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Please note: this review is for the 2016 season rather than the current season.

Twisted Realms Haunted House (CLOSED)

by PaigeBerrier (Junior Review Crew Member) after attending on Sunday, October 2, 2016 at about 7:30 p.m.

Fun Factor: Very High Fear Factor: High

Review

Let me start by saying that I was blown away by this haunt. This is a great experience for those looking for something more interactive, but there were some truly scary moments as well.

I went to Twisted Realms on a Sunday night, right as they were opening. Although a little hard to find initially, the Elkhorn Flea Market grounds offers a lot of area to work with and clean, working bathrooms (yes!). The waiting area for this haunt is a separate room with bleachers, so no waiting in line! They also have scary carnival games available to play ($1) for prizes and a photoshoot area with a creepy throne, as well as actors to entertain. Each group is called in using a ticket number.

Within the haunt, we were first told the rules gathered around a fire, being "read tales" from a creepy witch. I thought this was not only unique but it made sure people understood what they could and could not do. After that, our haunt began! As we made our way through the haunt, we encountered some tight areas, but mostly it is larger rooms, giving everyone a chance to see and, in this case, touch! You have to find your way through the haunt looking for hidden doors, crawling through areas, and pulling on elements to reveal passages. We were offered (not at all obvious) advice by actors when needed. There were several truly scary concepts for these rooms, and all of the actors gave an amazing performance - they never broke character, screams were LOUD, and all of their warnings and musing told a cohesive story of a cult gone way, way bad.

This is a must visit. As their story continues year to year, I can only imagine this haunt will continue to improve! I was EXTREMELY impressed with every element - handling the crowds, the creative themes of the room, all of the ways we had to exit different areas, the costumes and acting of the performers, and the length and visuals. Amazing!

Signage / Visibility / Location


Unfortunately, this was the one area lacking in this haunt. It is at the Elkhorn flea market grounds, which is a large and somewhat unmarked space (but a great area!), so they definitely could use some signs by the main road. However, once in the right area things were clearly marked. I also called after being confused about their location and the staff was very friendly. One thing I really appreciated about this haunt is their full, well-lit, clean bathrooms!

Wait Area / Line Entertainment


I cannot say enough good things about this portion of the haunt. The wait area is in a separate building which is circular in shape and has bleachers along the walls, giving people waiting a (huge) space to sit in their groups. They do entrance by ticket numbers, so there is no waiting in line. They also featured four carnival games for $1 each! Three games were based on skill (throwing) and one on chance. They offered prizes of (weird! creepy!) stuffed animals to those who won! Not sure if this is standard (we arrived literally when they opened on a Sunday night) but they offered to exchange 15 prizes for a t-shirt as well. They ALSO had an area with a throne and mist for photoshoots, which the staff was more than happy to pose with.

Actors' Performance


I was very impressed with the actors in this haunt. Several of the actors had amazing, shrill screams and they did not hold back! There was also a range of ages participating, so there was a lot of variety in characters. There were lots of jump scares at key moment, and the actors had a great grasp on timing. One actor even managed to separate our group (of four) at a crucial moment for a few minutes, which really added to the experience!

The actors never broke character even while our group was attempting (and failing) to exit a room. They were helpful without being obvious, and the time spent figuring out the escape route allowed each character to have their own individual "performance" that we could appreciate.

Sets Scenes / Props / FX


This unique haunt is centered around solving puzzles and finding doors and secret entrances to get into the next section, and I was absolutely blown away with the creativity (and creepiness!) of some of the scenarios. Our group had to work together to get into the next section. We also liked how each area was a room rather than a hallway, so everyone could see and touch around. We were encouraged to touch and move things.

They were also very consistent in their storyline (The Cult) and the haunt reflected that. We went through several different themed sections, including one that briefly went outdoors.

Length


We spent over an hour and a half throughout the waiting area (intentionally, we were playing games!) and the haunt. They were happy to let us take our time walking through did we were never rushed, only given (not obvious) hints when it was needed.

Crowd Control


We didn't experience a crowd on this night, but it was obvious they were prepared, and had an amazing system in place to handle a large crowd. I loved their waiting area!

Most Memorable Moment


There were so many memorable moments at this haunt, but I wouldn't want to give away any of the secret exits! Suffice to say we were SHOCKED with some of the reveals!

Summary

An extremely creative, interactive haunt with an amazing wait area and staff! Truly an expected gem!

View all Twisted Realms Haunted House (CLOSED) reviews

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October 15th, 2019 7:28 p.m. CDT 1.27