along with being new to the world of H.P. Lovecraft's "Arkham", i'm new to the board games as well.
after seeing Mansions of Madness, which i immediately fell in love with due to it's eerie nature and rpg-like elements, i decided to purchase it, and then force my loved ones to play. easily, they fell in love with it as well. i like to add a nice sense of darkness to the game by dimming the lights, and also lighting candles or playing very ambient music, i.e., 20's swing, drone music, storm sounds. i'm wondering what some of you do to get people into the mood and make things more intense or frightening, so that it doesn't feel like your typical board game. i'm not simply referring to out of game effects either. for instance, in game as The Keeper, saving up a threat tokens and not bombarding the players with swarms of creatures, but instead focusing on mentally chipping them down before going in for the kill.
as being brand new to the game, i'd also like to know some house rules you may use to keep the thematic element of each mystery present, and instill an overall chill to playing the game.