Looking for Xbox One emulators? Let’s see if we here at Retro Dodo have been able to find any!
Though the Xbox One wasn’t an immediate success – with its disastrous reveal focusing on TV services and functions that were inconsistently useful outside the US, not to mention the forced inclusion of Kinect – it actually went on to become an excellent alternative to Sony’s PlayStation 4 near the end of its lifespan. It built up an impressive library of games; though a smaller number of exclusives than Sony’s, they were certainly more varied in terms of genre.
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So what if you want to play Xbox One games, but you don’t actually have a console?
Usually, in this situation, you can use an emulator if your PC is powerful enough (and the specs needed to properly run an emulator, for a console such as the Xbox One would theoretically be very high indeed). There’s a few things to be aware of before you go ahead and download – and use – an emulator, however. We realise we’re probably preaching to the choir here, but it’s better to be safe than sorry – particularly with such a grey area as emulators.
Are emulators legal?
Emulators themselves are legal. It isn’t even against the law to play games on emulators. However, it is illegal to download and play game ROMs if you don’t actually own the game itself, in most parts of the world in any case. Naturally, we need to make sure you’re aware that Retro Dodo doesn’t condone this activity or anything of this nature that may get you (or indeed, us!) into legal trouble. It’s well worth being aware of your local copyright laws, especially where they apply to emulators and ROMs.
Is it safe to download an emulator or ROMs?
Please exercise caution; due to the somewhat shady nature of emulators and ROMs, just be very careful what you’re downloading. All sorts of malware and viruses can be hidden in these types of files – we can’t be held responsible for anything going wrong if you download something malicious or harmful.
Now, with that boringly necessary stuff out of the way…
Are any Xbox One emulators available right now?
Sadly, there doesn’t seem to be any dedicated Xbox One emulators available at the moment – and, according to people on the modding scene, it’s likely to be a good few years (perhaps as long as a decade) before functional emulators with widespread software compatibility do become readily available.
What if I found a website that reviews, ranks and provides links to Xbox One emulators?
Unfortunately, plenty of poorly-translated, badly-worded articles online do make the claim that some emulators can play Xbox One games, but we at Retro Dodo have yet to find anything that works at a stable frame rate or with a good range of games, regardless of the claims made on these spurious websites.
What will I find if I try to download one of these emulators?
At best, they’ll link you to an original Xbox emulator (and you can find out which ones we recommend in our best Xbox emulators article) or an Xbox 360 emulator that may play a handful of Xbox One games too (you can find details of those in our best Xbox 360 emulators article). At worst you’re likely to encounter a fake emulator that’s almost certainly going to be riddled with viruses and malware.
Why will it take so long to emulate Xbox One consoles?
Unfortunately, it takes at least a few generations for PC hardware to be powerful enough to emulate consoles. Though it may not be immediately obvious why – especially when the host, PC hardware vastly outdoes the original consoles from a tech specs perspective – there’s all sorts of reasons as to why it’s the case. It essentially boils down to each console generally being able to do something unique that isn’t standard on any PC hardware; these features can often be tough to replicate on PCs.
Here’s an excellent Reddit thread where a lot of people much cleverer than me explain it in a way that makes an awful lot of sense.
So there’s really no Xbox One emulators you can recommend?
Unfortunately not – if you are looking for an Xbox One emulator, you’re not going to be able to find one that offers any sort of reliable, consistent performance for anything other than the odd game or two. At least not yet – I’m sure in five years time, you’ll be able to pop back to Retro Dodo and find some more useful information on the subject!
In the meantime, why not check out Xbox One consoles on eBay? They don’t tend to be too expensive at the moment – and that’s certainly a better option than filling your PC with bugs or downloading an emulator that may well only see you able to play one or two Xbox One games with vastly reduced framerates!
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Jason – who lives in the UK – has had a lifelong interest in video games, which all started when he discovered Space Invaders in the early 80s. The first game he ever completed was Wonder Boy in Monster Land on the Sega Master System – which remains one of his proudest gaming achievements. Jason is a passionate writer – and has been writing about gaming since the late 90s. He currently runs pop culture blog midlifegamergeek.com, which he updates on a daily basis (and has written more than 700 articles on the blog alone!).
Outside of video games, Jason is a keen tabletop gamer, film buff and comic book fan.