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10 essentials for the ultimate haunted house

Entertainment Earth

Nerd Approved

I loved making my haunted houses with friends every Halloween when I was a kid. My basement was dark, dank, filled with old junk and home to creepy crawlies that are probably unknown to science — in other words, naturally terrifying. Halloween is still one of my favorite holidays, but these days, without that eery basement, I'd have to step up my game with props, gadgets and toys like the ones featured here.

Animatronic Asylum Door

I've seen a lot of animatronic props in my day, but this asylum door has to be one of my favorites. The door includes a video player, monitor, pre-programmed control hardware, digital soundtrack, mat switch trigger and all the necessary electrical and pneumatic connections. As you will see in the video above, the effect is chilling — I can only imagine how it would look in person. I'd actually love to use this as my front door year round, to scare away solicitors. $3750 - The Horror Dome via Nerd Approved

Doug Hudson

Zombie garden gnomes

Looks like another garden gnome is about to get turned! Imagine a horde of these handmade zombie gnomes on your lawn this Halloween night. Some wandering aimlessly (babbling incoherently in a British accent about travel plans, no doubt) while others feast on an unfortunate pink flamingo. $39 - Etsy via Nerd Approved

Fart Man fogger

No haunted house would be complete without a fog machine — but not any old fog machine will do. You would be surprised at how ridiculous and elaborate these things can get. For example, take the animatronic zombie Fart Man here. He erupts "in obnoxious gaseous explosions" while making humorous comments and spasming uncontrollably on the toilet. Clearly, human flesh doesn't agree with him these days. $2999 - The Horror Dome

Comfy chair costume

Invite your guests to take a load off in this comfy-looking gothic armchair and then point and laugh when the actor inside pops up and scares the sitter half to death. Of course, this prop could completely backfire if the person who chooses the seat happens to weigh a ton. Did my chair just cry for help? $1618.75 - The ScareFactory via Fashionably Geek

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Pillowmob face pillows

Upload a picture of face (human or pet) to Pillowmob and in a few short weeks you'll have a fluffy version of your severed head to place on your couch and creep out guests. Make a funny face or wear Halloween makeup — there's loads of potential here. You can start a pillow fight with your head, squirt fake blood on it and put it under the bedsheets of unsuspecting guests, or put a picture of your big crush on it and practice making out. Er ... uh ... forget I said that last part. $25 - Pillowmob via Nerd Approved


When someone walks into a dark haunted house, their senses are on high alert. Take advantage of that moment with one of these ShockGunz boom boxes. It looks like an ammo box, but inside there are dual air horns and a mini halogen light cannon. The video above is short, but it isn't hard to imagine what would happen if you jumped out of a closet dressed like a zombie soldier with one of these in your hand. $100 - Shot In The Dark via Nerd Approved

Entertainment Earth

Creepy "Living Doll"

Another essential for every haunted house is a creepy doll, and you would be hard pressed to find a doll that's creepier than Talky Tina. She's an authentic reproduction of the doll from the Twilight Zone episode "Living Doll," starring Telly Savalas. Only, this is one baby Telly didn't love. It speaks five scary phrases like "My name is Talky Tina, and I'm going to kill you." It also features eyes that automatically open and close. $139 - Entertainment Earth via Nerd Approved

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Hallway To Hell

If money was no object, the Hallway To Hell would be an awesome addition to your haunted house. It's 10-feet of pure terror thanks to a wall system that's programmed to shudder and shake with a menagerie of ghoulish figures lining the sides. ScareFactory also sells the classic swirling vortex of corpses, adding a nice touch of motion sickness. $5000 to $11000 - ScareFactory


Zombie head cookie jar

If your guests can survive the haunted house you've set up, reward them with a cookie from this zombie head jar. The joke is on them though — the cookies are made with boring bran and raisins. Bwahahahahaha! $29.99 - ThinkGeek via That's Nerdalicious


Empty box decorations

Many of the products on this list are crazy expensive, but this final addition is here to remind you that a little creativity is all you need to put together a spectacular haunted house experience. The decorations in the windows of the house above were created using only empty cardboard boxes. Looks like a lot of work though. I'll probably just get life-size cardboard cutouts of the Jersey Shore cast and stick them in the window. It's even scarier and there's not nearly as much effort involved. Reddit via Nerd Approved

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