SEP 2023

Craft a memorable Halloween with our escape room party guide.

Halloween is synonymous with spine-chilling tales, eerie decorations, and, of course, unforgettable parties all around. 

But, are you looking to celebrate with your loved ones right at home this year? 

Here at the best escape room in Chicago, we believe that hosting a Halloween-themed escape room party at home can be the ultimate blend of mystery, fun, and camaraderie. 

Here’s our guide on planning and hosting a spooktacular escape room adventure right in your living room.

Planning your party - the basics

This is step one of the Halloween escape room party planning process.

Step one of your Halloween escape room party at home.

Hosting a Halloween escape room party at home is an exciting endeavor, but it requires meticulous planning. 

From picking the ideal date to setting a budget, every detail counts. This section will guide you through the foundational steps to ensure your party is a spooktacular success. 

Read on to discover tips on dates, guest lists, themes, and budgeting.

Choosing a date & time

Deciding on the perfect date for your Halloween escape room party can be a bit tricky. 

Do you want the thrill on the actual day, October 31st, or a date close to it? 

Think about your guests' availability. 

Weekends might be a better fit, especially for families with kids.

Remember to factor in the duration of the escape room activity, and add some extra time for refreshments and socializing.

Making the guest list

Making the guest list for your Halloween escape room party.

Your home's space and the escape room's capacity will dictate your guest list's size. While drafting the list, consider the age groups.

If children are part of the fun, ensure the escape room theme is kid-friendly or plan a separate activity for them. 

When it comes to sending out invites, you have options: digital invites, traditional paper invitations, or a good old phone call. 

And don't forget to request RSVPs; it'll make your planning smoother.

Selecting a theme

The theme sets the mood for your Halloween escape room party. From classic horror tales and haunted mansions to witches and wizards, the possibilities are endless. 

If you're seeking more inspiration, explore the best Halloween activities in Chicago for a broader festive vibe.

Whichever theme you choose, ensure it resonates through your invitations, decorations, and the escape room storyline.

Setting a budget

Organizing a memorable escape room party doesn't mean breaking the bank. 

  • Start by listing all potential expenses, including decorations, props, refreshments, and other entertainment. 

    • Embrace the DIY spirit for cost-effective solutions, but also be prepared for some store-bought essentials. 

  • It's wise to keep a buffer for unexpected expenses. 

  • And if you're co-hosting with friends or neighbors, discuss sharing the costs to lighten the load on everyone.

Designing your Halloween-themed escape room

This is step two of the Halloween escape room party planning process.

Step two of your Halloween escape room party at home.

Crafting a Halloween escape room at home is both fun and rewarding. It's about weaving a spooky narrative, setting challenging puzzles, and immersing participants in a thrilling adventure.

If you're interested in other home activities, learn about building an obstacle course at home.

In this section, we break down the essentials, from plotting the route to ensuring safety. Let's make this Halloween escape room unforgettable!

The basics (skip if you’ve played escape rooms before)

Escape rooms are thrilling, timed activities where participants solve a series of puzzles centered around a specific theme. 

If you've ever been to one, you know the adrenaline rush of racing against the clock, piecing together clues, and striving for that victorious escape!

Planning the route

Planning the route for your Halloween escape room party.

Begin by drawing a layout of your home, marking the rooms you want to include in the game. Think about the sequence participants will traverse these spaces. 

It's crucial to maintain a logical progression, using clues or challenges that seamlessly guide players from one spot to the next.

Creating the storyline

Every escape room needs a captivating narrative. As it's Halloween, lean into eerie or mysterious tales. 

You can draw inspiration from our escape games, like The Bank or The Bunker, to add layers of intrigue to your story.

Planning the puzzles and challenges

Diversify your challenges! 

Incorporate logic puzzles, hands-on tasks, and scavenger hunts. Strive for a balance, offering puzzles of varying difficulty levels. 

And, given the Halloween theme, why not have participants decode a message in "blood" or unearth a secret item within a pumpkin?

Hints and clues

Figuring out hints and clues for your Halloween escape room party.

Hints can be a game-changer in escape rooms, especially when participants hit a roadblock. Decide on a hint system that suits your audience. 

Will there be a limited number of lifelines, or is it an open field? 

And remember, how players ask for help, and how you give them hints can significantly enhance the immersion and fun. 

Perhaps you could use themed hint cards or a spooky "oracle" voiceover to deliver clues.

For more relaxed fun, explore these pen-and-paper games you can play at home. 

Props and atmosphere

The right ambiance can transport participants straight into a horror movie scene. Think beyond just dim lights. 

How about using a fog machine for a misty effect or playing eerie whispers in the background? 

Gather props that resonate with your storyline. A blood-stained map or a glowing crystal ball can be more than just decorative; they can be central to your puzzles.

Safety first

Maintaining safety for your Halloween escape room party.

While we all love a good scare during Halloween, real dangers are a no-go.

If you're planning a challenge involving the lights being off, provide glow sticks or LED candles. 

Ensure that the floor is clear of wires or small objects that could cause trips.

And always have a well-lit exit path in case someone needs to leave the game.

Putting it all together

The final step is like a dress rehearsal for a play. Rope in a family member or friend for a test run. This will help you gauge the difficulty level and ensure the flow is smooth. 

Time the trial to see if the puzzles are solvable within the intended duration. It's better to identify and fix any hiccups now than on the actual day!

Preparations, decorations, and invitations