As in most games in the genre, the game puts you in control of a small fighter as you attempt to make your way past several stages filled with enemy ships charging and attacking you in different patterns.
The game features 7 distinct characters with psychic powers (which manifest in-game as bomb-type attacks and other special moves) and unique fighters, and the game features a story mode for each character, in which they have different dialogues and plot sequences for each boss fight.
Also included is a weapon system similar to Psyvariar's in which you can enhance your power and rate of fire by scraping incoming bullets.
A manga adaption of Shikigami no Shiro, written by Tohru Zekuu and illustrated by Yuna Takanagi, was serialized in Kodansha's Magazine Z from December 2003 until December 2004 and collected in three volumes. A sequel series by the same authors, Shikigami no Shiro: Nejireta Shiro ("The Twisted Castle"), was serialized in the same magazine from January 2005 until March 2008, and collected in a further eight volumes. Both series are based on the events of the first two games, focusing on the second.
The American PS2 version of this game features a notoriously bad English translation. On top of the lines being so literally translated that they're almost incomprehensible, the voice acting features lines read by the wrong actor, lines where the actor reads directions as part of the dialogue, lines left in Japanese, and lines that are completely missing.
The translation was completely redone for the PAL release, and the voice acting was removed altogether.