Written by  :  ETJB (450)
Written on  :  Jan 31, 2013
Platform  :  Genesis
Rating  :  4.4 Stars4.4 Stars4.4 Stars4.4 Stars4.4 Stars
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Another Classic 2D Platform Game From Virgin.

The Good

In the 1990s, Virgin released a series of incredible 2D platforming video games, which all featuring amazing 16-bit era animation, graphics, music and sound effects.

Global Gladiators is a fine example of Virgin 2D platforming that looks and sounds amazing. Our two young heroes are given water pistols (which look similar to the Super Soaker water gun) and told to help clean up the environment, which has come under assault from toxic monsters.

The water guns have unlimited ammo, shooting a short range green slime, and the environmentalist-themed levels have plenty of standard 2D secrets to find (i.e. invisible platforms, extra lives, health restoration, etc).

Your primary objective in each level is to collect enough Golden Arches in order to be able to exit the level, assuming you also manage to reach the exit.

Amazingly enough, the video game is able to stand on its own as a fun 2D platformer. It does not have shameful plugs for the fast food industry. Beyond the familiar Golden Arches and the marginally helpful Ronald McDonald, the game stays clear of telling kids to eat more fast food.

Global Gladiators is also one of the few Sega Genesis games that has an African American is a playable character. It is nice to see an effort being made by the game makers, both in terms of human diversity and environmentalism.

The Bad

The Global Gladiators only features four distinct worlds, with several levels in each world. It is a testament to how fun the game is, that the player is left wanting more, but the game does feel a tad bit too short.

Like Cool Sport, Global Gladiators does not have bosses at the end of each level and the in-game story line is kept to a bare minimum.

The intermission sequences at the start and end of the game are certainly nice to look at, but simply too short and lacking any sort of depth. Their is actually a final boss to defeat in Global Gladiators, but you will have a hard time believing that he posed much of a threat to the global environment.

In another comparison with Cool Spot, the primary weapon in Global Gladiators cannot be upgraded and you may get a tad tired of shooting out short range slime from water guns.

Heck, you may also question how spreading all the slime around is really good for the environment or why a giant, multi-national fast food empire, with magical employees, has to rely on two kids to clean up the planet?

The Bottom Line

The Global Gladiators looks and sounds amazing and is a testament to the creativity at Virgin. Beyond the technical aspects, its nice to see a game show some interest in an environmentalist message and racial diversity.