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Pinside rating

This game received 64 approved Pinsider ratings and currently rates 7.388 /10


Top 100 ranking

This game ranks #189 in the Pinside Pinball Top 100.

Score breakdown

Score breakdown in the 4 main categories:

Game design: 7.654

Artwork: 6.808

Sounds/Music: 7.035

Other Aspects: 7.541

Pinside staff rating

This is how we, the very knowledgeable (wink wink) staff & moderators rate this game. 3 of us have rated this game.


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Ranking history

An overview of this machine's ranking over the last years. Lower is better.

Rating history

An overview of this machine's rating over the last years. Higher is better.

Found 41 ratings (with comment) on this game

There are 41 ratings (that include a comment) on this game.
Currently showing results page 1 of 2.

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56 days ago
What a funky, junky little oddity. With art that seems to have been lifted off the cover of some random '80s German heavy metal record, and a playfield layout that goes every which way including places you never see, this under the radar weirdo sure is unique, and I like unique. Actually has a fast, lively flow, four flippers, and one of those XL-sized saucers in the playfield like Gottlieb's previous Mario Bros. game. Speaking of video games, this was originally supposed to be based on the Legend of Zelda, and then on the Gladiators TV show, but both those deals fell through and they ended up basing it on, um, heavy metal album covers, I guess. One of a kind.
4 months ago
This game is under rated. I feel SS Gottlieb games in general are under rated. Unique and effective slingshots. Unique, interesting, and graceful flow.
7 months ago
My first pin!

Awfull artwork, but very funny to play
8 months ago
I think Gladiators is an underrated game, though it does have it's faults.

Gladiators is a flow based game, which it does a great job at. It's very satisfying chaining shots together. More satisfying than most flow games.

This game suffers from some unfortunate game logic mistakes. There is a mode that you are better of cradling the ball and a mode that you can exploit for crazy scores.

However, if you take points out of the equation, the modes are fun, and make a good use of the whole playfield. It feels rewarding to slay the dragon at the end.

Shooting the multi shots to get multiball feels rewarding. The abyss shot is pretty easy to accomplish, but somehow always feels great and is quite unique. The ramps are enjoyable, and I like how they don't just feed the ball to the in lane.

The catapult is a pretty middle of the road gimmick.

It's worth noting, that this game is pretty easy, which can be viewed as a good or bad thing.
1 year ago
If you've never played it and never heard about it, and you play it for the first time, the speed of this pin can be quite remarkable. But when you've figured the shots, it's actually quite satisfying getting the multiball, combos one after an other. I really like it. I think it's a good challenge.
1 year ago
Picked this up for $1,600.00, and couldn't be happier. Excellent overall Playability & Rule Set. Really dig the 4 flippers. Very difficult challenges, especially the Cataclysm and Beast Slayer modes. Once you slay the beast, I really like how you get to enter your initials in the middle of the game. Hitting the Abyss can be relatively easy by holding the Left flipper open when shooting up into the L loop. Back glass artwork is a little cheesy, but the play field paint, coloring, and lighting are all above par. Hitting the Articulating M-ramp can be difficult, but the payout (especially in Multi-Ball) is well worth it. T Ramp is very easy to hit with the upper left flipper, and super fast fun. Attack mode is decent, and can be difficult to get the blue/yellow lights to match up. Mystery lane is very cool for random bonuses, and with a full lit DOUBLE, can really give you some great payouts. Overall, very excellent game and lots of fun to play. I'm very happy with this game
2 years ago
What a great game this is... I stumbled upon it and took a chance when I bought it and I’m glad I did. As others have said, it has great flow and is really underrated. Still learning the rules and have yet to get three ball multi-ball but I’ll keep at it. It’s a definite sleeper title that should be considered for anyone’s collection.
2 years ago
A super fun pin that needs more attention, but with it's low number production run it's kinda lost at sea. The layout is by far my favorite of any Gottlieb, and the flow is seriously the coolest part of this whole game. Plus the theme is perfect for my haunted house pinball tournament (Horrorhouse Fest) so it was a necessary pin for the collection. This may turn out to be my first re-theme attempt, as I think with some better art this game could really shine... plus I have been putting together a concept the last few years that works perfect for this idea. Wish me luck! :)
2 years ago
Super fun pin. It’s a shame this game was not made to be the Legend of Zelda like originally intended as this layout is wonderful. Might be my favorite game from this manufacturer.

The scoring is not really balanced though which really is a shame. Too many exploits for this to be a top game or even a B list game. It’s a solid C list game though and will usually be pretty cheap to buy, which is nice.
2 years ago
Love this game!
2 years ago
This is a really great gottlieb game. First, the game is fun. There are many different missions to complete before the "Beats Challenge" and it is challenging to get there. The sound is excellent. I don't really care for the voice but other than that, the audio is really good. There are many different tracks and they are all pretty good. The Dot Matrix is pretty good. It has really awesome animations and just looks great. The artwork is okay. Tying with the theme, it just doesn't really make sense.The theme is not horrible so it isn't really a game changer. It seems like it takes place in space which just doesn't make that much sense. The machine is fast and has smooth shots. I do wish that there were a couple more shots on the top of the playfield because it just seems to loop up there a lot. The scoring isn't really equal. One round on the pyramid gets you much more points than another round. Overall I would recommend this game.

