Steam Deck Modder Shows Off Original Xbox Emulator
Using a 512GB NVMe SSD Steam Deck, YouTuber Modern Vintage Gamer has managed to get original Xbox emulation up and running, bringing Timesplitters, House of the Dead, Jet Set Radio, and Halo to handheld. This isn't the first time that Xbox has been emulated on Deck, but his video details performance, how to install the emulator, and the possibilities this opens.
The Steam Deck is a beefy rig, so much so that Valve boasts that it's the most powerful handheld console, but it's also incredibly free in its design. You can use the pre-installed Linux-based SteamOS to access your library on the go but you can also fiddle around and get Windows installed, giving you access to emulators and other storefronts. MVG's own toying with the Deck meant that he got Xemu running, an original Xbox emulator.
You can use Xemu on Linux, macOS, and Windows, giving you access to a huge library of games ranging from Halo: Combat Evolved to Burnout 3 and 50 Cent: Bulletproof. Some have since been ported to PC on Steam such as Jet Set Radio but other exclusives locked to the original Xbox can be played on the go with the Deck provided you get Xemu up and running.
Around 80 percent of games are playable through Xemu but that doesn't necessarily mean that they'll run well. In MVG's video, he shows a few different classics and how they perform, with some having major FPS problems in certain scenarios. He also walks you through how to install Xemu on your Deck if you're interested in retro gaming on your handheld.
Halo: Combat Evolved "runs really well at 60fps" although some effects such as fog and smoke can cause performance issues. Ninja Gaiden Black is also near "flawless" with its "trademark silky smooth 60fps gameplay." Jet Set Radio Future also runs "really well" at 60fps but when pressing boost, the frame rate tanks. But this is a known issue that isn't related to the Steam Deck.
MVG also shows off TimeSplitters 2 which had a solid and steady framerate with "no graphical issues." Next up was Conker: Live & Reloaded which had a "very choppy" framerate rendering it "unplayable." You can see the full list of games shown off and reviewed in the video embedded above, while MVG promises to explore Steam Deck's emulation capabilities in future videos.
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