˚ skeletonKey ˚
A unified interface for ROMs, emulators and frontends.
(New features & bugs)
- A comprehensive & easy to use GUI
- Drag & Drop ROMs to launch & create playlists.
- Leverages Archive.org ROM libraries
- Netplay automation
- Global and granular control over libraires of ROMs.
- Deploy a gaming environment to a portable device such as a flash-drive.
- Mirror your saves and save-states into a cloud (Dropbox/GDrive/OneDrive)
- Convert ROMs to a Windows executable
- Download, install & setup HTPC frontends, emulators and joystick mapping programs.
please leave a comment with your suggestions
SkeletonKey exists as both a configuration tool and as a ROM-Launcher.
ROMs can be launched by dragging and dropping to the desktop icon, into the options window or selected from within your library.
Each skeletonKey option has a tool-tip when the mouse hovers above it. Operational feedback appears in the statusbar at the bottom of the window.
After skeletonKey is installed, the user is prompted to either locate the retroArch.exe program or a directory into which it can be installed - whereupon a quick-setup wizard can automatically install retroArch with several cores. RetroArch is tightly integrated into skeletonKey, with an exhaustive set of options and exclusive features for netplay.
By default, ROMs are [categorically] stored by system-name in the
(retroarch install folder)\downloads\[SYSTEM NAME] folder. The
\downloads\ directory is by default also retroArch's
"core_assets_directory". Emulators will be installed into skeletonKey's "app" directory by default.
Archive.org ROMs will be downloaded to the corresponding system name.
Each system is pre-assigned a retroArch core with which to associate ROMs. This association defines how skeletonKey will automatically launch ROMs. These core-to-system assocations can be changed to other cores or standalone emulators.
Skeletonkey can be run from a thumbdrive or other portable drive. The Portable.bat file should be run from the portable device when first starting skeletonKey from a portable drive on a new computer or if the drive letter of the portable device has changed.
Many users may desire to transfer an existing skeletonkey installation to a portable drive and the portable utility should facilitate the conifiguration migration. Migration options for the portable utility include localization of items to the drive for playlists and simple search & replace. Retroarch and skletonKey's other emulators' per-game settings are updated to reflect the new portable skeletonKey location.
If you already have skeletonKey and retroArch intalled, copy the folders to your portable drive and run the Portable.bat in the skeletonKey folder on the portable drive.
A deployment tool is available for users who wish to publish a skeletonKey. SKey-Deploy.ahk can be used to build, maintain and deploy a skeletonKey source-code versioning project, website and binaries.
Installing RetroArch & cores
RetroArch and components can be installed indivdually. The "RetroArch" list item includes all components. The most recent nightly build as well as the stable version are available.
RetroArch does not come pre-installed with emulator cores. Cores can also be updated and installed individually.
Installing BIOS Files
Drag & Drop BIOS files or a BIOS pack (.7z .zip .rar) to automatically install them to their proper places in supported emulators directories.
Selecting the Standalone Emulator radio button exposes ROM directory options. The Components and Cores listbox will populate with many systems. Selecting a system will enable users to press the SET button to set the ROM directory for that system. A junction folder will be mirrored in the "Systems" directory (defaults to
:\retroArch\downloads) with the name of the system. These folders will populate with files in the Options tab, the Archive tab and the Netplay tab.
Installing Other Emulators
SkeletonKey can install emulators for many systems. Supported emulators can be configured indipendently (for per-game settings too!!!) as they are launched by skeletonKey and as emulators assigned to ROM-Jackets.
This emulator is fully integrated into Skeletonkey. All of Skeletonkey's supported consoles compatible with RetroArch are configurable for use with it.
Mess BIOS files should be installed in the emulator's "roms" directory.
Unsupported consoles follow the custom console paradigm using the Mess command line syntax, eg:
Skeletonkey's supported consoles compatible with Mess/UME are preconfigured for use.