|16 out of 25 people thought this review was helpful.|
|Reviewed by: spook   (Event Visited: 10/05/14 @ 7:15 pm) |
Review Posted: 10/05/14
| Overall Score:|
|Scare Factor: Very High | Atmosphere: Very Good|
Visibility/Location: They are in a large abandoned dept store on a corner with a professional sign on the building. Just off a major highway
Wait Entertainment: They have a large expensive prop that you pose in front of for Facebook. Other than that the characters might be the weakest part of their game. They do have a large movie playing with no sound.
Length of Event: 30 minutes or so
Actor Performance: Oh yea...stellar. they have the perfect mix of performance art and straight shock value. the alternate and occasionally mix the two forms.
Patron Flow Inside Attraction: I think we were slow because there is so much eye candy to take in. the group behind us didn't quite catch us but they were closing.
Appropriate Ages: This is a top scare type haunt so your 10 year old better be tough....real tough.
Props / Special FX: Nailed it. They have as many top notch animated props as you are likely to see in Chicago. I need not describe them as you will need to experience them. Only one complaint they need to cover the mechanics on the dinosaur.
Costumes / Make-up: Again they nailed it. They didn't have a lot of latex masks 9 not that that's bad) but what was there was appropriate for the scenes. Lots of straight makeup well done.
Summary: I thought basement of the dead had the best 3d experience I had seen. These guys are a tad better. Really great art work mixed with props and live action. As for the first part of the haunt I thought I was going to experience just the classic darkened maze...then the good stuff hit and it never stopped. I am speaking to my own taste but I have never experienced a better haunt. It is the classic maze but the detail is outstanding. The scenes are well thought out and the actors come out of places you will never see coming.They don't do pitch black anywhere. If you haunt fanatics remember creature crypt(sadly gone) and dream reapers (again sadly gone) you will be excited by the quality of this show. Skellington manor in Rock island is the only other haunt that is as consistent as this one in delivering the mix of scare arts(performance,screams, animation)of the many I have seen.
|8 out of 17 people thought this review was helpful.|
|Reviewed by: cupajoe415   (Event Visited: 10/18/14 @ 8:15 pm) |
Review Posted: 10/20/14
| Overall Score:|
|Scare Factor: High | Atmosphere: Good|
Visibility/Location: It was one of the easiest to find! No problems there.
Wait Entertainment: There were a few good actors out front scraping metal on pavement and the like. It was good fun.
Length of Event: 15 minutes
Actor Performance: Acting was good. There was not alot of screaming or startles per say, but there were some good one liners.
Patron Flow Inside Attraction: We ran into another group a couple of times.
Appropriate Ages: 16+
Props / Special FX: Great effects guys. The house was pretty good. It was my first time, but I was pretty impressed. Reminded me a lot of what Dream Reapers used to be. The ceiling was a bit to exposed in places but beyond that, you had some great props.
Costumes / Make-up: Meake-up was excellent.
Summary: I usually don't give the whole rundown of each haunt I visit since I visit 10+ every season. I usually do like to share just a few of the improvements I saw over last year, if I visited it before, as well as mention anything that I think might be helpful for the future of the haunt.
I really enjoyed my first time to Massacre. I wouldn't say anything was really stand out, but I think it has the potential to be great if it continues. I think the actors were good but could be a little more creative in their lines. The props were excellent. Good haunt overall.
|6 out of 16 people thought this review was helpful.|
|Reviewed by: DragonSlayer   (Event Visited: 10/23/14 @ 10:00 pm) |
Review Posted: 10/28/14
| Overall Score:|
|Scare Factor: Very Low | Atmosphere: Fair|
Visibility/Location: Massacre is fairly easy to spot with its huge light up sign.
Wait Entertainment: There were not many people in the haunt when we visited but there were two actors roaming around and messing with people.
Length of Event: About 25 minutes.
Actor Performance: I was very let down with most of the actors in Massacre. The best actors were the guy scaring people in the line and the guy dressed up as a demonic pope in the church scene. Other than that I felt very disapointed by all the acting overall. Most of the actors were off cue and some were even talking or doing other things when they noticed us and tried to get into character quickly. For this haunt I was very let down by the performances.
Patron Flow Inside Attraction: There were not many people in the haunt but we never ran into anyone and no one ran into us.
Appropriate Ages: I would say 10 or so but the church scene is a bit overly done so it's really up to the parents.
