self-promotion. At Six Flags Great America, crowds waiting in line for "The Demon" are entertained by recorded accounts of how an actual demon has possessed the roller coaster, gets spotted by terrified witnesses, and fiercely resists humorous attempts to kill and/or exorcise it. Likewise, the "Batman" indoor coaster at the same park displays fake newsreels for waiting crowds, some of which imply that The Joker has sabotaged the ride and turned it into this trope.
  • The VelociCoaster at Islands of Adventure is built around doubling down on Jurassic World's dubious safety by having a rollercoaster built in the middle of the Velociraptor paddock to give Jurassic World guests a closer encounter with the ferocious carnivores, with much of the pre-show consisting of Owen Grady telling Claire Dearing how irresponsible and dangerous the whole idea is even with the coaster train's speed and safety systems.

    Video Games 
  • Adventures In The Magic Kingdom had you getting the Magic Kingdom at Walt Disney World open for the day. No explanation is given, however, for why the rides have suddenly turned homicidal.
  • AI: The Somnium Files: The game opens with Shoko's mutilated body displayed on Bloom Park's carousel surrounded by skewered upside-down merry-go-round horses, complete with Creepy Circus Music. The park has been sitting abandoned for eight years after a nearby chemical explosion, adding to the eerie atmosphere.
  • Ape Escape (the first one of the PlayStation) had a deadly Amusement Park of Doom to traverse through in the second-to-last level. Everything from an evil killer clown, a deadly remote-controlled car and a deadly roller coaster ride.
  • At The Carnival has Hazard Park, a seemingly normal carnival with 40 sections (counting attractions and non-attraction concepts such as the title). Each one of them is some combination of dangerous, unsanitary, or otherwise unpleasant. In some cases, the attraction may end up closed (e.g. First Aid station). There is only one amusement that has no injury on the ride: The Ferris Wheel, but that's not counting falls OFF said ride. Not even shutting down the park and replacing it with a block of high-rise office buildings stops the bad fortune.
  • Banjo-Tooie has an exaggerated version of this in Witchyworld. The food vendors are unsanitary, the big top doesn't even bother having seats for an audience, the employees are grumpy and tend to attack visitors, security is so lax that a shaman and a medicine woman have set up shop in the park unmolested, and the rides are generally poorly designed. In spite of this, Boggy's children still seem to be enjoying themselves too much to be all that cooperative when it comes time to leave. A sign outside the level announces that the park is closed due to their "appalling safety record", and that it will reopen once the authorities have been bribed. A second sign mentions that anyone surviving all the attractions gets a fanclub membership. Current number of members: 0
  • Batman: Arkham Series had a few of these, not surprisingly all focused on the Joker.
    • The Joker's Funhouse in Batman: Arkham City, a renovated factory once owned by Black Mask, turned into the Joker's base, complete with a deadly rollercoaster which new recruits to his gang must ride and survive.
    • Batman: Arkham Origins had the Joker somehow turning the top of a penthouse suite into this via parts he got old amusement park.
    • Batman: Arkham Knight Batgirl DLC set years before Asylum had the Joker set up shop in an abandoned off-shore park amusement park which he took over after the owner himself didn't bother to finish it. It's implied Joker had manipulated the man to make it before killing him.
  • The "House of Fear" level in Batman Doom is set in a haunted house attraction, complete with Creepy Circus Music. It's a bunch of twisty corridors with false doors and a frequent fire trap or two (as well as an occasional scream to give you a Jump Scare).
  • Bendy and the Ink Machine: Although it was never completed, Chapter 4's Bendy Land qualifies. Not only are there ink monsters lurking throughout different parts of the production, but Henry is unarmed for most of the chapter. There's an animatronic Bendy that Lacie Benton swears in her recording has been moving when she isn't looking - although this never attacks Henry. There are even two boss fights in Bendy Land: one with Bertrum Piedmont, who's become an amusement park ride and one set up by Alice inside the haunted house. Someone even thought it was appropriate to cross out the "Land" part of the Bendy Land sign and replace it with "Hell."
  • BioShock:
    • BioShock 2 features the abandoned amusement park Ryan Amusements. The "of doom" part comes from the fact that, like the rest of this game, it's riddled with crazed mutants you have to fight off. Expect the usual shock horror moments and creepy audiologs, with the added bonus of rather disturbing propaganda designed to scare children out of wanting to leave Rapture and visit the surface world.
    • BioShock Infinite has Soldier's Field which is meant to be a tribute to the history of Columbia and Zachary Hale Comstock's accomplishments as its "Prophet", but it secretly works as one big propaganda tool to recruit the citizens into joining military service — complete with a catchy anthem, at the entrance; so that later, Columbia would have more troops against the Vox Populi and eventually the world below the clouds. For good measure, it has mechanical puppet shows that spout examples about "not being a Dimwit", and giant clockwork caricatures of the Founding Fathers that could shoot you with miniguns if programmed to do so.
  • The secret stage from the first episode of Blood (1997) is called "House of Horrors" and features among other things a deadly ride on a water slide. It can be accessed from the stage called "Dark Carnival".
  • One of the stages in Bubsy for the SNES was an alien-controlled fun fair.
  • Two levels in Cuphead are set in amusement parks. One is called Funfair Fever, a run 'n' gun level where, among other things, you jump on a trampoline and dodge balloons and rolling balls with clowns on them, dodge cannons shooting at targets, and have a battle with a giant hot dog. The second amusement park level is called Carnival Kerfuffle, where you have a battle with a clown named Beppi, who tries to use the amusement park's rides to his advantage, including a passing roller coaster train, a bumper car (which Beppi rides), shooting gallery ducks, and a merry-go-round horse. For his final form, Beppi turns into a carousel ride with swings for you to stand on during the fight.
  • Swan Point Carnival in Dark Carnival is home to several mysterious disappearances and eerie events.
  • Dead Rising 2: Off the Record has Uranus Zone, a sci-fi-themed park in Fortune City, which happens to be lousy with zombies. With many of those zombies being former staff at the park, the rides have become dangerous hazards that can kill you if you're careless...or kill swaths of zombies, if you're clever.
  • Death Park is set in a derelict amusement park with a Monster Clown wandering the grounds.
  • Coordinate 136 in Digital Devil Saga is an abandoned amusement park castle crawling with demons and stocked with various traps.
