2022 Competition

Sign Ups Are Now Closed

Welcome to the third annual Haunt Comp,

the Haunted House Design Competition for students! We are excited to have you participate and cannot wait to see what you come up with. This competition focuses on revealing the processes and design considerations that go into designing and building haunted houses. It is run by the same team as before, however it is no longer hosted by TEA@UCSD. If you have any questions, do not hesitate to reach out to us at:


You are submitting a proposal for a haunted house revolving around a concept that will be revealed at the opening ceremony, which will take place once sign-ups end. You can choose to employ whatever interpretation or definition of the concept you want as long as you can explain how your experience is related to that concept in your presentation. Be creative!

Provided Materials

  • Prompt and Logistics (this document)

  • Buildable Area Layout (available starting at opening ceremony)

  • Judging Rubrics (available soon)

  • Workshops on each deliverable and example materials

  • Office hours will also be available throughout the competition

Challenge Considerations

  • Create and follow a unique and intriguing storyline. Intellectual property not in the public domain may not be used.

  • Contain convincing and immersive story elements (through costumes, props, make-up, set design, SFX, etc.).

  • Outline a haunted house that is realistic to build, including its props, SFX, and anything else the team has included in their design.

  • Remember safety is a priority! Do your best to follow national ADA guidelines and ASTM standards where applicable. Note: No considerations need to be made for additional safety guidelines due to COVID-19.

  • Ensure all content is inclusive and respectful.


Written Portion

Submit a PDF word document which includes a logline, synopsis, and beat sheet containing 8 -12 beats detailing the story of your maze. Each beat should be no more than a paragraph and include multiple reference images. A rough draft of this document will be due as we will be using it to give you some early feedback! The rough draft should include the logline, synopsis, and at least 3 completed beats.

Visual Development Portion

Visual development is creating visuals that communicate the design intent of the attraction. Design intent can be communicated in many different visual mediums including concept art, 3D modeling, reference images, animations, and more. This is the phase where most perspective renders and character drawings are done. The main objective is to communicate what you envision your maze to look like. While we do not expect you to illustrate every scene of your maze, we expect you to communicate your design intent for at least 3 scenes or story beats. Variety is important as while each visual communicates the individual design intent of that scene, on the whole, there should be a sense of narrative and visual cohesion that illustrates a clear visual narrative.

Types of Submittals

  • Concept Art - Character, Environment, Props

  • 3D Mockups

  • Animations

  • Videos

Schematic Design Portion

For this section, you will be asked to illustrate your maze within the given floor plan. We are not expecting a detailed floor plan. The floor plan should illustrate a realistic understanding of scale and proportion for the given narrative and physical limitations, as well as scare actor placements. In addition to the overall floor plan, we ask that you either select one room or a facade and produce 3 or more separate rendered elevations as well as a detailed floor plan of the selected area. This area must also be detailed as part of your visual development submission and we are looking for visual consistency between the two submissions.

Presentation Portion

Presentations will take place on May 21 via Zoom. Showcase your maze, its story, layout, and anything else detailed in the other deliverables. Make us excited about your maze! The goal is to make your audience want to attend your attraction and you will be evaluated on how well you accomplish that goal.


Submissions will be judged based on the writing portion, the visual development portion, the schematic design portion, and the presentation.

The written portion will be judged based on the uniqueness of the story, and how well you convey the story to us through your logline, synopsis, and beats.

The visual development portion will be judged based on how well it conveys the story of your attraction using the following guidelines:

  • Communication - How well does the given media communicate the design intent of the attraction?

  • Feasibility - Is what is being shown possible? Is it practical and within the scale of a seasonal walkthrough attraction? Does it show how these elements would come together in a physical environment?

  • Polish - The general quality of the submitted work.

The schematic design portion will be judged based on completion, polish, and feasibility. More details to come on this soon.

The presentation portion will be judged on how well you pitch your idea through a visual presentation as well as how you present such materials.


Please email your submission to in a zipped folder labeled with your team ID number. ONLY ZIP FOLDERS WILL BE ACCEPTED! Please submit no later than 11:59PM PDT on Friday, May 13th, 2022. Do not include any names or school information on any of the deliverables themselves.

More information on the rough draft submission of the writing deliverable will be sent at a later date.


Team requirements and eligibility:

  • Teams should consist of 2-5 members.

  • Only participants who are students and recent grads with less than 2 years of themed entertainment experience are eligible for this competition

  • You may only be a part of one team and may only create one submission.

  • You may work with students from other schools.

  • Multiple teams can come from one school.

  • Haunt Comp may ask for your transcript and work history to verify you do not have more than two years of industry experience.

  • Team members are allowed to drop, but they cannot be swapped out with another member. No late adds will be accommodated.

Submission and Judging:

  • DO NOT include your names or school(s) in any part of the proposal, only use your team ID. Failing to do so will result in disqualification.

  • No commercial IP (Intellectual Property) may be used.

  • Please cite your work! You will be disqualified for plagiarism.

  • Ideas must originate from your team’s own brainstorming. Any cheating (including outsourcing of work or plagiarism) will result in disqualification.

  • The submission creators retain ownership of their original ideas.

  • Judges’ views do not reflect those of their respective workplace.

  • Not submitting a challenge will not disqualify you. Your team will just receive a 0 (zero) for that challenge.

  • This is a competition for proposals only. None of the submissions will be built by Haunt Comp or any of our partners.

  • Members of the Haunt Comp team will not be judging your submissions. Judges will consist of industry professionals.

This competition is hosted by Haunt Comp. This is not hosted or sponsored by the Themed Entertainment Association at UC San Diego.