TOM Platt's opening goal could not save York City from a third pre-season defeat to higher-league opposition as they went down 2-1 to Nottingham Forest.
The Championship outfit quickly snuffed out Platt's 50th-minute effort with replies from Scotland striker Jamie Mackie and Republic of Ireland international Simon Cox.
Of more significance, however, for the Minstermen, who started the game with 16 professionals, were injuries to summer signings Femi Ilesanmi and Jake Hyde with both hobbling gingerly out of the action.
Earlier, an immaculate minute's applause, befitting the memory of club historian Dave Batters who passed away last week, took place prior to kick off with City quickly into their stride following the starting whistle.
Russell Penn had the ball in the net with less than three minutes on the clock but his effort, following good combination play between wingers Anthony Straker and Lindon Meikle, was correctly ruled out due to a shove by City's combative captain.
A positive raid to the byline by left-back Ilesanmi, moments later, teed up a great near-post chance for Hyde that he sidefooted over the crossbar from five yards.
Hyde went on to miss the target with another near-post opportunity - this time from Straker's low left-wing delivery - before Mackie bore down on Jason Mooney's goal following a John McCombe misjudgement.
The Scotland international was denied, though, by an excellent covering tackle by Ilesanmi.
City continued to press forward but a 30-yard Meikle attempt drifted out for a throw-in, while Michael Coulson forced the first save of the night on 23 minutes - a near-post parry from Dimitar Evtimov - after Straker had nudged a pass through the right channel.
The visitors keeper then proved equal to a firm Hyde drive after smart play by Coulson, while Mooney was equally as impressive when Mackie broke through on goal, saving his low shot with a trailing leg before Jamie Paterson drilled the loose ball into the sidenetting.
City were then forced into a 31st-minute reshuffle when Ilesanmi, who had been prominent at both ends of the pitch, limped out of the action and punched the dugout in frustration as he took his place on the bench.
Straker went on to fill in at left back with Ryan Jarvis coming on to operate on the flank.
A left-wing cross by Jarvis shortly afterwards was sliced into Evtimov's hands by Louis Laing while Mooney was again alert to smother at Cox's feet after he had sprung the Minstermen's offside trap.
Coulson's edge-of-the-box drive, which was gathered low to his left by Forest's Bulgarian shot-stopper, then proved the last attempt of the half.
The Minstermen started the second period brightly with Evtimov keeping out a 15-yard dive by Coulson, who then had a shot deflected wide with McCombe heading over from the resulting flag kick.
Their energy and enterprise told on 50 minutes when Platt burst into the six-yard box to get on the end of a low right-wing delivery by Coulson and beat Evtimov with a firm, first-time effort.
That seemed to sting Stuart Pearce's men into action and, within a minute, the scores were level.
Mooney could only parry a long-range Jorge Grant shot and Mackie deftly lifted over the prostrate Irishman from two yards from the rebound.
Forest then forged ahead six minutes later when Paterson fed Cox in the home penalty box.
He then left McCombe on his backside after swiftly sidestepping the City centre-back's challenge and drilled a low shot past Mooney from ten yards.
A hat-trick of opportunities went on to fall to Forest youngster Tyler Walker, son of ex-England defender Des, with the second a glaring miss that cleared substitute Michael Ingham's bar from five yards.
Ingham was also called into action by Mackie before Jarvis sidefooted a five-yard equalising chance wide late on.
City: Mooney (Ingham, 59), McCoy, Lowe, McCombe (Winfield, 59), Ilesanmi (Jarvis, 31), Meikle (Hirst, 81), Penn, Platt (Montrose, 59), Straker, Hyde (Murray, 64), Coulson (Rzonca, 81).
Forest: Dimitar Evtimov, Jack Hunt (Tyler Walker, 46), Louis Laing, Danny Collins, Amadou Haidara (Ilias Polimos, 53), Chris Burke (Roger Riera, 46), Mikele Leigertwood (Greg Halford, 46), Jorge Grant (Josh Rees, 81), Jamie Paterson, Simon Cox, Jamie Mackie.
Attendance: 1,714 (620 from Forest)