October 20, 2021

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PS4 Emulator Begins Bringing Last-Gen Games To PC

A newly-released PlayStation 4 emulator, Spine, allows PC gamers to preserve and experience console-exclusive titles from the previous generation.

PlayStation 4 emulator is bringing Sony’s previous generation of console exclusives to PCs. The PS4 had a highly successful run of exclusive games throughout its lifetime, and many of these games are still inaccessible to gamers without a PS4 or PS5 console. However, through the use of emulation, PC gamers may finally be able to experience and preserve these aging titles.

While many within the industry look down on emulation, feeling that it is comparable to piracy, emulation also serves as a great way to preserve older video games. Older console generations, such as the PlayStation 2 or original Xbox, are beginning to near the end of their life expectancy. The hardware of these old systems, particularly batteries, slowly begin to die as time goes on. Once all of these older consoles inevitably stop functioning, console exclusive games that are not available on PC or ported to newer systems will no longer be practically playable. The PCSX2 emulator, which allows PlayStation 2 games to run on a PC, was partially designed to prevent this from happening by making PS2 games playable on modern and evolving PCs. Emulators can even be ported to newer consoles, including those created by rival companies. For example, a PlayStation emulator on Xbox Series X/S allows Microsoft’s newest piece of hardware to play games designed for Sony’s very first gaming console.


Related: Does PS5’s DualSense Controller Work On The PS4

A YouTube upload from Modern Vintage Gamer details a newly-released emulator which allows PlayStation 4 games to run on a PC. The Linux-based emulation software, Spine, has reportedly been in development for four years before its public release last week. While Spine is unable to run big first-party exclusive titles like God of War or Ghost of Tsushima, the emulator does allow Linux PCs to run certain PS4 games such as Dead Cells and Sonic Mania. Unfortunately, the process of downloading and installing Spine is quite complicated, and the number of compatible games is limited, but the emulation tech is currently a work in progress that will evolve over time.

Along with preserving single-player gaming experiences, emulation is also capable of reviving long-dead multiplayer experiences as well. The PlayStation 3 emulator RPCS3 was updated in August 2020 to support online PS3 multiplayer games, allowing the revival of online communities in games such as Demon’s Souls. The technology works by creating a private instance of the PlayStation Network, allowing the online functionality of older titles to be experienced by players within that PSN instance.

While Spine is a brand-new emulation software, the system does show the potential to be expanded in the future. While PlayStation 4 hardware will continue to fail as the console falls out of production, emulators such as Spine will ensure that the console’s multitude of exclusive titles will still be accessible in the future.

Next: Game Boy Advance Emulator Upgrade Gives It Split-Screen Multiplayer

Source: Modern Vintage Gamer/YouTube

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