Pitfall: The Lost Expedition

We recently rented the game [http://www.gamespot.com/ps2/action/pitfallharry/index.html?q=pitfall+harry Pitfall: The Lost Expedition] for the [http://www.us.playstation.com/consoles.aspx?id=2/info/PlayStation2/default.html PS2]. We had gotten the demo quite some time ago and enjoyed that. I thought the 3D platformer engine was a little hard to control (as do most people used to the 2D platformers of my generation) at the time, but having played it more now you can certainly get the hang of it without it causing too much trouble. Of course my son Robert (8) had no troubles with the controls, and ended up working through most of the game without issues. The controls do offer a lot of options (I think every button on the PS2 is mapped to something) and that prooved to be too much for Dylan (4), though he did enjoy watching us play and liked to give it a spin every now and then. The game play is pretty straightforward; there is a story mode where Harry saves the world and rescues the girl and that kind of stuff, and along the way you collect different treasures and power ups to help you get farther in the game. It’s simple enough that any regular gamer can solve it inside a week, though my son did get stuck on one spot where I had to explain how the icons where supposed to be telling you how to get through the different levels, but for the most part he worked through the game on his own. I do have to admit that we actually played large portions of the game with an “endless life” type cheat code which made it pretty much impossible to die on any given level, but given the endless continues/lives you get anyway, this probably didnt make too much difference, only on one or two screens / bosses where it would have taken a number of more tries to make it through. The game is rated E, and by and large that seems like an adequate rating. There is a lot of killing animals/people which was something rather non-existant in the original pitfall games (for Atari 2600), but it’s done in an animated way which isn’t too bad, more like just knocking people out I guess. At one point my son was going around just trying to blow everything up, which I guess will be good practice for when he starts playing [http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2005/07/13/earlyshow/living/parenting/main708794.shtml GTA] [[image /xzilla/templates/default/img/emoticons/sad.png alt=”:-(” style=”display: inline; vertical-align: bottom;” class=”emoticon” /]] Still overall there’s a lot of strategy and problem solving involved too, so it’s ok. Even after you solve the story mode, there is opportunity to go back through and pick up any items you missed, and there are some mini games (including a copy of the [http://members.tripod.com/~PitfallHarry/ original pitfall harry game]) which are somewhat amusing to play too, so that should add to the replayability factor. The only downside is that it is only a 1 player game, so you’ll have to take turns if there is more than one of you. This isn’t actually always a bad thing, as people watching can help spot hidden treasures while the other person is moving through the levels. Given the game has been out awhile, you should be able to pick it up for [http://search.ebay.com/pitfall-harry-ps2_W0QQbsZSearchQQcatrefZC6QQcoactionZcompareQQcoentrypageZsearchQQcopagenumZ1QQfposZQ5AIPQ2fPostalQQfromZR10QQfsooZ1QQfsopZ1QQftrtZ1QQftrvZ1QQsacatZQ2d1QQsadisZ200QQsargnZQ2d1QQsaslcZ2QQsbrftogZ1QQsofocusZbs $20 if not less], and I’d recommend it for those with kids.