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Read Other 2014 Haunt Reviews's
2014 Basement Of The Dead & Shattered Review

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Basement Of The Dead & Shattered
42 West New York St
Aurora, IL 60506

Visited: 10/19/14


Reviewed By: The Shadow
Visibility/Location: Might be hard-to-find for first timers, as it’s below street level. The numerous 1-way streets can be confusing, as well. Follow the blaring music to its spot by the river, or just locate the casino in downtown Aurora.
Wait Entertainment: Lots to see and experience here! A snack booth served popcorn, nachos and drinks, while a fire twirler amazed onlookers with her fiery acrobatics. Several characters on stilts walked to and fro, and one costumed character hopped around on springy pogo stick legs. Additionally, a zombified DJ appeared on a retractable stage and tossed out freebies (tote bags, T-shirts, bracelets) as he spun tunes. Thankfully there was ample wait entertainment, because the non-VIP queue time was well over 90 minutes.
Admission Price: Basement of the Dead: $18
Shattered: $10
Combo Pass: $25
Parking: $10 in the nearby multi-level garage

Basement of the Dead: 11.5 Minutes *
Shattered: 6 Minutes
* = Since people move through haunted attractions at different rates, your time will vary. Note: The time shown here represents the actual time spent moving forward through the attraction. Time spent waiting in queue lines, staging areas, intro scenes, rules rooms and when traffic jams cause patrons to come to a halt, has been subtracted. 

LPR: 1.750
LPR stands for Length/Price Ratio. It represents perceived value of an event, by comparing length vs price of admission. Higher numbers represent more value per dollar. Actual quality and/or entertainment value of an event are not factors in this calculation. Click Here to see how this event compares to others visited this year by the staff of
Scare Factor: Basement of the Dead: High
Shattered: Medium
Crowd Control: Basement of the Dead:

The ticket-taker at the haunt entrance asked ‘how many per group’ and ensured that a maximum of 7 entered at any one time. They spaced us out well enough that I didn’t run into anyone else until the prison-bar maze. As I attended the haunt alone, I attempted to remain by myself for the duration and didn’t have much of a problem doing so.


I didn’t encounter anyone else in this haunt, largely because there were so few people in line. So no issues here.


Basement of the Dead:

Several years back I visited (what was then called ‘Nightmares’) and fondly recall being scared out of my wits. Time has passed, but the cast & crew of Basement of the Dead is still able to scare the pants off of just about anyone.

You begin by descending a small set of stairs and crouching under an inflatable bag, and then the fun begins. Well-placed air jets, outstanding (scary) scene construction and high levels of gore make this Basement inadvisable for children under 13. Had the animatronic scares been timed better, the scare factor would easily be ranked as ‘very high’, but unfortunately many of them missed when I went through.

One of my favorite scenes involved a church room, with an undead nun and goathead priest pointing to us ‘sinners’. There were some particularly creepy props sitting in the pews, a few of them rocking back and forth. Many of the jump scares came courtesy of powerful air jets and truck horns which really kept me on my toes!

There was a spinning vortex hallway that was disorienting enough to begin with, but I’m almost positive that the BotD crew loosened up the moorings on the railings so that when you grabbed onto them to stabilize yourself (which you inevitable will), you wound up feeling even more off-balance. A nice touch to an otherwise standard haunt room.

At one point, a ghoul guided me (and only me) through a wooden door that led to another wooden door….that wouldn’t open. I spun around to discover that now both doors had been locked, and the ghoul had trapped me inside! He then dragged chains across the metal bars separating us, and briefly tormented me before allowing me to continue. I loved that idea; an excellent way to isolate guests!

With a high level of intensity maintained throughout, eleven-and-a-half minutes is a long time to be in a haunt, and for $18 I felt that the Basement was well worth it.


Low on actual scares, but very high on the “cool factor”, and overall extremely creepy. I have no fear of clowns whatsoever, but even I had to admit that the static props inside this mini-haunt were moderate-to-highly disturbing. I was VERY impressed with the 3D effects and color schemes, not so much with the acting. In fact, the acting inside was pretty bland with only a few actors strewn about, several of whom had to run back and forth between rooms. A few areas had a unique theme (eyeball room, clown head hallway), but the demented funhouse theme was prevalent throughout.

Some may find Shattered to be anticlimactic when compared to its next door neighbor, but I appreciated the different kind of unsettling scare that one can get from just looking at a terrifying prop—in 3D!

In short, I would recommend getting the combo pass to both haunts, as they each provide their own type of terror—BotD for its detailed scenes and overall intensity, and Shattered for some of *the* scariest figures you’ll see this side of Tim Curry’s Pennywise the clown.

If you’ve visited in the past, return. If you’ve never been, come. My complements to the Basement of the Dead crew on once again putting together a terrific haunt—it IS just as good as everyone says, and then some.

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