N64 Games on Raspberry Pi 3

I had a Pi2 when I discovered Lakka and was immediately impressed with it. When I tried playing Mario Kart 64 it was very choppy, bad FPS when opponents were on the screen and I could tell that the hardware just wasn’t equipped to handle it. But the Pi 3 was out by then and I bought one, cautious but hopeful. When I started Mario Kart 64 I thought I was let down as the beginning “Nintendo” logo spinning heavily dropped the FPS. Again the menus appeared to have the same FPS issues and as I started a race, the cloud that hangs the red, yellow, green traffic light was choppy and I could tell the FPS had dropped drastically. This was even more evident with the countdown which usually lasts 4 seconds, lasted 6 or 7. But a dim ray of hope came.

The second the race started the FPS shot up and even with every opponent on the screen it was like the good old days on N64. The one difference seemed to be the curves in the game (like an opponents head) appeared a little jagged instead of smooth. I continued the race and found some points where the FPS would noticeably drop and it looked like I would have to settle for playing it on my laptop.

My questions.

  1. Is there any way to increase the performance of the Raspberry Pi for the game to work flawlessly?

  2. Why are the graphics dumbed down (jagged lines)? Is this because it detects the hardware limitations and automatically compensates? Or would it not matter how fast the Pi was?

You guys have done phenomenal work and if my issues can’t be fixed with this Pi I will wait anxiously for the next version which will hopefully make the mark.

As always I greatly appreciate your time and effort in helping with these matters.

Sincerely, Brendan

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I think some people have had success after messing with some core options. Make sure you’re using the dynamic recompiler, set the gfx plugin to Rice and I think the jagged issue you’re describing is because of nearest-neighbor texture filtering, so try changing that to bilinear.

I have family visiting and am way too drink to comment. I’ll try your suggestion and post back in a few days.

In the Video options I set HW Bilinear Filtering to On. This fixed the jagged lines and dramatically increased the FPS. While the menus are still a little jerky with the FPS, I could play Mario Kart 64 flawlessly and Super Mario 64 was ALMOST perfect. There are still some FPS issues with Super Mario. I was unable to find an option for Dynamic Recompiler or the GFX Plugin. I tried going through every setting and still couldn’t see it. I believe I have a stable release, should I download the nightly? Thank you again for your help.

Hi guys, new to the forums so I can’t create my own topic, so i’m going to slightly hijack this one (same topic) I installed Lakka on my Pi 3 using noobs and the Lakka_RPi2 package. (Acts as it’s own OS).

I overclocked my Pi3 a bit and want to give N64 roms a shot. For some reason there is no option for a GFX Plugin for my games?? I’m using the current version of Lakka / Retroarc (it was downloaded from the server today).

What am I missing? I would like to give Rice a shot to see if that helps with my performance.

Also, any tips on auto-connecting my Bluetooth 8bitdo controllers back to the Pi3 after a reboot? Using another computer to send SSH commands is getting old fast.

Thanks for any help you can send my way :slight_smile:

The mupen64plus-libretro core only has GLideN64 plugin. The ParaLLEl core has configurable gfx plugins but I don’t think it’s included with Lakka. IIRC, people reported having better results with mupen64plus-libretro core anyway.

For the 8bitdo controllers, looks like there’s no solution to the pairing issue: http://www.lakka.tv/doc/8Bitdo-Wireless-Controller/

Thank you for the quick reply. This information is really helpful. I’m new to N64 emu so I will take any advice I can get. I have a Razer laptop with a GTX1060 of needed. I just love the mobility of the Pi3.

Would running an emu in rasberian be better for N64 emu on a Pi3 or would it be the same quality as I currently have with booting into Lakka? The reasberian retropi option looks to work better with the 8bitdo bt controllers and no ssh script everytime. (all though i found an auto boot bt script that might work)

and it sounds like rice wouldn’t benifit my performace? right?

Thanks again for the help :slight_smile:

Rice might help performance a bit, but it’s also a mess, with lots of missing/broken effects.

RetroArch on Raspbian is fine, too. The main advantage of Lakka is that it’s a console-stype, turnkey experience, but if you don’t mind doing the additional configuration/work for a more roll-your-own experience, it should work just as well.

Sounds like Lakka is where it’s at atm :slight_smile: Thanks again for all the help. anything else I can do to get the n64 emu to play as smooth as the original system? i have my resolution all the way down and my Pi3 overclocked to 1.35

Not that I can think of. N64 is unfortunately right on the borderline for RPi3, so some games will run acceptably and some won’t.

Thanks Hunter :slight_smile: really appreciate all the help

Lakka in Raspberry Pi 3 is great for emulating older platforms, but when you will want more :slight_smile: (and inevitably you will want to emulate modern platforms) Retroarch is available to run them in your computer.

