View Full Version : For Pro haunts over 8000 s.f, How many rooms do you have?

02-26-2007, 11:49 AM
I am trying to finalize our design plan, and we are worried that we do not have enough scare rooms for the size of haunt that we are building. My question poses as this; If you are over 8,000 s.f. how many actual haunt rooms do you have in your haunt? Do you have mazes? If so, what is the percentage of maze with the percentage of scare rooms? I would love to hear from haunts of all size big and small. Help a guy out!

Thanks everyone, you guys have knowledge that is PRICELESS!

Jim Warfield
02-26-2007, 12:05 PM
I always thought to keep the room as big as possible, or maybe just have one big room. Divide things up using lighting effects, shadows, lasers, some fog.
Maybe someday someone will build a big box to place in the middle of a big room that could do all of this . Set-up and tare down would be pretty cost-efficient, wouldn't it be?

If you are relying upon the rooms to slow down the show you will need a fair number of rooms,(because scared people tend to move fast) if you give a more theatrical show with storytelling actors you will need fewer rooms, but of course commanding the attention of a group to tell them any kind of a story is a talent not commonly found, then again finding the money and time to build alot of rooms might not be a commonly found item for you either?

Mr. Haunt
02-26-2007, 12:25 PM
I would have to agree with Jim. It depends on how fast you want patrons to go through your haunt.
Bulding some rooms larger will give you a chance to get more creative with your set and prop set up. Don't forget you could also get your patrons to interact with your actors, give them the feel like they are a part of the set this will also make it feel that they are spending more time in your haunt, then when they least expect it, you scare the crap out of them :shock: . You can get creative in small or large rooms.
I would also say, it would depend on your story line. If your haunt takes place in a mansion or a hotel, the rooms might be smaller. If you are doing a dungon they might be a little bigger such as a large torture chamber.
If you have a section where you take the patrons into an outdoors type of seen a large room will give you space for great detail. Make them feel like they are outside, even though they are not.

I hope this helps.

Mr. Haunt

02-26-2007, 03:15 PM
We build some where around 40,000 sf. This space is divide among several buildings each having several attractions in it. Each house size is around 5000 sf. Depending on what kind of scene you want, that will determine the size, we have some scenes, such as foyers into the hotel, which are 16 x 20 x 16 tall. Then we have down to a 4 x 8 walk by scene. It all depends on what the scene or house them warrants.

02-26-2007, 03:31 PM
I would suggest doing about a 6K sq. ft. haunt with a 2K sq.ft. indoor q-line. People don't like waiting outside in the cold... especially in the rain! Just a suggestion... -Tyler

Jim Warfield
02-26-2007, 03:33 PM
Pstchologically various sizes of spaces will effect people differently.
We all know about claustraphobia from small spaces (or spaces perceived to be be smaller than they may actually be) but larger than normal spaces may also adversely affect some people's feeling of well-being, adding to apprehension.
Of course up-close hiding places in a large space could get them when they begin to relax, thinking nothing is goung to get them?

Greg Chrise
02-26-2007, 04:10 PM
It's also about being different. If you go through 60 haunts and list the number of rooms you generally have 10 to 13 major scenes and usually large rooms 20 by 12 in some instances that add up to 5 to 6,000 SF. Usually a 20 plus thousand square foot haunt is 4 of these all together with a central hidden corridor system so generically 40 to 50 rooms in 20,000 SF.

Just to be different, I have in 3,000 SF 18 highly entertaining things happening and mostly tight areas and small rooms with only two large scenes. As a result, we compete with the big boys and no one really knows why. I've watched knowledgeable people stand in front of my building and tilt there head like a dog hearing a weird noise trying to figure out why it works to the same level.

It isn't necessarily any cheaper to build the haunt, just limited on overall space. To me bigger space means higher rent and that is just evil. When you go location shopping you can convert the dimensions into dollars per square foot to compare. This works for buying or leasing. It works for storage shopping too.

What happens if you have a large temporary location and then the following year such a large space is not available? Yo just lost your customer following because it isn't what it was.

I have also seen large areas with 3 different themed haunts in them but, you go from one to the other like it is all one big haunt. Why not have them as 3 seperate tolerable events? Because they don't really stand up on their own as entertainment value.

If I had 8,000 Sf I would have two 3,000 SF with seperate entries and lines with a 2,000 SF scened out lobby. But, that's just the way I roll.

So many are so large it becomes more like an endurance test rather than a long fulfilling entertainment venue. I paid to walk this far? If I just wanted to walk I could go shopping at walmart. The dog food is on the opposite end from the milk. That's pretty scary. But, you can go into three rows of toys and lose an hour and a half. If you are a woman apparently 12 feet of make up is good for an hour and a half. I'm forever pleading to the security cameras "Please help me!" when ever Vampirella has somehow slipped into there.

It isn't square footage so much as how good were the number of things that happened. 18 things is enough to swirl anyone's head. 25 things is quite the value, it should be over now. 35 things is okay I'm feeling abused now. 40 things is okay screw this I have had enough of your crap. 50 is that sucked I'm only doing this once ever in my life and would not really recommend it unless I hate someone.

I would rather have them exit fulfilled and highly entertained. Also if you have a smaller amount of things to develop to a higher quality rather than 50 stupid fugly junky things that are supposed to be scary or something you will not be thought of as highly.

Going to the other extreme. There are a couple seance rooms that have 30 things happen in them that only take up so many square feet (maybe 400 SF) for the event and 800 SF for the people and they work to some extent. Then you are dealing with how lame it is versus attention span.

It sounds good in advertisments "100,000 SF of Spooky Stuff" but in application it sucks. Yeah 100,000 SF of undecorated plywood. I could see that at Home Depot for free. Unless you are ZZ Top and 9 trailer trucks of millions of dollars of stuff has rolled into town for the biggest show ever. That worked in 1979 when the tickets were only $18. Only a few haunts have even similar possible name recognition. Now if Neatherworld had a record on the top 40 for 20 years it would work.

Jim Warfield
02-26-2007, 05:08 PM
A ZZ Top haunted house? Would it be illustrating the nasty things possible for mankind as described in some of their most famous songs? That would be stimulating, I think? ("On the rough side of the road, in a ditch?" something like that?) ex cetra........