I want to start out this review with a big THANK YOU! Thank you Abyss for finding the secret Haunted house formula. The majority of haunts donít understand the formula and Iím ecstatic you do.
The formula to a good Haunted Attraction is simple. Build a tight, disorienting maze, create dirty, old not so perfect scenes, use animatronics sparingly, and fill the friggen place with actors. Letís face it, haunted houses these days are just too perfect and are filled with too many over priced props. Iím glad to see a haunt keeping it old school! With unexpected startle scares everywhere you turn, talented interactive actors, dark constricted hallways, and a very unique atmosphere that will surely keep you hesitant to enter the next room. The Abyss is a must attend haunt this year!
I donít want to give too much away in this review because you really have to do yourself a favor and check it out. But, I have to point out some of things that really stood out to me. First things first, this haunt is filled with startle scares. They do such a great job with hiding actors in the most obscure places and dividing your attention into different areas. For example, my group entered a room with a sewer pipe in the side of the wall. An actor was trying to escape the pipe because someone was pulling her from the other side. Your attention was glued to this scene because she was asking for your hand and screaming frantically. They used opportunityís like these to lock in your attention and then BAM, an actor is waiting for you when you turn around. Scenes like these were placed all over the haunt and it really helped with the scare factor. They do a great job with using actors in other ways than just to scare you, but to set up scares as well.
Another favorite part of mine was the torture room. The acting in this room was extremely intense! A woman was lying on a medical table frantically trying to get out of the hands of the killer, thereís blood everywhere, then you turn the corner and some psycho is drilling out a girls mouth with a dentist drill. The acting MADE this room. When I say they were in character, I mean they were IN character. Flailing arms, splattered blood, horrific screams. They truly wanted you to believe they were getting tortured and it wouldíve made anyone cringe.
After the inside portion of the haunt you find yourself outside in a cornfield. Dimly lit pathways wind you through the quiet corn maze. Again, the atmosphere takes you over and you are totally immersed. I would of liked to see more actors in the corn maze, but the quietness and unknown is a scare factor in itself. Concluding the corn maze you enter a cemetery with tombs and actors appearing out from everywhere. At one point four to five actors surrounded my group and were prowling us to the next section of the haunt. I loved the fact that we ended up outside at the end of the haunt. You get the best of both worlds. In past years the haunt continued into another building after this portion, but I was saddened to find out they ended it outside this year without the other building.
The one thing that I would like to see next year is a more intense ending. The chainsaw ending is such an overused tactic and I would like something more creative to match the rest of your haunt
All in all, The Abyss is a very actor driven, get down to business, haunted attraction. You do not see whatís coming, and they do a tremendous job at scaring you. It really is one of Illinois best kept secrets when it comes to hunted attractions. If you want an exciting, keep you on your toes, haunted attraction, visit The Abyss. You wonít be disappointed! I am looking forward to next year!
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