Best way to play games on TV?

Discussion in 'General Gaming Discussion' started by Windaga, Dec 19, 2016.

  1. Windaga
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    Windaga GBAtemp Advanced Fan

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    Hey all,

    I'm looking into the best way to play emulated games on my family TV. I don't want anything large (as in, a console like a Wii or laptop.) Preferably, it would be something I can plug into a HDMI slot and forget.

    My parents wanted the NES classic, but there weren't any stores around us that stocked it. So, I figured I could still get them something that played NES games, but would also be discrete.

    So far, I've seen the Chromebit, raspberry pi, Mini PC sticks, and the Chromecast. Is there anything else out there that you guys are aware of?
     
  2. migles

    migles Mei the sexiest bae

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    my dad works for nintendo.
    raspberry pi should be great... people had been making portable nes, portable gba's even n64 IIRC with raspberry pies...
    you just install retroarch or something, plug a controller in a usb port, or use a bluetooth dongle and forget about it,

    chrome cast is a stream device, you will need to run the game on a tablet or phone, i don't really recomend using a stream device.. it's great to watch movies or sharing pictures, but to play old games i don't think it's that pratical..
    don't know about the others devices
     
    Last edited by migles, Dec 19, 2016
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  3. sniper_x002

    sniper_x002 GBAtemp Fan

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    I use Retroarch with Steam Big Picture (I used ice to add all the games individually to Steam).

    It works great.
     
  4. Windaga
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    Windaga GBAtemp Advanced Fan

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    My only issue with the pi is the diy aspect. I'm really not that handy...:(

    I didn't think the Chromecast was going to work well either. I have one and it's... Unreliable at best. And as you said, it's a streaming device.

    Sniper - isn't big picture streaming too?
     
  5. sniper_x002

    sniper_x002 GBAtemp Fan

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    Big picture in itself is not streaming, but it does have the ability to. It's just Steam with controller support.
     
  6. Windaga
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    Windaga GBAtemp Advanced Fan

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    But it requires a PC correct? That would be too large for the space in their living room.
     
  7. migles

    migles Mei the sexiest bae

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    my dad works for nintendo.
    it's basically your pc running the steam client, that would mean you will have your computer connected to the tv...

    heh, well from what i understand you just need to install the retro pie on the sd card, connect something to usb like a bluethoot dongle (raspberry model 3 has bluethoot) or controller (to play the games) and done
    you can order the box for the device if you want, not that really needed, but if you have kids or animals it's always best to have a case in the device...

    heh, nintendo is selling a NES mini, but it's just 30 NES games in a expensive device that doesn't do anything else

    if you are confortable with using your phone or tablet to play the game and share the picture to the tv, you can as well get a bluethoot controller so you can play the games with buttons, i would go ahead.. you can basically turn your tv into a smart tv with chromecast... for example you can watch youtube or movies with it
    my problem with this is because i love to text and play games, and the fact my phone battery is not the best, it would need to be connected to a socket.. and i don't know how if the delay between the device, crhomecast and tv is noticiable, add a bluethoot controller..
     
    Last edited by migles, Dec 19, 2016
  8. sniper_x002

    sniper_x002 GBAtemp Fan

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    Yes. A laptop would also work fine especially if it's just older systems being emulated.
     
  9. Windaga
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    Windaga GBAtemp Advanced Fan

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    Yeah, I'm more looking for a standalone option (in terms of connection.) The Chromebit and mini PC's both run the emulators locally as opposed to streaming; this is ideal, as I'd like the set up to stay as discrete as possible. I was thinking of ordering them two Bluetooth SNES controllers to hook up to whatever I end up using, as well.

    The fire TV looks like it could work, but it's a bit larger than I would have liked.
     
  10. Soccerdies

    Soccerdies Advanced Member

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    what about using a laptop and connecting it with hdmi, use a usb xbox 360 controller
     
  11. Windaga
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    Windaga GBAtemp Advanced Fan

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    A laptop and wired controllers would be too large for what I'm looking for. Thank you for the suggestion, though.
     
  12. hiroakihsu

    hiroakihsu SUPREME LURKER OF THE WORLD

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    May I suggest a PS TV (on which you can install henkaku then run retroarch)?
     
