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Video Game: Ben There, Dan That!
Ben and Dan's hand-drawn travels through the universe.

Ben There, Dan That is a point-and-click adventure that follows two intrepid explorers, the titular Ben and Dan, as they travel through various dimensions in a quest to return to their flat to watch Magnum, P.I.. A combination of brain-teasing puzzles and some far-out thinking sees the dynamic duo quip, steal and murder their way through alternate reality versions of London. Humorous and surreal, the story begins with Dan dead, a firework and one of his orifices... after which they are kidnapped by aliens, and Hilarity Ensues.

It all makes sense when you play it

Sort of.

There is a sequel called Time, Gentlemen, Please! note  It expands upon the gaming hilarity and also becomes much more offensive in its own ways. After ruining the utopia they helped create at the end of the first game, Dan and Ben travel back in time to ensure that coat hangers are never invented.

Seriously. There's other stuff, some Nazis, and loads of references to other games and genres. It also has a pretty sweet boss fight at the end.

Both games are available on Steam for less than the price of a pint. Ben There, Dan That! is freeware. Time, Gentlemen Please! is not freeware, but is pretty cheap to buy.


Ben There, Dan That provides examples of:

  • Author Avatar (the main characters.)
  • Better than a Bare Bulb: Pretty-much everything that happens is lamshaded the hell out of.
  • Blob Monster: Bob the Blob, who is actually a superhuman whose body is 86% water (a normal human's is 80%). Ben accidentally kills him with a sponge.
  • Breaking the Fourth Wall: Frequently.
  • Convection Schmonvection: At one point Ben uses a wooden plank to cross a river of lava. This is lampshaded if you examine the plank:
    Dan: Won't it burn or melt or anything?
    Ben: No.
    Dan: Thank heavens for heat resistant wood, now.
  • Cutting the Knot: Ben... erm... does this sometimes.
  • A Date with Rosie Palms: Referenced repeatedly, mostly involving Dan. The most obvious, of course, is the dialogue that results from trying to use Dan on Dan.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Both leads have their moments.
  • Drinking Game: The three Britains in the authentic British pub The Limey in the Eagleland dimension play one: they finish their glass whenever someone says "Come on England!". However, since the only drink they can get is low-alcohol American ale, they don't get very drunk as a result.
  • Eagleland: One of the alternate Londons is part of a universe where America has turned the tables on Britain and annexed it as the 51st state. London has become a schlocky, tourist-trappy Americana version of itself. The "authentic British pub" has two things on tap: beer, and that stuff Americans drink instead.
  • Easter Egg: The museum shop.
  • Even Evil Has Standards: Though Ben wasn't too bothered about killing a priest with a bible, he draws the line at killing said priest's son (even if he is a zombie).
  • Expendable Alternate Universe:
    Ben: "I don't need to dispose of this corpse. He's from another dimension and therefore doesn't exist."
  • Have I Mentioned I Am Heterosexual Today?: This is my partner Dan. My ADVENTURING partner. That there is my ADVENTURING partner Dan.
  • Heroic Comedic Sociopath: At one point you have to club a priest with his own bible to continue. And that's just the beginning!
  • Hoist by His Own Petard: Future Ben and Future Dan write themselves out of history.
  • In Medias Res: I'll say. The first task you have to complete is reviving your inexplicably-dead friend in the middle of some jungle somewhere.
  • Insurmountable Waist-Height Fence: Lampshaded with the velvet rope blocking off the museum shop (and subverted, if the player is insistent enough.)
  • Kleptomaniac Hero: Taken to extremes.
    Ben: "It's not 'stealing.' It's 'adding to my inventory.'"
  • Lava is Boiling Kool-Aid:
    Dan: "It's a bubbling, boiling river of orange-hot lava."
    Ben: "You sure? Looks like tomato soup to me."
    Dan: "Can it, you. It's lava, alright?"
  • Most Common Super Power: The tourguide in the superhero dimension, naturally.
  • The Most Dangerous Video Game: Parodied.
  • My Future Self and Me: The aliens are actually Ben and Dan's future selves in disguise.
  • Noodle Incident: Apparently, the adventure that preceded this one involved Dan getting kidnapped by an eagle, which somehow led to him being dead in the jungle, conveniently close to a Mad Scientist lair with a reanimation machine.
  • Ret Gone: The fate of Future Ben and Future Dan.
  • Scenery Gorn: Several of the alternate dimensions have backgrounds that consist of a London ruined by fire, ice, zombies or Americans.
  • Shout-Out (Too many to classic adventure games to count, but especially to Sam & Max Hit the Road, which the game owes a great deal to, and to Monkey Island.)
  • Sidekick: Dan. The stable of options you have for interacting with things even includes by default the option to inflict Dan upon it, ala Max from Sam And Max Hit The Road. This gets used once early on for a minor task, then lampshaded many times later on when Dan refuses to play ball.
  • Slippy-Slidey Ice World:
    Ben: (on looking at its door) "It's the inevitable slippy slidey ice dimension."
  • Take That: The "authentic British pub" in the Eagleland alternate universe is basically a gigantic Take That at everything that is American drinking sensibilities. The barman will only serve the watery, soulless American "beer" unless you can provide multiple forms of ID, chastises the drunken louts watching (American) football for being too rowdy (and the poor fellows can barely even muster any kind of rowdiness for nancy American football, with all its padding and not being rugby), and threatens to storm out should anyone manage to get drunk enough to pass out (which he makes good on).
  • What Kind of Lame Power Is Heart, Anyway?: There's an entire dimension of superheroes with really lame powers.


Time Gentlemen, Please! provides examples of:


Zack & Wiki: Quest for Barbaros' TreasureAdventure GameEdna & Harvey: The Breakout
Ben Jordan: Paranormal InvestigatorFreeware GamesChzo Mythos
BejeweledSteamBeyond Good & Evil

alternative title(s): Ben There Dan That; Ptitleniy6550s; Time Gentlemen Please
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