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Thread: New to emulation - How to proceed for mainly retro games???

  1. #1

    Default New to emulation - How to proceed for mainly retro games???

    I have dabbled in game emulation in the past, mainly for old NES type games and such. I recently have been talking to some friends about this and they mention that there are now ways to emulate a variety of games on one device with only a few emulators. MAME and SCUMM are two that have been mentioned. It looks like there are also several front-ends such as RetroArch and LaunchBox as well.

    My main use for this would be older games like the original Sierra Kings Quest games and similar, NES games, Game Boy original games, some arcade games, and such. It wouldn't be a single purpose type of emulation scenario. I would want multiple platforms to all run on this unit.

    This is also more of a hobby to me than a full-time deal. I work on electronics for a living and come across gamers who that is pretty much all they do. I want something simple that doesn't take forever to setup and manage. I am sure I can make this work but wanted to ask for some advice from those who have already figured it out. I also want to do this all on ONE computer if that is possible and not have to have multiple devices sitting around. I work on computers so often end up with parts from junk units sitting around. I usually try to refurbish what is worth messing with end up with "Frankenstein" computers. The "Frankenstein" computer in question is an HP 23 inch all in one. I personally hate these things as most all in ones are basically a piece of junk. This one came to me with a fried motherboard and the rest of the unit was mint to I hated to just send it off for recycling. I ended up finding a replacement motherboard with the CPU listed at the link below already on the board for cheap.

    It is basically this computer when you get right down to it but is a "Frankenstein" build of it since the original board was AMD A10 based. The Core i3 runs circles around what came in it.

    The unit doesn't have dedicated graphics and I would be relying on the onboard GPU included with this processor. I know this probably wouldn't be a good unit for the latest and greatest games but am mainly interested in retro games, so would think this unit would be more than capable. It is outfitted with 8GB of RAM as I am sure that matters but could bump it up to 12GB if that would be of help. Again, this unit seems like it would be overkill but I don't know as I am new to this.

    I also have an HP Envy Laptop that is basically physically falling to pieces but is equipped with this CPU: This is a more powerful unit for sure but I would have to use it on an external monitor with a mouse and keyboard since it is falling apart. It would basically be setup like a small desktop because the actual frame of the unit is broken (known problem) and the screen is about to fall off the thing.

    I have PLENTY of cheaper units lake AMD A6-A8 models as well as Intel Pentium/Celeron models that have been left behind. Think cheap Wal-Mart computers. Again, I hate these things and consider them junk but they were left behind and I figure they might be more than enough for retro gaming. I also have some older Core 2 Duo era units. I am sure there is some overhead to the emulation process but what is a good way to get started for someone who wants to emulate games mainly from year 2000 and older?

    Thank you,


  2. #2

    Default Re: New to emulation - How to proceed for mainly retro games???

    I found that there are some large ROM packs out there. I am getting all the NES and SNES ones right now. Each one has like 3500 games in it so I can pick and choose my favorites. Super Mario Bros and Zelda are my favorites as they are probably are for many.

    Another one I forgot about is the older TI 99/4A system that I started out on. It looks like there is also emulation for this but I have just started looking into that.

    I was looking at the file sizes for these ROMs and they are TINY. I am wondering if the Intel Core i3 and i7 systems I posted above are total and complete overkill for these types of games or if a pretty potent CPU is required for the emulator overhead. I know these games are simple but the entire thing is smaller than even a simple picture taken on basic cell phone these days.

    Another question? I know games like Duck Hunt were not working on LCD monitors that last time I looked because their refresh rate is too slow compared to CRTs. I figure there might be a way for the targeting to be artificially slowed down in the emulator for those to work but was just wondering. These are not my prime focus but know that some people have kept the old CRTs around just for this purpose.


  3. #3
    Junior Member pix07's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2016

    Default Re: New to emulation - How to proceed for mainly retro games???

    its enough for 2d game systems like : TI 99/4A,SEGA,NES,GAMEBOY,ARCADE CABINETS etc....
    you need decent card to emulate playstation2 and 3.
    "God made the integers, all else is the work of man "- Leopold Kronecker

  4. #4
    Cool Newbie
    Join Date
    Mar 2017

    Default Re: New to emulation - How to proceed for mainly retro games???

    Check out attract mode front end. It works great and is very easy to use.

  5. #5 EmulatorLowdown's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2017
    Blog Entries

    Default Re: New to emulation - How to proceed for mainly retro games???

    First off welcome to the world of emulation.

    Maybe you should look into the GPD XD handheld console.

    Its like a Nintendo DS made in china that plays everything from 16-bit all the way up to Dreamcast games.

    You can also plug it into your TV and play games the normal way.

    This could be a simple answer for someone new to emulators who just wants to get going instead of tinkering with all the different softwares.


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