  • Doki Doki: Yuuenchi, a 8-bit Nintendo game never released outside of Japan, took place entirely in one of these.
  • Donkey Kong Country 2: Diddy's Kong Quest has Krazy Kremland, an amusement park full of brambles and massive Zinger hives, built near a disgusting swamp. The roller coasters are even broken down, making the rides fast paced fights for your life. The Kremlings probably do like the place, given how many are in the park and how some are even riding the coasters.
  • Ravenwood Park in Enigmatis 2: The Mists of Ravenwood is a long-abandoned attraction magically disguised as a functioning facility in order to lure in sacrificial victims.
  • Epic Mickey:
    • We get to see sweet ol' Disneyland (Walt's original theme park) and Walt Disney World (the biggest and most popular of all Disney resorts) mixed together and then turned into this. The land itself is named Cartoon Wasteland, and was originally created by Yen Sid from Fantasia as a home for forgotten Disney characters. Originally bright and happy, it was completely screwed up after Mickey Mouse accidentally spilled paint thinner on it and caused the Shadow Blot to take over. Forgotten Disneyland/World attractions make appearances as levels or Easter Eggs in addition to current attractions (although a few of them have different, darker names such as "Dark Beauty Castle" a.k.a. Sleeping Beauty's Castle or "Lonesome Manor" a.k.a. Haunted Mansion). As you go through the levels, you can either help rebuild or cause more destruction in the world you're supposed to save by using your paintbrush and tools (namely, regular paint or paint thinner).
    • The sequel reveals other parts themed off other Disneyland areas- Rainbow Mines and Caverns (based off a former Frontierland ride), Disney Gulch (based off Frontierland), the Train Tunnels (based off the dioramas seen while riding the train between stops), Fort Wasteland (based off the Fort Wilderness hotel), and Autotopia (based off Tomorrowland's Autopia). There's also an area called the Floatyard, which is where abandoned float parts are put when they're not in use.
  • Fallout 4's final DLC, Nuka-World, is partially occupied by a loose alliance of raider gangs who have turned what territory they have conquered into their own Wretched Hive while the rest of the park is filled with ghouls, mutant crocodiles, mutant ants and other radioactive/mechanical post-apocalyptic monstrocities.
  • The titular Fancy Island, according to an old newspaper seen in the Fancy Island archive page, was once an amusement park that was abandoned when the caretaker disappeared, and then became haunted by the many spirits and monsters of the game.
  • The Wii game Fragile Dreams: Farewell Ruins of the Moon features an abandoned and decrepit theme park where he meets Crow.
  • Harmful Park, a PSX Shoot 'Em Up, is entirely set on an amusement park modified by a Mad Scientist. Each level is one of the attractions of the park.
  • The setting of the second Haunted Museum game or "Frightmare Land", a monster-infested amusement park loosely based on the real-life Japanese park Gulliver's Kingdom.
  • The tutorial level of Hitman: Blood Money is set in a Baltimore amusement park which was shut down years before after a badly maintained ferris wheel came off its axle during a ride, killing and injuring many people. The owner escaped justice, filed for bankruptcy and has since thrown his lot in with a group of local gangsters. He is, of course, your target.
  • The titular park Illbleed, built by horror movie director Michael Reynolds. Unlike most examples, it advertises itself as a lethal and dangerous park that tries to kill guests, the incentive for going being massive cash prizes for surviving each attraction, with a grand prize of $100,000,000 to anyone who lives all the way to the end. A visiting reporter claims that roughly a hundred people a day perish attempting the challenge. Eriko, the main character, wisely avoids it until her friends vanish after winning free tickets there and she has to go find them.
    Michael Reynolds: This is not an attraction that you merely sit and watch, the characters and settings of this story are all real. So if the enemies get you, you will die!
  • Indigo Prophecy: Lucas heads over to the abandoned Fun Fair amusement park, after learning Tiffany has been kidnapped by The Oracle. It ends horribly, when The Oracle causes the structure to break apart, killing both Tiffany and Lucas, who was later brought Back from the Dead.
  • Killer7: The ISZK-LAND amusement park in the state of Washington makes up for the first half of the fourth chapter (Encounter). As with many other areas in the world, it is filled with murderous Heaven Smiles, and many of the park's attractions present creepy elements like illusory rooms and looping passageways. By far the most disturbing secret about this place is that Curtis Blackburn is using it to gather orphans for his organ traffic businesses.
  • The FantasyRealm dungeon in Kingdom of Loathing is a cross between this and a Crappy Carnival. As a fantasy themed "experience park", most enemies in the area are just actors in cheap costumes (attacking guests is part of the "experience") and half-assed mechanical monsters note . Also the food and beer are expensive.
  • Kirby and the Forgotten Land has Wondaria Remains, a deserted theme park with scarely-functioning attractions and enemies lurking around every corner.
  • The second campaign in Left 4 Dead 2 is called "Dark Carnival", and features Whispering Oaks Amusement Park as its setting. It was actually a normal park hastily turned into an evacuation center at the start of the Zombie Apocalypse, abandoned not too long before the events of the campaign, as can be seen by the good condition of the structures and rides. Infected entertainers in clown costumes are a common feature, and act as a lesser version of a Boomer in that their squeaky shoes attracts other zombies when they sprint.
  • In The Legend of Heroes: Trails to Azure, Mishelam Wonderland briefly becomes this when Campanella uses his powers to change it into Fool's Wonderland, complete with creepy clown imagery and ghost monsters. It's all an illusion, but it becomes this for real when the Pleroma Flowers start blooming among its grounds.
  • Murderworld is arguably the most fun level in Marvel Ultimate Alliance, with its various mini games as well as the plot twist that you originally think it's Castle Doom, though the organ music is the first clue that something isn't right. Other hints include the bad haircut on Doom's pictures all over the place, the way the poles can be bashed open to reveal swirly poles, and the occasional chests that open to reveal large squeaky hammers that hit you on the head.
  • Max Payne 2 features a level in which the hero shoots it out with villains in an abandoned fun house of horror that mirrors his own story. Three times: fighting your way in, fighting your way out (with control of the mechanisms to use as traps), and on fire. The first time is a subversion, as it's a cool-down level in a game that so far featured Everything Trying to Kill You. Even after Max's monologue lampshades the harmlessness of the fake haunted house animatronics, players are still likely to jump from the non-lethal surprises, with guns drawn.
  • Mega Man:
