- System update prevents emulation software from running on Xbox Series X | S
- Microsoft establishes policies against the emulation of games in its store and platform
- Despite the restriction, some users have found ways to get around the emulator lock on Xbox Series X | S
Microsoft blocks emulation software from running on Xbox Series X consoles | S, leaving emulation fans, retrogamers, and conservationists without access to their favorite emulators.
The community shouldn’t be surprised, as Microsoft has never officially endorsed emulation software, and sees it as an avenue for software piracy.
Additionally, Microsoft Store policy states that “products that emulate a game system or game platform are not allowed on any device family.”
Xbox owners have been running emulation software unofficially, but a recent system update has blocked the software from starting.
Xbox series consoles are the most accessible home gaming devices for emulation, as they can easily run anything from old Xbox games to PlayStation 2 and Nintendo Wii games.
Microsoft’s fight against emulators
This latest action isn’t the first time Microsoft has tried to remove emulators from its Xbox platform.
When the series consoles were released, many users found that they could download and install Universal Windows Platform versions of various emulators such as RetroArch and DuckStation directly from the store. However, once Microsoft caught on, it started removing them.
Microsoft’s crackdown on emulators began to escalate in the late summer and into the fall, where they dealt with daily takedowns for a while.
However, enthusiasts found a way to distribute the emulators to last up to three days by not naming them “RetroArch” and instead using random names.
How to get around the restriction
Users report that if the console is offline and hasn’t received any updates in the last month, it should work as usual when running emulators.
Developer mode supposedly works too, but you need an Insiders account. Enthusiasts have started a LetUsEmulate hashtag to try to get the console maker to change their policies.