Lakka: Linux distro turns your PC into a retro console

Something for the Linux fans – Lakka is a new lightweight distro that will turn any PC (no matter how small) into a retro gaming console. It can emulate a pretty serious stack of old gaming hardware, and supports new-fangled things like video streaming, time-rewinding and both PS3 and Xbox 360 controllers.

A look at Lakka

A look at Lakka

Lakka is based on the OpenELEC media player, and is built around the RetroArch retro game emulator tool, so it’s got the pedigree to ensure that it all works like it should.

It’s easy to set up and use (we’re not sure if that’s for beginners or the more experienced Linux fan), and – excitingly – runs on just about anything that uses ARM, 32-bit or 64-bit hardware. This means that your tiny computer boards – including the Raspberry Pi, CuBox-i, HummingBoard and CubieBoard 2 – are all compatible, as well as most standard PCs if you want something a bit more grunty. (This means if you’ve already got gaming controllers lying around, the hardware required to run Lakka costs as little as $35.)

While the application looks pretty awesome, you will have to provide your own game ROMs, which are then stored on an SD card, and can be picked from the built-in menu system.

As with most distros, Lakka is available for free download (that’s “free as in freedom”), and it’s open source, so if you’re that way inclined, you can hack away at the source code hosted on Github.

Otherwise, head to Lakka.tv and follow the download instructions to grab the code for your very own retro game emulator.

…we’ll be doing the same thing as soon as we get some spare time, so keep an eye out for a proper review soon!

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