It’s easy to make your Mac into a retro game console (Atari, Nintendo, Sega, Sony, etc.) with the OpenEmu software.
Who has never wanted to play all the games of their childhood? Small problem: the consoles no longer work? the cartridges are ruined? you sold them? We may have a solution, read this article to find it.
The only prerequisite is to have a Mac (or a Hackintosh), since this software is only available on macOS. It sometimes has some advantages to put your marbles at the apple brand.
You probably already know the old console emulators (to name a few: Nintendo 64, Super NES, Atari 7800 etc.), but often they only work for one console only, and the integration is quite hazardous.
This is where the software that I am going to present to you today comes into play: OpenEmu. It is not really a console emulator, but rather a software allowing to aggregate several of them. It can therefore emulate dozens of retro consoles from Nintendo, Sega, Atari, Sony … You can find the exhaustive list of supported consoles on their GitHub page.
Presentation of OpenEmu
This is what the interface of the OpenEmu software looks like. On the left, you have a menu summarizing all the consoles supported by the software. By clicking on one of the consoles, you will have access to all the games concerning this console that you have indexed in the software. We will come back later to see how to add your games in OpenEmu.
You can observe that only one game is present in my library, Pokémon Platinum (I took the opportunity to redo this game from my childhood to carry out the OpenEmu test).
Adding your games
To add a game to the software, nothing could be simpler. Before starting, I advise you to create a folder where you will place all the ROMs of your games together. Personally, I placed my ROMs in a folder created in Documents so as not to lose them. It would be silly to lose your game save because you can’t find it anymore.
To download these famous ROMs, you will have to go to one of the sites offering them for download. To name just two, I can advise you Emuromand Emuparadise which are two of the sites offering the most games to download.
When you have chosen your game and downloaded it, place it in the folder created beforehand. You just have to drag the file into OpenEmu, it will automatically be placed in the section corresponding to its console. You just have to repeat the operation for all the games you want to play.
You just have to launch one of the games to start playing it! Then everything will be as if you are playing it on the real console. To increase the immersion in the game, you can connect a gamepad to your Mac. Most recent controllers are compatible and recognized by the software natively, such as for example the controllers for Xbox 360, Xbox One, PS3, PS4 but also some controllers from SteelSeries and Logitech. Some retro controllers are also compatible, you will find the list on the OpenEmu GitHub.
You can then adjust the controller in the settings for each game console. Here is an example for the Nintendo DS (Pokémon Platinum console). Normally, if your controller is plugged in (or connected via Bluetooth), you will be able to map buttons directly by pressing them. Remember to select your controller (not your keyboard) in Input .
So you can finally play your favorite games with a real controller and rediscover the sensations of the time!
If you hover the mouse over the game window, you will have a menu bar that will appear, allowing you to pause the game, restart it, save as well as other setting options.
As I told you about it, you have the possibility to save your games directly in OpenEmu, they will appear in Saves States in the corresponding console.
But by default when launching a game you’ve played before, OpenEmu will ask you if you want to continue with the last saved save.
- Number of consoles offered
- Automatic backups / Possibility of having several
- Possibility to create a complete game collection
- Cover of games with info
- Grouping of games by consoles / Possibility of creating collections
- Some consoles are missing
- Mac exclusive
OpenEmu is a super software exclusive to macOS, allowing you to group all your retro games together and create a real complete library of games from different consoles and eras. It will delight former gamers or people wishing to replay from time to time the games of their childhood. One way is also to transform an old computer running macOS into a real retro game console by connecting controllers.