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Discussion Starter #1
Hello fellow haunters! I am trying to get an early start on my 2014 halloween haunted garage. The theme I am kicking around is "Asylum for the Criminally Insane". I have thought of the obvious scares: people in cells, jumping at the bars, padded rooms, etc... I would like some variety, however.

I will have about a half-dozen actors (mostly teenagers with one or two adults) and I build rather simple pneumatic cylinder or wiper-motor driven props.

Any ideas? Here is a link to my website that has pics vids from previous haunts to give ya'll an idea of stuff I have done in the past.

www.macehaunt.com

Thanks!

-Stan
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks, Hilda! I will check out both of those! I am still very early in the process (my wife keeps saying "it's March and you are thinking about Halloween??". haha.

I am kicking around three possible themes... leaning toward #1.

1. Asylum for the Criminally Insane. Slanted heavily to “criminally” insane. Mental illness is not something to be taken lightly… don’t want to offend anyone.
2. Necropolis – City of the Dead. Movie and/or video game. Make it more mythical-scary, supernatural rather than coffins and vampires. Costumes and scenes will be challenging.
3. A Winter’s Night – loosely based on Disney’s “Winter’s Night – The Haunting Of Hawthorn Cemetery”. Costumes and room design will be a challenge.

-stan
 

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Nox Arcana did an album called "Blackthorn Asylum" that combined the asylum theme with H.P. Lovecraft's "From Beyond." You could try using that as the soundtrack and throwing in some Lovecraftian beasties.
 

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I saw a video where someone built a cage/jail cell that looked like it was built against the wall but was on wheels. There was an actor inside that did the typical yelling/screaming/cage rattling. When the moment was right the actor grabbed the bars and ran at the patrons, cage and all. Based on what I saw in the video, it appeared people were somewhat lulled into a sense of security knowing the actor was locked inside a cage and couldn't get to them. When the cage came at them there definitely appeared to be a sudden feeling of OMFG!!!! I wish I could remember who did this so I could give them credit, I thought it was a brilliant idea.
 

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Try a drop panel scare

We did an asylum theme for our Lions Club 3-D Chromadepth Haunted Barn portion of the annual hayride.

I built a cell area, where people would see me behind the "glass" window of my cell. It was actually a drop panel that I could drop and really catch people off guard. Many people felt safe that I was behind the window, so they walked right up and made faces at me. The panel would drop quickly, with a bang and I was suddenly reaching out for them. Many people hit the ground trying to get away!






This was a very effective scare. It does not have to be done with 3-D chromadepth. The drop panel will work well with conventional lighting.

Eric
 

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Thanks, Hilda! I will check out both of those! I am still very early in the process (my wife keeps saying "it's March and you are thinking about Halloween??". haha.

I am kicking around three possible themes... leaning toward #1.

1. Asylum for the Criminally Insane. Slanted heavily to “criminally” insane. Mental illness is not something to be taken lightly… don’t want to offend anyone.
2. Necropolis – City of the Dead. Movie and/or video game. Make it more mythical-scary, supernatural rather than coffins and vampires. Costumes and scenes will be challenging.
3. A Winter’s Night – loosely based on Disney’s “Winter’s Night – The Haunting Of Hawthorn Cemetery”. Costumes and room design will be a challenge.

-stan
DC - for my two-cents worth, here are my suggestions
1. get yourself a copy of Alice Cooper's From the Inside It might give you some insight to the criminally insane
2. try this all in black and white. This is what I think of - old 50's style horror movies
3. umm, umm I got nothin'. I've never heard of this Disney production
Not the greatest suggestions, but more food for thought
 

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Discussion Starter #12
2012 Goth Gloom Spookhouse

I saw a video where someone built a cage/jail cell that looked like it was built against the wall but was on wheels. There was an actor inside that did the typical yelling/screaming/cage rattling. When the moment was right the actor grabbed the bars and ran at the patrons, cage and all. Based on what I saw in the video, it appeared people were somewhat lulled into a sense of security knowing the actor was locked inside a cage and couldn't get to them. When the cage came at them there definitely appeared to be a sudden feeling of OMFG!!!! I wish I could remember who did this so I could give them credit, I thought it was a brilliant idea.
I think that was the 2012 Goth Gloom Spookhouse! I saw that moving cage and thinking about making one of my own.

The video is here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T_rqUrBY38Q
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Yeah, I love those Hi-Rez vids... I am thinking about the Axe Killer one and build the door myself. Need to research what material is used so that the axe appears to come through the door (latex?). And sync the props to the video will be challenging unless I buy more stuff (I use DMXorcist with VSA with wireless remote triggers). The timing of the pneumatics with the axe strikes has to be exact so I might have to buy one of those decoders... wife is gonna love that!
 

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Discussion Starter #14
I have a pretty creepy custom track I made that might fit the bill. Right click/save as to down load it or just click to play to listen. Great to just loop play in a scene. On a good sound system, it'll do the trick all by itself. Crank...the...volume....! :confused:

Dungeon Torture!

Here's all of them I did. Never know what you might need-

http://www.halloweenforum.com/halloween-music/116239-my-sound-tracks-still-down-load-free.html
OMG, this is awesome! Thank you so much!
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Thanks to everyone who has replied. In general, I am thinking of having the following rooms (just off the top of my head):

Entry Sally Port ... get everyone tense. the haunt 'guide' will give them the "don't approach the bars, don't get separated from the group" lecture.
Solitary Confinement ward - Similar to the Hannibal Lecter cell but with bars.
One cell would have a "Hannibal-type actor" (with a secret exit so he can sneak up on people
Padded room cell - Like the one where James Moriarty was chained to the wall (in the new Sherlock series). Another live actor in here
Axe Killer room - possibly... if i can work out how to build the prop
Creepy hallway - similar to the entryway in the Goth Gloom Spookhouse 2012 haunt
Bulging Door prop in the hallway, sparking fusebox, breaking pipe. When the pipe breaks, alarms would sound...
Electric Chair prop - on the fence about this one... really doesn't fit...

this leads to the main room. The 'research lab' of the asylum. In here would be the moving cage prop, some actors that seem to be confined but break free, various 'steampunk' pieces of equipment... pneumatic cylinders making things go "boom".

Taking a lot of ideas from Goth Gloom Spookhouse haunt. They really did a super job! I just can't figure out where I can use my giant spider from last year :)

I am still torn between this idea and a more "artsy" Winters Night theme...

Keep the ideas coming!
 
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