All Visitor Reviews
All 2009 Visitor Reviews Submitted by ilikehaunts
|Disclaimer: Reviews on this page were supplied by an outside source. The opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the staff of HauntedIllinois.com. Haunted Illinois does not endorse, support, represent, or guarantee the accuracy, truthfulness, or reliability of these reviews.|
|Scare Factor: Very Low | Atmosphere: Fair|
Visibility/Location: Located in Palatine, Psychosis is located off of a semi-main road, though if you arent paying attention, you will easily pass by it. It is important to note that it is in a strip mall NEXT TO Sears.
Wait Entertainment: On the night that we attended, there was one older-looking actor wearing a cowboy hat and a duster. Though, he just stood at the entrance and talked to guests, rather than scared them.
Length of Event: 10 min
Actor Performance: Psychosis has a lot to work on in this category. Many of their actors used elementary scare tactics such as yelling "get out of my room" and simply just screaming. In a bedroom scene a younger actor wielding a hockey stick popped out and yelled, "Hey, hows it going!" as his scare, then proceeded to hit items with his hockey stick.
Patron Flow Inside Attraction: We were the only group so we never ran into another group.
Appropriate Ages: All
Props / Special FX: Many of their props were simply furniture in rooms painted black, gray, or white. Detail was limited in this attraction. Though there were some interesting lighting used in this attraction, it was set amongst less than impressive settings.
Costumes / Make-up: Some actors wore black robes and others were seen in lab coats. In several instances many actors were without makeup, while others were wearing a limited amount of it.
Summary: We attended Psychosis last year and were really excited to see how they would grow and expand this season. For a first year event (in 2008) it was fun, and had a lot of room to grow. This year, much of the attraction remained the same, and the detail within the attraction seemed limited as well. Through out the beginning of Psychosis, guests are show a variety of videos, the 1st of which is in their room immediately after waiting in line. It features a man who comes out and explains that you will be scared throughout the attraction, and then says "the first scare will come from right below this screen, wake up little guy" at that point an actor emerges from the darkness. this scare could have been the most effective in the house, if it hadn't been pointed out by the actor on screen, which completely ruined the scare factor there. The next area is a shack-like house featuring some trees and an actress in a robe that takes your tickets, guests then enter the home. Inside, our group was instructed to watch another video, this time the video explained the rules of the house, and unlike the first one, did not end with a scare.Guests are then told to "Get out" and proceed into the rest of the attraction. Most of this attraction had wide-open, well lit halls, featuring wither black or gray walls. Some of these halls included lighting such as green lasers and colored lights, but over all, nothing really happened. Rooms experienced along the way included a bed room, kitchen, cooler, clown area, alley way, and a prison/hospital area. In this final scene guests were asked to "Sign in" and were given a clip board, crayon to write with and a sticky "hello my name is" name tag. They also had "funny pills" (tic tacs and mentos) that they issued to guests. Throughout this area there were a variety of scenes including a couple of actors writing on the walls with chalk, a bathroom, and a maze featuring a couple of actors. Upon leaving the maze guests entered a gift shop where they could purchase t-shirts or get a psychic reading. In the end, my group felt let-down by psychosis as we were hoping they would change it up, and deliver something more impressive than last year. Instead it felt as if much of their scare factor was lost, and their layout was about the same with the same, if not less, detail than before. At $14 this attraction left much to be desired.
|Scare Factor: High | Atmosphere: Good|
Visibility/Location: Statesville (contrary to popular belief) IS NOT located at an actual prison. Though it has great visibility at the Siegel Pumpkin Farm, marked by the enormous Inflatable Pumpkin at the entrance. Note, if it has been raining, their parking lot is VERY VERY muddy, and is almost reminiscent of a slip and slide! On the night we attended there were several vehicles stuck in the mud, and a couple we covered in mud (they had slipped and fell in it) my suggestion would be to wear clothes/shoes you don't like (which you should do at any haunted house ANYWAY) and if possible drive a vehicle with 4-wheel drive.
Wait Entertainment: Statesville did very well in this category. As we waited in line, there were at least 6 actors roaming the line scaring customers, as well as loud rock music playing in the background.
Length of Event: Statesville - 10 min
City of the Dead - 5
Actor Performance: All of the actors through out both attractions stayed very much in character and fit into the areas in which they were in. It is important to note that the actors in Statesville were much scarier than those in City of the Dead - where most of the actors just stood in one place and grunted or spoke indistinguishable gibberish.
