View Full Version : Open Floor VS. Desired Path Walkthroughs?

07-21-2007, 10:26 PM
I've been thinking about this and wondering what everyone else thinks or is doing. I was wondering what your thought was/are/is on Open Floor or Desired Path Walkthroughs?

Now I know some of you might say by having an Open Floor you will probably want a guide to walk customers through the haunt. I personally don't want to have a guide at my haunt. I want to have the people immersed in where they are.

I also realize there are things to look out for with an open floor walkthrough. Thievery, damage, vandalism, and possibly more. With an open floor you could have cameras in every room so you can keep an eye on things and maybe have a mic in each room, so your security guard watching the video could get on a mic, plug in the room the people are in and tell them that there being watched and to stop what they are doing. That could solve somethings, but also could be more of a headache than anything. Also the actors in each room could watch the patrons and move them through to the next room after scaring them of course.

Desired path walkthough. The haunts I've been to either have a hallway like path with scenes on the sides of you and your looking through a window or something similar. Or the scene is roped off and your still walking in the hallway like path that has been designed for you.

I haven't been to a lot of haunts(good haunts..lol) and could be wrong with my basis for this thread, but I would like to kow what you all think.


07-22-2007, 04:08 AM
Open floorplan with ALL props nailed/screwed/glued down and actors in every room.

07-22-2007, 10:50 AM
I have neverbeen thru an open floorplan haunt before...I would be interested in going thru one.

Jim Warfield
07-22-2007, 08:00 PM
Theoretically it sounds excellant. In practise I think you would get a residue of people who would never want to leave ...until they felt they had gotten their "money's worth", as equated with the clicks of their "clock" (not yours)
"I paid $10.oo , I want to be in here looking around for the next 35 minutes."
Maybe the whole place could have a hydralically tipped floor to slide them through the exit every so often?
Even as incredibly long as my house tour is, people still stop and won't move at a certain part because they assume the tour is about over. (and they have alot of tour left )
Maybe a trap door in the wall I can open from a distance by pulling a cable, showing them the body of a dead skunk will have to be installed?
I have never agreed with "Scare Forward" because I try very hard not to inspire running, which leads to falling , which makes injuries.
I have also never agreed with chasing people quickly through . I have been working on the place for 20 years I want them to see it! They paid to see it!
In a perfect world allowing those good, intelligent people to partake of your entertainment at their own speed would be wonderfull. Sometimes this even happenes here but not all the time by any means.

07-23-2007, 08:33 AM
I may have misunderstood what you meant by open floor plan. We have a definite pathway through the haunt but we do not separate the patrons from the scenes. There are no barriers such as the half walls, ropped off areas, windows, etc. mentioned in the original post. Patrons are not free to roam where ever they want.

07-23-2007, 12:21 PM
Sorry MindWerxKMG, let's see if I can explain it a little better.

Open floor plan walkthrough to me means walking through a room of a house/hospital/factory/prison, etc... and not just a hallway looking in at a room through a window or half wall with an actor or animatronic scaring patrons.

I haven't been to many haunts, only the ones around me. Maybe I should visit more haunts this season to get a feel for what walkthroughs require. B/c whats in my head for what I want might not be the best things for me.


07-28-2007, 12:50 AM
I don't know where you are located or how many haunts are in your area but you should attempt to see as many different haunts as you can! It can be very inspiring. Plus it is a lot of fun. Then you can determine what you like and dislike about the different styles of haunts or what may or may not work for your own haunt. If you have to, plan a trip to a bigger city near you that may have more options available. Of course if you are already running your own haunt then this can be hard to do.

I have visited many haunts in different parts of the U.S., from the big corporate ones like Knott's Scary Farm & Universal Studios all the way down to home haunts and you can always learn something from every haunt (even if it is what NOT to do). I also recommend going on busier dates (if possible) rather than slower ones as, in my opinion, haunts are always better when there is a crowd to enjoy them. [Plus, in my experience, when things are slower, haunt actors don't seem to put their all into the scares (and I have even experienced times when they seemed to prefer to socialize with each other than try to scare the few people attending.]

Jim Warfield
07-29-2007, 09:41 AM
The quality of the haunt experience can change drastically with each hour.
Same haunt but now a certain employee decided to go home 3 hours early, "just because", didn't tell anyone they are leaving, there goes that room or scare...
"Open Walk-through"? Good ! Now it might not matter so much if some of the helpers walked away!! (But nothing beats having live bodys around to keep the customer-inspired BS at a minimum)

07-30-2007, 08:40 AM
I am one for the open Floor plan.. I want my Customers to feel as much as they are in the room as possible. To have it roped off or to have a Path to me seems Silly. Let them walk into a room and be like Um I cannot Escape this monster coming at me. It is not Scary to me to have a wall or something to where the actors cannot go past.. Shrug. just my Opinion.

Jim Warfield
07-30-2007, 08:48 AM
Ahh yes, but build a stub-wall to keep the customer out of the display area, put a bright light on the far side of the wall, creating a very dark triangular shadow on the customer side of the wall then crouch down there only to stand up right in the customer's face at the most opportune moment!
The imagined safety of the wall is shattered in half a heart-beat.
Stub walls can be "Good".
Always give the patrons a seemingly "safe" place to rest or head to them change it into the scarest portion of the experience!

07-31-2007, 04:06 PM
we try to have a mixture of about 50/50 hallways and open floor scenes, with the hallways conecting the open floor scenes. this works well for us, as the hallways help control the thru-put and the scenes are stop gaps along the way. Even if you have a "open floor scene" you still may want to incorparate having a pathway thru the open scene. it is much scarier to interact within the confines of a scene then to view it from a distance like a painting on a wall. Have people walk into the dinning area and around the table then just walk past it.