These haunts are proof positive that you do not need big sponsors or high end FX to get great scares. A well designed layout, distractions and fitting soundtrack all set the stage. Once you get your guests out of their comfort zone, high energy actors with good timing will startle them every time.
This brings up the question; what do you do with a distressed patron?
Should your actor break character and show them the nearest exit?
Should they back off and let them be or increase the torrent of terror to give them their monies worth?
I know some haunts with “low scare’ hours or lights on walk through times to handle known scaredy cats, but sometimes the older, bigger ones are the ones that scream like a little girl. Good times to be sure.