Have you landed on the new PlayStation Classic, dreaming of nostalgia for retro games from the 1990s? Well, you don’t have to wait for Sony to release a repackaged compact version of the PS1. Forget pre-order and build your own «PiStation» with Raspberry Pi 3.
What to expect from the PlayStation Classic
At the time of this writing, there is no indication as to whether you can add your own game ROMs. The console starts at $99 (UK £89).
A Raspberry Pi 3 kit will cost you even less. It can also work with over 20 PlayStation games and you can even buy a PlayStation case. In short, the Raspberry Pi is a much better option than waiting and paying for the comparatively expensive PlayStation Classic.
Raspberry Pi PlayStation Emulator: What You Need
If you’re missing the true gaming wonder of the original PlayStation (released in 1995) or you’ve never played the console for the first time, you’re in for a real treat. Surprisingly, the Raspberry Pi can run PlayStation emulators, which means classic games from 1994 to 2006 can be played.
For best results, you will need:
- Raspberry Pi 3 or 3B+
- Suitable microSD card (8 GB or higher)
- Ethernet and HDMI cables
- Reliable power supply
- Retro game controller (keep a USB keyboard handy though)
- Etcher software from etcher.io
- Your choice of Raspberry Pi in retro style
You may also need a PlayStation-style case and even a real controller. We will talk about it later.
Step 1: Install the retro games package
Once you’ve downloaded the image of your chosen game kit, you’ll need to burn it to a microSD card. The process is simple and explained in detail in our Raspberry Pi Operating System Installation Guide.
In short, insert a suitable microSD card into your computer. Having done this, open Etcher and click » Select Image» then navigate to the (unzipped) disk image for the set of retro games you selected. Make sure the microSD card is selected under » Select Disk » then click » flash» .
Wait for the image to be written to the microSD card, then safely remove it. Plug into your Raspberry Pi and turn it on. Retro game software will be uploaded soon!
Step 2Setting Up the PlayStation Emulator
First, you need to set up your controller. Multiple controller profiles can be used, so follow the on-screen instructions to assign buttons, etc. You will need to do this so you can navigate the EmulationStation UI where your games are launched from.
Next, click the » Menu» and select a wireless network connection option. (Ethernet is fine if you want to skip this.) Just select the SSID and enter the password (which is why you might need a keyboard). Once connected, the IP address will be displayed.
In the menu, find the «Package Management» option and use it to install PlayStation emulators. Make sure at least one of the following is selected:
- L.R. beetle-psx
With all three installed, you’ll be more likely to be successful when running the PlayStation ROM.