Props / Special FX: The special effects and props were great but the problem is that they are not well hidden and not well placed.
Costumes / Make-up: The costumes and make up were good. A lot of detail on most of the characters and I really like the doll room!
Summary: I had high hopes for Massacre especially since it was ranked as the best haunt in IL and I really liked it last year. All these hopes soon became disappointments though as soon as I started through the haunt. The problem is that Massacre tried to do too much with their space and they spread themselves too thin. Most of the haunt has light bleeding through from all of the other rooms much like 11th Hour did when they first moved to their permanent spot. I get it, you have to open to make money but save some of the space to make improvements instead of spreading across the entire warehouse. There were not nearly enough actors in there, there were not nearly enough props in there, and most of the scenes were from last year.
The props were very nice and elaborate but things need to be better hidden to create that reality you want to convey. The T-rex looked laughable as this head comes near you on a huge bar sticking 5 feet out of the wall. Fix that! Cover it up better and actually the tightness of where that prop was last year made it more intense and believable. Massacre is too open inside. Smaller twists and turns would make many rooms more intense. Also, actors talking to each and not caring much about their craft really detracts from a haunt.
On a positive note though, Massacre has a lot of potential. If they control the lighting better from room to room they will have a top haunt. The 3D is great but make those areas a bit tighter especially where the barrels are to really get people's attention. The best part of Massacre is the purge are. You leave a movie theater and end up on the streets. This was well done and I thoroughly enjoyed this part the most.
Overall, Massacre is a decent haunt and the only reason I rated it so low is because of the hype and recognition that comes with this haunt. We expect the best and you have delivered before and I know you can again. I think Massacre will get better but this year is not the best of Massacre. It has seen better days before.
|12 out of 36 people thought this review was helpful.|
|Reviewed by: asylum_clown   (Event Visited: 10/12/14 @ 8:00 pm) |
Review Posted: 10/13/14
| Overall Score:|
|Scare Factor: Medium | Atmosphere: Very Good|
Visibility/Location: Fairly easy to find. Connected with a little strip, next to a Burger King. Bright neon sign.
Wait Entertainment: It's there, from the lot to the actual waiting que. It was okay, in general. Also a movie plays against the back wall.
Length of Event: About 20-25 minutes going at steady pace.
Actor Performance: It was okay. Low energy for most of the rooms and half the time the actors seemed to enjoy telling d**k (censored) jokes more than actually scaring you
Patron Flow Inside Attraction: Could have been better. Not bad per se but there were moments where I (by myself) caught up to the group in front of me and had to wait. I went on a non busy night so... don't really understand what the holdup was.
Appropriate Ages: 16+ I'd say, due to female top nudity on at least one prop and adult themes and language.
Props / Special FX: Awesome!
Costumes / Make-up: Some really good work here!
Summary: I arrived at 8: 15 pm in what was technically the exit parking lot. There is a lot at the entrance and on at the exit of the haunt. I wish this was more clearly labeled, but it's not really a complaint. They had actors in both locations scaring patrons so it didn't really bother me. I walked around the building to the front and entered the dark building. As I had assumed it really wasn't busy. I presented my online ticket and went in and waited in the main line. They had The Conjuring playing on their back wall. Now, this isn't a complaint by any means, but I do think that it is a rather missed opportunity for them to just be playing any random horror film in the que line. I personally would have rather seen a gue video made by them kind of setting the atmosphere and introducing us to the haunt in some way. But perhaps that's just the theatricality in me.
The que line itself was rather boring. The actors weren't really that energetic and active which was disappointing. When I had walked up and was getting in line I saw one of them cornering a girl and I automatically was thinking to myself "yeah, this is going to be great." But the rest of the fifteen minute wait time was just filled with nothing. There were a few others roaming in the line, but they just kind of stared at people and moved on.
Then finally I came to the entrance. I was by myself and, shockingly, they let me go through by myself. I'm sure that had they been busier this would not have happened, but I honestly REALLY appreciated that. Like, a lot. I didn't want to be the awkward random person in someone else's group and ruin their time and I wanted to make sure that I got the scares. So, Massacre people- thank you. The clown guy letting the groups go in was funny, and was entertaining to watch.
