#153 Forgotten Worlds

Posted: 2nd August 2013 by Jeroen in Games
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259th played so far


Genre: Shoot ‘Em Up
Platform: Arcade
Year of Release: 1988
Developer: Capcom
Publisher: Capcom

When playing the most recent three games (we spent a Sunday afternoon catching up with some smaller games), we somehow managed to play through a chronological progression of shoot ’em ups. Both Gorf and Juno First were of the basic Space Invaders vertical shoot the alien type, each with its own innovations.

Forgotten Worlds, meanwhile, jumps five years ahead and is a side-scroller. Originally the first game for a now-forgotten arcade system, it was marketed as bosses that were ‘larger than the screen’. Its main characters also apparently make frequent appearances in other Capcom titles, so surely there’s some legacy there. All in all, an interesting entry to move to now.

Our Thoughts

There is quite a large number of these sort of side-scrolling shooters that were released around this time. For a large part, it plays similar to other horizontal scrollers – shoot stuff, get out of the way and so on. There’s the usual weapon upgrades with some nice but fairly predictable effects.

As always, a game like this divides into two different gameplay parts – normal levels and bosses. Sure, the basics are the same, but they play differently.

The bosses, first. Yeah, they’re impressive – big, taking up the full screen (and more) with many different parts you can destroy – often disabling attacks or defenses even if it doesn’t directly harm the boss. It’s mostly a matter of shooting lots and avoiding the attacks.

Despite their gameplay simplicity, they look and act awesome. They’re big, they’re detailed in their design and it’s satisfying to break them up blow by blow, see different parts explode or break down and fight your way through. Maybe not too tactical, but incredibly convincing.

The levels are almost the opposite. Enemies (as so often) tend to die pretty quickly. Dealing with their swarms and patterns, however, is more complicated. While this is partially lots of rapid fire, positioning and paying attention matters as much. Add to that wanting to collecting the money floating around after killing the enemies (zennies, a name Capcom continues to use even now).

This is going to sound a little bit sad but my favourite part of Forgotten Worlds was the shop. It just seemed a little bit random that it would pop-up as if from nowhere with an insanely peppy looking blonde girl selling her merchandise to similarly peppy music. A non-point really but it always made me smile.

The game’s bosses don’t seem as special now, but I can see how the whole would have been impressive in its day. Even if some sections are less impressive now, the game is great fun to play. With some additional extra life help, I played through it (yeah, sorry, I needed that bit of assistance) to the end, which I happily did. The variety in environments and enemies is great and the bosses are great to try to beat. Brilliant.

Final Thoughts

Apart from the fact that you will need multiple restarts to get that far (it’s very similar to manic shooters in that way) this game is incredibly immersive. The worlds and are beautifully drawn and the Duke Nukem lookalike makes for a great hero (as does his partner but you don’t really meet him in single-player mode). We will later be seeing references to this in SNK vs. Capcom: Card Fighters Clash when my favourite shopkeeper will be making an appearance. Yay!

  1. […] platform, beat ’em up and action game, I would have easily confused it with something like Forgotten Worlds if I had to say so at the time. Forgettable is the right […]