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Team Zombillies reviewed this attraction on September 15, 2012.
Final Score: 8.66
2012 is Chambers of Horror’s 33rd year in operation! This 4950 square foot indoor attraction utilizes their space unlike any other attraction we’ve seen to date to bring you around 30 minutes of screams! The crew draws from their 40+ years of experience to bring life to the story of a boy whose passion for fear escalates into an obsession! His idea was to create experiments based on peoples’ fears and, as the people fall victim to their fears, they become a new ‘chamber’ inside this dark attraction where you can try your luck as well! If you think you have what it takes to make your way through the Chambers of Horror and survive, then make sure to visit them for the 2012 haunt season!
There are 30 paid actors that have become victims of the Chambers throughout the years. There were interactive characters around almost every corner, virtually eliminating dead spots and keeping us on our toes! Starting early in the year on the 13th of every month all employees go through training that consists of scare tactics and safety, such as crowd control as well as dealing with emergency situations. All characters acted appropriately according to their scenes, and stayed in character which intensified the highlights of the attraction. As soon as we thought we were making our way to safety, the creatures inside the Chambers quickly let us know that we weren’t as smart as we thought we were! It seems as though they always had a way to bring us back after we thought we had escaped! Some of these terrifying and witty ‘victims’ and creatures include chainsaw-wielding madmen, trolls, a hunchback, and some more familiar characters like Freddy Krueger and Michael Myers. The most memorable character we encountered was Beetlejuice, and he was one of the most unique and well-played ghosts we have seen to date.
Most of the costumes throughout the attraction matched the scenes they were in and helped accent the characters wearing them, but some of them were more elaborate than others. Several masks are used effectively throughout the attraction and added a finishing touch to the ones that needed them. Makeup was also used (applied in-house) and was a contributing factor in why some characters stood out more than others.
Customer Service: 9.01
A searchlight on top of the building and a small black and orange sign by the road lets you know you have arrived at the Chambers of Horror and points the way to a large paved parking lot. Although the parking lot is dimly lit, it is free and there are also two portable restrooms for your convenience. As you make your way to the line you will notice the haunt’s hearse parked in front of the building and, beside it, a tent where Beetlejuice and a coffin ride can be found for a negotiable price. As you wait in line outside to purchase tickets, there is a small TV on the side of the building playing horror movie clips and a couple of actors interacting with the crowd to entertain you while you wait. One unique thing about this attraction is that once you purchase your tickets there is no longer a wait before you go through the haunt. Once inside the Chambers, there were plenty of well-lit exits and ramps. Stairs were present throughout the haunt but other ramps and secondary passages make this attraction handicap accessible. If you can escape the Chambers, a concession stand and friendly staff offer plenty of snacks, drinks, and spooky memorabilia including masks that you can buy before you leave. Another unique thing that we noticed about this haunt is the small museum of movie characters near the exit of the building with a life-like statue of Michael Myers as well as others.
When you arrive at Chambers of Horror you will notice that it resides within a building that grows creepier as the night draws on (the same one portrayed on their website). We didn’t notice any music outside the haunt with the exception of the TV playing horror movie flicks. The hearse, casket ride, Beetlejuice, and other roaming actors let you know you are at a haunted house and get you ready to experience the challenge the Chambers has in store for you!
Special Effects: 8.74
Chambers of Horror prides themselves in making the majority of their special effects in-house. From an excellent ‘Sematary’ to Freddy’s boiler, a vortex tunnel and a seemingly never-ending waterfall coming from what looks like an old sewer pipe, the crew behind the Chambers has displayed their talent for all to see! Among the finest of their disorienting tactics are some very intense strobes combined with carefully designed props and backdrops that will keep your head spinning no matter how many times you go through! We didn’t hear many sounds during our tour except for those accompanying dismembered bodies and the occasional outdoor power tool (usually used for cutting wood, but not here).
The story behind Chambers of Horror is the tale of a young boy who grew up enthralled with the idea of scaring people. As he grew older, his passion became an obsession. He started conducting ‘experiments’ on various people to try and find out what scared people the most. But as the Chambers grew scarier and more horrifying, they took on a life of their own, when they entrapped their own creator and those unfortunate enough to think they could make it through, forever doomed to relive their most terrifying fears and execute them on whoever dares to challenge the Chambers of Horror!
Fright Effect: 8.61
All of the preceding elements combined to make Chambers of Horror a haunt that we won’t soon forget! Scares range from some twisted humor and eerie fog scenes to blood-curdling screams and frantic chainsaw attacks. Distraction was also used inside the Chambers, so don’t let your guard down! Our group of reviewers was split up into 2 groups before we entered to ensure that everyone got a scare, regardless of our line position. Another plus is that the crew was able to guarantee that no two groups meet each other while inside the attraction, no matter how fast you think you can run!
Our high score in this category reflects how well this haunt is set up, given their space limitations in this small building. The fact that they were able to cram 30 minutes of ‘entertainment’ into less than 5000 square feet and keep it all at $12 for general admission is a testament to the years of experience that the crew of Chambers of Horror has brought to the table. VIP tickets are $17. You can bring a non-perishable canned food item and receive $1 off general admission on Fridays. This offer does not apply on Saturdays, but this helps the Chambers keep their ticket prices competitive with other attractions in the area. In summary, $12 for an estimated 30 minutes makes this a must-see attraction if you’re visiting the Dayton, Ohio area this haunt season!