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A Python interface to the Sony PlayStation console.
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PSXLE (or PSX __L__earning __E__nvironment) is an PlayStation 1 (PSX) emulator, written in C, that allows programmatic control of PlayStation games. This documentation covers the associated Python library PSXLE-py, which allows simple per-game integration with OpenAI Gym and other Python applications. The design and development of PSXLE is shown in the paper on arXiv.


Build Requirements

Note: a pre-built version of psxle will soon be available from, if you're using this version, you can skip to "Installing".

The following are requirements to build psxle on your own computer. Note that this has only been tested on Ubuntu 16.04+ and other systems may require additonal steps.

  • cmake
  • xvfb
  • libsdl2-dev
  • libglib2.0-dev
  • libgtk-3-dev

Build Script

While cmake can be used directly for a system-wide installation, you can make use of the pre-prepared build_psxle script to automate the process for most cases. You should then be able to build psxle using:


The default build directory will be set to ./psxle_build (relative to where the script runs), although you can choose a different directory as an argument to the build script.


To install, run:



The Python library's main function is to expose a Console class to represent a PlayStation instance. This class is designed to support interations that broadly fall into four categories:

  • General

    • run and kill control the executing process of the emulator
    • freeze and unfreeze will freeze and unfreeze the emulator's execution, respectively
    • speed is a property of Console which, when set, will synchronously set the speed of execution of the console, expressed as a percentage relative to default speed
  • Controler

    • hold_button and release_button simulate a press down and release of a given controller button, call these control events
    • touch_button holds, pauses for a given amount of time and then releases a given button
    • delay_button adds a (millisecond-order) delay between successive control events
  • RAM

    • read_bytes and write_byte to directly read and write console memory.
    • add_memory_listener and clear_memory_listeners control which parts of console memory will have asynchronous listeners attatched when the console starts
    • sleep_memory_listener and wake_memory_listener tell the console which listeners are active
  • Audio/Visual

    • start_recording_audio and stop_recording_audio contrrol when the console should record audio and when it shoud stop

    • get_screen synchronously returns an np.array of the console's instantaneous visual output

Using a combination of these methods allows for the creation of a game abstraction. See the PSXLE paper on aXiv for more discussion. More information will be made available here soon.

Quick Start

Note: console emulation requires a disk image of a game. None are provided here. These should be obtained legitimately through purchased copies and used only for personal use.

To begin running a PlayStation console (assuming installation is successfull), run:

python3 <PATH TO ISO>

This will start a console to run the specified game and enter a python REPL with a Console object given by c. You can type, for example c.freeze to freeze the console, or c.speed = 200 to run the console at double speed.

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