cageymaru

Fully [H]
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Libretro has announced that it has committed to releasing a port of RetroArch to the Xbox One in early 2019. The Xbox One platform has a built in Developer Mode that grants users the ability to develop and test software on the system. This should forgo having to jailbreak the console. According to the FAQ, users can switch between Developer Mode and Retail Mode. Access to Developer Mode costs $19. All Xbox One users should benefit from DX11, DX12 and FreeSync on the platform, but Xbox One X users will have access to a more powerful GPU than the standard Xbox One.


It's not all perfect though. While Developer Mode won't require you to jailbreak your console, you do have to pay at least $19 for a Microsoft Dev Center account. You will also have to factory reset your console if you ever want to get out of Developer Mode. And while it's definitely an exciting development, libretro still recommends PCs with beefier CPUs and GPUs for the best emulation experience.
 

Shmee

[H]ard|Gawd
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Messages
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So it is $20, and there is nothing stopping MS from blocking this once game companies get mad at them for allowing emulators on their console.
 

andrewaggb

Limp Gawd
Joined
Oct 6, 2004
Messages
437
All of these consoles should be releasing official (in-store) emulator apps. Wasted opportunity that they haven't. Nintendo probably won't allow it, but I bet Sega and commodore would cool with it if they get a cut.
 

Wiffle

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Joined
Oct 2, 2011
Messages
292
Hrmm...

Last I checked, the bios of these systems is required for the emulators to work properly, and the bios files are 100% proprietary. Unless you physically own the system which you are emulating and a copy of the game as well, you are in violation of copyright infringement.

Given RetroArch's twitter post of "We've bit the bullet and will commit to releasing an Xbox One port of RetroArch..." I think its safe to say they are willing to risk legal issues on the hopes that they can work out some kind of business deal with these companies. Hopefully it works out for them, especially given the rise of backwards compatibility and nostalgia markets.
 

Derangel

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Messages
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Hrmm...

Last I checked, the bios of these systems is required for the emulators to work properly, and the bios files are 100% proprietary. Unless you physically own the system which you are emulating and a copy of the game as well, you are in violation of copyright infringement.

Given RetroArch's twitter post of "We've bit the bullet and will commit to releasing an Xbox One port of RetroArch..." I think its safe to say they are willing to risk legal issues on the hopes that they can work out some kind of business deal with these companies. Hopefully it works out for them, especially given the rise of backwards compatibility and nostalgia markets.

Not all consoles require a bios to emulate and RetroArch does not distribute bios files for the emulators that require them.
 

Nobu

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Jun 7, 2007
Messages
6,684
Hrmm...

Last I checked, the bios of these systems is required for the emulators to work properly, and the bios files are 100% proprietary. Unless you physically own the system which you are emulating and a copy of the game as well, you are in violation of copyright infringement.

Given RetroArch's twitter post of "We've bit the bullet and will commit to releasing an Xbox One port of RetroArch..." I think its safe to say they are willing to risk legal issues on the hopes that they can work out some kind of business deal with these companies. Hopefully it works out for them, especially given the rise of backwards compatibility and nostalgia markets.
Many bioses have been clean-room reverse engineered, others have been worked around so a bios isn't necessary. Only ones which need a bios iirc are ps3 and maybe gamecube/n64/wii/ps2. Pretty sure n64 doesn't need one, ps2 may not.
 

DukenukemX

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Messages
5,810
I'm gonna mod my 360 and PS2 to have the ability to do other things than play retail games. For some reason I have like 5 PS2's that people gave me.

Hrmm...

Last I checked, the bios of these systems is required for the emulators to work properly, and the bios files are 100% proprietary. Unless you physically own the system which you are emulating and a copy of the game as well, you are in violation of copyright infringement.

Given RetroArch's twitter post of "We've bit the bullet and will commit to releasing an Xbox One port of RetroArch..." I think its safe to say they are willing to risk legal issues on the hopes that they can work out some kind of business deal with these companies. Hopefully it works out for them, especially given the rise of backwards compatibility and nostalgia markets.
Emulators haven't been illegal for years now. Both Sony and Nintendo have taken people to court many times and have lost many times. As for the bios there aren't many emulators that require this and the ones that do assume you're ripping the bios from your console. PSX doesn't require a BIOS to play PS1 games. PCSX2 does require a PS2 BIOS.

Emulator authors can make a HLE bios that would actually perform better but only slightly and requires a lot of work. It's just easier to tell people to rip their own bios rather than do all that work.

