Don't be afraid

Different ways to make sure you have a bloody good time this Halloween

Halloween (Oct 31) is just around the dark corner. And since we're too old to trick-or-treat and too afraid to visit places that are actually haunted, here are alternative ways to have a bloody good time this Halloween without running the chance of encountering a real ghost (and losing all your hair in fright).

MORE SCREAMS

Think you have a brave heart and want to prove that you're the top dog in your gang? Then check out these screaming events with friends at your own peril. Muah ha ha.

★ On Oct 27, face your fear at Scream Fest 2012 at Major Cineplex Ratchayothin (From 7pm. 1839, Phahon Yothin Road, 02-628-7347-8). Enjoy a screaming marathon as you shiver through three horror movies - Paranormal Activity 4, Silent Hill: Revelation 3D and Sinister - screening for free from midnight till dawn. Along with a ghost cosplay contest and spine-chilling talks from The Shock team, Gangnam Style somehow has crept in to this event as well. "Zombie Dance Gangnam Style" (which sounds scary to us in so many ways) will be performed by the Bloody Hospital Begin team. To partake, register at the booth on the third floor at 7pm.

★ From Oct 26-31, Ghost Expo at Mega Bangna (9 Moo 6, Bangkaew, Bang Phli, Samut Prakan, facebook.com/megabangna) will give a major fright to everyone in the family. No one is safe as children and parents can embark on a journey of fun and fear through seven haunted zones. Mystery Express in front of IKEA is where kids can take photos with a train replica full of giant luminescent pumpkins. Spiritual Wisdom in front of Home Pro is where sacred amulets worth about B1 billion are on display. Ghost Whisperer at Fashion Galleria is where you can meet well-known Thai psychics. Families can enjoy a scary spin at Screaming Merry-Go-Round. Haunted House will take place at the underground parking floor in Mega Plaza zone.Three notoriously haunted places will be recreated there. Get your fortune told through palm reading, Thai horoscope and tarot cards at Fortune Teller zone. Head to Ghost TV zone where celebrities will share their ghost stories. Some activities aren't free. Every B500 spent at stores in Mega Bangna equals one skull stamp, which gets you an ice cream cone at IKEA or a spin at Screaming Merry-Go-Round. Two stamps earn you an entry ticket to Haunted House (worth B200), while 10 stamps earn you a fortune telling session. Twenty stamps get a session with famed psychic Ryu Jitsumpat.

EAT AFTER DARK

If sitting face-to-face with your girlfriend without make-up or boyfriend with bed hair over a meal isn't scary enough, we've rounded up places with spooky offers where you can take your date and make your night out hauntingly memorable.

★ If you're looking for a spooky vibe or ghost pictures, head straight to The Shock (7pm-5am. 9 Moo 6, Praditmanutham Road, 086-059-1494) where you can look at real pictures of alleged ghosts in a gallery room adjacent to the main dining area. Thai dishes such as Broken Coffin (fried seafood drenched in sweet and sour sauce; B140) and Headless Ghost (deep-fried shrimp heads; B90) are on offer. Some dishes are served in small wooden coffins. Ice comes on brass trays while rice is presented in Buddhist monk bowls. The place is owned by Kapol "DJ Pong" Thongplub, who runs his own ghost stories radio show "The Shock".

★ For a high-end thrill, head to FiVE Gastronomy and Mixology (5pm-1am. Room 233, K Village, Sukhumvit Soi 26, 088-524-5550, facebook.com/Fivebkk) for an evening of black magic in the air and on the plates. The vibe is quite mesmerising, coming across as the laboratory of an alchemist and a mad scientist. Metal plates containing spells are placed at the bar. Good things - Titan's spaghetti (Spaghetti squid and squid ink; B350), The black martini (B280) and Black magic wands (breadstick with Japanese BBQ sauce and seaweed; B100) - come in black. If you're really brave, try Baked to-the-bone (B360; bone marrow served with bread). Plenty of spirits (to drink) are also available. FiVE will host Holy Halloween Party on Oct 31 from 7pm onwards. Tickets are B500 and include two drinks and finger food. Five cocktails especially created for Halloween will be available. Dress holily or evilly as a saint, satan, angel, nun or priest in black, white and red. Best dressed person wins a prize, of course. Saints and sinners alike will get to lose themselves in the music as the DJs dish out disco, house and other tunes.

