This 2D platformer stars Harry Jr., son of Pitfall Harry from the classic Activision game Pitfall! This time around, Harry Jr. must rescue his dad, who was kidnapped by an evil warrior spirit named Zakelua. Harry Jr. must climb and swing on vines, ride ziplines, pull levers to open new passageways, ride mine cars, fight numerous enemies, avoid traps, and of course, collect treasure. Harry Jr. can use a whip to defeat nearby enemies and use several long-range weapons as well. The long range weapons, including sling stones, boomerangs, and exploding stones, have limited ammunition which can be found scattered throughout each level.
The graphics look good overall, and Pitfall is probably the second-best looking platformer on Jaguar (behind Rayman of course). Unfortunately, some enemies are hard to see against certain backgrounds. The music and sound effects are also done well, and are a good fit for a jungle themed game. The control is a bit sluggish, which is especially bothersome when fighting fast-moving bosses. Another bad thing is that you can't attack while you're crawling. If an enemy approaches you while crawling, you have to find a spot where the ceiling is high enough to stand up, then press the B button to stand, and then duck down and whip the enemy. And by then, you've probably already taken two or three cheap hits. There is a save feature that can be used after completing a level, and it also saves the number of lives and continues you have remaining. Even though the game isn't terribly long, some of the levels provide a good challenge. So this isn't a game you can just breeze through right off the bat.
Unfortunately, Pitfall: The Mayan Adventure really isn't super fun to play. One good thing is the inclusion of the original 2600 Pitfall! game, which can be found within the game or unlocked with a cheat code. But the main game is, sadly, just another mediocre platformer.