Nightmare Factory in Havelock, NC features a quartet of interconnected haunts within the main attraction - Dead Zone, Clowns in 3D, Haunted Factory, and Psych Ward. Nightmare Factory opens its doors at 7pm on most nights, but the real thrills begin at 9pm when they offer their R-rated show.
Our expectations were blown away from the moment we pulled up! We’ve been to haunts located in strip malls and storefronts before, but this was definitely different! Nightmare Factory had taken over several buildings/storefronts in their strip mall location plus they had a large, well-developed outdoor midway complete with eerie lighting, creepy vignettes, yummy concessions, a gorgeous gift shop, and even a stage! There are extreme sideshow acts and other performances that take place on that stage nightly adding that extra layer of spooky fun!
There was an ever-multiplying number of monsters lurking around the midway too. Some were in the relentless search of new victims while others were just plain entertaining… shout out to the zombie stumbling incoherently around in the tiny cemetery!
As we anxiously awaited our turn, the story of Albert Knight's Factory played on a large projection screen, recounting the horrifying history of this place. The factory truly manufactured “nightmares” in the form of an assortment of torture devices in the early 1900s. We learned that these nightmarish products were tested on the very workers who were making them, and it was rumored that those who died were fed to the others in the cafeteria. They eventually rose up against Albert Knight and his factory, setting it ablaze in an act of fiery revenge. This was a really well done video production, it legit felt like we were watching a documentary on the History Channel.
The journey began outside in the factory’s zombie infested loading dock, Dead Zone. There was evidence of the horrendous past with items like electric chairs and boxes labeled with the names of other torture devices strewn about. From the loading area, we entered Nightmare Factory’s 3D blacklight experience, Clowns in 3D which was filled with… you guessed it… crazy clowns. After escaping the madness and honking clown horns we entered the Haunted Factory where we encountered a bloody butcher scene and wondered if he was the one cooking up and serving the factory’s dead workers… Last up was the Psych Ward filled with the victims who weren’t lucky enough to be killed by their experimentation.
In addition to the four haunts in their main attraction, Nightmare Factory has yet another haunted attraction! The Narrows Dark Maze was new for the 2023 season. This standalone haunt was, without a doubt, our favorite experience at Nightmare Factory! We were welcomed by one of our newest favorite characters “Brains”. We’re not sure if that’s his name or not but we could see his so that’s what we’re calling him. Pitch black, super narrow, and very twisty and turny, we were forced to keep our hands in front of us to feel our way along The Narrows. As we navigated through the darkness, we were confronted with loud banging, different textures along the walls, and just the right amount of physical contact was the cherry on top.
At the Nightmare Factory, there are no animatronics to be found, but that doesn’t mean they are low tech. Movie quality sound, detailed sets, flash-crackers, loud alarms, and even louder actors bring the scares at this haunt!
Because this haunt is so driven by their actors, they’ve got to look good, right? Nightmare Factory uses incredibly thorough makeup techniques on all their characters! Not only are they fully covered but most actors even wear contacts that further enhance their looks. Even after a long night of haunting, that makeup hadn’t budged and it wasn’t going anywhere. We must confess… we touched some faces to verify. Costuming was all perfectly on point as well.
We’ve been to many R-rated, full contact haunts, and although what we experienced wasn't quite the R-rating we are accustomed to, it was still an incredible show and great time!
With its 4 interconnected haunts, additional attractions, eerie atmosphere, and passionate actors, this attraction delivers an all-around amazing experience! Nightmare Factory also has a year-round rage room called Unleash, so check out all the haunts and then go take out your frustration and break some shit!