Patron Flow Inside Attraction: Surprisingly, we never ran into another group.
Appropriate Ages: 13+
Props / Special FX: Both attractions featured an incredible amount of high-end props and special effects. From electric chairs and giant demons, to hanging bodies and actors on zip lines, Statesville definitely has a lot of "stuff"!
Costumes / Make-up: All of the actors had costumes and make up that fit into their rooms. Some better than others - but regardless I never felt like someone was out of place.
Summary: I always have mixed emotions when I visit Statesville. The house itself is very fun, and is definitely one of the scarier attractions in Illinois. But, I will start off saying - NO HAUNTED HOUSE IS WORTH $30. PERIOD.
Statesville begins with customers being crammed into a tightly packed cell, which is nothing more than another waiting area, with a couple of actors taunting guests, more so than in the normal line. From there, guests enter yet another waiting area to enter into the introduction room. In this area nothing happens aside from waiting. From there, guests are ushered into the same introduction that they have used for SEVERAL years now, if it is your first time, it will be a very cool effect, if you have been here before it will be the same old tired routine, I suggest that they scrap this scene to make way for a new, more impactful introduction. It is important to note that they HAVE updated the room a bit, by taking out the gothic type ceiling and adding corrugated metal siding to the room, giving it a more industrial look. Overall though, it is essentially the same.
Upon leaving the intro, guests must wait one more time before entering into the main portion of the attraction. In this area actors with megaphones taunt guests and explain the rules. This room featured several TV's playing "feeds" from inside the attraction, showing the inmates wreaking havoc. Once this room is over, guests enter the main portion of the attraction.
Statesville is broken into essentially 3 different themes - A Prison, an Asylum, and an area featuring demented clowns.
Throughout much of the attraction, the layout seemed to be the same, with some of the older rooms being re-worked to appear as new.
In the prison, many actors wearing dark dirty clothing taunt and scare customers. As the tour begins you traverse among several cells and cages containing prisoners that often bust through the bars to scare guests. Throughout this area, bodies are suspended from the ceiling, making it difficult to walk and adding to the claustrophobia of the area. An interesting aspect of this scene is that it features a second floor, where actors above get scares as well. In the following areas of the prison guests encounter a reception desk (formerly the kitchen) a prison bus that guests walk through, a bath room and shower area (formerly the toxic waste area) as well as a couple of areas where you must push your way through inflatable air bags, that create a very claustrophobic feeling. Statesville does a great job of creating interesting areas where guests may have to duck or walk at odd angles, this to me, is one of my favorite parts of Statesville. Additionally, guests enter a room featuring an actor smeared in feces, with walls decorated with various pornographic cutouts (these cutouts are censored by use of blacking out inappropriate material). New this year was the "ring" room, featuring about a dozen females that all look the same as the girl in the movie, "The Ring" most of these were props, but a couple of them were live actors, this room was definitely very creepy, and an upgrade from what it was last year.
Next in Statesville was the asylum area, which featured plexi glass walls, and many actors adorning straight jackets. This area was the same as previous years, except they replaced the strobes with flickering fluorescent lights on the walls. The actors in this area had a good amount of energy and did a great job.
After the Asylum portion, guests entered into the clown area. Which features high ceiling, red and white walls, and lots of clowns! All of the clowns wore jumpsuits and makeup that matched the pattern on the walls. This area featured clowns at virtually very angle, through the use of zip lines, inclines, bungie systems, and strobes, this area was certainly chaotic. Upon leaving the clown area, guests travel through a vortex, and out the exit, to be chased by an actor with a chainsaw.
The next attraction, City of the Dead, though very detailed, was not nearly as terrifying as Statesville.
Much in the fashion of the first house, guest enter a waiting area where they forfeit their tickets to an actor, after waiting for some time they are ushered into the introduction room that has been used for several years now. In this room, a skeletal creature says something, although in my many years of attending this attraction I have never understood what it says due to poor sound quality. At the end of this recorded monologue a large animated beast carrying a saw blade emerges from the dark accompanied by strobe lighting. Though a cool effect, it provides no real scare factor. Once this scene is over, guests continue into another waiting area where they are broken into groups and enter the attraction.
This year, city of the dead appeared to have received no noticeable upgrades, and appeared to be the same as past years. Here, guests travel through a series of well decorated, jungle-like scenes featuring actors in tribal type outfits growling and speaking in "tongues." Though this portion is very neat to look at, the rooms all seemed to blend together, and was far less scary than Statesville. I feel that by having this attraction AFTER the main house, your tour ends on a less impressive note.
