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It is hard to believe Pitfall, what could be considered the first video game action platformer released for the Atari 2600 in 1982, is now thirty years old. Pitfall was created by then Activision co-founder and programmer David Crane and literally stretched the Atari 2600 to the max. Players were eager to take on the roll of Pitfall Harry and begin exploring this new world on their television screens in search for gold and jewels. Now to commemorate the 30-year anniversary Activision has blessed fans with a very nicely interpreted endless runner for mobile platforms.
In this new game players once again take the roll of Pitfall Harry as he makes his way through lush tropical environments with a goal of getting further and further into the game. Players use simple screen swiping controls to make Harry jump, duck/slide, turn corners and whip adversaries. In addition, the game also utilizes the gyroscopic controls and players also have the ability to steer Harry left and right and used to collect treasure scattered along the trails throughout the game. Enemies are also encountered along the way and Harry must tap the screen at just the right moment to break out his whip and kill cobras and scorpions.
The sharp colorful graphics, adventurous sound track and variety of camera angles keeps this game interesting and the player on their toes. Occasionally there is some slight lag usually around the time the camera angles change but I haven’t found it to distracting. Fans of the original will feel right at home with all they encounter from the just mentioned enemies to the familiar vines used to swing across dangerous precipices.
Players can earn a variety of patches for reaching certain goals from completing the tutorial to performing a stylish dismount off a vine swing. Earned patches along with statistics and high score information are kept in the Explorers’ Club where you can also shop the store to by more lives and medicine to cure snake and scorpion bites. The camera angles vary from side views to dead on third person and most of the time the transitions are very fluid and really quite amazing to view. Deeper into the jungle Harry will also have the ability to ride motorcycles and mine carts (among other things) using the sames swiping controls used when simply running.
Activision did include Game Center support on iOS so you can see how you rank among friends and other players from around the world. All-in-all Pitfall! is a great retro addition to your mobile library of games and should give you a great deal of fun for the $.99 purchase price.
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