Modders hack PS4 to run Linux and Pokemon

Adam Westlake - Dec 31, 2015
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Modders hack PS4 to run Linux and Pokemon

It's been some since we've heard about impressive mods to get game consoles running software and games they're not meant to, but thanks to Failoverflow, a collective of console hackers, there's something new to closeout 2015 with. The group has managed to hack Sony's PlayStation 4 to install the Linux operating system on it, taking advantage of the console's fairly standard PC architecture.

As the Linux software basically allows the modders to use the PS4 as a regular computer, they also managed to install an emulator for the Game Boy Advance, additional software that is capable of running games for older Nintendo handheld. With that, Failoverflow went ahead and put a version of Pokemon on the PS4, dubbing it the "PlayStation Version."

The modded console and software can be seen in action in the video above. As Fail0verflow's slideshow presentation mentions, they've managed to keep much of the PS4's functions in working condition after the Linus install, including WiFi, Bluetooth, optical audio, the serial port, and HDMI encoder. Things like USB, 3D acceleration, and HDMI audio are still a work in progress, however.

What isn't made completely clear by the video is that the modders also managed to connect an actual Game Boy Advance to the PS4 in order to play Pokemon. The handheld system merely acts a controller for the game, with gameplay still running on the display connected to the PS4, but it's still an impressive achievement.

VIA VentureBeat