Overall, Statesville remains one of the most enjoyable tours in the area, but also remains the most over-priced event in the area. As stated earlier, and as voiced by many others, $30 is WAY TOO MUCH to spend on a haunted house - ever. For the amount of time spent inside this attraction, it definitely hurts your wallet. Perhaps if they offered both attractions as separate prices it may be better off, but being forced to drop $30 for 15min of haunted house, is just WAY TOO MUCH!
|Scare Factor: Medium | Atmosphere: Average|
Visibility/Location: Evil Intentions struggled in this category. They are located in a very small alley way, that could be very easily missed. Their attraction is in a very nice location though, right near the Casino and in a very creepy-looking industrial building.
Wait Entertainment: Though there were actors roaming around, they all seemed to be rather inactive considering how long we were waiting. There were only 6 people ahead of us, but still we waited almost 15 minutes to get in. In that time, there was a video about 2-3 min in length that played on repeat and in that time about 3 actors walked in, then walked out with no attempt to scare customers.
Length of Event: About 15 min
Actor Performance: Many of the actors had unmotivated attacks, and many of them were wielding chainsaws.
Patron Flow Inside Attraction: We never ran into another group
Appropriate Ages: 12+
Props / Special FX: Evil Intentions seemed to rely a lot on darkness and chainsaws, aside from that - most of their rooms seemed rather empty and void of props.
Costumes / Make-up: Most of the actors seemed to be wearing "Goth" type bondage clothing. Make up was average, and featured mostly white faces with black make up under their eyes.
Summary: Despite a long wait in a short line, I had mixed feelings about this attraction.
The waiting area, though small, did lend a very creepy atmosphere with its deep bass sound track and destroyed walls - coupled with the industrial feeling of the building it made for a very creepy waiting atmosphere. Once moving out of he waiting area, groups of six were ushered into a holding area where they waited to enter the next room. After a brief scare, guests continue into a room that contained 6 toe-pincher style coffins. As the coffins are opened a man wielding a chainsaw comes out of the darkness to scare groups, then guest are ushered into the coffins one by one and locked inside. This was a great idea, but had no scare factor. While inside said coffins, a video played, but aside from that nothing happened. It would have been much more effective to have some form of scare, as it was almost a let down for nothing to happen aside from watching the video. Guest were then let out one by one by an actor in a mask wielding a power tool. After this there was a brief out door area where a couple actors roamed with yet more chainsaws. Once back inside guests entered an area that seemingly had 3 ways to go, this was very confusing and our group had to ask for directing from a near by actor, as we proceeded the proper way (up the stairs in the room) and actor emerged from a hall way wielding another chainsaw. Once up the stairs we traversed amongst several areas, including a maze made of pallets that featured some decent actors crawling amongst walls, a bathroom, and several areas of complete darkness. In many of these areas, actors wielding gas powered chainsaws were seen. Due to this much of the house smelled of gas fumes. One creative section was an area where our group had to crawl through a tiny area decorated as if it was an air vent.
Overall, this attraction was DEFINITELY different than many of the attractions available in Illinois, although throughout much of the attraction I felt very unsafe, considering the amount of chainsaws used indoors, I would almost compare it to running a car in your garage with the door shut. Additionally, in many of the dark areas there were floor changes that could have resulted in a tripping hazard if I weren't paying much attention. In the end, our group had fun at this attraction, despite one of our group members claiming to be lightheaded from the fumes.
I would give this attraction a try, but note, as a newer attraction I felt that the $15 price tag left a little to be desired.
|Scare Factor: Medium | Atmosphere: Good|
Visibility/Location: The Dungeon of Doom has a great location in a very large industrial-looking building in Zion. Although the building is kind of difficult to get to (you must avoid sever roads that lead up to it due to police order) there are illuminated orange signs (ie Haunted house Traffic keep straight) that will point travelers in the proper direction.
Wait Entertainment: On the night that I attended there were several actors roaming the line, both inside and outside of the building. Because it was slow, many of them were just roaming aimlessly, but when guests approached the attraction they did a good job of scaring them. I believe if the attraction were more busy, many of these line actors would have been seemingly more effective, though when they were scaring they did a great job.