  13. Windaga
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    Windaga GBAtemp Advanced Fan

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    Huh, that's a thought. I do have a PSTV, and they are incredibly compact. I wonder if it's possible to hook up other Bluetooth controllers, though? I only have 1 ps3 remote.
     
  14. chocoboss

    chocoboss GBAtemp Regular

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    I actualy own a Pi Zero with retropie + Xbox 360 gamepad it is really nice for 8 bit system and but it is really limited for 16 bit like SNES some games don't work really nice :( but GBA works great :rofl2::gba:

    With a Pi3 you can probably emulate up to N64 / PS1
     
  15. The Real Jdbye

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    Alola
    The screen resolution on the PSTV is kind of low though, especially when you run emulators that don't have pixel-perfect scaling. The end result will not look as good as a Raspberry Pi, and might not scale uniformly.

    I personally recommend the Raspberry Pi, you can put Kodi and RetroPie on it (with a shortcut in Kodi to launch RetroPie) so it can be used for both streaming movies/shows and retro games seamlessly, and you can also put Moonlight on it to stream games from any PC with a recent Nvidia card which works well. Or you can just use RetroPie by itself if you don't care about media. It takes a bit of setting up though but once that's done you don't have to mess with it again unless you want to add more games or addons etc. Pi 3 has built in wifi and BT so you don't need any USB dongles unless you want to use a remote with it. It should run everything up to and including PS1/N64 games very well, unsure about Dreamcast, PSP etc. Remember that no cables are included and you'll also need a case for it so that will bump up the price a bit but it's still cheap in the end.

    Either that or an Android box would be good. Android boxes are a bit easier to set up, again you have Kodi available so it can be used for both games and streaming media, the selection of apps is bigger, for example you have a Netflix client which is missing from Kodi, but it might not be as seamless as Android is really touchscreen optimized so controlling it with a remote might not work that well, and you'll be switching between using Kodi for some things and the home screen for other things. Kodi on the other hand works very well with a simple IR remote or bluetooth keyboard. I have no experience with Android boxes so I can't really suggest any particular ones (except Shield TV which I hear is great, but is not cheap)

    I can recommend the NES30 Pro, it's a compact BT gamepad that has all the buttons you'd need (including analog sticks for PS1/N64 games, which is really useful when you want to play those kind of games as they don't control very well with a D-pad)
     
    Last edited by The Real Jdbye, Dec 19, 2016
  16. Tom Bombadildo

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    I forgot
    Honestly, your requirements are sort of limiting you to basically a Raspberry Pi. I know you say you're not very DIY oriented, but it's extremely easy to setup and has a lot of good tutorials to help you along the way. It should only take at most half an hour to setup and add all the games, after that it's basically set.
     
  17. Windaga
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    Windaga GBAtemp Advanced Fan

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    I appreciate the assistance guys.

    @Tom Bombadildo
    I'll look further into the Pi. I realize the requirements are restricting - I just want something small that my parents don't have enough to keep up with. It'll be hard enough getting them to keep the remotes charged. But as everyone has mentioned it a few times, I'll keep looking into Pi as a solution.

    @The Real Jdbye
    Thanks for the suggestion! I'll look into the controller now. I'll look into the Pi3 - Tom, yourself, and others have all suggested the Pie line as the most comprehensive solution.

    The solution doesn't really need to play anything above PS1/N64 - it'll likely have more SNES and early 64 games than anything else. I'm going to look up some videos on the Pi now.

    Edit
    Wow, this actually isn't nearly as difficult as I originally thought it was. For some reason I thought soldering and handiwork was involved. The Pi3 w/Retro Pie looks pretty perfect for what I need it for.

    Thanks a whole lot guys. Now I just need to put together all of the stuff I'm going to need. I've seen "packages" where they pack in cases and screens and stuff, but none with just the Pi3 and a case thus far.
     
    Last edited by Windaga, Dec 19, 2016
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  18. Saiyan Lusitano

    Saiyan Lusitano GBAtemp Guru

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    Well, you could always use a PSTV for emulators, PSP and PS1 games but the problem is that it requires a Sony PlayStation Vita proprietary memory card (16GB at the very least) and they aren't cheap. Plus, a DualShock 3 or 4. Not to mention the exploitable games.

    Maybe an Android tablet that connects to the TV (which would require to buy its adapter)?