How to Install Retropie/Emulationstation on OrangePi3

Introduction: How to Install Retropie/Emulationstation on OrangePi3

I've been struggling with this board since forever. OP Android is crap, their Linux releases as well, so, we can only rely on Armbian. After all this time, I've wanted to try converting it to a emulationstation but there is no official releases for it, so, I've managed to install somehow and I'll share it here. It's not the best performance and I haven't tried to overclock it to see if there would be improvements.

So, let's start.

Step 1: Step 1: Prepare the Board

You will need:

- An OrangePi 3 board

- Power Supply

- SD Card (boards with 8GB eMMC are not enough) loaded with Armbian (I'm using Arbmian Focal based on kernel 5.7)

- Keyboard and Mouse

- A USB Game controller (to begin. Haven't tried with Bluetooth ones).

Load Armbian and update/upgrade it:

sudo apt update && sudo apt upgrade -y

Optional: to save space you may want to remove unnecessary apps that come with Armbian:

sudo apt remove thunderbird libreoffice-common libreoffice-core geany meld hexchat remmina transmission kazam mpv && sudo apt autoremove && sudo apt autoclean && sudo apt clean

Step 2: Step 2: Configure Bluetooth

If your board does not load Bluetooth properly, open crontab as root (sudo crontab -e) and add the following line to the end of the file:

@reboot btmgmt --index 1 public-addr 00:11:22:33:44:55

Step 3: Step 3: Download and Install Rasbpian

To download Raspbian, simply run the following line on terminal:

git clone --depth=1

Then,open file manager and go to (remember to replace USER with your username) home/USER/RetroPie-Setup/scriptmodules, where we'll need to remove some files in order to have a successful installation:

emulators - delete files,,, daphne.s, both scumvm files, and;

libretrocores - delete files also,,,,,, and all files beginning with lr-mupen64plus;

ports - delete files and;

supplementary - delete files remove and;

Then, start the installer with the following sintaxe:

sudo __platform=generic-x11 RetroPie-Setup/

The installer will load.

Run the basic install and wait a few hours until it completes. Then go to P - Manage Packages then OPT - Optional Packages and Install all Optional Packages. Wait a few more hours.

After that, you may want to go to driver and install some packages for Bluetooth controllers.

Step 4: Step 4: Configure @ Boot

After the installation, go to C - Configuration/Tools, select option 802Autostart and set it to autostart after login.

Step 5: Step 5: Run EmulationStation and Configure a Controller

Load your ROMS to the folder home/USER/RetroPie/roms. The folders are already created.

on terminal, type emulationstation and hit enter. Connect your controller to a USB port and configure it.

Then, be happy!

At reboot your Orangepi3 should already start on emulationstation gui.

I know it's not the best performance BUT if you want to install it and play some old games, this may be a way to do it.

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    7 weeks ago

    This worked for me. Using an Orange Pi 3 LTS w/ bluetooth controllers.

    To anyone doing this in 2022: I had to use a different version of Armbian (Armbian 22.05.0-trunk Focal) as the latest official release (22.05 Jammy) has a wifi bug for the Orange Pi 3


    2 years ago

    Ja tenho um RPi 4 que uso para trabalhos diários ( navegação web, etc ) e um RPi3 para me distrair com o recalbox, estou pensando em comprar um Orange Pi PC ( H3 ) 1gb de ram para estudar / experimentar, vc acha que usando esse seu guia o retropie funciona ?

    Desde já,muito obrigado por sua atenção.

    Translated into english by google
    I already have an RPi 4 that I use for daily work (web browsing, etc.) and an RPi3 to distract myself with the recalbox, I'm thinking of buying an Orange Pi PC (H3) 1gb of ram to study / experiment with, you think using this guide does the retropie work?

    In advance, thank you very much for your attention,


    Reply 2 years ago

    Olá! Para o processador H3, você já encontra imagem pronta. Procure por retroorangepi.



    2 years ago

    I have no interest in games.may i install the Raspbian the same way?