Site icon Libretro

RetroArch 1.15.0 release

RetroArch 1.15.0 has just been released.

Grab it here.

If you’d like to learn more about upcoming releases, please consult our roadmap here.

Remember that this project exists for the benefit of our users, and that we wouldn’t keep doing this were it not for spreading the love to our users. This project exists because of your support and belief in us to keep going doing great things. We have always prioritized the endusers experience, and unlike others, we have never emburdened them with in-app ads, monetization SDKs or paywalled features, and we intend to continue to do so. If you’d like to show your support, consider donating to us. Check here in order to learn more. In addition to being able to support us on Patreon, there is now also the option to sponsor us on Github Sponsors! You can also help us out by buying some of our merch on our Teespring store!

NOTE: Our upcoming Libretro Core Progress Report (January 2023 – March 2023) article will arrive later.

RetroArch is now available for Mac on Steam!

Thanks in large part to the hard work of warmenhoven, RetroArch for Mac is now on Steam! Get it here.

Minimum system requirements:

We’re very proud that RetroArch is now available on Steam on all three major OS platforms: Windows, Mac and Linux. Not only that, all but one of the cores (58 as of this writing) are fully compatible for Mac.

We went the extra mile and made sure to support both the old and new generation of Macs. Therefore, we support both CPU architectures: Intel x64 based systems and the newer Apple Silicon/ARM architecture. So on newer Apple Silicon Macs you’re getting a native version of RetroArch and any core DLC. No Rosetta2 translation layer overhead in this case.

General improvements to the Mac version

The Mac version is in a much better state now compared to the last stable. Here is what has been worked on since 1.14.0:

We have made the decision to default the Metal Universal build to the Vulkan video driver. It is currently running faster than the native Metal video driver, has HDR support, and it allows several Vulkan-accelerated cores to run on macOS. What this means is that your macOS should be at least El Capitan (macOS 10.11) or later, and preferably High Sierra (macOS 10.13 or later). Of course, if you don’t meet the minimum OS requirements, there is always the non-universal build, which should only require macOS/OSX 10.7 as a minimum OS.

Other big improvements for Apple users

Lots of Quality of Life changes have been made across the board which benefits all Apple devices – tvOS, iOS, macOS, you name it.

Shader stacking

There are two big new additions to the shader system that are transformative.

You can now:

Basically, you can stack shader presets now on top of each other. In other words, you can mix various shader presets, and then save it as a new preset. This gives the user a level of customization that was simply not possible before. You could for instance combine a CRT shader with a VHS shader and create all sorts of interesting effects.

How well these shader combinations run on your system is entirely dependent on the capabilities of your GPU.

There are also other interesting additions that shader developers in particular might want to know about. Learn more about that here.

New alternative to runahead – preemptive frames

Runahead is a method that was first introduced in RetroArch before it got adopted by other emulators. It has the potential to drastically reduce latency, even being able to go below the native latency that a console and a CRT would be capable of. However, like any system, it also has its own drawbacks and deficiencies. Biggest one being steep performance requirements and (so far) no hardware context support (so cores that currently rely on OpenGL/Direct3D11/Vulkan are a no-go).

RetroArch 1.15.0 now debuts a new alternative system to runahead – preemptive frames. It works by rerunning core logic to “rewrite history” before the current frame. Frames are only rerun when the controller state changes.

A quick example of the performance difference between runahead and preemptive frames (tested on a Core i9 13900K):

Core FPS (with Runahead) FPS (with Preemptive frames)
Snes9x 2010 Donkey Kong Country 2 ~1963fps – 3 frames ~2400fps – 3 frames

Your mileage may vary on your own system. Of course, runahead still exists as well, and you can decide for yourself which system is best for you with any random game/core.

Other changes

There are other big changes that we unfortunately lack the time to properly describe in full detail. So in conclusion, read the changelog below for full details on everything that has been changed/added/fixed.



Exit mobile version