Length of Event: We paid for the "Ultimate" Package, times were approximately:
1st floor (1st trip) - Approx 9-10min
1st floor(2nd trip) - 8-9min
Buried Alive - 2min
2nd Floor - 8 min
Actor Performance: Here is where the Dungeon of Doom lost a lot of it past years appeal. Many of the actors this year seemed unsure of their roles - many of them seemed to just stand or have very breif, unmotivated attacks. Although this wasn't true throughout the ENTIRE attraction, as there was a decent amount of actors that were very successful in their attacks, the majority of them seemed to be on the less scary side. This could possibly be explained by their new layout, which will be elaborated on further in the summary.
Patron Flow Inside Attraction: Throughout the attraction, there were several areas in which staff was able to split groups up - due to this flow was well done and my group never ran into another.
Appropriate Ages: 8+
Props / Special FX: This attraction makes good use of many interesting props and scenic elements (such as the moving tubes and swinging rooms), although it seems like they are missing many great props they have used in the past (such as the exorcist - electric chair - and frankenstein) Overall, they effects that they did provide were well done, and seemed to fit well into the areas in which they were placed.
Costumes / Make-up: The line actors had very well done costumes and were very believable.
The 1st floor actors seemed to be less well-dressed
Mercy General (2nd floor) had some very creatively dressed characters.
Summary: Overall I felt disappointed by this years installment of the Dungeon of Doom. They have moved from their original location at the Lake County Fair Grounds, to a rather obscure location in Zion. Throughout the attraction there was an overwhelming feeling that they attempted to expand too fast - too soon. Though their attraction WAS very big, so were many of their rooms, which (to me) took away a lot of the claustrophobic feeling that the original Dungeon presented. Additionally, in past years installments of the Dungeon they relied heavily on darkness to disorient customers, and set them up for some great scares. But this year, (most likely due to fire codes) they did not fully cover the ceilings of the rooms, which allowed for quite a bit of light pollution to enter the portions of the attraction that were seeming supposed to be dark.
Additionally, as previously mentioned, the attraction felt as if it expanded too fast, by this I mean the halls felt very wide open, and the rooms seemed few and far between. Personally, I feel the execution of this attraction would have been much more effective if they had taken their original attraction, and built it inside this building, and then expanded over time (rather than all at once).
Overall, as a fan and customer of Dungeon of Doom for more than 8 years - I feel that they really lost something this year with the move. Hopefully they will be able to fix these problems in the future.
For the $25 spent to experience the entire attraction, big as it was, this attraction just wasn't as much fun as it used to be, and this year I felt the Dungeon of Doom was slightly overpriced.
|Scare Factor: Medium | Atmosphere: Good|
Visibility/Location: X-Treme Hauntings was located off of Sayton Rd., it is easily accessed from either Grand or Rollins depending on where you are coming from. The building itself is the back end of a store front.
Wait Entertainment: On the night that we attended, there were no queue line actors outside, this could be due to us arriving early in both the season and the night.
Length of Event: Approx 12min
Actor Performance: The X-treme crew stepped it up this year and put on a pretty good show! Many of the actors were convincing and seemed very into their roles. The only exception would be that several of the actors seemed a bit out of place (such as a mental patient in an elevator).
Patron Flow Inside Attraction: We never ran into any other groups until the clown room, where they attempt to misdirect customers by sending them through doors that lead no where. Unfortunately, this got annoying after a while, as the actors in this room did less to scare us than they did to attempt to misdirect us. Eventually, there were almost 3 groups in this one room...
Appropriate Ages: 10+
Props / Special FX: This haunted house uses less animations and props than most would, but the ones that they did use were effective. Mostly, their props were scenic (such as dressers, etc). This attraction does use some very effective effects though! Their elevator (though cliche) was fun, and their rocking room was very cool. They also used several scents through out the show, and dropped rice on customers to simulate bugs I believe.
Costumes / Make-up: The actors seemed to have some pretty good makeup, and their costumes (with the exception of a few as previously stated) fit into their rooms nicely.
Summary: This year X-treme put on a pretty good show. Although, their layout seemed to be very similar to past years, they have reworked some of their rooms and created some nice scenes. Their attraction had a high level of detail in many rooms and really set a good mood through out.
Some favorite scenes in the attraction included a nasty kitchen, a rocking room, and a disorienting pitch black maze. Overall, i feel that X-treme hauntings has finally overcome some of their prohibitive factors, and created a really effective show. And at a price of $14, it wasn't too overly expensive, although I felt a dollar or more off would have increased the value of this attraction greatly.