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Videogame: Pitfall!

Before we go on to the excellent Pitfall! Videogame Review, we would like to welcome Philip Teoli as our first outside contributor to our Aroundtable. Philip Teoli is a programmer and seasoned gamer. Here is his first review....

Name: Pitfall!

Developer and Publisher: Activision Publishing Inc.

Platforms: iOS and Android

Release Date: August 9th, 2012


Price: Free (In App purchases available), Used to be 0.99$

Link to App (iOS):!/id547291263?mt=8

Link to App (Android):


This is one of the most popular games to ever be been released on Atari 2600. I remember my brother would play that game, and I would watch while he tried to beat it. You must also keep in mind that at the time there were no saves and the graphics were horrible by today's standards, but they were awesome at the time. I have never played the original but I did play the Pitfall! 2: The Lost Caverns.

The only difference between Pitfall! and the sequel was the graphics and the music. It was actually one of the first games to feature a soundtrack while playing. As trivial as we may think this is today, back on a 4 bit machine, that meant a lot.

Through the years there have been many different iterations of this game. The last one that I had played was on the original XBOX called Pitfall! : The Lost Expedition. It was fun. It was in the style of Crash Bandicoot.

Then I heard that there was one for the iPhone and the little kid in me was jumping for joy. So, I got it from the iTunes store.

Storyline (Plot)

You are playing the Pitfall! Harry character. Your goal is to get passed all of the obstacles in order to get to your goal of getting to the finish line. It begins with your attempt to get away from an erupting volcano. So you trek through the jungle using the paths and try to get to the finish line: a very simple idea.


The game is basically taken from the original Pitfall! game It slapped on newer graphics and made it 3D and there you go. You have the new game. Basically you are running through a jungle and there are various obstacles in your way. There are snakes, fallen trees, pits that you need to jump over and so on.

Gameplay Screenshot


The controls are actually pretty sweet and simple. You can move left to right on the path you are on just by tilting the iPhone. Unlike some games, it is not overly responsive. you tilt a bit, it moves a bit, you tilt a lot, it will tilt a lot. The actual character moves are 4 swipe gestures, Jump (Swipe up), Slide (Swipe down), and Turn left or right (Swipe left or right). So there are no controls on the screen which means you have the complete real estate to move around.

As you can see on the screenshot above, as you go along you will pick up some silver bars. These are like the equivalent of the stars in Mario Brothers or the rings in Sonic the Hedgehog. The more you pick up these bars, the more that you can unlock some perks and achievements. This is where swerving left and right can be useful.

The Bar on the right is just to let you know where you are in the game. .

The only aspect of the game that I thought took away from the adventure were the in app purchases. Basically if you do not purchase anything, the game plays like the original game on Atari and makes you start from the beginning. When you first start, you are given a few continues, but they are rare. For the old timer gamers like me that played the original, we will be fine with not purchasing anything. It is fun just to get as far as possible without dying. However the newer generations of players that need to win at all cost will be very tempted to pay to obtain diamonds which are essentially used to buy continues or some perks in the game.


Bottom Line

This game will appeal to all generations. The older crowd will like it cause it will feel nostalgic while the newer gamers will like it cause it is an easy game to play on a commute to school or work. I think the in-app purchases give an uneven advantage over others that do not buy anything but it is still a fun game to play.

All in all, this is a good tribute to the original and it is one of those games that I go back to ever so often. I would recommend it right now as it is free on iOS. Worth a shot if you like these types of adventure games.

Rating: 8.5 / 10

Check out Philip Teoli's website at

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