Let’s go through how you would install RetroPie, and connect to your Bestie I. We will show below how to set up a Nintendo Entertainment System (NES) emulator, but the process is generally the same for any of the gaming platform emulators. You will need to know how to open and type commands into the terminal.
Step 1: Prepare Your Bestie I
You should first connect a monitor and keyboard/mouse to your Bestie I. If you unscrew the lid, and pop open the auxiliary port on the back of the Bestie I, you can access all the ports you need inside. Plug in your monitor extension cable into one of the HDMI ports, and your keyboard and mouse into the two open USB 2.0 ports. Make sure the Bestie 1 is powered on.
Step 2: Download and Start Setup
Open you terminal and download the latest version of RetroPie to your Bestie I brain. As of this writing, the current version is 4.7. Once in your terminal, type the commands below:
git clone --depth=1 https://github.com/RetroPie/RetroPie-Setup.git cd RetroPie-Setup chmod +x retropie_setup.sh sudo ./retropie_setup.sh
Step 3: Install RetroPie Configs
There are some challenges in our experience with installing the standard Retropie quick install setup, so let’s go through how to get through that. First, you should do the basic install, and this will take anywhere from 20+ or more minutes. From time to time it seems to freeze, so just let it go:
Then, you will need to install the sub-packages manually as well. You can do that by going to “Manage Packages” -> “Core Packages”, and making sure each one of these is installed properly. It should look something like this:
Lastly, you need to go into your terminal, type in this command:
sudo nano /boot/cmdline.txt
to the end of line 2, with a space right before it so it’s separated from the previous parameter, and this will give you one huge massive line of text.
Hit CTRL-X to exit, and click “Y” to save it.
That should be all the configuration you need here, let’s go ahead and reboot the machine, and come back here for the next step.
Step 4: Install RetroPie ROMS
Games are stored in something called a ROM, which is a fancy type of file container. So, it is illegal to own or use any ROMs that you do not own, therefore we can’t help you get those ROM’s from anywhere. If you do a search for these kind of ROM’s using DuckDuckGo, you shouldn’t have any problems finding them if you’re so inclined to replicate your legal purchase in a digital format. We assume you have legal copies moving forward. To load them in your system, in our example, we will use the file explorer to dump your ROM images into your “/home/pi/RetroPie/roms/nes” folder. If they are zip files, you shouldn’t have to unzip them for this to work.
Step 5: Configure Your Controller and Emulation Station
To get the full feel of using RetroPie, you should use a controller from the emulator of your choice! There are tons of USB controllers simulating the original platforms, so feel free to pick any up. You can find them here, here, or make your own for example. Plug it into your last open USB3.0 slot, and let’s start up emulation station by going into your terminal, and typing:
That should load up the emulator you see below, and then you can configure your controller! It should ask you on load to do so, and to find out more information, go to the official docs.
Step 6: Configure Audio
The audio can come out of the HDMI you are using, or 3.5mm jack. We will push you towards the sound troubleshooting docs, which are pretty self-explanatory. The basics are you will need to add some configs using your terminal based on whether you want HDMI sound, or 3.5mm audio jack sound.
Step 7: Go and Play!
From here, you simply hit the start button, and your available games to play should appear!
We recommend to leave your Bestie I cover open when playing games for long period of times, since it can make your GPU and CPU pretty hot and extra airflow would be nice. There are plenty of things you can do from here, so check out the official docs, and remember to be careful if you choose to install and run this on your Bestie I system. It should be able to handle it just fine, but some of the higher res platforms could cause issues, and there are a LOT of things we never tested in our setup. You’re on your own here, good luck, and happy gaming!