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goregator
02-28-2008, 03:16 PM
Hey guys, just got back from Disney and while there visited "Terror in Orlando". Now this may have been discussed here already but if so Ive missed it because Ive been away for a while due to a VERY crappy computer(finally bought a new one) What was your opinions before I give mine???

MDKing
02-28-2008, 03:44 PM
Well, I went through this past fall and there was pretty much 2 guys there doing tours and scares, for both haunts...one was the owner and another guy. With that being said, it was OK. It's Leonards old Mayhem Manor, the original oneI believe....


Allan

goregator
02-28-2008, 04:37 PM
same here. 1 actor in each haunt. Sets looked good. My wife and I were the only 2 customers. The cashier looked startled when we walked in and this was on a friday night. The main haunt, Mayhem Manor needs a better ending. Nothing made you wanna run out. In fact I didnt know it was over till I walked back into the lobby.

drfrightner
02-28-2008, 07:00 PM
Its not how I would do it for a tourist town but if it works it works.

If it was mine I would be building a Disney style attraction, with incredible scenes, sets, props and facade. This attraction in Orlando doesn't even have a cool sign or anything. It's really hard to find it. If you're going to run the attraction on bare bones staff I think you need more interaction, props, and animations.

Its not how I would do it to me its very basic. When you think about the success that Terror On Church Street had, when you think back they had incredible sets and props and lots of actors in incredible costumes. I would do it more like TOCS and not this Terror in Orlando.

But again if it works for them that is really all that is important.

Larry

goregator
02-29-2008, 05:56 PM
Its not how I would do it for a tourist town but if it works it works.

If it was mine I would be building a Disney style attraction, with incredible scenes, sets, props and facade. This attraction in Orlando doesn't even have a cool sign or anything. It's really hard to find it. If you're going to run the attraction on bare bones staff I think you need more interaction, props, and animations.

Its not how I would do it to me its very basic. When you think about the success that Terror On Church Street had, when you think back they had incredible sets and props and lots of actors in incredible costumes. I would do it more like TOCS and not this Terror in Orlando.

But again if it works for them that is really all that is important.

Larry


Excellent post! I hate it because I really wanna see the year round haunt do well in the Orlando market but Im concerned about TIO. Its funny you talk about the sign, we passed it twice before "accidentally" finding it.

MDKing
02-29-2008, 06:09 PM
It is pretty hard to find for sure, it's between a couple other businesses. I talked to the owner and he did say they were experiencing growing pains... He was a nice enough guy, but he kind of came off as thinking himself an expert to me. With a few more actors it could have way better. It was really one guy doing every scare, so that guy gets an "A" for effort to me!

Allan

Jim Warfield
02-29-2008, 06:49 PM
"One guy doing all the scares!?"
How preposterous! Who ever heard of a thing like that ever working?
HAHAHAAHA!

Greg Chrise
02-29-2008, 07:17 PM
And who knew you could cut down one of my facades like that?

drfrightner
03-01-2008, 05:11 AM
Whenever Terror on Church Street was around, they had awesome looking monsters walking around outside. I think they were the first haunt in the nation to do this... and it worked. They also had an awesome sign, the windows looked great, they had neon, they had a gift store, awesome actors, tons of actors, awesome sets, and more than anything a Disney quality attraction.

All this thing seems to be is a couple wood mazes with one actor jumping out at you... yes its a Pickel thing. If you ask me this didn't work out for Pickel in Salem, it didn't work out competing against Netherworld in Atlanta, and I doubt it will work here either.

At the very least these people need better signage, costume monsters walking around, and a kick ass lobby. I bet if you counted the people who walk in and then out it would equal how many buy tickets.

This is Orlando, the bar is set HIGH! You have to have a cool lobby and cool facade...sadly the rest of the attraction can suck but not the facade and not the lobby. If these people are to survive they need to do something outside and create a top flight lobby.

Larry

goregator
03-01-2008, 08:04 AM
Terror on Church Street was unbelievable. We toured that one at least 40 times when they were open. Remember after closing they reopened in a new spot on Church Street but it wasnt the same, it never recaptured the same mystique. I got a lot of my inspiration that I still use today from Terror. Terror in Orlando sadly doesnt come close. And yes the Lobby needs help. I was wishing that we walked in their and saw this great gift shop with props as well as souveniers, just like TOCS had. Nope, just a desk with a register in the corner with a couple of shirts tacked to the wall.

MDKing
03-01-2008, 08:55 AM
Jim, I understand you do your tours yourself and that's great. I also know you do a great job and are skilled at it. So, if you ever get the chance go see TIO! I think you'd appreciate what you do even more!

Allan

Greg Chrise
03-01-2008, 10:30 AM
Actually the Mayhem Manor Idea of only having one guy per group came from Leonard seeing Jim's performance only skip the performance part and focus only one one guy saying boo and getting the money.

The concept became that you could have 10 guides if there were the crowds and each guide doesn't follow but does the silly behind the scenes things that are supposed to be scary.

Even in Orlando getting customers is going to be tough all year round. All though they are there, they are there to see Mickey Mouse.

Jim Saw it wen it was in Myrtyl Beach, a hundred years ago, I saw it when it was North of Dallas.

The triangular grids are so much more of a value to the customers if there are 28 actors and props inside the walls, some detailing, strobes and fog. As these were intended to be starter or gypsie shows that are supposedly so easy to operate, all of those things never get put in there.

