New WR - Fastest Perfect Pitfall - Atari 2600 (LOCKED)

  1. New WR - Fastest Perfect Pitfall - Atari 2600 (LOCKED)

    05-21-2006, 12:00 AM
    NEW WORLD RECORD ON FASTEST PERFECT PITFALL !
    As reported on May21/06


    Hello fellow gamers:

    It gives me great pleasure to formally announce that we have a new world champion on the Activision classic \"Pitfall !\".

    There are the two criteria that a gamer must meet in order to qualify for a \"Perfect Pitfall\" record...

    -> Finish with 114,000 points, thus implying that all 32 treasures were picked up and that no point loss due to falls or touching an enemy were sustained
    -> Do not lose a life in the process

    On April 24, 2006, Rodrigo Lopes, one of the world reknowned members of Brazil's \"Metroid Team\" and a fellow Twin Galaxies referee, adds another major console record to his belt by completing the legendary Atari 2600 classic title with 114,000 points and 1:06 remaining on the clock on his first life, beating the previous world record set by Todd Rogers (\"Mr Activision\") of 1:01 remaining.

    Twin Galaxies created the category \"Perfect Pitfall\" way back in 2000 or 2001 when gamer Alan Hewston first brought the game to prominent attention when he submitted TG's first verified score of 114,000 points.

    Walter Day, myself, and then worldwide Atari 2600 referee Ron Corcoran, received data that other gamers had submitted claims to Activision years before. Thus, while Alan still retains the undisputable title of first TG-verified score of 114,000 points, he now shared the record with several other gamers. Thus the idea for the \"Perfect Pitfall\".

    Ron and I discussed this and realized that when a popular and venerable title had it's maximum score achieved, TG should explore whether a secondayr challenge could be created to spur further competition. This decision was a no-brainer for TG as Alan, and other gamers that followed, brought the record to new realms, until Todd Rogers became the first TG-verified gamer to complete the game in under 19 minutes.

    Enter Rodrigo Lopes. Using his own method of completion, he passed Todd by a mere 5 seconds, enough to take the title on this most respected classic from the Atari 2600 platform.

    The game is relatively simple. You are the famous adventurer and treasure seeker, \"Pitfall Harry\". Jump over obstacles, avoid falling in pits and lakes, avoid falling down open holes, and while you're at it, try to pick up as many of the treasures as you can along the way.

    You start out with 2,000 points which has always struck me as being a bit odd for a game. Whatever. Treasures were worth anywhere from 2,000 to 5,000 points and came in a varity of shapes. You were given three and only three lives which you would lose if you fell into a pit or lake, or touched a snake, scorpion or campfire. You lost points if you touched a moving or stationary log, or if you fell down a pit.

    To show you how difficult it is to get a \"Perfect Pitfall\", I want to share the outcome of an older TG-related gaming event from the 1999-2001 era. Alan Hewston was the top scorer with 113,998 points that deca event, and I was second with 113,995 points. We both barely grazed a log, enough to cost us a few precious points. As close as we came to 114,000 points that was not enough for the maximum score of 114,000 points. Alan eventually reached that goal, and the rest is history.

    Now then, onto Rodrigo's performance. Below is a point/time chronicle of his progress. Remember, he starts with 2,000 points and does not sustain a hit or lose a life along the way.

    ******************************

    THE PATH TO VICTORY

    19:01 (min/sec remaining) - Treasure 1 is picked up

    At this point I will list the time remaining and the treasure count only

    18:15 - 2
    17:11 - 3
    16:23 - 4
    16:14 - 5
    16:04 - 6
    15:50 - 7
    14:53 - 8
    14:43 - 9
    13:51 - 10
    13:13 - 11
    12:25 - 12
    12:01 - 13
    11:23 - 14
    11:14 - 15
    10:41 - 16
    09:58 - 17

    At this point I happened to notice that by sheer coincidence, he had picked up half the treasures at the halfway point. After verifying this game and reviewing my notes, I then saw that he did the same thing back at the 8th treasure when there was roughly 75% of the clock remaining.

    09:43 - 18
    08:31 - 19
    07:30 - 20
    07:11 - 21
    07:02 - 22
    06:33 - 23
    06:19 - 24
    05:13 - 25
    04:44 - 26
    04:34 - 27
    04:20 - 28
    04:01 - 29
    03:52 - 30

    Now, from memory of my own attempt, the last few treasures came far apart from each other. With nearly 4 minutes to go, I remembered how I felt years back in competition against Alan. The thrill of getting them all, so close and yet so far, and one tiny mistake along the way was all it took to botch getting them all, let alone without taking a hit.

    02:40 - 31
    01:06 - 32

    And there you have it, fellow gamers !!

    ***************************

    AFTERTHOUGHTS

    There are a few things worth mentioning here.

    For starters, the game's end always struck me as a little anti-climactic, and I suppose that the designers realized that when they released the sequel title \"Pitfall 2\". There, \"Pitfall Harry\" jumps up and down when he touches the final treasure.

    Now the game for the Atari 2600 was released I think in 1982. I am wondering, now, which came first...\"Pitfall !\" or \"Raiders of the Lost Ark\" ?

    Next on my mind is the nature of the game itself. It is incredibly well designed in that you can take two vastly different approaches to the game...

