RetroArch | How To Add Cores

RetroArch is a cross-platform frontend/framework for emulators, game engines, video games, media players, and other programs that are open source and cross-platform. I’ll show you how to obtain and install Steam RetroArch cores in this article. Check out more down below.

How To Add Cores To RetroArch

How To Find The Cores

If you want your cores to be as current as possible, you’ll need to perform this every time RetroArch gets an update. Go to this link first. If required, expand the folder until it resembles the following image:

Choose the folder containing the most recent stable version (currently 1.10.1, may vary). Open the platform folder that corresponds to your operating system. Click Windows if you’re not sure what this means. Click x86 if you’re one of the rare people who still use a 32-bit computer. If not, select x86-64.

How To Download And Install Cores

From the directory you clicked to, you will now download RetroArch cores.7z. After that, you’ll need to extract them and get them to where they need to go. This may necessitate the use of 7-zip. This will be covered in a section towards the end of this guide.

Please scroll all the way down if you are unable to extract the files. First, extract them to a location where you can readily access them, such as your Downloads folder or your desktop. Navigate to your extracted folder, then RetroArch-Win64 (or your architecture), then cores after that. SELECT ALL and COPY EVERY FILE TO THIS LOCATION.

After that, you’ll need to figure out where you installed RetroArch via Steam. You may accomplish this by right-clicking RetroArch in your Steam Library, selecting properties, selecting Local Files, and selecting Browse, as seen in the image.

In your file browser, this should open the RetroArch folder. PASTE your clipboard after opening the cores folder that should be here. I advise against using DLC to overwrite RetroArch’s cores, as they will ‘upgrade’ and correct themselves via Steam Update before you launch your game.

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How To Download The Info Files

Unless RetroArch adds support for whole new cores at a later date, you should only have to do this once. The info files can be found at this site. If this is your first time following the guide, go to the file browser window in which your cores are open, go up one level, and open the info folder. 

If you’re not following the guidelines for the first time, start by opening your Steam RetroArch folder and then the info folder. If you prefer, you can extract directly to your Steam RetroArch/info folder, or follow the same steps as with the cores. Again, don’t overwrite any existing files, and you should be good.

Using Extractor

7-zip is similar to WinRar, but it’s a lot better. It supports almost every file format known to man and is both free (as in freedom) and free (as in cost) software. It does its job and otherwise stays out of your way. What more could a man want?

In any case, you’re probably wondering which version to get. They make it quite easy for you to figure out. This is what you’ll see when you open a 7zip archive for the first time (with different files, maybe). You’ll want to select extract (don’t ask why it’s denoted by a minus sign). 

You can copy the file directory from your open file explorer window, which should be in your RetroArch info folder, and paste it into the one and only text field in this guide. 

P.S. Those should be backslashes, not Yen symbols. Because I have Japanese Locale activated, those are Yen indicators. Thank you, Microsoft.

Final Thoughts

I only wish they had included the online updater that comes with the standalone version. By changing Steam RetroArch’s start parameters to the following, you can still accrue Steam playtime:

On Windows: "C:\Path\To\RetroArch" %command%

On Linux: "/path/to/retroarch" && %command%

This allows you to play your standalone version while accruing playtime on Steam. The overlay should also operate normally. There is no need to change the percent command percent in any manner.

Last Updated on June 2, 2022

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