Reference added: 491 "Sidearms and Forgotten Worlds -- PCE ports of Capcom's side-scrolling shooters."
In some ways this is a gorgeous port of the Capcom shooter, but in other ways it is an awkward port.
Graphics, music, all that stuff is great. Top-notch all around there.
Controls, now, we come to some issues. No simultaneous two-player, for instance (just like that previous Capcom port, Sidearms (see entry 491).
More puzzling is the button layout. I think the game shipped with a special three-button controller (one to rotate left, one to rotate right, one to shoot--simulating the arcade spinny controller). If you don't have one of those, you set the options to "Normal Pad" and get one of the rotation buttons on the Start button.
This... isn't all that useful. It's too bad that the game doesn't seem to support six-button controllers. But also when you set the control to "Normal Pad Auto-Fire" it should have used the two buttons to rotate, but instead you still have to use Start.
When you can't rotate one direction easily in this game, it gets frustrating. I'm still trying to sort this out.
Okay, well I miss my arcade stick but using a regular pad held with two fingers on Start and Button I, with your right thumb under the controller, and normal pad auto-fire enabled in the game's Options panel, gets you through passably well. It at least lets you start to enjoy the game for what it is, a fine 360-degree shooter.
Whereas in Sidearms you can only shoot forward or back, in Forgotten Worlds you can, of course, rotate and shoot any which way you want. This makes for some very cool strafing-style shooting at swooping foes, and you can also shoot up or down at things.
You'll hit minor slowdown now and then, but nothing really horrible. The bosses are epic in scale and I'm kind of scared of that second boss now (the reclining dragon) because I'm not sure how to hit him (they don't really flash when hit). But he looks damn cool. The blue "zenny" coins you collect look purty and besides that they let you buy neato upgrades in the shops you fly past occasionally (psst--the homing rockets work wonders on the first boss).
All the more shame about the controller situation then.