    TRAVELLING PREDOMINANTLY TO THE LEFT
    -> You run with the logs each time to enter a new screen while moving left
    -> You automatically avoid tripping over any log that is on the extreme right of a new screen to the left
    -> You can jump directly onto the head of the first crocodile

    TRAVELLING PREDOMINANTLY TO THE RIGHT
    -> You run against the logs and must jump over each while moving right
    -> You must remember to jump right before leaving a screen while moving to the right whenever there is a stationary log on the extreme left side of the new screen
    -> You can't directly jump onto the head of the first crocodile in the lake, and instead must wait until it closes it's mouth

    The two path choices yield differ widely. It is my personal opinion that travelling predominantly to the right is the more challenging of the two. However, based on all \"Perfect Pitfall\" submissions to Twin Galaxies thus far, taking the left-oriented path leads the fastest possible results. And I have to add that to date, only a singe gamer has submitted a verified path going predominantly to the right. so I highly recommend taking the left-most path.

    Last but not least, Ron and I created the proviso that a gamer could NOT lose a life in order to achieve a \"Perfect Pitfall\" record. And there were two (2) reasons for that decision. First, it didn't sound right to have a \"Perfect\" in the record name and yet lose a life in the process. And second, it was possible to strategically lose a life in order to achieve an even faster time, as hard as this may be to believe.

    You see, when \"Pitfall Harry\" buys the farm, he falls down from the trees in exactly the same spot on the left side of the screen. This means that a clever player can enter a shave off a precious second or two by re-appearing on the opposite side of an opening or closing pit, and gain an incredible amount of time by running into just the right scorpion underground. If properly executed (no pun intended), we heard word of gamers achieving fast completion times of 1:30 or so remaining.

    It seemed very cheesy to us to blend in strategic game deaths with a perfect completion in a time-based game. Strategic losses in \"Pacman\" were absolutely necessary as there was no time completion involved and the game was point-based only. Thus our decision we felt was the right one to make, and I still believe so even now.

    Well then, that covers it all...the history of \"Pitfall !\" submissions to Twin Galaxies, the creation of the \"Perfect Pitfall\" record, and finally Rodrigo's new world record for a fastest perfect completion.

    And so, on behalf of the staff of the Twin Galaxies Intergalactic Scoreboard, congratulations, Rodrigo, on an awesome accomplishment !!

    Robert
  2. 05-21-2006, 01:19 AM
    Ok , the big question. What was it done on Robert, \"PAL, EMU or NTSC\"


    -Todd Rogers
  3. 05-21-2006, 05:54 AM
    He's from Brazil, which is PAL-M, so if he videotaped a game on an actual system, the colors onscreen would be different. The picture may roll as well.

    NTSC isn't 100% the same as PAL (or PAL-M). Same goes for emulation. But if his Decathlon scores are any indication ( https://www.twingalaxies.com/forums/viewtopic.php?t=6561 ) I'd say whatever he's playing, it's definitely *not* a NTSC system :)
  4. 05-21-2006, 07:12 AM
    Quote Originally Posted by stonic
    He's from Brazil, which is PAL-M, so if he videotaped a game on an actual system, the colors onscreen would be different. The picture may roll as well.

    NTSC isn't 100% the same as PAL (or PAL-M). Same goes for emulation. But if his Decathlon scores are any indication ( https://www.twingalaxies.com/forums/viewtopic.php?t=6561 ) I'd say whatever he's playing, it's definitely *not* a NTSC system :)
    Or he did it on PCAE 2.6


    Mr. Kelly R. Flewin
  5. 05-21-2006, 08:00 AM
    Quote Originally Posted by Mr_Kelly_R_Flewin

    Or he did it on PCAE 2.6


    Mr. Kelly R. Flewin
    Does that make it OK? If so, I think I'll re-submit a few scores.
  6. 05-21-2006, 09:08 AM
    Quote Originally Posted by dyancey
    Quote Originally Posted by Mr_Kelly_R_Flewin

    Or he did it on PCAE 2.6


    Mr. Kelly R. Flewin
    Does that make it OK? If so, I've think I'll re-submit a few scores.
    PCAE 2.6 has been acceptable for several years. :)
    I'd rather be last on every game than throw my time away chasing only one score.
  7. 05-21-2006, 09:53 AM
    Quote Originally Posted by Mr_Kelly_R_Flewin

    Or he did it on PCAE 2.6


    Mr. Kelly R. Flewin
    Like I said, playing an emulator is not the same as playing an actual NTSC system. You can't make a fair comparison between the two.
  8. 05-21-2006, 04:17 PM
    Who verified this score? Did it get verified by more than one referee? Did the Atari platform referee get to see the run or even how about another top record holder in Pitfall's fastest completion category? If one wanted to challenge this score, who would have to receive and review the request?
  9. Thanks!

    05-21-2006, 05:17 PM
    Wonderful Article Robert!

    Thank you very much.
  10. 05-21-2006, 07:46 PM
    My understanding is that there is zero difference in speed between PAL-M and NTSC. They're only different in the way colors are handled. As for emulators, I don't know enough about the hardware to say if there's a difference.
    Martin Bedard

    Arcade Finder - Find the coin-op games you want to play!
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