Joan Jade and the Gates of Xibalba is a puzzle adventure game developed by Artifex Mundi and published by Alawar Entertainment. The main character, Joan is spending some quality time with her husband while their children, Jim and Emily are volunteering for a summer archeological dig in the Yucatan. Unfortunately, they receive news of a terrible storm that struck the Yucatan and now, their children have gone missing. As a result, Joan and her husband Bruce fly immediately to Central America to see their children. Not long after they arrive in the peninsula do they witness the inefficient way the local police is handling the rescue mission, so Joan takes it upon herself to use her own exploration skills in searching for her children.
Joan finds herself in the ruins of an old Mayan temple hidden in the middle of the deep jungle. The player takes on the role of Joan as she explores the temple and finds all sorts of hidden objects scattered all over the place. Finding these items provides clues to the whereabouts of Joan’s children, who are believed to have been held captive inside the same temple. A helpful cursor serves as the player’s guide in determining the right directions to follow as well as items that can be picked up. All objects collected by the player are recorded in Joan’s journal, which can be opened any time during the game.