Ben Jordan: Paranormal Investigator Case 4 - Horror at Number 50


For centuries, a strange entity has lurked inside Number 50 Berkeley Square in London. In the 19th Century, two sailors attempted to enter the house... one was killed and the other lived to tell the tale.

In the modern day, the house is now a bookshop but strange things have been happening so you, as Ben Jordan, are hired to find out what is going on along with a team of four other paranormal investigators.

Groups +


Credits (Windows version)

7 People

A graphic adventure game by
Original music by
Sound Effects by
Beta Testing by
Adventure Game Studio by
Ben Jordan logo by



Average score: 84% (based on 5 ratings)


Average score: 3.9 out of 5 (based on 11 ratings with 1 reviews)

There is nothing better than a playful ghost

The Good
BJ: Horror at Number 50 is the fourth case of the BJ series, released since 2004 by Grundislav Games. It's an independent game made with the AGS engine, with the spirit of the old-school adventure games. Case 4 was released in 2005 and is an introduction to the characters of Simon Booth and Alice Wilkins, two persons who will appear in Ben's next cases and be helpful for solving them.

The story begins in London, in Percival Jones's office, following the events in Smailholm (in the third case). Ben is contacted by a Mr Miggs, whose bookshop is haunted by something since a long time ago. Indeed, in the XIXe century, two sailors seeked refuge in this building for sleeping but something attacked them. One of the sailors was murdered and the other was terrified and told the story but died later. Ben accepts the case and along with four others investigators, will be thrown into something he'd never imagined.

Gameplay has improved but not so much, it's still the old school one: use your mouse to select an action like "observe", "take", "talk" or "walk". About this latter, you can't walk if you don't select walk; that's a bit disappointing for people used to walking with just clicking on a place with the mouse. But if you've played BJ since the first case, you must be used to this kind of gameplay. You can pick objects with the finger icon ("take"). For using them, you need to go into your inventory, select the one you want to use and click on the character or object you want to interact with. With the eye icon ("observe") you can observe your environment. Ben will always say something that you read in a box as the game isn't voiced at all.

Anyway, a new icon is making its appearance (for those who played the Deluxe Edition of Case 1 before the Case 4, it's not a surprise): the (!), or "talk without question". Generally, it's just for one or two sentences, just for humor. Consider it as a bonus because the (?) or "talk" is the most important icon for discussion. But this appearance causes the change of the name for the action. The previous "talk" will be refered as "interrogate" and the new icon is now taking the name of "talk".

Case 3 introduced the "typing" gameplay but it's absent in Case 4. It's probably why the mobile phone makes its appearance: it has a real importance in the game because you will need it for contacting Percy or Miggs.

Nothing is wrong with graphics as the game doesn't want to be the new "stunning graphics game". It's enough for little details. You'll enjoy the blood spatters, the paintings or even the puzzle with the toilet.

Soundtrack is as usual good and sticking to the ambiance in the house but I'm disappointed by it. I'll explain it in the negative points.

The Bad
First of all, if it's great to have this new feature that is the mobile phone, you don't have time to pause between two pressures, even for looking to the number. You'll ring and you'll have to start composing it. You had no choice but to have in memory the number. Another frustrating thing about is that if you pressed a wrong number, you can't clear it. You had to let it ring and... well, you know the drill.

Second thing is the fact that you're playing in a closed house without travelling in open space. So, it's kind of frustrating after three cases outside with landscape and varied locations. It's perhaps the fact that I'm used to games like Painkiller, Half-Life 2, F.E.A.R. or Doom 3, alternating open and close space that makes me feel like a prisoner when I can't go outside. Well, here, it's for the sake of the story but Grundislav could have added a garden with clues for example.

Third point is the soundtrack. Well, quality is present but it's not as good as in the previous cases though. Why? Well, in the previous cases, you have ongoing music. Here, well, it has disappeared for the ambient sounds, which are very good effects. Music is only appearing in the Travel Room, when you hang out with Simon and Alice the first night or for dramatic moments.

And finally, the lifetime... yep but for another reason than being a short game with two hours of fun. Contrary to the previous case in Smailholm, you don't have to decipher messages or to make real choices leading to two endings. Yes, you can choose for the first night if you hang out with Simon and Alice or go to bed but the result is only a gain of points if you choose one of these options.

The Bottom Line
This case has won many AGS awards, though it's for now for me the second weakest case in the series. First is the original case 1 as being the first one to be released.

But I strongly recommend the game. If you've played the third case, you'll be somewhat disappointed by the mobile, the fact that you're locked in a house and that music isn't ongoing. I hope that the 5th case is much better and that the mobile gameplay will be fixed in future cases.

Windows · by vicrabb (7272) · 2008


Alice Wilkins

If you read the tombstone in Smailholm Cemetary in The Sorceress of Smailholm, the previous case, you will find an Alice Wilkins's grave. In this, you meet a young woman called also Alice Wilkins. Grundislav Games admitted to have used twice the name involuntary but will try to incorporate this error in the storyline.

Related Games

Related Sites +

  • Grundislav Games
    Where you can download and get information about Ben Jordan games and other games such as the Donnie Darko game and Granny Zombiekiller.

Identifiers +

  • MobyGames ID: 18826


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Contributors to this Entry

Game added by Neon Hammerite.

Additional contributors: vicrabb, Patrick Bregger.

Game added August 18th, 2005. Last modified February 22nd, 2023.