    • Area H of Mega Man ZX, which was the amusement park Vent/Aile was in when it was attack by a Maverick Raid ten years ago. Features giant Metool mascots that try to kill you, popcorn machines designed into weapons that try to kill you, and those UFO Catcher things that try to pick you up and drop you into Bottomless Pits in an attempt to kill you. Capping it all off is a fight with Purprill, which is fueled (especially in Vent's case, where he is explicitly told) by rage induced by You Killed My Mother.
    • Clown Man's level from Mega Man 8. Killer robot and trains that try to run you over on sight. Magic Man's level from Mega Man & Bass has the same theme and obstacles due to resource reuse.
    • This level type is used yet again in Mega Man 11 — not once, but twice. In one, a park has been destroyed and defaced thanks to the resident Robot Master Blast Man. Obstacles this time include explosive robots and a roller coaster filled with tiny robots that doubles as a miniboss. The second amusement park level, home to Bounce Man, is much more colorful and less dangerous, as it's full of balls to bounce off while avoiding enemies suspended by balloons.
  • The fourth stage of the fourth Metal Slug game takes place in a horror-themed carnival whereupon the Amadeus Syndicate have unleashed real Zombies and Mummies. The boss is a weaponized animatronic, as is a vehicle you can use at the beginning.
  • Michael Jordan: Chaos in the Windy City features the real life Riverview Park in Chicago as Dr. Cranium's base of operations. Originally torn down, Dr. Cranium re-built the park into his own twisted and maniacal fortress.
  • Mischief Makers features Spike Land, which as its name suggests is an inexplicable amusement park devoted to Spikes of Doom.
  • LeChuck's Big Whoop Amusement Park/Carnival of the Damned from Monkey Island 2 and The Curse of Monkey Island.
  • The Mystery Case Files series has two of its games set in the eerie Fate's Carnival. While in Madame Fate, the carnival seems still in use and fairly innocuous (though a little bit unnerving), Fate's Carnival shows an abandoned, grisly and downright surreal version of it.
  • NieR: Automata has the Amusement Park where the Machines spend their time playing and having fun unless provoked by 2B or 9S. There's also a mad opera singer whose body is built from the corpses of fallen androids.
  • The Secret World has Atlantic Island Park, an abandoned and dilapidated amusement park plagued by a long history of deadly freak accidents and rumors of hauntings. It turns out the park's creator deliberately designed it so he could draw energy from the lives of those who died at the park, turning him into a powerful spirit known as the Bogeyman. Featured as the main location in the psychological horror game spin-off The Park.
  • The Lakeside amusement park in Silent Hill could possibly qualify as this, especially the one from Silent Hill 3 that includes a killer roller coaster, a lethal haunted house and a boss battle on a carousel. Oh, and let's not forget the blood-drenched, Donnie Darko-esque rabbit mascot.
  • Sonic the Hedgehog: Series Big Bad Dr. Eggman's loves creating these, so naturally they're featured heavily. In fact, one of his stated goals in addition to Take Over the World is having a theme park of his own creation.
    • Carnival Night Zone from Sonic 3, what with all the spikes, robots, and the infamous red-and-white barrel.
    • Sunset Park Zone in Sonic Triple Trouble, an abandoned amusement park filled with Eggman's Mecha-Mooks and explosive floor sections.
    • Twinkle Park in Sonic Adventure. It seems as though Eggman has temporarily managed to take a step towards his goal of world domination - he's managed to take over a theme park and turn it into a giant deathtrap.
    • Eggmanland from Sonic Unleashed. Roller coasters regularly going off the rails, bottomless pits beneath the ferris wheel, open lava pits, free-roaming monsters, and more killer robots than should even be legal. And the less said of what Eggman used to build this joint in the first place the better. Notably, Eggman has been hinting at creating this specific theme park for years and he finally succeeds here and fittingly enough, its both the final and hardest level in the game. (and arguably all of the 3D games)
    • Dr. Eggman's Incredible Interstellar Amusement Park from Sonic Colors. Not quite the standard look for this trope, what with the bright colors and the food-themed world, but still not a place to take the kiddies thanks to Eggman's robot minions and the alien enslavement. Eggman's PA announcements also indicate this place to be extremely unsafe.
  • Spider-Man 2: Mysterio has a "Funhouse of doom" you have to go through.
  • Super Mario Bros.:
    • Super Mario Sunshine: Pinna Park is usually a safe, entertaining amusement park, but stopped being so since Shadow Mario (a.k.a. Bowser Jr.) rigged it to give hell to Mario. The cannon in the coast was given to an angry Monty Mole, the wooden ships that are hanging airborne are swinging more erratically (and, at one point, gain enough momentum to spin a full lap vertically), the ferris wheel is spinning too fast due to a big Electrokoopa overpowering it, one of the Yoshi seats in the carousel is missing, and all of that is predated by Shadow Mario himself summoning a gigantic Humongous Mecha called Mecha-Bowser to defeat Mario and forcefully escort Princess Peach to Corona Mountain.
    • Super Mario 3D World: World Bowser, being the eighth and final standard world, breaks the trends of the last world in a Mario game being Mordor-like landscapes filled with lava (in this game, that's actually World Castle, its preceding world). It's a bright, colorful, and jazzy landscape filled to the brim with bright lights and deadly attractions.
    • Mario Party 2: Bowser Land is an evil theme park in Bowser's own image. It has all kinds of reversed mechanics, like the banks that loan money instead of ask for it, but force anyone who lands on the space to pay it back in full. Or the parade which causes players to lose 2 coins a space as they march back to the start.
    • Mario Party 7: Bowser's Enchanted Inferno. It's a funfair built upon four islands surrounded by lava, and many of the attractions are dangerous.
  • The old SWAT Kats: The Radical Squadron SNES game's Madkat level was an amusement park where children had been disappearing, though you only see them in the opening clip and after the boss is beaten.
  • Team Fortress 2 has its 6th Halloween Special take place in one of these. Complete with carnival games and bumper cars OF DOOM! Possibly subverted, because it's not quite haunted yet (though the mercs will be quick to fix that) and Merasmus ended up using very un-spooky sandalwood scented candles for the ritual.
  • The final chapter of The Testament of Sherlock Holmes takes place in an abandoned funfair, now full of Moriarty's goons.
  • Tomb Raider: The Last Revelation inexplicably has a level based around one of these, which includes a room with spike pits that can only be seen in a mirror reflection and a target-shooting game that dumps the player into a spike pit if they don't complete it in time.
  • Twisted Metal Black has a carnival park in the Suburbs level, where you can send the Ferris wheel rolling to crush opponents.

