Well, that didn’t take long. The desktop version of EmulationStation works really well with the Steam Deck, and allows you to streamline your emulation setup on this impressive handheld. Plus it works in perfect sync with EmuDeck, allowing you to have preconfigured emulation settings AND multiple options when it comes to organizing your ROM library. In this video we’ll go over basic setup, add artwork, and improve how it displays in SteamOS.
Note that while I didn’t show it in the video, you can go into Main Menu > Other Settings and adjust the default emulators to your liking. This is helpful if you have a preferred RetroArch core or want to use a standalone emulator.
01:38 installation and EmuDeck setup
05:26 EmulationStation setup
07:22 scraping and some configuration
11:52 configure ES for SteamOS UI
16:29 testing ES in handheld/gaming mode
18:57 themes showcase
19:42 summary & conclusion
Some notes from the ES-DE developer:
- New versions will be coming out frequently. Be sure to check their changelog for updates.
- Future ES-DE releases will have a single filename (EmulationStation-DE-x64_SteamDeck.AppImage, which will allow you to drop-in the new AppImage for version updates without having to re-add the AppImage to Steam UI every time.
- ScreenScraper is the preferred scraping utility, thanks to its more robust media support.
- ES-DE works over a network share, in case you wanted to access your games from an NAS. However, when setting it up, SMB protocol performance very poorly compared to NFS, which can startup 10-30 times faster. So if you are looking to use NAS for your ROM library, be sure to use NFS.