Something to look forward to: Although still in small steps, PS4 emulation has started to progress more firmly with a recent major update to Spine, a PS4 emulator for Linux. Right now, it can competently run 2D games, and while it looks like running Sony’s exclusive great titles via emulation is still far from being achieved, the prospect for the future is optimistic. Hopefully development can accelerate even more when Spine finally becomes open source.
PS4 emulation is starting to get real. Earlier this month, there was a major new update to the promising closed source project called Spine, a PS4 emulator that runs on Linux and is in private development by Reddit user devofspine.
Although work on the software started a while ago, with a somewhat timid release in June 2019, the project is still in the early stages of development. According to devofspine, going open source now could be risky, with too much hand on the code that could hamper progress. It could “dilute the effort at such an early stage,” the developer says. However, it is planned to open the project to the public in the future.
Still, Spine looks to be very promising, as it comes before the Orbital competing emulator project. According to this Wololo.net article, Spine was tested with around 1,000 games and managed to run around 35% of them, while 40% could only display game intros and 25% did not work at all. Smaller 2D titles, in particular, performed well via emulation. All of this is documented in a compatibility list that accompanies the emulator files.
In the video above, we can see that the emulation is not perfect, as some text elements end up being distorted or not showing at all. Still, the performance looks decent to consider the game playable, with stable frame rates, precise sprite exposure, and crisp sound.
Spine will certainly need more development time, as it does not yet allow custom configuration of commands and does not have a GUI, but it has surely succeeded in its early stages in becoming another tool for preserving data. games as an art form, as are other emulators that are now perfectly capable of running old-time classics from acclaimed consoles like the SNES, Genesis, PlayStation 1 and 2 and many more .
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