    Web Animation 
  • Loo Loo Land from the episode of the same name in Helluva Boss. It's an amusement park in Hell that features unsafe rides, notices daring the visitors to sue them due to No OSHA Compliance, criminals running amok that repeatedly try to kidnap the rich Stolas, and an animatronic clown demon who gets into a fight with Blitzo that ends up setting the park ablaze. It's also horrible in a more mundane sense — it's a Souvenir Land with overpriced merchandise, the games are rigged, the aforementioned animatronic clown demon traumatized Octavia as a child, and it's apparently wholly plagiarized from a more successful park named "Lu Lu World".

  • Girl Genius: When Agatha weaponizes the circus' carts and such it includes a merry-go-round, which in the planning stages was set to be capable of "leveling a small town", and eventually takes DuPree out of the fight and breaks her jaw all without ever being shown on panel.
  • Subverted in JoJo's Bizarre Summer Break since the amusement park the gang visits is a normal one. Unfortunately, the Joestar family curse activates even in plane rides, Jotaro managed to insult a meditating monk, and Kakyoin randomly finds a baby's spirit (Mannish Boy). Jotaro also attracts the attention of the High Priestess, which swallows their submarine ride.
  • Sehan's third quest in Return To Player takes place in one. He not only has to go through various deadly rides, but save as many of the people forced to work the park as he can.
  • The Little House of Wonders in Skin Horse. It was abandoned years ago, and the "it's a small world" parody ride now has toxic waste instead of water and is dotted with asbestos warning signs. Also, the self-aware animatronics are all cynical and depressed. (To the naturally cynical and depressed Sweetheart, this comes as a relief compared to the wall-to-wall cuteness she was expecting.)

