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Turn Your Old PC into a Retrogaming Console with Lakka Linux

If you have an old computer gathering dust, you can turn it into a PlayStation like retrogaming console with Lakka Linux distribution. 

You probably already know that there are Linux distributions specially crafted for reviving older computers. But did you know about a Linux distribution that is created for the sole purpose of turning your old computer into a retro-gaming console?

Lakka is a Linux distribution specially for retrogaming

Meet Lakka, a lightweight Linux distribution that will transform your old or low-end computer (like Raspberry Pi) into a complete retrogaming console,

When I say retrogaming console, I am serious about the console part. If you have ever used a PlayStation of Xbox, you know what a typical console interface looks like.

Lakka provides a similar interface and a similar experience. I’ll talk about the ‘experience’ later. Have a look at the interface first.

Lakka Retrogaming interface

Lakka: Linux distributions for retrogaming

Lakka is the official Linux distribution of RetroArch and the Libretro ecosystem.

RetroArch is a frontend for retro game emulators and game engines. The interface you saw in the video above is nothing but RetroArch. If you just want to play retro games, you can simply install RetroArch in your current Linux distribution.

Lakka provides Libretro core with RetroArch. So you get a preconfigured operating system that you can install or plug in the live USB and start playing games.

Lakka is lightweight and you can install it on most old systems or single board computers like Raspberry Pi

It supports a huge number of emulators. You just need to download the ROMs on your system and Lakka will play the games from these ROMs. You can find the list supported emulators and hardware here.

It enables you to run classic games on a wide range of computers and consoles through its slick graphical interface. Settings are also unified so configuration is done once and for all.

Let me summarize the main features of Lakka:

  • PlayStation like interface with RetroArch
  • Support for a number of retro game emulators
  • Supports up to 5 players gaming on the same system
  • Savestates allow you to save your progress at any moment in the game
  • You can improve the look of your old games with various graphical filters
  • You can join multiplayer games over the network
  • Out of the box support for a number of joypads like XBOX360, Dualshock 3, and 8bitdo 
  • Unlike trophies and badges by connecting to RetroAchievements 

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Getting Lakka

Before you go on installing Lakka you should know that it is still under development so expect a few bugs here and there.

Keep in mind that Lakka only supports MBR partitioning. So if it doesn’t read your hard drive while installing, this could be a reason.

The FAQ section of the project answers the common doubts, so please refer to it for any further questions.

Do you like playing retro games? What emulators do you use? Have you ever used Lakka before? Share your views with us in the comments section.

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  • Just Wanted To Say a Big Than You To Any & All Who Is/Was Involved With Making LAKKA What It Is Today 2-21.. THANK YOU ! I Would love to know where to & how to get PS & PS2 roms & a how to video + Easy DOS installs on lakka ! Its Alredy Great &I am not Complaining at All Just this would just be Even Better Noob Frindly

  • Outstanding Abishek: Very nice to visit your site just for your depth and enthusiasm in the one of the Nicer OS platforms. As we all can thank Torvalds for his grand project simply to advance his studies lacking in MainFrame access. For His drive we now all prosper in a great fun loving absorbing diversity creations. Linux! Amen. To what is has become, along this new Lakka building a dream is coming true Thx All! – if this can be developed to operate many console and PC emulations along with supporting Graphics engines. The greater fun to teach the young audience anything can be performed on beloved Linux.

  • Thanks for sharing this. It’s impressive overall.
    However, there’s no classic anything without C64 and Amiga games/ROMs emulators. It’s a big miss indeed.

  • The name Lakka is great. They mention in the FAQ it means cloudberry in Finnish, but it also mean lacquer in Finnish, so great for preserving your old hardware!