Many bioses have been clean-room reverse engineered, others have been worked around so a bios isn't necessary. Only ones which need a bios iirc are ps3 and maybe gamecube/n64/wii/ps2. Pretty sure n64 doesn't need one, ps2 may not.
RPCS3 a PS3 emulator doesn't require a BIOS but it does require PS3 software which you literally download from Sony's website. How nice of Sony. Nintendo 64 emulators don't use a BIOS and neither does Dolphin the GameCube Wii emulator. The Nintendo 3DS emulator does require the software off the 3DS as does the Switch emulator Yuzu. They're both made by the same author. CEMU the WIi U emulator only needs the special keys to run the games, no BIOS or software.

Give you guys a bit of news in that there is indeed a PS4 emulator being worked on. Multiple PS4 emulators though one has gone underground, but the one that hasn't is the same guy who made RPCS3. Which is strange cause RPSC4 is the underground emulator and Orbital the one worked on by the founder of RPCS3. Anyway the emulator is going to virtualize the CPU emulation using QEMU and KVM, which should sound familiar to Linux users. When there's a working PS4 emulator it opens up Pandora's box and it can never be closed. Just think about what that means for terrible PC ports and the abuse of DRM, and how this could translate to the PS5. For now here's the Nintendo Switch emulators progress. BTW anyone looking to try this should know that Yuzu currently hates AMD graphic cards due to OpenGL sucking on them, but if you run the emulator in Linux it's drastically faster cause OpenGL drivers for AMD don't suck on there.
 

joobjoob

Gawd
Joined
Jun 29, 2004
Messages
546
I'm gonna mod my 360 and PS2 to have the ability to do other things than play retail games. For some reason I have like 5 PS2's that people gave me.


Emulators haven't been illegal for years now. Both Sony and Nintendo have taken people to court many times and have lost many times. As for the bios there aren't many emulators that require this and the ones that do assume you're ripping the bios from your console. PSX doesn't require a BIOS to play PS1 games. PCSX2 does require a PS2 BIOS.

Emulator authors can make a HLE bios that would actually perform better but only slightly and requires a lot of work. It's just easier to tell people to rip their own bios rather than do all that work.


RPCS3 a PS3 emulator doesn't require a BIOS but it does require PS3 software which you literally download from Sony's website. How nice of Sony. Nintendo 64 emulators don't use a BIOS and neither does Dolphin the GameCube Wii emulator. The Nintendo 3DS emulator does require the software off the 3DS as does the Switch emulator Yuzu. They're both made by the same author. CEMU the WIi U emulator only needs the special keys to run the games, no BIOS or software.

Give you guys a bit of news in that there is indeed a PS4 emulator being worked on. Multiple PS4 emulators though one has gone underground, but the one that hasn't is the same guy who made RPCS3. Which is strange cause RPSC4 is the underground emulator and Orbital the one worked on by the founder of RPCS3. Anyway the emulator is going to virtualize the CPU emulation using QEMU and KVM, which should sound familiar to Linux users. When there's a working PS4 emulator it opens up Pandora's box and it can never be closed. Just think about what that means for terrible PC ports and the abuse of DRM, and how this could translate to the PS5. For now here's the Nintendo Switch emulators progress. BTW anyone looking to try this should know that Yuzu currently hates AMD graphic cards due to OpenGL sucking on them, but if you run the emulator in Linux it's drastically faster cause OpenGL drivers for AMD don't suck on there.


Interesting. Is there 360 emulator i can get to play my copy of too human?
 

DukenukemX

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Messages
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Interesting. Is there 360 emulator i can get to play my copy of too human?
Yep, except I haven't touched 360 emulation just yet. The emulator is called Xenia and it even plays Halo 3, which as far as I can tell isn't on PC for some reason. Keep in mind some of these emulators also make use of Vulkan and DX12, a rare feature to find on native PC ports. Yuzu and CEMU are going to have Vulkan support while Xenia already has DX12 support. Dolphin and RPCS3 both have working Vulkan support. Why are these rare features in modern PC games?

 

RanceJustice

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Messages
6,193
The reason they're supported is primarily because most of them are open source and generally favor open APIs including Vulkan, but I am guessing many emulators make use of them because Vulkan (and to an extent DX12 as well) do something of particular importance to emulator devs - get closer to be bare metal. Emulator development is far and away different from game development (which is often abstracted over several layers - manipulating engines, scripts and whatnot rather than anything lower) and is more like lower-level systems development; you're often providing hardware specific calls etc..and you have to well..emulate as if you were running on what the console title expects, after all. So I've been told by those involved in emulator development anyway.