    Web Original 
  • Abandoned by Disney is a creepypasta that focuses on a strange (and fictitious) abandoned Disney resort in Georgia, that appears to be haunted. It's probably the best-known of a long, long list of creepypastas that involve sinister happenings at the Disney Theme Parks.
  • SCP Foundation: Cragglewood Park, tagged SCP-2571, is a place that people only have vague memories of, and some of the children who go to the park are seemingly erased from existence. Only pairs of siblings can enter Cragglewood Park; in order for one sibling to escape, the other has to go on the carousel and become a singing tree in the park forever.
    • The SCP-823, aptly named "Carnival of Horrors", was one of the first apparitions of this trope on the website. This amusement park was abandoned after a day remembered as "Bloody Sunday", when numerous people in the park died of supernatural causes in very disturbing ways (including lovers being fused together in the Tunnel of Love, and a mascot-actor being suffocated by the stuffing of his own costume while wearing it). The amusement park still has a deadly influence over whoever enters it - as the grotesque suicides of the task force sent by the SCP Foundation proves. And the worse thing? The area of influence of the park's deadliness has been growing throughout the years. This place is so dangerous its destruction by nuclear weapon was considered.
    • SCP-944 is not the full amusement park, which is still open to public, but just one attraction, the Mirror Maze that the SCP Foundation isolated. Those that enter the Maze can randomly suffers from various incidents - ranging from being lost for hours in tunnels that do not actually exist, to ending up permanetly deformed after passing by the "twisting mirrors".
    • And lets not forget SCP-1357. Playland, an amusement park in Poland whose attractions and staff shapeshifts to adapt the tastes and desires of the young children that enter it. The park seems to just be a fun place trying to cater to the children visitor's whim... Until the staff manages to expel the parents out of the park, while keeping the children inside, and lie to them to make them believe their parents abandoned them and that they should live at the park forever... Even worse if the child ends up not having fun anymore and wishing to leave Playland, the staff will brainwash them into becoming another employee of the park.
  • "Mr. Bones' Wild Ride", a memetic story of a rollercoaster someone built in Rollercoaster Tycoon 2. The ride seems innocent enough on the surface... but then the unlucky participants find out it is long enough to take four years to complete. And once they finish the ride? They find themselves walking down the path which leads back to the ride's entrance... Complete with a giant sign which tells them, "The ride never ends".

    Web Videos 
  • The RTGame video "I Asked My Subscribers To Build A Knock-Off Disneyland In Minecraft" shows the creation of one of these. It's got horrifying (and legally distinct from Disney) mascots in the likes of "Ricky Rat" and "Roofie" (don't leave him alone with your kids!), dangerous rides, a slave shop, and messages like "END ME" and "HAVE A GOOD TIME OR ELSE" plastered all over the place.
  • Joueur du Grenier: Papy Grenier once directed what started as a normal amusement park... until he built lethal attractions, fired the maintenance workers and made the food as greasy and salty as possible for the sake of profit. Apparently, 27 people had already died in his old park.
  • Liminal Land is this trope when it meets the "liminal horror" typical of The Backrooms. Liminal Land is a fictional amusement park created in the 70s in New-Mexico as an attempt to rival and dethrone Disney as the leader of the amusement park industry. It however closed in 1989 after a series of disappearances and accidents. Exploring the website revealed that the park was highly unethical, and that the ominously-named CHARON company behind it only cared about money to the point of putting its guests health at risk - from building their park over a repurposed nuclear power plant and using its energy to heat pools, to using dangerous, barely-tested, body-damaging technology for their rides. And let's not forget HOME, CHARON's project to have its guests stay as "long as humanly possible" by building a literal underground suburb under its park. However, the Youtube videos slowly reveal that there is something abnormal in Liminal Land, making it closer to an Eldritch Location. For example, pictures taken there never seem to get the face of the guests quite right, and some ride will compell people to ride them alone - leaving them with massive disfigurement from unknown causes. And when it comes to the titular HOME underground town, the direction of the park itself ignores how big the place actually is....
  • The Watcher World segment of the Nightmare Time episode, The Hatchetfield Ape-Man and Watcher World is set in the titular theme park ruled by an Eldritch Abomination that manipulates guests into killing eachother for its amusement.

