Gargoyles (video game)

Cover to Gargoyles.

Gargoyles is a platform game released for the Sega Genesis, based on the cartoon of the same name, developed and published by Buena Vista Interactive in 1995. A Super Nintendo version was also planned for release, but was canceled.


The game loosely follows the plot of the show, although only two characters are identified in any substantial fashion: Goliath, the protagonist, and Demona, who ultimately becomes the main antagonist and the most recent owner of the Eye. No other characters from the show are featured.


In the game, players control Goliath, leader of the Manhattan Clan of gargoyles, as he seeks to put an end to a magical, corrupted talisman, the Eye of Odin, which can transform whoever comes to possess it.

Throughout the game, Goliath will contend with the Vikings who ransacked Castle Wyvern in the past, as well as new, robotic foes who attack him in the present across various venues, such as Manhattan rooftops and a subway. His arsenal of attacks to defend himself include various strikes with his fists, grapples, throws, and leaping maneuvers. Furthermore, he can pump his wings once to increase his jumping distance, as well as climb along walls and ceilings with his claws.

The game contains 11 levels bookended by short cinematics which explain the story thus far, each level concluding with a boss encounter. Gargoyles boasts a hand-drawn appearance to Goliath, Demona and the Viking antagonists, not unlike Virgin Interactive's Aladdin also for the Genesis, but also a CGI-modeled look for the robots encountered in the present.


The game was released exclusively for the Sega Genesis on May 15, 1995.[1] A canceled SNES port was planned for a Christmas 1995 release.[2]


The game was very well received by critics. GamePro's Scott Larry gave it a review score of 17.5/20, calling it "one of the best games for the Genesis, right next to Earthworm Jim 2," and added: "Topnotch gameplay and great graphics made Gargoyles one of the year's best. It's a stone-cold blast!"[3] A review by Game Informer awarded it a score of 8.5/10, commenting: "Disney Interactive made Gargoyles into everything that would be expected from Disney's animation division. All the character movements look like a cartoon in themselves. If you found joy in Aladdin and The Lion King you'll probably receive the same thrill from Gargoyles but on a darker level."[4] Next Generation gave it four stars for its "simply amazing" graphics and being "a real treat to play", calling it one of the biggest surprises and best Genesis games of the year, and positively comparing it to "similar in looks" Demon's Crest for the SNES, adding that "with this and Toy Story, Disney has done more with the Genesis than Sega has ever done."[5] The four reviewers of Electronic Gaming Monthly were more conflicted about the game, giving it scores ranging from 4.0 to 7.5. They all agreed that the game's controls were frustrating, but differed in their opinions of the gameplay and graphics (from "dingy" to "aren't the best" to "really impressive").[6]


  1. Information from the VHS release of Gargoyles the Movie.
  2. Video game catalogs in 1994-1995 shows promotional artwork of the Super Nintendo version, featuring cover art with Goliath about to jump off a building and take flight, with the ESRB Rating Pending symbol on it.
  3. GamePro 79 (February 1996), page 70.
  4. Petrified No Longer, (November 1995).
  5. Next Generation 13 (January 1996), page 171.
  6. "Gargoyles Review", Electronic Gaming Monthly, EGM Media, LLC (January 1996), p. 40.

External links


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