I'm continually impressed with many emulator projects, especially those for more recent systems and open source. While I've always loved the wealth of high quality emulators from elder generation hardware (ie Xbox, Gamecube, PS2 and previous), it has only been relatively recently that newer platforms have been emulated with success. Consider the aforementioned Xenia (X360) , RPCS3 (PS3) , and Dolphin (GC / Wii) emulators for instance, that were thought to be years down the road yet have grown to play many retail titles successfully. Of considerable note are the emulators for current or near current generation Nintendo consoles such as CEMU (Wii U) , Citra ( New 3DS ) and amazingly enough Yuzu (Switch)! While it takes some time for recent emus to evolve to providing the kind of flawless performance one expects when calling it a true alternative play platform, they're moving at quite a pace and perhaps most importantly the outcome can mean a superior overall experience versus the original platform! A powerful gaming PC can handle upscaling the internal rendering increasing the graphical fidelity and perhaps even tweaking other elements of the game; Zelda Breath of the Wild on CEMU is perhaps the most visible experience with massive upgrades and optional graphics packs changing the colors, distance, removing fog etc... as well as rendering the graphics at your native monitor's resolution. Some can even play online multiplayer - Citra has a built in "room" system for online play for instance - with a few of them even offering "official" online play in the right circumstances, such as CEMU playing online if you have a legit WiiU to dump your keys from etc.

One reason I'm so happy for something like Yuzu's development is that I've grown so tired of watching incompatible consoles and exclusives upon them, where one has to purchase a whole platform for a single title. I'd love to be able to play Super Smash Bros Ultimate, Mario Kart 8 Deluxe, Splatoon 2, or Octopath Traveler on PC ( perhaps via Steam) but due to Nintendo's single minded intransigence, it may be a long time before such comes to pass officially. Consoles have transitioned to using hardware more like off the shelf PC components or bog standard mobile hardware over the last generation , so perhaps if we can't shake off the concept of the proprietary console entirely, perhaps emulating - or maybe at some point, porting - titles will become easier and easier.
 

chameleoneel

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Messages
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due to Nintendo's single minded intransigence, it may be a long time before such comes to pass officially. Consoles have transitioned to using hardware more like off the shelf PC components or bog standard mobile hardware over the last generation , so perhaps if we can't shake off the concept of the proprietary console entirely, perhaps emulating - or maybe at some point, porting - titles will become easier and easier.

Nintendo is the king of handheld gaming. they know this and have finally melded that into their console side. Delivering their full featured flagship games, in a uniquely quality, portable experience. No one else has dared attempt this. As such, no other product comes close to what the Switch has done as an overall product, for gaming. Indeed, the Wii was a good idea without many ideas for games. And the Wii-U should have been the Switch but was probably too budget conscious to go all-in. But they finally did it with the Switch. and the successes of Switch, are exactly why its games should never be on other platforms.
 

RanceJustice

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Nintendo is the king of handheld gaming. they know this and have finally melded that into their console side. Delivering their full featured flagship games, in a uniquely quality, portable experience. No one else has dared attempt this. As such, no other product comes close to what the Switch has done as an overall product, for gaming. Indeed, the Wii was a good idea without many ideas for games. And the Wii-U should have been the Switch but was probably too budget conscious to go all-in. But they finally did it with the Switch. and the successes of Switch, are exactly why its games should never be on other platforms.

I suppose we may just see the Switch a bit differently, but it isn't some magical device that only Nintendo could forge - it is a variant of the Nvidia Shield tablet (in fact, the current exploit giving access to homebrew is based on this fact). Mobile games today have come quite a long way and there is relatively high powered CPU/GPU on many phones and tablets. Even prior to the Switch, it wouldn't have taken any real magic to release 3DS games on Android, but of course Nintendo didn't do that. The Switch is not a bad device by far and the combination of the Nvidia Shield tablet core, the JoyCons (which solve the issue of non-touch screen controls), and the Dock (allowing higher resolution play on external displays among other features) is a nice idea. However, I have always felt it is handicapped by its software.

