I love some of the latest video games on the market, Call Of Duty, Resident Evil (Remakes), and Horizon Zero Dawn. These games are great, but there is just something about the old-school retro 1980s and 1990s games that rock.
I’m here today to show you how to play these games for free, without the use of any consoles, cartridges, and or old-school controllers. That’s right, no bull bro! You might be asking yourself, how does one accomplish such a task? Listen up and I’ll show you.
First off, you’re going to need an old Mac or PC computer with Mac OS, Windows, or Linux installed on the machine. Next, if you enjoy using a controller, you’re going to want to pickup a USB controller online. Finally, you’re going to need what called ROMs.
Computer & Software
Once you have in your possession a computer, you’re going to need to install some software called an emulator on the hard drive. The emulator translates instructions from your computer to the instructions of a classic console. I recommend the following emulators. Nintendo (8-bit) – Nestopia, Sega Genesis (16-bit) – Kega Fusion, and Super Nintendo (16-bit) – SNES9x.
If you’re running MacOS, I’d recommend you check out an app called OpenEmu. OpenEmu is an app that organizes all your classic systems and games into one easy to operate program.
It’s all about control, unless you favor using a keyboard to play games, you’re going to want to purchase a controller. The good news is SNES USB controllers are very inexpensive. The best place I’ve found to score yourself a good deal on a pair of controllers is Ebay. You can pick up a pair of iNEXT SNES USB controllers for around $10. The controllers can be used to play NES, Genesis, and SNES games.
Games a.k.a. ROMs
Once you have your computer and controllers set up and configured, it’s time to download some ROMs. Classic game ROMs can be found all over the internet, but I recommend using Vimm's Lair for ROMs. It’s safe and they have a large selection of classic games.
While we are on the discussion of classic games, let's talk about playing classic games with a fresh take on the challenge aspect. What are you talking about you might ask? I'm talking about "ROM Hacks". A ROM Hack is a game that has been modified by a programmer and presents itself as a new-take/experience on an old classic game.
A great example of a legendary ROM Hack is Hyper Metroid. Hyper Metroid is a new take on the classic SNES title Super Metroid. The game is not for the faint of heart as it's very challenging, but completing the game is very rewarding. Trust me, the game was hard as hell. If you're interested in Super Metroid ROM Hacks be sure to check out Metroid Construction, the website is loaded with awesome Metroid Hacks.
How To Play ROM Hacks
ROM Hacks, unlike traditional official ROMs a.k.a. GAMES. Are not playable without a little help, do not worry it's easy to fix. To play a ROM Hack, you must first download the override instructions for the classic ROM. These override instructions combined with the original classic ROM create a new game. This technique is called a Patching a ROM.
To Patch a ROM file you will need an IPS ROM Hack file and the original game file from a place like Vimm.net. Once you have your files downloaded, it's time to patch them. Hands down, the best patch tool I've found is an online application located at MarcRobledo.com. Just upload your files, press apply patch, and download your new game and you're good to go. The ROM will now work with your emulator software.
If you're still interested in exploring the world of ROM Hacks, I've made a list of my favorites you can check out right here in my next post.