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Pitfall: A Mayan Adventure

From the Database of Home of the Underdogs




Copyright 1996, Activision

The first platform game designed specifically for Windows 95, Pitfall: The Mayan Adventure is an excellent game that updates the addictive gameplay of Atari?s Pitfall! to modern hardware. The plot even pays homage to the original: Pitfall!?s hero Harry, after many years of adventuring, was imprisoned by an evil spirit during his recent foray into the Mayan jungles. As his son Pitfall Harry, Jr., you must swing on vines, hop over pits and leap over crocodile heads in classic Pitfall! tradition, as well as bungee-jump, boomerang, and mine car your way to rescue your Dad.

The Mayan Adventure not only retains the excellent gameplay of an Atari classic, but also manages to enhance it several magnitudes higher. Lush graphics and excellent soundtrack grab you immediately, and the frantic action begins as soon as the intro is over. Several minutes of classic Pitfall! action, i.e. jumping over deadly pits and on alligators, soon give way to many new, pleasant surprises. There are many things to hang or lean on, a fast mine car to ride, and many other fun sequences. The enemies are much tougher this time around, and you will need to learn different tactics for different enemies. The game even rewards your explorer spirit by way of many hidden levels and secrets. As a bonus, ?oldskool? Pitfall! fans can hunt out the original Atari 2600 Pitfall! emulator, which is hidden within one secret level in the game.

With excellent graphics and sound, numerous hidden surprises, and rock-solid gameplay, The Mayan Adventure is a proud and worthy sequel to Atari classic. The game played a bit sluggishly when it first came out, but that problem is gone in today?s fast computers. The sheer amount of levels, 13 in all, will keep you bleary-eyed late into the night?especially since you get no passwords and no possibility to save the game. This is the only major flaw of the game, and the only thing that prevents it from entering our Hall of Belated Fame. If you love Disney?s cartoon games such as Aladdin, The Mayan Adventure is simply a must-have, even with some frustratingly difficult level and no save games. Three thumbs up!

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