Paranormal Investigation is an experience by Abramelin Wolfe – of SL Abranimations fame – built specifically for the Sansar’s Scariest competition, which concluded in October. It was judged run-up up in that competition – and deservedly so.
Given it was built for Halloween, this is – in lighting terms – a dark experience in which visitors are invited to join ghost hunters exploring a haunted house. As one might expect from such a place, the main lights are out – presumably to help spot spectres. However, lanterns have been placed out along floors and hallways to help illuminate the way, although it can seem a little dark for those in desktop mode.
A visit starts in the lounge of the house, where the ghost catchers have obviously set-up a base of operations, a case of equipment on the floor, and a table against one wall where a record of their work is being kept. This is worth getting a look at, as it includes a floor plan of the house (try first-person (F3) if in desktop or, if you’re handy with the movement keys and the mouse, freecam (F4) over to this and zoom in – use the – and + to reduce / increase the zoom speed). Easy to fix the in mind, the plan helps with explorations as you move on through the house.
This is perhaps the quietest room in the house, and offers a doorway through to a study where the first hints of paranormal happenings are going on – books float through the air, a Ouija board is being kept busy by something. The books are worth watching; they don’t randomly fly around, rather, they are carefully removed from their place in the bookshelves, float around and are then returned to their resting place, as if removed and replaced with deliberate intent.
At the back of the house and across the hall from the lounge are the kitchen and dining room respectively, where more signs of odd goings-on can be found, as can the first indication of a ghostly presence. More apparitions can be found upstairs – including a skeleton seemingly determined to keep in trim. However, the biggest delight in this experience is to be found up in the attic, where the Thing That Goes Bump In The Night clearly has an interest other than haunting!
What makes this experience a delight is the attention to detail. There are various nods to paranormal investigations – the use of the term “ghost catchers” puts one in mind of the Ghost Hunters TV series; in the bedroom there’s both a jumping bed and a revolving head a-la The Exorcist, while elsewhere bodies float or appear as you explore. Again, if you are handy with freecamming in Desktop Mode, you might want to zoom into the bookcases in the lounge and study and check the titles of the book spines, such is the care poured into this design.
With a little interaction possible (chairs can be moved around), a good use of trigger volumes to generate things like the appearance of the floating body and localised sounds, Paranormal Investigation makes for a fun visit for those still looking for a bit of a spooky experience.