How-to Install RetroArch to SNES Classic Mini

Learn how to play NES, Game Boy, Sega Genesis, N64, and more games on your SNES Classic Mini. RetroArch lets you play games from other consoles on your SNES Classic. This tutorial will show you how to install RetroArch and import ROMs to your system. In addition to playing other consoles, RetroArch also allows you to play problematic SNES ROMs that doesn't run well or work with the default emulator on the SNES Classic.

Here is a list of games that work and do not work on using the default emulator on the SNES Classic. You will be able to run the problematic games using RetroArch.

Before we begin:

This tutorial uses a computer running Windows. If you are using a Mac, follow our guide here before you begin.

How-to Install RetroArch to Your SNES Classic

1. Download hakchi2 CE (hakchi2_CE_#.#.#.zip) and extract it your computer.

2. Download RetroArch (Hakchi_Retroarch_Neo_v#_#_#c.hmod) and put the file into the user_mods folder inside the hakchi2 folder. This version is the most stable version of RetroArch and the one we recommend.

3. Download the RetroArch Essential Cores (Hakchi_RetroArch_Essential_Cores_v#_#_#.zip) and extract it to your computer. Move any hmod you wish to install to the user_mods folder inside the hakchi2 folder.

The modules are: gambatte for Game Boy, genesis_plus_gx for Sega Genesis, glupen64 for Nintendo 64, mednafen_pce_fast for Turbografx 16, mgba for Game Boy Advance, picodrive for Sega 32x etc. For even more consoles, check out KMFDManic's set here.

4. Open the hakchi folder, run hakchi.exe, and select your console.

5. If you have not dumped your kernel yet, go to Kernel > Dump kernel and hit Yes. This will create a "dump" folder with your SNES Classic data in it in the "hakchi" folder. We recommend you back up this folder and keep it safe as it contains your SNES Classic original kernel which you can use to restore your console in case anything happens.

6. Go to Modules > Install extra modules.

7. Select RetroArch and other consoles you wish to install (note: the modules uses up memory so only install the modules you plan on using) and hit OK.

8. Follow the steps on the screen.

9. Press Add more games and add the ROMs that you want to sideload to your SNES Classic (you can add multiple ROMs at a time). RetroArch supports Nintendo, Game Boy, Game Boy Color, Game Boy Advance, Sega Genesis, Sega Mega System, Nintendo 64, etc. Note: Nintendo 64 games do not run well on the SNES Classic.

10. [Optional] Highlight all of the games you added and right-click and select Download box art for selected games or you can select an individual game, press Browse, and add your own custom box art.

10. Now press Synchronize selected games with NES/SNES Mini.

Extra note: All non-SNES games should automatically run in RetroArch while SNES games will run on the default emulator (called Canoe). If you are having problems with any SNES game, read our tutorial here to learn how to run SNES games through RetroArch. RetroArch is compatible with more SNES games than the default emulator.

While running a game in RetroArch, you can activate the RetroArch settings menu by pressing Start + Select on the controller. Here you can quit the game and go back to the SNES Classic main menu.


If you have any questions please let us know in the comments field.

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