If you’re interested in playing retro games without having to splurge on various systems and all the hardware that comes with it, creating your own retro gaming console with a Raspberry Pi is the way to go. Thanks to this tiny computer and the RetroPie software distribution, enthusiasts can access countless retro titles from all their favourite platforms. To get started, all you need to do is pick up some components, put them together and configure the software. It’s not as complicated as you might expect, and you won’t have to spend a fortune to acquire all the necessary parts. So, without further ado, let’s begin.
Buy the Components
First, you should get the computer itself, a power supply, and a protective case to avoid any damage. Most people opt for the Raspberry Pi 4, but you can buy a newer and more powerful version if you prefer. The Model B with 2GB of RAM is sufficient for emulating retro games, though. Of course, you’ll also need a monitor or TV along with an HDMI cable to display your games. To configure the RetroPie software, a Windows or Mac PC and micro-SD card (ideally 8GB or more) is required. As for peripherals, you can choose between a keyboard and mouse or any console controller/gamepad depending on what you have available.
Download the Software
Fortunately, all the software for this build is available for free. This includes the RetroPie distribution disk image and an SD card image writing tool for your respective operating system. You can find the former on the official website. As for the latter, popular options include the Win32 Disk Imager for Windows and ApplePi Baker for Mac.
Write the Software
To reiterate, the RetroPie software library will serve as the OS that emulates all your games. What’s great is that it also allows you to play browser games. For example, you can use it for mobile casinos such as luckynuggetcasino.com which can be accessed right from your Raspberry Pi, making it the best option in terms of software.
Now let’s move on to how to get RetroPie onto your SD card. Windows users will first have to manually extract the .gz file, whereas on Mac this is done automatically. Once extracted, run the SD card image writer tool installation program before taking the following steps:
- Navigate to Device and select your SD card
- Click on the Image File icon
- Select the file you decompressed
- Click the Write option and wait for it to finish
Assuming you’ve already built your Raspberry Pi and inserted the micro-SD card, you should see the RetroPie splash screen appear upon start-up. What you do next depends on your controller. If you’re using a gamepad, for instance, you will need to assign each button to your desired control.
Keep in mind that the final step can vary between devices. Your best bet is to find the appropriate guide for your setup and take it from there. Soon enough, your Raspberry Pi will be ready to meet your retro gaming needs.