In my case, it was great to start with Lakka, which is more simple than Retroarch since it is more pre-configured (includes cores, etc.) and then migrate to Retroarch.

Lakka is also great if you have an old PC (5-year-old time frame is ideal for this) to turn into a dedicated video game console. Personally, go thrift store shopping and find an older, but not too old PC and turn that into a Lakka unit for less than the cost of a Raspberry Pi 3, with infinitely better perfomance. Craig’s List and eBay will have old PCs that are wonderful for a project like this. :slight_smile:

Hi, i’m playing at n64 on rpi3 with Lakka 2.1 RC4 (core Mupen64Plus GLES2 2.5 9b01067 / retroarch 1.5.0). I have seen that the current version have graphics problems. For example, in super mario 64, at the beginning, there is mario face and there are a lot of white textures instead of the red ones. In standalone Mupen64Plus it is ok, in older version of the libreto core it is ok too (GLupeN64 GLES2 309c031 / retroarch 1.4.0 in Recalbox 4.1 beta). There is a way to update this core only to a new or a previous version to confirm it ? i tried to copy glupen64_libretro.so (and made a .info) from Recalbox into Lakka, but it seems that it doesn’t worked, probably because Retroarch is not the same version. Thank you

How to get the N64 to work somewhat well on the Pi 3:

  1. Overclock your damn Raspberry Pi 3! Here’s a link on some ideal settings for overclocking (one I use personally with a few tweaks here and there): https://haydenjames.io/raspberry-pi-3-overclock/.

Overclock your main ARM CPU core frequency, the SDRAM frequency and the core (i.e. GPU) frequency. Also, for 3D graphical performance enhancement (i.e. N64, PSX, Dreamcast, etc.), increase the 3D Video frequency as well (v3d_freq).

Note: This WILL void your warranty. I am not responsible for your frying your damn Pi. It’s a $35 board, and if you’re that concerned about frying it, don’t do it. Simple.

  1. If you do overclock your Pi, a cooling case (passive or active) is mandatory. The Pi 3 gets incredibly HOT when taxed, and even worse when overclocked. You WILL fry it if you do not employ some form of cooling methodology. Both heatsinks (get the three-set of them, not just two!), and a case with a fan that blows air are mandatory.

Recommendations for cases for the Pi 3: https://www.pretzellogix.net/2015/09/02/the-best-raspberry-pi-2-cases-compared-and-reviewed/

My personal Raspberry Pi 3 gaming unit case: https://www.amazon.com/Makerfire-Raspberry-Protective-Enclosure-Heatsink/dp/B019SIAGTO/ref=sr_1_6?ie=UTF8&qid=1503281813&sr=8-6&keywords=raspberry+pi+3+cases+with+fan+and+heatsinks

The case I use for the Pi which is on 24/7 as a VPN/ad-blocker/networked storage/bittorent box: https://www.amazon.com/Raspberry-Model-Cooling-Cooler-Heatsink/dp/B072C56M6T/ref=sr_1_20?ie=UTF8&qid=1503281844&sr=8-20&keywords=raspberry+pi+3+cases+with+fan+and+heatsinks

  1. Get a damn good, stable, and steady power supply! With the fan and heatsinks, don’t use a cheap supply! The Pi 3 uses 2.5 A, which is a hell of a lot of current for such a little board. I use a 5V 3A micro USB power supply with push-button ON/OFF switch. The one I use myself: https://www.amazon.com/NorthPada-Tinker-Supply-Charger-Adapter/dp/B072FTJH73/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1503282299&sr=8-2-spons&keywords=5V+3A+micro+USB+power+supply&psc=1

  2. Regarding which emulator to use in Lakka for N64, I recommend Glupen for speed (it’s optimized for the Pi), but you’re going to have to sacrifice graphical clarity (i.e. blocky, cloudy). Mupen64 and Parallei don’t run all that well on the Pi (even when tweaking the settings, it’s hard to get it to run anything outside of the usually optimized set of games such as Mario 64, Ocarina of Time, etc.).

  3. Don’t run Rare games. :slight_smile: LOL

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I copy the core from Lakka 2.1 RC1 in the core directory of the RC4 and the graphics are fine (Mupen64Plus GLES2 2.5 eda9d16) so the core from RC4 (Mupen64Plus GLES2 2.5 9b01067) is not the best to use.

I just installed Lakka 3.2 out of the box Mupen will not load any ROMs I have tried such as Mario 64 or Mario kart it goes to the title screen (RetroArch not the game) then back to RetroArch. Parelells works for Mario 64 well and goldeneye which is not great but playable, however it will not load Mario kart the game begins to load Nintendo screen then freezes on a grey screen

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