With a little luck, you’ll be able to find money bags, silver bars, gold bars, and diamond rings.
But many obstacles will get in the way, some of which merely deduct points from your score, while others are fatal. Rolling logs and falling down a hole will deduct points, and scorpions, alligators, snakes, bottomless pits, swamps, and fires will cause Pitfall Harry to lose a life.
Pitfall! for Atari 2600 game description
You have 20 minutes to try to collect all of the treasures on the numerous screens if you can live that long!
The player controls Pitfall Harry through 256 horizontally connected screens of jungle in an attempt to recover 32 treasures in a 20-minute time period. Along the way, players must maneuver around pits, quicksand, rolling logs, fire, rattlesnakes, scorpions, and crocodiles. Harry may jump over or otherwise avoid these obstacles by climbing, running, or swinging on vines.
Treasure consists of bags of money, gold and silver bars, and diamond rings, which range in value from 2,000 to 5,000 points. There are eight of each treasure type. The player begins the game with three lives and a score of 2,000 points; a perfect score of 114,000 is achieved by collecting all 32 treasures without losing any points by falling into holes or touching logs.
Running under every screen is an underground tunnel, which Harry can access by climbing down ladders or falling into holes. Traveling through the tunnel moves Harry forward three screens at a time, which is necessary to collect the treasures within the time limit.
However, the tunnels can be blocked by brick walls, forcing the player to return to the surface to find a way around. The tunnels also contain scorpions.
The player loses a life if Harry comes in contact with any obstacle (except logs) or falls into a tar pit, quicksand, waterhole, or mouth of a crocodile. The game ends when either all 32 treasures have been collected, all three lives have been lost, or the time has run out.
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