In comparison, Jim's tour takes an our and a half. Mayhem Manor with little interaction takes about 7 minutes to walk through. With all the interaction in place it can take 20 minutes and be worth the ticket price.

In secret emails, I agree that putting $250,000 into it might be over kill and never be gotten back because of the competition with why the tourists are really there.

It all comes down to the customers paying money. It sounds like they got Allan's money so it is a success! It isn't right but it is a success. Hopefully it is a starter haunt that over time can evolve into something?

Greg Chrise
03-01-2008, 11:04 AM
If it ever becomes a significant draw and a great attraction, Mickey will probably buy the property and bulldoze it over or let cute busy termites loose. If it is a bottom feeder show, it might be left alone and at least provide the operators with an income.

Building over time from pathestic to something good is also a survival technique. The customers experience the long term development and share the experience. You have cultivated a market and it isn't like everyone starts out with a million dollars to sit around on.

Fundamentally I would think it isn't good to go into places like that. Just one city over, it would be adored and built over time be the community made it all happen. Being a bottom feeder is still being a bottom feeder in the end of the story.

Just like when these guys took all this stuff down the street from Netherworld.

Sometimes it works, if there are NO other haunted houses and 4.5 million people a month are walking buy and it is cheap enough. If it really worked, it would not be moving around.

The big part of what is missing in these start up scenarios is having lots of partners expecting to get a big piece of some imaginary pie and the fact that they always end up in some high dollar rent situation instead of owning the property. Then the show never evolves because it is under hardshp from day one.

Then there is that lack of customer satisfaction thing.

If you take that same unit and put 20 actors in it, have lighting, detailed walls, fog, props, story lines and no focus on through put, then when you exceed capacity you add haunts instead of run people faster, then you have a business. You also place the thing in a community that has nothing and by the end of the season everyone is thanking you for all that it provides, an outlet for the actors to do something and in some cases be emowered where they otherwise wuld never have so much fun. This fun sparks the customers obviously into equally enjoying the thing immensly. Then you don't do it for greed, you give 80% to charity. Everything is paid for, rent has been sponsored. Then you have something that isn't going to fought or thought to be a rip off or a bottom feeder or ends up owing someone money.

goregator
03-01-2008, 11:29 AM
Im really pulling for the TIO guys, the industry has to succeed in the Orlando market. Maybe their Sept and Oct months are phenomenal??? In another note it was VERY sad to see the cleared out property where Skull Kingdom once stood...

SomeThingInTheIce
03-01-2008, 01:19 PM
Chainsawwolf.com is posting thst TIO is closing, its last day will be March 1st 2008. So once again these mazes will be back on the market to drain someones bank account. Maybe someone will get them and make something out of them. It is sad I was going to check them out this Halloween when I headed to HHNs.
heres a link to the post:http://groups.yahoo.com/group/chainsawwolf/message/33404

HouseOfHorrors
03-01-2008, 02:03 PM
Well I checked this place out mid december with some friends when I was in orlando. We went around 9pm on a sat night and there were NO customers the whole time we were there. I can't believe first off that they crammed supposedly 2 attractions in this tiny storefront. I can't remember how much it was, as far as I recall it was around the $15 per person mark. I wanted to check it out so I paid for the 4 of us to get in. There was one actor and he told you a cheesy story that I think took longer than the whole trip through the show.
Similar to screamworks in Atlanta, there were absolutely no props in this place whatsoever. Oh wait, there was a little jigsaw hooked up to an extension cord on top of one of the walls that made noise when you walked by. Also beautifully painted OSB panels that looked like they had seen some abuse. Hopefully whoever bought this thing didn't pay a fortune for it like the guys at screamworks did. It took less than 10 minutes to walk though, and the response from my friends when we walked out was just laughs and " I can't believe we just paid to walk through that" It would not have been bad for a little show set up at a carnival or something, but c'mon. in Orlando????? Where tourists get wowed all day walking through Universal Studios and Disney World?? I had been approached by someone who was looking to start a haunted house in Orlando..and trust me if someone doesn't open something down that blows people away it will inevitably go out of business. Just my 2 cents.

-Tim

drfrightner
03-01-2008, 07:50 PM
I really hate hearing that... I read that its closing myself. Thanks for the link. My God when will people EVER stop buying these plywood mazes from the Godfather, taking his advice so he can make a couple bucks. How many more people must fall flat on their face before people learn that there is NO 'Godfather' and it takes a lot more experience, dedication and MONEY to open a premier attraction. Those Pickel houses are 80's, but we're going on 2010, and if you just took the time to tour around and see some of the haunts that are open you'll know right off the bat that some plywood maze with one actor and no props doesn't cut the cake.

Any 'Godfather' that gives you this advice, or tells you this is what it takes to be successful just doesn't know anything.

Its hard to feel sorry for people, when today you can find all sorts of info on the web, or even on youtube and see just where the industry is at. Man this boils my blood everytime I see another one bite the dust after being duped into buying plywood walls. One thing rings true though...there really is no other haunt that has tour the nation more than this one. After you bomb in one city its onto the next! LOL

I really am sorry to hear another haunter is out the door. I hope down the road someone will open a haunt in Orlando and bring back the glory of Terror on Church Street.

Larry