There are varying degrees of acceptance when it comes to interactivity at a haunted house. There are the kinds of people who scurry through as fast as they can, hoping to go unnoticed and with very few hindrances. Some people enjoy being talked to by the actors, while others appreciate a little physical contact. And then there are the sick and twisted people who think the best kind of thrill is getting tossed into a chair and being held captive by a psychopath while the rest of their group is chased into the next room.
The folks at Southside Massacre fall into the latter category and, as luck would have it, I do too- which is why I’m officially declaring it the best haunt that Indianapolis has to offer.
Southside Massacre warms up its victims with a new twist on the ever-popular neon trip through a black light responsive trailer. Patrons are locked inside with curiously passive actors, disorienting fog, and tension-building dubstep blaring throughout the attraction that make for a unique, extra-sensory experience.
The mostly-dark indoor maze (another common element in modern haunted houses) is again characterized by intensely wubbing electronic music and peppered with masked monsters who have a lot of tricks up their sleeves.
The final leg of Southside Massacre is by far the most realistic and physical portion of the haunt. Expect to be jeered, poked, squeezed, and pushed as you meet room after room of Southside Massacre’s spooky staff who aren’t afraid to get in your face, fire off insults, and threaten to do bad things to you.
One IndyMojo crew member, Brendon Riha, testifies, “The most memorable part of Southside Massacre was the fact that the actors could touch, grab, and really taunt you. It made the whole experience feel like you were actually being tested instead of just walking through. The best part of the experience was when I was taken hostage by a large male actor and his mistress. I was grabbed and pushed up to the wall by the mistress, who used her metal weapon to corral my throat and pin me into the corner. I actually felt like I was being attacked and, while my group was in the next room, I had been left for dead.”
Indy Mojo Promotions Director Matt Ramsey found Southside Massacre to be a satisfying experience as well.
I loved that they completely discarded the traditional Halloween spook music, for a modern taste of electronic music. I felt it added to the tension of the attraction, as you moved through the space. Great make up and acting gave it a realistic feel. It wasn’t just a bunch of people growling at you as you passed through. They actually took the time to corner people in the group, or single them out, while everyone else was left to watch, sometimes providing a great distraction, leaving them as unsuspecting prey to a second villain to enter from another part of the room.
The staff and set up was well-prepared to handle crowds, with strategically placed line corrals, port-o-lets, and staff members at the entrance of each haunt, reminding you of the rules on touching, pregnancy, cameras, and lights. The time between each area also provided time for our group to catch our breaths and discuss our experience from the last room. I don’t want to give anything away, but let’s just say there are a lot of surprises, lots of variety, lots of screams, lots of fun.
Southside Massacre claims to be Indy’s “most intense haunted house”- a declaration I concur with wholeheartedly. It’s not for the faint of heart or those thrill seekers I mentioned earlier who can’t even keep it together in a touch-free haunted house. If you’re the type of person who’s looking to be shit-my-pants-scared, please forget about all the rest of the city’s haunts and head straight for the Southside.
6004 Camden St.
Indianapolis, Indiana 46227
$18 at the door or online; get coupons at their website for $3 off Thursday or Sunday and $2 off Friday or Saturday. Coupons not valid with online tickets or in conjunction with other promotional nights. See their website for full details.