PS3 emulator RPCS3 now boots the XMB

The PlayStation 3 XMB

The cross-media bar, or XMB, might be the best console user interface ever. It made the PSP and PlayStation 3 a joy to interact with, and now you can finally relive the magic on a modern machine. Popular PS3 emulator RPCS3 now supports the XMB – at least in part. While much of the front-end’s functionality is not yet implemented, the devs describe this as a “major breakthrough” for PS3 emulation.

“After years of hard work from several developers, we’re excited to announce that the VirtualShell/XrossMediaBar (VSH/XMB) now boots in the master build while using the latest PS3 firmware version,” developer AnnieLeo explains on Reddit. “While you cannot launch games from within the VSH/XMB just yet, this is a major breakthrough in PS3 emulation.”

You can see all that functionality broken down in the video below, but you’ll notice some major features missing – like the ability to launch games, for example. But this is a big deal for the emulation scene because it means RPCS3 is now properly replicating more low-level system functions than are usually required for most games.

“VSH uses a lot of low-level parts of the OS that games don’t need to work,” as AnnieLeo explains. It “required a lot of work to reverse engineer and implement them all, plus figure out other quirks specific to the VSH process such as differences in memory utilisation.”

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