Some of Nintendo's faults include a being always one step behind on their sofware/common features (ie still using friend codes, having a relatively limited and poor online presence/features etc), tunnel vision for a single-purpose device, and a nearly insane addiction to control. The Switch's hardware makes for a great multi-use device and I originally hoped it would run a Nintendo skinned variant of Android, allowing me to do "Android/tablet things" and play Nintendo games on the same device. Sadly this was not to be with the implementation of the HorizonOS which is an upgraded version of the OS from the 3DS. Even with this proprietary choice, Nintendo did not support software and application development to take advantage of the Switch's hardware in other ways. For instance, on the go and especially the Dock basically begs for comprehensive media playing options. The Switch would also make a nice e-reader tablet, with reasonable battery life, but again there';s no option for this. There's not even an easily accessed browser, or even the kind of varied social media features such as Twitch that many appreciate today. I see a lot of wasted potential for the Switch's hardware, given the tunnel vision regarding software. I suppose I don't see the purpose of a $300 device that only plays games (under very specific circumstances no less), especially when it could so so much more. T

Even when it comes to gaming, I really don't feel the Switch itself is anything special. Nintendo's strengths are in their first party software/IP and their creation of peripherals - both things could very easily thrive on open platforms. It is not some technical wizardry that keep Switch titles exclusively on the Switch either, but its simply business. Nintendo has a few iOS/Android titles, but they're never "true" games not because recent hardware can't handle it, but because they want a draw to the Switch. Nintendo knows that the Switch is essentially a "mobile" device and they're not competing with Xbox/Playstation for graphical fidelity or power and that's okay - they don't need to. I just can't be amazed by the Switch - its core hardware is a solid preexisting variant, whereas Nintendo's peripheral prowess make the controllers and dock good additions and help to justify the price. The core software is a letdown in my eyes being so exclusively focused on sale and play of games that it feels restrictive, leaving the games as the sole justification for purchase. Specifically, Nintendo's 1st party library, because I can't picture buying a cross platform title on the Switch if it is available on PC, for instance. Nintendo has some strengths undoubtedly, but I don't see why they need be confined to an exclusive, single use hardware platform when it seems to me they could reach far further with less overhead if they branched out a bit.
 

DukenukemX

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Messages
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The reason they're supported is primarily because most of them are open source and generally favor open APIs including Vulkan, but I am guessing many emulators make use of them because Vulkan (and to an extent DX12 as well) do something of particular importance to emulator devs - get closer to be bare metal. Emulator development is far and away different from game development (which is often abstracted over several layers - manipulating engines, scripts and whatnot rather than anything lower) and is more like lower-level systems development; you're often providing hardware specific calls etc..and you have to well..emulate as if you were running on what the console title expects, after all. So I've been told by those involved in emulator development anyway.
I know that Vulkan can pretty much skip a step for emulators because of how the API works, but I'm not sure about DX12. API's like OpenGL and DX11 have the driver working on the CPU to translate the code to something the GPU can use, while Vulkan does this on the GPU itself bypassing the CPU. The emulator with OpenGL normally goes game -> wrapper -> driver -> GPU but with Vulkan you can cut out the wrapper portion plus the driver sits mostly on the GPU.

My point though is why do modern games that we pay good money seem to omit Vulkan or DX12? These are the API's of the future so all new game titles should be using them instead of DX11. If a bunch of guys using their spare time can do it for Emulators then why can't professionals who get paid do it? DXVK a DX11 to Vulkan wrapper that is used for Wine in Linux makes every DX11 game run on Vulkan. What the fuck game devs, this is your job.

One reason I'm so happy for something like Yuzu's development is that I've grown so tired of watching incompatible consoles and exclusives upon them, where one has to purchase a whole platform for a single title. I'd love to be able to play Super Smash Bros Ultimate, Mario Kart 8 Deluxe, Splatoon 2, or Octopath Traveler on PC ( perhaps via Steam) but due to Nintendo's single minded intransigence, it may be a long time before such comes to pass officially. Consoles have transitioned to using hardware more like off the shelf PC components or bog standard mobile hardware over the last generation , so perhaps if we can't shake off the concept of the proprietary console entirely, perhaps emulating - or maybe at some point, porting - titles will become easier and easier.
This is what I'm pissed about, looking at the PS4 and Xbox One and what I see is basically a custom built PC. Exclusive games should have been a thing of the past, and I would think Nintendo could make 10x more money if they simply ported their games to other platforms. The Switch is using a tablet Tegra SOC that has a custom OS to play walled garden games. This applies for other exclusives as well, cause I'm still pissed at RockStar with Red Dead Redemption 2. I don't like console gaming, I like using a keyboard and mouse, port your games.