★ Japan i Larb u (11am-10pm. 1/F Mega Bangna, 9 Moo 6, Bangkaew, Samut Prakan, 085-675-1118, facebook.com/japanilarbu) doesn't scream Halloween decor-wise. But what this Japanese-Isan fusion restaurant has to make you feel queasy is a special dish called Sushi Lagano (B70). It's basically three pieces of sushi; one with silk worms on top, another has crickets and the third features insects of the day. Yum.

★ The Square (Novotel Bangkok on Siam Square 392/44, Siam Square Soi 6, Rama I Road, 02-209-8888) will offer a Halloween-inspired international spread buffet on Oct 31. The dinner deal includes a scary welcome drink. Kids in costume will receive special treats. Cost is B950 per person (prices subject to tax and service charge).

★ amBar (From 8pm. Four Points by Sheraton, 4 Sukhumvit Soi 15, 02-309-3000) will host "The amBar Family Halloween Party" on Oct 27. Sip special drinks named after members of The Addams Family priced at B250 each. DJs will be working their magic while more spooky surprises await throughout the unholy night. Free entry.

★ BarSu (Mon-Sat 5:30pm-2am. Sheraton Grande Sukhumvit, 250 Sukhumvit Road, 02-649-8358) celebrates Halloween from Oct 29 to 31. On Oct 27, enjoy two for one drinks before 9pm during BarSu's Halloween party. A bottle of vodka with free mixers and cocktails are on offer at special prices. Dance to live music from band Hot Gossip.

★ party house one (From 6pm. Siam@Siam Design Hotel & Spa, 856 Rama I Road, 02-217-3000) offers a complimentary Blood cocktail or mocktail while you indulge in its Asian food buffet on Oct 31. The price is B750 per person.

ZOMBIES 2.0

The Miami zombie attacks; the US Homeland Security

Department's warning on a zombie apocalypse; the third season of AMC's The Walking Dead... Zombies have strangely dragged their way into our consciousness this year. So we think you should be prepared for the possibility of a zombie-infested world by learning a thing or two about how to survive through these applications. All of them are compatible with iPhone or iPad.

★ BLENDING IN. In case you've ever wondered how you would look undead, there are many free and paid apps for your smartphones and tablet devices to help you visualise yourself on the other side. Try Zombie Face Booth or Zombie Pic Booth Free if you want to see what your face would look like without skin around your eyeballs. Zombie My Face allows you to render your face like it's decomposing and about to fall off. If you have some money to spare, buy ZombieBooth HD: 3D Zombifier, which gives quite realistic results.

★ RECREATING YOUR WORLD. Zombie Lane is a non-violent zombie game. First, you won't die if a zombie gets to you. Your main goal is to bring the pre-apocalypse world back. You get to grow crops, and bring your spouse and dog back to your home.

It's very family-and-gay friendly since you can choose a spouse of the same sex. Shop for new clothes and weapons before you embark on a killing spree. Also available on Facebook. No Zombies Allowed is a mix of the city-building genre with some cute zombie killing. You can recruit big-headed survivors to live and work in your city and send out a truck in search for supplies. Shoot the undead to their second death from a tower or kill a horde of zombies from a truck's roof.

★ SHOOT 'EM UP. When someone or something comes after your brain, the most sensible thing to do is to shoot their head off, right? Dead Trigger is one of the best things in life that are free. You'll get to face zombies that chase you relentlessly with cool guns. The graphics are scarily stunning. There's a good variety of zombies to kill too. The first person perspective really makes this game scary because sometimes you don't know that you've been bitten from behind until it happens. Graphic-wise Zombie Nation has a comic book feel to it. It's basically about protecting your hideout as hordes of zombies come for you. Other survivors will join you as the game progresses so you don't have to fight the undead alone. Upgrading your arsenal and equipping your team with deadly weapons is the key to your survival. In Zombie HQ, you can choose to be a guy or a gal as you explore the vast surrounds of a city that has been taken over by the undead. Zombies come to tear you apart and your job is to tap and move fast or you'll end up as their dinner. You can also make a hideout, change killer costumes and upgrade your weapons in this game. We recommend The Nightworld even though it isn't zombie-infested because it offers a different kind of apocalypse where food is rare, the world is dark and you have to kill or be killed. Be stealth as you approach your target and kill him without making a bloody scene. If you're spotted, however, prepare for a shoot-out.

About the author

Writer: Pornchai Sereemongkonpol & Kaona Pongpipat