How to Use RetroArch on Your IPhone or IPad - Latest Global News

How to Use RetroArch on Your IPhone or IPad

It’s bizarre considering it’s been about 14 years since we first saw the RetroArch retro gaming frontend and core loaded. 14 years. And now, after this crazy time, we can be grateful to Apple for finally letting us use it on our iOS devices. At least we can, and in the end the good guys win and we can jump into emulation with both feet with our OLED screens.

But while if you have even the slightest interest in retrogaming you may have dabbled with RetroArch before, things are a little different on iOS. So if you want to learn how to use it with minimal effort, you’ve come to the right place.

Using RetroArch on iPhone

1 – Download the app

First things first: We need the app. You can now search and download it from the App Store. Now we don’t expect something to happen and it to suddenly disappear, but we live in strange times so grab it sooner rather than later.

2: Open RetroArch on iPhone

You probably want to take a look at the interface now, so just open it and browse. You have to place your games in the right places first. When you’re done, return to the home screen of your iPhone or iPad.

3 – Using files to save your games

Of course we can’t tell you where to get the games, we’ll assume you own originals and have converted them, but once you have your collection at hand on your PC/Mac, it’s important to understand whether they’re zipped , rarred or 7zip RetroArch are cannot use them. Your game ROMs must be uncompressed.

Now we need to load the game onto our device’s storage in the Files app. Search for “Files” on your iPhone and open it. Once you start in a folder, exit until you see the On My iPhone screen in the Locations section. Get in there.

Use the three dots above to create a new folder and name it something like Emulation or RetroArch, which is obvious.

In this folder I would create additional folders for the systems you are interested in to keep things organized, so SNES, Genesis and even Amstrad CPC. These are the folders where we will also copy our uncompressed roms.

4 – Copy games to our folders in Files

Now we have to download the games on our mobile and although it is not difficult, it is not exactly user-friendly.

There are several ways to do this. If you are only interested in a few games, you can attach them to an email and email them to yourself. Old game ROMs tend to be tiny. From there you can open the email on your phone, click on the attachment and it will ask if you want to save it to your files. You can do this and even navigate to the folders you just created and save them there.

If this seems like too much effort or you want to copy a large collection, you can log into your iCloud on a desktop computer, create the same folder structure, and then copy the files to the cloud.

From there, you can either navigate to your cloud in Files on your phone and copy the files back to your device locally, or even try loading them from iCloud. This of course depends on your connection and most are so small, just copy them unless you’re messing around with PlayStation 1 or Mega CD and the like.

5 – Load games into RetroArch on iOS

Now you have the makings of your retro gaming library, you can reload RetroArch. Select “Load Content” and then “Open.”

Now you are in your Files folder and can easily browse from there. If you’re looking for your iCloud, simply click the “Browse” button at the bottom and locate it in the “Locations” sections.

Find your game, tap it and seconds later, retro baby!

Things to consider

While RetroArch is remarkably easy to launch and play if you want to emulate games on a computer such as a Commodore 64 or Amstrad CPC, many games are designed for these systems with the fact that they have a huge keyboard. For example, sometimes you need to “press 1 to start”.

Luckily, you can bring up a virtual keyboard in RetroArch by clicking on the rectangle in the bottom left corner and selecting the option. Enter what you need and press B to get rid of it and get into your game.

This should at least get you up and running and we will cover RetroArch in more detail in future articles.

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