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Pitfall! is a platform action game. You play Pitfall Harry who is on a quest to locate treasure deep in the jungle. 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. You have 20 minutes to try to collect all of the treasures on the numerous screens, if you can live that long!


Pitfall! MSX Jump over the lumber
Pitfall! Atari 2600 Entering the catacomb of tunnels below... it is a different world down there.
Pitfall! Atari 2600 Death by a Scorpion!  If you don't time your jump just right, your fate will be sealed underground...
Pitfall! Atari 2600 Title screen / starting the game

Part of the Following Groups

User Reviews

Pitfall Harry's adventures in the jungle Atari 2600 *Katakis* (37938)
The best Atari 2600 game? Atari 2600 Mr. E (4)
best game developed in 1982, it was on the top of the charts for a year Atari 2600 Scott G (729)
A 1980s classic! ColecoVision Gustavo Henrique dos Santos (104)

Critic Reviews

The Video Game Critic Intellivision Mar 12, 2000 A 100
TeleMatch ColecoVision Feb, 1984 1 out of 6 100
All Game Guide Atari 2600 1998 5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars 100
Techtite Atari 2600 1999 5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars 100
The Video Game Critic Atari 2600 Sep 02, 2005 A- 91
Game Freaks 365 Atari 2600 Jul 05, 2009 9 out of 10 90
Commodore Horizons Commodore 64 Oct, 1984 9 out of 10 90
Retroage Atari 2600 May 21, 2009 8.6 out of 10 86
Retro4Ever Atari 2600 Sep 18, 2012 8.5 out of 10 85
The Video Game Critic Atari 5200 Nov 04, 2001 C- 42


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Pitfall! was popular enough to have a Saturday morning TV cartoon based on it. The cartoon focused on the adventures of Pitfall Harry, his niece Rhonda, and the cowardly mountain lion Quickclaw.

Explorer's Club

Players who were able to rack up 20,000 points or higher were eligible to receive the Explorer's Club patch from Activision if they sent in a screenshot to the company.


A clipping bug in the ColecoVision version of the game would allow the player to actually walk through the walls in the lower area if hit just right. A demonstration can be seen in this video.


  • FLUX
    • Issue #4 - #33 in the "Top 100 Video Games of All-Time" list
  • Game Informer
    • August 2001 (Issue 100) - #41 in the "Top 100 Games of All Time" poll
  • Retro Gamer
    • September 2004 (Issue #8) – #85 Best Game Of All Time (Readers' Vote)
    • Issue 37 - #21 in the "Top 25 Platformers of All Time" poll
  • TeleMatch
    • Issue 04/1984 – #3 Video Game of the Year 1983 (Readers' Vote)
Information also contributed by Big John WV, Guy Chapman, Kevin Tuttle and PCGamer77.

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Contributed to by RKL (5606), Kabushi (148626), Satoshi Kunsai (1810), Terok Nor (21383), Servo (55755) and koffiepad (9987)