Something to think about but that Switch emulator could be changed to play those games on Tablets with probably better performance since ARM -> ARM translation can be done much quicker and there are tablets with Vulkan support. It's one thing to see Nintendo Games on PC, but it's another to see them running better on a Samsung tablet.
 

N4CR

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Yuzu currently hates AMD graphic cards due to OpenGL sucking on them, but if you run the emulator in Linux it's drastically faster cause OpenGL drivers for AMD don't suck on there.

Interesting because AMD cards ran No Mans' Sky best out of the gate and it's OpenGL...
 

Nobu

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Messages
6,684
I know that Vulkan can pretty much skip a step for emulators because of how the API works, but I'm not sure about DX12. API's like OpenGL and DX11 have the driver working on the CPU to translate the code to something the GPU can use, while Vulkan does this on the GPU itself bypassing the CPU. The emulator with OpenGL normally goes game -> wrapper -> driver -> GPU but with Vulkan you can cut out the wrapper portion plus the driver sits mostly on the GPU.

My point though is why do modern games that we pay good money seem to omit Vulkan or DX12? These are the API's of the future so all new game titles should be using them instead of DX11. If a bunch of guys using their spare time can do it for Emulators then why can't professionals who get paid do it? DXVK a DX11 to Vulkan wrapper that is used for Wine in Linux makes every DX11 game run on Vulkan. What the fuck game devs, this is your job.


This is what I'm pissed about, looking at the PS4 and Xbox One and what I see is basically a custom built PC. Exclusive games should have been a thing of the past, and I would think Nintendo could make 10x more money if they simply ported their games to other platforms. The Switch is using a tablet Tegra SOC that has a custom OS to play walled garden games. This applies for other exclusives as well, cause I'm still pissed at RockStar with Red Dead Redemption 2. I don't like console gaming, I like using a keyboard and mouse, port your games.

Something to think about but that Switch emulator could be changed to play those games on Tablets with probably better performance since ARM -> ARM translation can be done much quicker and there are tablets with Vulkan support. It's one thing to see Nintendo Games on PC, but it's another to see them running better on a Samsung tablet.
Because games use game engines, which have to be rewritten to proper utilize the features of vulkan/dx12, and then the games themselves have to be written in a way where they can take advantage of the vulkan features in the game engine. It takes time to learn a new engine, and not all games benefit from it the same. Some studios can't afford to hire devs who know how to use the newer engines, or they can't afford to wait for the kinks to be worked out nor can they fix them themselves. Etc.
 

gamerk2

[H]ard|Gawd
Joined
Jul 9, 2012
Messages
1,868
Hrmm...

Last I checked, the bios of these systems is required for the emulators to work properly, and the bios files are 100% proprietary. Unless you physically own the system which you are emulating and a copy of the game as well, you are in violation of copyright infringement.

Not quite; most emulators have long since reverse-engineered the BIOS, which is permissible so long as it's done in a "clean room" environment. Likewise, users are legally able to dump their own consoles BIOS.
 

Ordeith

Limp Gawd
Joined
May 30, 2013
Messages
380
You will also have to factory reset your console if you ever want to get out of Developer Mode.

That's not what the documentation says:

"To switch to Retail Mode, open Dev Home. Under Quick Actions, select Leave Dev Mode. This will restart your console in Retail Mode."

It's just a restart, NOT a factory reset.
 

piscian18

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Joined
Jul 26, 2005
Messages
11,021
All of these consoles should be releasing official (in-store) emulator apps. Wasted opportunity that they haven't. Nintendo probably won't allow it, but I bet Sega and commodore would cool with it if they get a cut.

Team Executer put out a statement I believe talking about how the reason they were so aggresive in cracking the Switch is because they felt like Nintendo did a shit job porting apps and games to it(This is pre- nes library and youtube app.). Retroarch works great on the Switch.
 

cageymaru

Fully [H]
Joined
Apr 10, 2003
Messages
20,713
That's not what the documentation says:

"To switch to Retail Mode, open Dev Home. Under Quick Actions, select Leave Dev Mode. This will restart your console in Retail Mode."

It's just a restart, NOT a factory reset.
I know. That was what the article said though. So I made sure to quote it so I wouldn't have a bunch of angry bros on the forums just in case the actual instructions were vague and wrong.

In short I protected my butt, even though I figured it was wrong. :)
 
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