How to... Create your own retro gaming arcade for free
Webuser|January 22 - February 04, 2020
Wayne Williams shows you how to play a huge collection of classic games while staying on the right side of the law

If you’re keen to play old games but no longer have the hardware to run them on, there are loads of different free emulators available to download, covering almost every arcade game, computer and console ever made. However, an emulator is nothing without the games and, unfortunately, adding them usually means downloading the relevant ROMs, which is is essentially illegal. Many developers are happy for people who purchased the original game to download a version of it that will run on modern hardware but, if you didn’t own the original, you shouldn’t download a ROM version of it.

Thankfully, you don’t need to break the law to get your retro gaming fix because there is a completely legal way to enjoy arcade and console games for free. In this issue’s Weekend Project, we show you how to get started.

What you need

Building your own, fully legal retro gaming arcade requires an emulator, but we won’t be installing a standalone one for this project. Instead, we’re using Kodi for the task because the latest version of the popular home-theatre system (18.5 ‘Leia’) supports a number of popular emulators and provides an easy way of displaying your favourite games on a TV or monitor.

If you’re worried about Kodi’s bad reputation for providing access to an illegal content, you should know that there is nothing intrinsically illegal about downloading and installing Kodi, as long as you don’t use it to download or stream copyrighted material. The process we’re using it for in this Weekend Project is completely legal.

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