Edit- Just got rid of it. Defiantly gets old if you have a smaller collection. Call outs get REALLY old. Only had it for 5 months too.
2 years ago
This pin was in a bar closed to my school and I have a lot of memories with it.
That's maybe the one who make me enter the pinball world.
Seriously, an underrated pin, lot of fun, vibration great and really cheap. Today a real bargain. For how long...
The lack of playfiled design come from the short dev time...
3 years ago
I got the game in a trade and the family loves it. Has some pretty cool shots, fun play and the kids love the shaker. We have 4 pins and people seem to gravitate towards this one for whatever reason. It's not slow like most gottliebs, it actually plays pretty fast. I'd recommend especially for kids
3 years ago
This was my very first DMD game and I miss it sometimes. An excellent title for the beginner collector and can still be found at reasonable prices. First game that I had ever experienced a shaker in and the one in this game is powerful which is very cool.
3 years ago
Great game - though it should have been Zelda! Fun game that keeps people coming back - beast slayer not easy to get. Scoring exploit unfortunate - wish there was code to patch that to keep players to actually playing through the modes and not just taking advantage of that.
3 years ago
Very underrated and fun machine. Plays well and is extremely fast. Can buy these Gladiators for a very reasonable price. A keeper in my book and very fun to play. The side rails are made out of a metal that rusted quite a bit on this machine ... not chromed so they will have to be replaced or painted.

Machine is fun!!! and has some really nice shots (long and short)
3 years ago
This pin offers a great adventure! The playfield design is unique and offers a lot of variety. I brought this pin back from the dead, and I'm very happy that I did.

The good:
- Four-flipper two stage playfield with left ramp, right spinner and upper side ramp!
- Controllable ramp arm for scoop
- Pretty deep rule set, with really cool acu-spin for extra ball and add-multi-ball to modes
- Ability to disengage pop bumpers with both flipper buttons
- Unique music that drives the game well
- Good shaker motor

The bad:
- Unbalanced scoring with scoop: you should have to ride the ramp to get the 50 million.
- Calm Before the Storm exploit: unlimited points. Easy to "just say no" if you own it.
- No end of ball sequence. Can be confusing for newer players playing 4-player games.
- Standard Multiball is a little unbalanced with the rest of the game. If you play it enough, you'll find yourself shooting for modes instead of multiball. Calm before the storm is a much better value.

Even with all the problems with the rule set, this game is super fun! It sucks that you have to purposely avoid scoring issues, but the fact that I still love this pin is a testament to the overall design of the game. If you have the chance to pick one up for a decent price, I would highly recommend Gladiators.
4 years ago
I never walk away from this game without my blood pressure racing. I don't get that experience From a lot of pins that are in that top 100 that's for sure.
4 years ago
Finally adding my comment to this game. I have to say that everyone who comes over to play this game always has a great time playing it. It seems that there is a die-hard fan base for this game. If you haven't played this pin, you're missing out a great experience. It's probably the best 90's Gottlieb pins made.
4 years ago
Very fast Pinballmachine !
4 years ago
Very fun game, backglass art is just so so, but the playfield art is good. With leds the game brightens up great. Overall a blast to play and a keeper in my collection
4 years ago
What a fun and fast flowing System 3!

The rules and scoring are a bit tricky to understand at first but it really is a fun game. Hard to find one but I recommend it. Can be had for a decent price.
We just ours a couple of weeks ago and finally got it working 100% correctly last night. I'll update the review when I've had more time with it.
4 years ago
In my opinion this is one of gottliebs best machines. A fun layout with good rule set and modes including a final mode “beast challenge”. the art could have been better in places and the theme is a little strange. Other then that this game is on par with some Bally Williams games I've played so I think that says a lot for a gottlieb. Very solid game all around. Glad I stumbled upon one

Edit: the shaker is very obnoxious and personaly I think it's too much so I keep that unplugged
5 years ago
Love this game! I first played at a pinsider’s house; who had a massive collection. This was the one game he would never sell; and he had all the A-list titles. So, I had to have one. I love the unique shots! The ball lock at the top by the catapult is the most challenging and the shot to hit the ball lock under the flipper is really cool. The music and sounds are my favorite! The 80’s sounding music goes great with the kinda cheesy artwork; I think it fits well. The dragon taunts are cool too. Then there is the crazy industrial shaker motor!! It’s much stronger than any other shaker I’ve seen and I think it adds to the already unique game. O, and one last thing. The speed of this game is really fast; so a 3 ball multiball is more than enough to keep track of; especially with the two flipper areas on the playfield. I don’t see this game leaving my collection any time soon.
5 years ago
Gladiators is a hidden gem that is often overlooked. It has a layout that is unlike anything else, which leads to some crazy combos and interesting shots.

DMD animations are pretty limited, and the sound is the music sounds like it was ripped straight from a Sega Genesis. Still, the ruleset is solid, and the game is just pure fun to play.
There are 41 ratings (that include a comment) on this game. Currently showing results page 1 of 2.

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