Working Emulator Means You Can Finally Play PS4 Games On PC

Working Emulator Means You Can Finally Play PS4 Games On PC
Sony | Windows

Written by 

Tom Chapman


17th Sep 2021 16:07

As the debate between console and PC rages on, you'll no longer have to choose which classic titles you'll want to boot up your PS4 for, and which you'll roll your chair over to the computer for. Emulators are everywhere right now, and while Microsoft will let you play N64 games before the Switch does, the PlayStation 4 is the latest console to get the emulator touch. 

These days, emulators are a dime a dozen, meaning the gaming world is your oyster. The big three of Microsoft, Nintendo, and Sony continue to carve up their kingdoms and refuse to play nicely with each other. However, in an era where more PC ports of PlayStation classics are rumoured on a weekly basis, the idea of playing your favourite PlayStation games on PC isn't that farfetched. 

How can you play PS4 games on PC?

Even now, Sony's stronghold on its first-party titles means you'll need either a PS4 or PS5 to run some of its most popular games. Despite the PS4 coming to the end of its life cycle as we enter a new generation of games, there's still a lot of love for that black box. Now, the Linux-based emulator called Spine is giving a taste of retro gaming.

Be warned, Spine's limited capabilities means it still can't run AAA titles. It means if you came here to play Marvel's Spider-Man or God of War, you're fresh out of luck. Still, there's a growing catalogue of games that include Crash Team Racing Nitro-Fueled, Digimon World: Next Order, and South Park: The Stick of Trurth. Notably, it's mainly indie games running on Spine right now, with 2D titles seeming to be ideal. 

Spine was first announced in 2019, with an impressive video that promised the likes of Megaman Legacy Collection and Stardew Valley. Some thought it was too good to be true, but eight years after the PS4 made its debut, its first PC emulator is actually here.

Are more PlayStation games coming to PC?

It's a pretty rough build, and at the moment, most of the 1,000 games tested won't work at all. 45% will only get you to an intro screen, while around 35% can actually run the full game. As seen above, we probably wouldn't recommend you try running Persona 5 via Spine.

Long story short, Sony is hesitant to release its entire back catalogue to PC players. There's been a great success with Days Gone and Horizon Zero Dawn, but aside from the recently announced Uncharted Collection bringing Nathan Drake to PC for the first time ever, those at the top threaten to pull the plug on more ports.

As explained by Sony Studios boss Herman Hulst, console releases will remain a priority for the gaming giant. Although there are rumours God of War and Ghost of Tsushima could branch out to PC, we wouldn't hold our breath.

There's a lot to be said for emulators, with many citing it as an important way to preserve games once their hardware goes obsolete. Then again, with the PS4 still being fresh in our minds and these games still on shelves, others argue emulators are a fancy workaround for theft. Either way, Spine could be the future of the PS4 once sony finally puts the console out to pasture.


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