pitfallFormat: iPod, iPhone, iPod Touch

Developer: Activision

US iTunes, App Store, iBookstore, and Mac App Store

As a gamer of the 80’s I have a huge soft spot for Pitfall. I had this for the Atari 2600 and it was an incredible adventure. To celebrate the game’s 30th anniversary (damn am I really that old?) Activision have decided to give the game a HD lick of paint and slap it on the iOS store. Another fun little fact about Pitfall is that there is an 80’s commercial that features a very young Jack Black.

This looks nothing like the Pitfall I remember is what I first thought when I fired this bad boy up. But that really is not a bad thing. This is one fine looking game. I do not even know how to describe the way this game looks. It is in full HD and looks glorious, but they have used a somewhat retro art style and it works amazingly well. As well as this one thing that I thought was really cool and added to the high quality visuals was the way the camera would change angles to make everything seem a little more dramatic.

Now while this game has the Pitfall name and it is intended to celebrate the games 30th birthday. It sure as hell does not play like the Pitfall I grew up with. And you know what? I am actually so glad because this manages to keep the spirit of the original game, but in a total new package. The clear inspiration for this game is Temple Run. It plays very similar to Temple Run which in my book is not a bad thing at all. Pitfall Harry the guy you will be playing as is always running forward and just like in Temple Run you will need to swipe to make him stay alive. You will need to make jumps avoid traps and do other fun stuff to try and get as far as you can.

The dynamic camera angles do such a great job of not only showcasing the games gorgeous visuals, but it kind of changes things up. The core game play never changes, but sometimes the camera will turn to the side so the game looks like a 2D platform game. At various points in the game you can get into some vehicles like a mine cart. Now the game play does not really change here, but it does a wonderful job of shaking things up a bit.

Now I am a bit of a old fart when it comes to video game re-makes I want everything to be the same as I remember it being. I know this is a terrible attitude to have. Activision though have really proved me wrong here. This is a wonderful game and like I mentioned before this does not play like the old Pitfall it is certainly its own game.

The only downside to the game is the in app purchases. The game as of me writing this is free, but the ability to start from a checkpoint is not. When you run so far you will pass a checkpoint that you can use tokens to buy. This idea here is that if you die you will start here instead of starting at the beginning of the level. The problem is these tokens are really expensive and you can collect them in the game, but you never really get that many. The game also felt like it was harassing me to buy stuff from the in game store.

Despite the somewhat aggressive nature of the in app purchases I still loved the actual game. I never spent a dime in the in app store and I had an absolute blast. This is a must download for fans of the original Pitfall and even for you youngster who have no clue what the heck Pitfall is it is a great game.

US iTunes, App Store, iBookstore, and Mac App Store