    Western Animation 
  • Get Ace: The villains live on a house overlooking an abandoned amusement park; the whole area is called "Creepville" and is host to several derelict attractions, such as a creepy rollercoaster that encircles the house and travels through a spooky mineshaft.
  • Jimmy Two-Shoes subverted this in the episode "Carnival Lucius". Heloise tricks Lucius into building one (because Jimmy wanted one) by describing it as if it were something terrible. Then it's played straight when Lucius realizes the truth and straps her and Jimmy into a roller coaster that's meant to kill them. That said, Lucius' carnival was still full of unsafe and dangerous rides, although the people of Miseryville didn't seem to mind.
  • Martin Mystery: One episode has Martin, Diana, Java, Billy, and M.O.M. going to a horror-themed amusement park called "Terrorland" to celebrate Martin's one year anniversary as a Center agent; however, their fun is cut short when monsters start coming to life and attack the visitors. Turns out they have a real artifact in their Egyptian-themed ride that is causing the monsters to attack.
  • The Mighty Max episode "Clown Without Pity" dealt with children being lured into a theme park by a Monster Clown named Freako and apparently never coming back. It is later discovered he is turning the kids into monsters because he wants everyone to know what it feels like to be a freak; they transform by looking into funhouse mirrors and the only way to reverse the transformation is to break the mirrors.
  • The New Adventures of Superman: In "Luthor's Loco Looking Glass", Luthor sets up his base of operation in an abandoned amusement pier. For some reason, the Tunnel of Love has horror figures in it.
  • In The Real Ghostbusters episode "The Bogeyman Is Back", the title villain transforms an ordinary theme park into "the perfect place for fear to grow and thrive." Could also qualify as a Circus of Fear, given the circus theme of the park, complete with evil mechanical clowns.
    Winston: Boy, they don't make them like this anymore.
    Peter: They never did make them like this! Bogeyman's been redecorating.
  • The Rick and Morty episode "Anatomy Park" features an amusement park inside a man's body that is incredibly run down and dangerous, haunted with deadly monster-like diseases and with rides that are broken or suddenly go nowhere.
  • In Robbie the Reindeer in Legend of the Lost Tribe, Blitzen creates a Reindeer World theme park in which the animatronic reindeer are actually the rest of the herd, being mind-controlled and tortured.
  • Scooby-Doo features this trope several times.
    • In an episode of Scooby-Doo, Where Are You!, the gang look into the odd goings on of Funland, an amusement park that has been shut down temporarily, and has a malfunctioning robot running around causing damage.
    • An episode of What's New, Scooby-Doo? has the gang visit a theme park haunted by the Roller Ghoster who tampers with rides endangering the guests. The episode mentions that he's already sabotaged three, and he sabotages two more before he gets caught.
    • The live action movie takes place in a spooky-themed theme park where monsters take over visitors' bodies. At one point, one of the attractions goes haywire, nearly killing the gang.
    • In Scooby-Doo and the Cyber Chase, the final level of the video game in which the gang gets trapped is a boardwalk carnival, and haunted by duplicates of five classic Scooby-Doo foes. Except this time they're not just thugs in costumes....
  • The Simpsons:
    • "Itchy & Scratchy Land" parodies much of the above, where, right on cue, the various robots simultaneously all go amok at once. Well, not quite on cue. Frink forgot to Carry the One.
    • The alcohol-themed "Duff Gardens" in "Selma's Choice". While it's not explicitly "doomy," it's hardly a place you'd want to take your kids: rude costumed characters, robots that go haywire, sleazy souvenirs... and to top it all off, the "water" in one of its boat rides is actually beer mixed with LSD. It says a lot when the longest line in the whole park is for the complaints booth.
    • "Brush with Greatness" had Mt. Splashmore, a water park which boasts it has "The most ways you can be shot hundreds of feet into the air by a geyser of highly pressurized water." Which was all well and good, except, like many of the places promoted by Krusty, very little of the budget was given to the safety, employing teenage lifeguards who were obviously not qualified. (After Homer got stuck in the H2WHOA!, its main attraction, the lifeguards tried to solve the problem by sending more kids down, an incident that made Homer put the H2WHOA! on his revenge list.
    • The amusement park Ned Flanders bought and refurbished into "Praiseland" was originally closed because a child somehow got his head cut off at the park.
    • It's strongly implied that Krustyland fits the bill:
      Kent Brockman: We now go to Krusty's press conference where he denies that his products are unsafe, his amusement park is a death trap and that he's selling video tapes of Tonya Harding's wedding night.
      Krusty: ... so I contend that those tourists were decapitated before they entered the Krustyland House of Knives.
    • "Lisa's Belly" has Riot Waters, a water park Homer used to go to as a teen and laugh at all the park-goers getting hurt on rides like Devil's Deluge and The Void. To his disappointment, it has since been changed to Quiet Waters, a much safer place catering mostly to little kids. Homer, however finds the abandoned Devil's Deluge and slides down it with Bart and Lisa. They make it out unharmed, only to get sick from the untreated water on the slide.
  • Spongebob Squarepants has the episode "Glove World R.I.P." where SpongeBob and Patrick go to the titular park, which in previous episodes was a structurally sound Souvenir Land but now is dilapidated to the point that every ride is prone to causing injury. They try to keep it from getting closed, their efforts eventually culminating in them chaining themselves to the front gate at night. Not only are their efforts pointless because the creators have just built a new, even better park nearby, but they also aren't able to unchain themselves because Patrick threw the key in a lake.
  • El Tigre: The Adventures of Manny Rivera: One is featured in "Adios, Amigos" that sports rides that easily break down and petting zoos where the animals attack the petters. Manny and Frida revel in the chaos and the misfortune of not-so-lucky parkgoers until the Titanium Titan shows up.
  • In the The Wacky Adventures of Ronald McDonald episode, "Birthday World", the titular amusement park is run by Professor Pinchworm, a Mad Scientist out to take over the world by turning its population into babies. He gives Hamburglar invitations to the park for Ronald and his friends as a present for Ronald's birthday, and once they arrive, he traps them inside, then tests his age ray on them during one of the rides. Now, Ronald and his friends have to find the ray so they can foil Pinchworm's plan and return to their normal ages, making their way through a maze of rides and attractions.

    Real Life 
  • Vernon, New Jersey was once the home of Action Park, which came about as close to this trope as a real life amusement park can. A total of six people died either at the park or in offsite hospitals from complications, and an unknown number of other patrons were known to suffer serious injuries, with local paramedics reporting treating 5-10 guests on some days. It eventually closed down in 1996 under a tide of lawsuits and other financial problems; when Intrawest reopened it two years later as Mountain Creek Waterpark, many attractions had to be heavily redesigned or bulldozed entirely. The park's reputation came from a multitude of factors, including: the easy availability of beer in the park (which was consumed by both guests and staff), the teenaged staff's indifference towards the safety rules, recklessness on the part of the visitors due to the flouting of said rules, poor design or lack of maintenance on the rides themselves, and the fact that almost none of the employees spoke Spanish even though the park was running ads on Spanish-language radio and TV stations in New York. It got to the point where the Park had to buy the nearby hospitals extra ambulances to deal with the constant traffic of injured streaming out of the park.