As I entered the house all it took was one clean shock to my hand from a shock pad to let me know to keep my arms tucked in. The first thing that struck me were the sets. Throughout most of the haunt, with only a few exceptions towards the middle, the detail was exquisite in the rooms. Everything seemed really high quality, and it was very obvious that some love went into creating those walls. Since I was going through by myself I did often have a chance to actually take in the detail which was nice. Even the makeup and costumes were really good. The makeup was well done, and really organic and consistent, and I think out of the whole event there were only two costumes I didn't like or think were that good. One was a clown, who's costume wasn't tied very well in the back and you could see his normal shirt under it and the other one was the black costume worn by a female in the theater towards the end of the haunt. It just seemed cheap to me and thrown together- and thusly out of place in such an elaborate setting.
The use of animatonics was great, and the ones that they had really stuck out to me. My favorite being (surprise, surprise) the dinosaur in the jungle area. But I did have one problem with that one room though. The dinosaur, while a great effect and actually really fluid in it's movements, was still very obviously fake. All you had to do was just look past the neck and see the bars and poles sticking out- which really brought me out of the moment. Had the mechanical workings just been hidden it would have been my favorite room in the entire haunt.
While the rooms themselves were quite elaborate and had quite a few hidden scares in them. they can't hold the show up by themselves. The actors are the key, and this is the part that I am the most torn about. On one had there were some actors here that did a fairly good job. On the other there were areas that had nobody in them at all that really needed actors, and there were actors who were just not on the ball (at least tonight. As a haunter myself I understand, fully, that sometimes you just have an off night.) Now, I have a philosophy as a haunter. You have three options when it comes to interacting with guests. You can either 1.) scare them, 2.) creep them out, or 3.) make them laugh. That's it. And it seemed like most of these actors followed the same logic. The problem is... they all followed number three when it came to me. The other problem is, it was always the same jokes. They were either telling d**k (censored) jokes, or making some kind of lude comments. They also often whipped out quite a few rape-ish comments in the vein of Deliverance, in attempts to creep me out and, I'm sorry guys, that just doesn't work for me. Be it a joke or an attempted creep out though it kind of got old, real fast because it was the same lines over and over, room after room. I understand that when you have a lone guy it's easy to just automatically go to "that place." But just remember... all of you are thinking the same thing. Stand out. Now, there were actors that did a good job of thinking outside the box with some comments. The demonic priest and the trans hooker near the end get the biggest kudos from me for being original. There was also a clown in the 3D haunt that was pretty active and energetic. Neither of them scared me really, but they had some nice thought out dialogue and were able to think on their feet.
There was also a slight problem from time to time with actor energy in certain areas. The doll room, and the mechanic room are two that really stick out to me. The doll room makes me sad because actually, besides the jungle, this visually was my favorite room. It was genuinely creepy. I've been to many haunts and they usually all have doll rooms. This was the first one that really ever gave me any pause. But the actress in it didn't even attempt to scare me. She just stood there. The mechanic in the next room too just kind of stood there and let me pass.
As a side note, I also want to give the church room a shout out for being rather daring with the imagery. It was probably my favorite room because it had a good mesh of actor interaction as well as some really disturbing content.
As I said before there were some seemingly fairly bare areas throughout the house that I feel could have used more actors, which was odd to me because there would be smaller rooms with three or four actors in them at a time. I feel like some of them could have been more spread out.
Also there was a slight problem with catching up with the group in front of me from time to time. Now, I thought I was going through at a good pace. Probably slower than most because I was trying to take it all in, and I was by myself. And I understand that people get scared and stop in fear and what not. But it was a slow night, and I bumped into them quite a bit and had to have actors tell me to wait several times. I don't think that should happen. But in general I feel the pacing wasn't that bad. All together it took me twenty-three minutes to go through the entire haunt myself (I timed it,) not including the que line at the beginning.
Fear Factory was probably my biggest surprise. Most 3D haunts don't really have that good of a 3D effect. I can say, without a doubt, that this haunt has some of the best 3D effects I have ever seen (outside of Halloween Horror Nights at Universal.) The let down to me? It wasn't a separate haunt like I had been led to believe from the promo material. It was just a section in the middle of the existing Massacre haunt and once you were done you went on with the rest of Massacre. I also wasn't a big fan of the being reused, but that's not really a complaint but more so a personal tick.
All in all I can't complain. I got a good deal, and I did get a few jumps in the house. While I would have liked to seen the cast (in general) matching the quality of the sets there were a few that were defiantly with it and made it a really worth my time. It's defiantly a production I can see growing in the future, especially if they keep going on their daring and ballsy path.