The original XBMC

This entry is part 1 of 1 in the series Retrogaming

Years ago, there was the original XBMC. Some of you might remember it, some others will discover it today.

XBMC history

As you might already know, Kodi used to be called XBox Media Center. It used to be an homebrew (ie. a custom application) for the first Microsoft Xbox gaming console. Thanks to the Xbox hardware being very close to a regular PC and the fact it was “standardized” (ie. all xbox have the same hardware it quickly become a very powerful and famous software.

XBMC features

XBMC allowed users to watch their movies (locally, or stored in network shares), listen to Music, check the weather, play “ripped” Xbox games, and various emulators. One feature, I would like to talk about was the ability to perform “retrogaming“.

XBMC as a retrogaming platform

Nowadays, if one feel like playing old video console titles or arcade games in your living room, one can do so by installing an emulator on his computer and downloading some “roms” (disclaimer : be sure to check your local laws before doing it). However, playing old games on a regular PC is very often a lot of trouble: one must configure its controller for every emulator, tweak video and audio settings, etc. This is really a LOT of time wasted before begin able to play. This is where XBMC is great.

Since it has standardized hardware from audio, video chips to controller, it means that everyone using an Xbox uses the exact same setup (which will never be the case on a regular PC). In practical terms, it means that once the emulators are installed and the roms downloaded : everything is plug and play! No tweaking settings, no controller mappings, etc.

This was 13 years ago. Today, one can still play emulators on Kodi, however, since Kodi runs on a regular PC it is a lot more trouble… Unless we chose the road, once again to standardized hardware with Android device such as Nvidia Shield TV, or Raspberry Pis units.

Kodi as a retrogaming platform

In a coming article, we’ll show you how to install Kodi on a regular PC and use it as a frontend for all your roms and emulators. I’ll also talk about great “out of the box” working distribution using Kodi and retrogaming apps. Stay tuned !

What’s about you : have you played the original Xbox? Did you use the original XBMC?