OS X Targeted 'OpenEmu' to Deliver Native Mac Interface to Console Emulators

There are few great emulator options for OS X, but that is set to change in the near future as multi-source system emulator OpenEmu prepares for an official launch.

Open Emu is an open source project to bring game emulation to OS X as a first class citizen, leveraging modern OS X technologies such as Cocoa, Core Animation and Quartz, and 3rd party libraries like Sparkle for auto-updating. Open Emu is based on a modular architecture, allowing for game-engine plugins, this means Open Emu can support a host of different emulation engines and back-ends while retaining a familiar OS X native front-end.

OpenEmu, which has been in beta for quite some time, is able to emulate the hardware of several different consoles. Version 1.0 of the software will include support for several 16-bit systems, including the Game Boy, Game Boy Color, Game Boy Advance, Game Gear, NeoGeo Pocket, Nintendo Entertainment System, Sega Genesis, and Super Nintendo, among others.

Support for additional systems like the Nintendo 64, the Nintendo DS, and the Sony PlayStation will be added in the future.

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The emulator features a slick iTunes-style design, displaying downloaded ROMs in a menu organized by system. Designed from the ground up for OS X, it offers up a native OS X interface.

With full save state support, the software allows for multiple ROMs to be played at once and it also provides OpenGL scaling, multithreaded playback, and gamepad support.

At this point in time the team behind OpenEmu is working on polishing the app and adding final artwork, but the release is "close."

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OpenEmu was previously available as a beta download and the beta version of the application can still be acquired by downloading and compiling the source code via Xcode. A full set of instructions is available here.

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Top Rated Comments

nepalisherpa Avatar
146 months ago
Good thing I can download 3rd party applications on my Mac without "jailbreaking"! :)
Score: 19 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Mucx Avatar
146 months ago
Ok, lets clear up some things about this project.

In no particular order...

1. This is open source software. You don't pay for it, we don't ask for anything in return, not even a donation.

2. We absolutely are not selling any ROMS through this application.

3. This will not appear on the Mac App Store.

4. OpenEmu utilizes a bevy of fantastic open source emulators (read our GitHub!). Our trick is to unify them into one application that seeks to remove the geekiness of this area of video gaming. Drop a legally owned ROM into the application, it organizes, adds box art, cleans up the game name and with a single click... off you go and play. We want to be the interface HUB for all open source emulation projects. We have many more emulators and supported systems to come.

5. We have gamepad support working right out of the box (excluding XBOX controllers which will need a 3rd party driver to use). Almost all the popular HID compliant controllers will work. (If we missed one, tell us!) Simply connect it, and OpenEmu does the rest (it auto-assigns buttons). Do we recommend a controller?... sure, possibly the WiiU Pro controller.

6. Skeumorphism. Thats right, we do it. Hopefully tastefully. The main application is extremely simple and understated. (though purposely black so that your games stand out and look great). The controller preference screen (as shown by MacRumors screenshots) are were we go to town. Its actually interactive. Click the buttons on the images and it interacts. Its done that way to aid the understanding of the hardware you are playing, as well as a general visual & interactive aid to re-assignment of gamepad or keyboard inputs. Trust me, we didnt go to the Scott Forstall school of visual design but nor did we get the google iron out.

7. When is it out? Setting dates in open source hobby software is suicide! Sorry... compile it or ask a friend who has used it. Then take a guess how close you think it is. :p

8. Is this illegal? No, emulators aren't illegal (at best a mild shade of grey). We don't distribute any BIOS stuff or ROMs. We provide the tool, its up to you what you want to do with it. We will provide and promote legal gameplay solutions (see below).

9. We plan to offer a original homebrew ROM pack upon release should you not have any old games at hand but want to see what this emulation thing is all about.

10. What about Retrode? Ah yes Retrode (some of the OpenEmu team have helped on that project)... in the meantime, let me just put this here and say that this will be the most legal way to play and backup your games soon:



Want to know more? Then hit us up on Twitter (@OpenEmu) or browse our GitHub page.

Thanks
Score: 15 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Semester Avatar
146 months ago
Skeumorphism!!!
Score: 8 Votes (Like | Disagree)
UnfetteredMind Avatar
146 months ago
OMG! Road Rash for Sega Genesis would be awesome. Been a loooooooong time since I've flown around corners in the air at over 100mph while beating someone else with a club!
Score: 8 Votes (Like | Disagree)
farmermac Avatar
146 months ago
wow would love to see the original Mario on NES ROMs in a legit easy to use marketplace.
Score: 8 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Dwalls90 Avatar
146 months ago
This.Is.Epic!
Score: 7 Votes (Like | Disagree)