Tokyo Haunted House Offers the Horror Experience Over Video Chat
posted on by Kim Morrissy
Summer in Japan is typically associated with haunted houses and tests of courage, but in these post-COVID times, even ghosts would want to maintain social distancing. The Tokyo-based haunted house Obaken is offering horror experiences through online video chat services such as Skype, ZOOM, and Vimeo starting from August.
The online horror experiences take the form of interactive stories where participants can communicate with the actors as the tale progresses. The headline act is the “Manago: Will Something Happen? A Mysterious Ghost Painting Introduced by an Occult Otaku” program, which will get an international version in September.
The story follows an occult fanatic named Satoshi Asakura, who opens the ZOOM call with a lecture about a ghost painting he procured from a flea market. However, both the host and guests are confronted with strange sights midway through the call.
The experience will be hosted on Airbnb, and each showing will allow up to eight guests. It costs 1,800 yen (approximately US$17) to participate.
In the “Fool's Offense” experience, participants are responsible for guiding the actor to safety as they watch his story play out onscreen. Up to 10 people can participate, and it costs 1,800 yen. A session can be booked through Obaken's website.
Obaken is also releasing a live-action visual novel game called “Hopeless Favor,” which will be released on PC and smartphone devices through the company's official website on August 18. In the game, a girl searches for her missing friend in a haunted real estate office, and the player's choices will determine her fate. The game costs 3,500 yen (approximately US$33).
Obaken first opened in 2012 and is located in Tokyo's Suginami Ward. It is an interactive horror game simulation establishment, and a number of its promotions have gone viral over the years. It has received over 30,000 visitors in the last three years.