    That said, Action Park also earned a cult reputation among New Jerseyans and New Yorkers as an Amusement Park of Badassery, a place where guests could take part in experiences that still haven't been replicated due to pesky safety regulations, such that many children of the '80s and early '90s from that area came to view it as a Rite of Passage. It was a major pioneer in many ride designs, especially for waterparks, and while this meant that they were the ones who had to work out many of the safety kinks (it took experience for them to realize that a waterslide with a vertical 360 degree loop might not be the safest thing to send a human being down), it also meant that, at the time, there was nothing like it, and thanks to them using designs and ideas that other parks went on to reject (for admittedly good reason), there still hasn't been anything quite like it since. As such, when the park's original owners bought the Mountain Creek resort back from Intrawest in 2010, they briefly revived the Action Park name from 2014 through '16 for nostalgia's sake, though it was changed back to Mountain Creek Waterpark starting in 2017 due to the fact that a) few people under 35 still remembered Action Park, and b) the 'new' Action Park was an In Name Only affair.
  • The Chernobyl evacuation zone, off-limits to human occupation since the region was contaminated by radiation, contains an amusement park that was scheduled to open mere days after the nuclear accident. Rusting, unused rides from this real-life APoD were exhibited in the first Life After People.
  • The abandoned Six Flags New Orleans, which was possibly the inspiration for the "Dark Carnival" campaign from Left 4 Dead 2.
  • While not a park in itself, the infamous Haunted Castle at Six Flags Great Adventure in New Jersey became a symbol of amusement park doom on May 11, 1984, when a horrific fire roared through it, killing eight. The park operators managed to escape culpability by insisting to the court that it was a case of arson; even if that were true (and the official report doubts that explanation), inspectors still counted a dozen egregious violations of fire codes at the attraction, up to and including a lack of smoke detectors. It had managed to escape inspection before the fire by virtue of its status as a "temporary structure" (even though it had been in place for five years) due to it having been built in seventeen mobile trailers.
  • In an eerily similar turn of events to the above incident, Luna Park Sydney was shut down in June 1979 after six children and one adult were killed when the park's Ghost Train went up in flames. The cause of the fire has never been determined, with speculation ranging from faulty electrical wiring to arson (an investigation by The ABC in 2021 revealed possible links to police corruption and organised crime). The park has since reopened, and while it has occasionally closed again due to safety issues, this tragedy has not been repeated.
  • The abandoned Gulliver Kingdom park in Japan, featuring, well, the giant abandoned lifeless corpse of Gulliver. It's also located conveniently close to Aokigahara forest, Japan's number 1 suicide spot, and to the former headquarters of infamous doom cult Aum Shinrikyo.
  • An activist looking to raise awareness for recovery efforts after Hurricane Sandy attempted to camp out on top of the wrecked Seaside Heights roller coaster, but was apprehended and arrested because the coaster's skeletal remains were dangerous and off-limits. (Not that the coaster had been exactly safe before the storm.)
  • Lake Shawnee Amusement Park in West Virginia, the site of a desecrated Indian Burial Ground turned into a settler farm which saw three settler children killed by Indians and several Indians killed by settlers in retaliation, turned into an amusement park in the 1920s (purportedly the developer was unaware of the site's history). After two children were killed, the park shut down in 1966 amid rumours of the land being cursed and haunted, with the rides and structures still standing in varying states of disrepair. It was reopened in 1985, then closed and abandoned for good in 1988. Tours are available in the days leading up to Halloween.
  • Mangyongdae Funfair in North Korea is just about what you would expect. It's open, but nobody actually goes there for good reason. All of the rides are in states of grievous disrepair. But don't worry, the rides are safety tested... Forcefully, by local farmers.
  • Artist Julijonas Urbonas designed an amusement park ride that was intentionally fatal to ride. Called the Euthanasia Coaster, this ride would start with an incline over 510 meters or 1,670 feet tall, which is over 400 feet taller than the Empire State Building. This climb would last two minutes, giving riders time to contemplate their decision to get on. Once it reached the top, the occupants would be given a choice whether they want to continue or get off. Those who stay on would then experience a drop at over 360 kilometers or 220 miles per hour. The coaster would then travel around seven different loops, each getting progressively smaller. These would maintain a constant force of 10 G's on the riders for one minute, forcing blood away from their brains and ultimately killing them. Urbonas designed this ride with the intent to give terminally ill people a euphoric and painless death.
  • On July 9, 1991 — in an event dubbed afterward as "Black Sunday" — Kings Island in Cincinnati, Ohio, had the misfortune of being the scene of two deadly unrelated accidents in one day. In the first incident, a visitor who was attending a company picnic entered a restricted area of Oktoberfest Pond and was electrocuted by a live current from a defective water circulation pump; both a friend of the visitor and a park employee were killed when they tried to assist him (the visitor survived). One hour and fifteen minutes later, another visitor (who was reportedly drunk) was killed when she slipped out of her harness during the Flight Commander ride, fell out of her capsule in midair, and landed on her head. In the former incident, Kings Island was fined $23,500 by OSHA for multiple safety violations at Oktoberfest Pond.
