The Scream Queen
Visibility / Location:
Parking is right outside of the haunt itself, with plenty of spots. While there is a sign on the street of the haunt, it's small and a bit hard to see (perhaps a light on it would help). There is a spotlight and flashing lights outside the haunt, so that was helpful in pinpointing the location.
The indoor wait area consisted of a TV playing horror trivia, as well as some brief advertisements for House of Torment's escape rooms. Costumed actors worked the line as well. Before entering the haunt, each group took a picture that could be purchased at the end. The rules were also explained to each group before heading into the haunt.
$29.99 (Plus service fees & taxes) on the night attended.
$32.99 (Plus service fees & taxes) on Saturday nights
VIP Admission - $39.99 (plus a $2 service fee and tax when purchasing online)
Skip the Line - No Wait - $49.99 (plus a $2 service fee and tax when purchasing online)
The Frenzy: 14 Minutes
Nightmare High: 8 Minutes
LPR Score = 1.412
LPR stands for Length/Price Ratio. It represents perceived value of an event, by comparing length vs price of admission. Higher numbers represent more value per dollar. Actual quality and/or entertainment value of an event are not factors in this calculation. Click Here to see how this event compares to others visited this year by the staff of HauntedIllinois.com.
House of Torment had a great system for pacing groups! Before entering the haunt, my group was instructed to wait for a button outside the haunt to turn green. Once it turned green, we were able to enter the haunt and work through at our own pace. This was a really great tool - we didn't catch up to any groups, nor did any groups catch up to us.
House of Torment was a new-to-me haunt this year. I had visited its sister haunt, 13th Floor, multiple times in the past, so I was excited to see what this haunt had in store. My group jumped into the VIP line, where we had a very brief wait. We also paused to take a quick picture with one of the creatures of the haunt, then lined up to listen to the rules. The first haunt was explained to us as a zombie outbreak, while the second took place in a high school. The only thing I vaguely remembered hearing about House of Torment was that it was set in Chicago, and these details did end up being references throughout.
As soon as the light turned green, my group entered The Frenzy. At first, this haunt seemed a bit sparse - the actors were few and far between, and the sets weren't nearly as detailed as we had anticipated. However, the further we moved into the haunt, the more details were added. I was really impressed by a room packed full of antiques, as well as a house that looked fit for hoarders. The actors were pretty engaging, taunting us that we would stay there forever in the haunt.
One room inside The Frenzy truly stands out, and that's a recreation of a Chicago El train (I think I actually said, "Oh wow, I LOVE this!" when we entered). The actors inside the haunt are aggressive and intimidating, and the train's vibrations really created a claustrophobic, chaotic feeling. I'd say House of Torment is worth checking out for this room alone!
The second haunt, Nightmare High, takes place in - you guessed it - a high school. I have honestly not seen a high school themed haunted house in all my years of visiting them, so I was pretty pumped to see this setting. Nightmare High didn't disappoint - there were destroyed classrooms and demented classmates galore. I particularly liked the darkroom, which even had students' senior photos hanging up. Great touch!
Something that House of Torment does incredibly well in both houses is their lighting. Use of darkness, then brief illuminations via strobe lighting, worked really well! My group commented about how disoriented that we felt walking through; at times, I had to resort to doing a zombie walk (hands out in front of me and stumbling) just to get through a room. There was a great library room that was incredibly dark, with just brief flashes of light punctuating our walk through. We were all really impressed with how big of a role that the lighting played throughout.
One thing that I was a bit confused by is that Nightmare High features a brief clown maze towards the end. While I liked the clown maze, it didn't really seem to fit in with the theme of the house. Perhaps it was included to stay on trend with the clown frenzy that is sweeping the nation?
Overall, I really enjoyed House of Torment. I thought that pacing system was on point and would love to see other haunts utilize this system. The lighting was some of the best I have seen this season, the Chicago setting was awesome, and the actors were interactive throughout. I look forward to visiting again next year!
Get the latest Halloween and haunted attraction news, haunted house discounts and more by entering your email address below.
HauntedIllinois.com is your online source for everything Halloween in Illinois. We host the internet's most comprehensive and up-to-date directory of Illinois haunted houses, hayrides, haunted trails, home haunts, yard displays, fall festivals, apple orchards and other Halloween attractions. You will also find Haunted House reviews, local trick-or-treat hours, Haunt Industry news, links to hundreds of Halloween / horror / haunted house websites and more!
"The Internet's Most Comprehensive & Up-to-date Directory Of Illinois Haunted Attractions"