How to Install DuckStation for Playing PS1 Games on Linuxby@heythisisvivek
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How to Install DuckStation for Playing PS1 Games on Linux

by Vivek Y.July 5th, 2024
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DuckStation is a free, open-source, cross-platform PlayStation 1 emulator. It allows you to play your childhood games on modern hardware and operating systems. DuckStation uses advanced hardware acceleration technologies like D3D11. It's completely legal to emulate games as long as you own the games themselves.
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DuckStation is a free, open-source, cross-platform PlayStation 1 emulator that allows you to play your childhood games on modern hardware and operating systems with maximum compatibility and top-notch speed.

But before you question its legality, hear me out: It's completely legal to emulate games as long as you own the games themselves and the emulator does not violate any company policies, which it does not in this case.

It's a fantastic emulator that guarantees to provide support for most games out of the box. I've tested some of my favorite games like Resident Evil, Tekken, and NFS, and they performed incredibly well.

In this article, we will discuss some of its highlighted features, as well as how to install it on most Linux distributions, including post-installation steps.

Features of DuckStation

The following is a list of the unique features that this emulator offers:

  • It's free, open-source, and cross-platform that supports Windows, Linux, and macOS.
  • Supports modern CPU architectures like x86-64 for desktops and armv7/AArch64 for Raspberry Pi and Apple Silicon.
  • It uses advanced hardware acceleration technologies like D3D11, D3D12, OpenGL, Metal, and Vulkan.
  • Upscaling and texture filtering are supported to enhance graphic experiences.
  • Played games are saved locally in the original PS1 format and can be shared across different platforms.
  • Easily customize digital or analog controllers to your needs.
  • Support loading cheats from existing lists.
  • Well, this one is not necessary in modern systems, but you can emulate CPU overclocking.

How to Install DuckStation on Linux

There are two ways to run DuckStation on Linux: one is using the portable AppImage, which doesn't require any installation, while the other involves using its Flatpak package, which requires installation but simplifies application management, such as upgrading to the latest version.

I won't explain the steps for AppImage because it's quite easy: simply download the latest AppImage file from its release page and run it like a shell script.

So, let's see how you can install DuckStation using Flatpak. To start, open your terminal and install Flatpak on your Linux system (it comes pre-installed in Fedora).

# For Debian and Ubuntu-based distributions:
$ sudo apt install flatpak

# For Red Hat and Fedora-based distributions:
$ sudo dnf install flatpak

Next, add the official Flathub repository that allows you to install Flatpak packages.

$ flatpak remote-add --if-not-exists flathub

Finally, install the DuckStation Flatpak package with this command:

$ flatpak install flathub org.duckstation.DuckStation

Once the installation is complete, you can launch the application from the activities overview.

Post-Installation Setup

When you launch DuckStation for the first time, you will be presented with the following setup wizard, where you can specify the language and default theme. When done, continue by clicking on "Next".

On the next screen, you'll be asked to provide a BIOS (or ROM) image to start the emulator and to play games. I won't be providing any ROM image links for legal reasons, but you can use an image from your own old PS1 unit or find one online.

Next, it will ask you to specify the path of your game directory; just create one in your home directory and use that.

If you have a game controller, connect it to your PC and map it according to your preferences. If not, don't worry—you can still use your keyboard and mouse.

Finally, the setup is complete, and you can now exit the setup wizard by clicking on "Finish".

That’s it. The DuckStation main window will now appear, displaying a list of all games located in the provided game directory. For now, I haven't added any games, so they are not appearing below.

How to Uninstall DuckStation from Linux

To uninstall the emulator for any reason, just open your terminal and execute this command:

$ flatpak uninstall org.duckstation.DuckStation

Wrap Up

In this article, you learned how to play your favorite PlayStation 1 games on your PC using the DuckStation emulator. However, aside from this, there are other emulators, such as Ryujinx, that allow you to play Nintendo games on your PC.

Many users still consider emulators illegal, particularly after Yuzu's case, but it's important to note that Nintendo took action against Yuzu for allegedly circumventing their software encryption.

So, playing games that you own on an emulator is perfectly fine, as long as the developer isn't violating any rules or regulations set by the company.