  • In 1993, one kid disappeared at the Aquaparque in Lisbon. It had been originally thought to be a kidnapping. Later, another kid disappeared too. This time, they tested another theory: that the kids had drowned in the pool, so they dredged the water. They found the corpses of the missing children. It turned out that the wells had no proper barriers to prevent people from being sucked into them. New regulations, which had been lacking before (the then-current ones were from 1959, thus obsolete), were adopted by 1997 and a round of inspections followed: seven parks closed, including Ondaparque in Costa da Caparica, which had a similar well problem and where one death had ocurred. Meanwhile, the parents of one of the children took the unprecedented step of suing the Portuguese state (for the lack of regulations), and they settled by 2002. The parks themselves are currently abandoned, and in various states of decay (and Ondaparque ended up owing a huge water bill - 110,000€ in 2002).
  • The Verrückt water slide at Schlitterbahn's Kansas City water park was a tragedy waiting to happen, as a lawsuit following a fatal 2016 accident revealed. For starters, Verrückt was designed by two people who were neither engineers nor qualified designers of amusement park rides, but who were, respectively, one of the co-owners of Schlitterbahn and his business partner. The ride was built just to give Schlitterbahn the bragging rights of the tallest water slide in the world, with no regard for safety standards in the rushed design process. The designers ignored issues of the raft going airborne over the second hill and colliding with the overhead hoops and safety netting. When the ride opened, poor maintenance caused it to fall into disrepair (most notably with a failure of the brake system) while operators were poorly trained. Verrückt's designers knew the ride was dangerous and even attempted some last-minute redesigns to mitigate the problem (they didn't). Several people involved with its construction tried to blow the whistle, but the park covered up accidents and injuries during both testing and regular operation, going so far as to destroy and/or alter injury reports and coerce lifeguards into giving coached statements. Eventually, the decapitation of a ten-year-old boy on the ride (who just so happened to be the son of a Kansas state legislator) led to a criminal investigation that resulted in Schlitterbahn and the park director being charged with negligence and involuntary manslaughter, while the designers were charged with second-degree murder; the charges were eventually dropped due to technicalities. Schlitterbahn, its reputation tarnished beyond repair, was forced to buy itself out to competitor Cedar Fair and now exists only in name. Verrückt was demolished in November 2018, and the rest of the Kansas City park (the only Schlitterbahn property Cedar Fair refused to buy) was demolished in late 2021 to make way for an amateur sports complex. Swindled has more details here.
  • SeaWorld earned this reputation thanks to its Shamu stage show featuring live orcas. In this case, the danger isn't so much for the park guests as it is for the trainers, many of whom have been injured (some fatally) when the animals attacked them, and the orcas themselves, who suffer various health problems as a result of captivity. The 2010 death of trainer Dawn Brancheau from an attack by an orca named Tilikum (who had previously killed two other people, a trainer in 1991 and a man who tried to stay after hours in order to swim in the orca tank in 1999) brought a torrent of negative publicity to SeaWorld that culminated in the documentary Blackfish.
  • In 2016, Dreamworld's Thunder River Rapids ride had a boat that flipped over, claiming 4 lives in the process. Afterwards, the park landed in hot water, and all the attractions went through a thorough safety inspection. The ride has since closed down, and the park has reopened.
  • Middlemoor Water Park in England had a human trebuchet that would launch guests 180 feet through the air of velocities of 40 miles per hour into a safety net. In 2000, one guest, Stella Young, got seriously injured when she bounced off of the safety net and hit the ground, breaking her pelvis. She was much more fortunate than Kostydin Yankov, who missed the safety net altogether and died in 2002. The trebuchet was discontinued not long after.
  • In the 1920s, American engineer Harry G. Traver constructed various roller coaster rides, including three that have come to be known as the "Terrible Trio", including two different iterations of the "Cyclone" — one in Ontario and another in New Jersey — and the "Lightning" in Massachusettes. The Ontario Cyclone, the likely inspiration for the aforementioned Canadian musical Ride the Cyclone, was so shoddily constructed that it had a bad habit of practically tearing itself apart whenever it was operated, which not only resulted in irregular operating hours since it had to be frequently shut down for repairs, but it also caused numerous injuries and one fatality (on its opening day, no less!). The New Jersey Lightning, on the other hand, has no recorded fatalities among patrons, but it was notorious for its violent side-to-side motions that resulted in terminated pregnancies (leading to the slang term "Take her on the Lightning" to refer to abortions) in addition to rib fractures. The New Jersey Cyclone has the cleanest track record for having no injuries or fatalities, but only because it was demolished before anyone got hurt on it. All indications point to it being a potential health hazard in a similar vein to its siblings, however.


Video Example(s):


Bowser Land

It is available after all other boards are played at least once each, and until its completion Toad will remain captive by Baby Bowser, who then proceeds to replace him as the game's host (for this reason, the other boards will be unavailable until this one is cleared the first time). The board takes place in an amusement park built by Bowser and his minions in the midst of a volcanic region. Every five turns, a special event known as Bowser's Parade happens as follows: A row of pyramid-shaped floats based on Mario enemies move across a given route; any character who is in the way will run away from the parade in terror, losing coins along the way. If no character is in the parade's planned route, or the arrows that should guide the parade make up for a nonsensical route, then the event is cancelled. The characters are dressed with their normal outfits, as everybody here broke character due to Bowser's threat being serious. The banks work differently in this board, as they give coins to the characters instead of forcing them to deposit theirs; but if a character lands on the Bank space, they must pay the debt in full (if they have no coins, then they must pay with a Star if they have one).

How well does it match the trope?

5 (5 votes)

Example of:

Main / AmusementParkOfDoom

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