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Promotional poster for Forgotten Worlds
|Release date(s)||July 1988|
|Genre(s)||Horizontal scrolling shooter|
|Mode(s)||Up to two players, simultaneously|
|Arcade system||CP System|
|Display||Standard resolution (Used: 384 x 224)|
Forgotten Worlds, originally titled Lost Worlds (Japanese: ロストワールド?) in Japan, is a side-scrolling shoot-'em-up game by Capcom originally released as a coin-operated video game in 1988. It is notable for being the first title released by Capcom for their CP System arcade game hardware. The game took two years to develop, with a production budget of $5 million, equivalent to $10.2 million in 2016.
Set in a distant future, an evil god known as Emperor Bios has destroyed most of the Earth, turning it into a desolated wasteland known as the "Dust World". Two nameless super-soldiers are created by the people to defeat Bios and the eight evil gods who serve him.
Forgotten Worlds can be played by up to two players simultaneously. The player controls a flying muscle-bound soldier armed with a rifle with unlimited ammo. The Player 1 character is equipped with a long-range automatic rifle, while Player 2 has a short-range wide shot. The controls in the original coin-op version consists of an eight-way joystick for moving the character in the air while flying and a unique rotatable button known as the "roll switch". Rotating the switch left or right allows the player to adjust their character's aim in one of sixteen directions, while pressing it causes the player character to shoot his gun. This allows for the player to move their character anywhere while keeping their aim in one direction. Pressing the switch rapidly will cause the character to perform a "megacrush" attack which will destroy all on-screen enemies, but at the expense of a portion of their vitality gauge.
The player character is accompanied by a satellite module orbiting near him that will provide backup firepower every time the player fires their gun. Like the main character, the satellite can also be rotated with the roll switch. Rotating the character while firing will only rotate the aim of the satellite, while rotating the character without firing will not only rotate the satellite's aim, it will also move its relative position around the player.
The player can obtain blue-colored coins known as "zennies" from defeating enemies throughout the game. The zennies are used as currency to obtain new power-up items from shops located at certain points in each stage. When the player enters an item shop, they are given a choice of the items available and a limited time to make any purchase they wish. These items consists primarily of new weapons for the satellite module, but also includes a health kit to restore lost vitality, an armor that allows the player to sustain additional damage, and even tips on how to defeat the boss awaiting at the end of the current stage.
Forgotten Worlds consists of five stages with a total of eight bosses. The player will lose if their vitality gauge runs out, but will be given a chance to continue.
Forgotten Worlds was first ported to various home computers in Europe by U.S. Gold in 1989. Versions were produced for the Amiga, Atari ST, Commodore 64, ZX Spectrum, Amstrad CPC, and IBM-compatible PC. These versions of the game were developed by Arc Developments. All the computer versions required a joystick controller in order to be played and could not be played with the keyboard only (with the exception of the IBM PC version, ZX Spectrum, and Amstrad CPC versions). The player rotated the character in these versions by holding the fire button while pushing the joystick left or right. In the Spectrum sales charts, it was number two, behind Robocop, which was number one every month for most of the year. However, all these conversions contain only 4 levels: the first 3 levels then an abridged version of the final level, for a total of four bosses instead of the eight of the original game. Oddly, on the boxes of the conversions, is written that the player has to fight all the eight bosses.
A Sega Mega Drive/Genesis version, produced by Sega, was released in Japan on November 18, 1989, with subsequent releases in North America and the PAL region in 1990. The Mega Drive version simulated the controls of the arcade version by using A and C buttons to rotate the character in either direction and the B button for shooting. Unlike in the arcade version, both players are equipped with long-ranged automatic rifles. This version provides an auto-fire feature that can be toggled on or off on the game's settings. In 2008, the Mega Drive version was released on the Wii Virtual Console in North America on November 17 and in Europe on November 28.
A Master System version was also released by Sega in Europe and Brazil. This version is 1-player only and due to the presence of only two buttons on the Master System's standard controller, the buttons are used solely to rotate the character, who shoots automatically. The Megacrush attack is performed in this version by pressing both buttons simultaneously.
The Turbografx-16 version, produced by NEC Avenue was released in Japan on March 27, 1992. It was released as a Super CD-ROM² title which supported a specialized 3-button controller that NEC released only in Japan. An American version for the TurboGrafx 16 was released by Turbo Technologies Inc. as well. With the 3-button controller, the player can control their character as they would in the Mega Drive version, with two buttons to rotate the character and one to shoot. With the standard TurboGrafx-16 controller, the Run button is used in the place of the third button to rotate the character to the left. The TurboGrafx-16 is one-player only, but allows the player to select between either of the two Unknown Soldiers at the start of the game (with their respective abilities from the arcade version retained).
An emulation of the original arcade version is included in the 2005 compilation Capcom Classics Collection Vol.1 for the PlayStation 2 and Xbox, as well as in 2006's Capcom Classics Collection: Remixed for the PlayStation Portable. Both, the PS2 and Xbox version, allows the player to use their respective controllers' right analog sticks to control the player character's aim.
Appearances in other games
- The Player 1 character appears in Marvel vs. Capcom: Clash of Super Heroes as a "helper character" assisting the main fighters, under the name of "Unknown Soldier". Additionally, the Gods of Thunder and Wind and the King of Gods appear in the background of one of the stages.
- The two Unknown Soldiers, as well as Sylphie the Shopkeeper, are playable characters in Namco × Capcom (where they were voiced by Akio Ōtsuka, Tesshō Genda, and Rie Tanaka in order). The soldiers are assisted by the Mobilsuits from Side Arms (who are named "Side Arm α" and "Side Arm β" in the game), while Sylphie uses weapons and items from many different Capcom arcade games, and has the ability to dress up as four other Capcom characters and use their attacks (namely, Makoto from Street Fighter III 3rd Strike, Michelle Heart from Legendary Wings, Linn Kurosawa from Alien vs. Predator, and Mai-Ling from Red Earth). Additionally, the Dust Dragon boss appears in two stages as background decoration (which is explained in the game's story as being brought over into these stages by the time-space distortions). The shop theme is also featured in the game.
- In SNK vs. Capcom: Card Fighters Clash for the Neo Geo Pocket Color, there is an amusement center in the game called Lost World. It features a large Dust Dragon statue, numerous weapons from the game behind display cases, and the music from the first stage. Also, a card shop can be accessed on the upper-right corner of the building. The shop keeper is Sylphie, and while browsing her cards it plays the shop theme from Forgotten Worlds.
- The War God appears in Guy's ending in Capcom Fighting Jam.
- Sylphie appears in Project X Zone 2 as a shopkeeper, with Rie Tanaka reprising her role.
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