[How To] Play NES roms on PS2 using ULaunchELF. (USB Method)

Foreword: This is an excellent tutorial that shows that the PS2 can be exploited in a non-conventional way.  Yes, there is a way to play SNES methods on the PS2, but I did not realize NES roms can be played as well!  All props go to author ICE, and I take no credit for this tutorial.  Expect more of these to come in the future. ~ Versatile

Revisions: 11-30-09: Initial release.

[Update 12/1/09] Made critical changes on the button map of the FCEU port, Added link for NES roms and added a NOTE at the end.
[Update 12/2/09] changed the complexity of the title and made it easy to understand the concept.

[Update 12/21/09] Edited the whole tutorial and made it simpler.

[1-25-2010] Added Versatile1’s FMCB and the DVD decrypter tutorials.

[1-28-2010] Linked to the latest version of FCEU and added 2 troubleshooting notes.


Nintendo 8 bit, also known as NES, is the mother of all consoles. Now, wouldn’t it be nice if we could play those old classics on the PS2 using an emulator ???. Well, you have come to the right place because this tutorial might help you.

This is what you need:

1) A ps2, slim or fat.

2) A Modchip or Swap magic and The ULaunchELF CD.
Click Here to download the CD version of ULaunchELF.

Watch Versatile1’s DVD decrypter Video Tutorial, for a better understanding on how to burn the ULaunchELF CD.

(OR) A memory card exploited with Free Mcboot, which has ULaunchELF installed on it.

Watch Versatile1’s ‘How to install Free Mcboot’ Video Tutorial

3) A USB flashdrive or a USB External HD.

4) FCEUltra Emulator.Click Here to download ‘ps2fceu_093.zip’.

5) NES roms. You could get them from romnation.net or by using p2p clients.

This is what you do next:

  • Format the USB media to FAT32.
  • Extract ‘ps2fceu_093.zip’, so that you will get the file ‘packed_fceu.ELF‘.
  • Copy the ‘packed_fceu.ELF’ file to your USB media.
  • Copy the NES ROMs to your USB media.

That’s the picture of the contents of my USB media. As you can see, there is a ‘packed_fceu.ELF‘ file and a folder named ‘NES ROMS’ which contains all my NES roms.

  • Connect the USB media to the PS2’s USB port.
  • Now boot the ULaunchELF CD on your PS2, by using a mod chip or swap magic. (Free Mcboot users can load ULaunchELF from the Free Mcboot menu)

The ULaunchELF Browser controls:

Up and down to navigate through files or directories
O = Select file or directory
Triangle = Browse back or exit menu

  • Now, after you boot ULaunchELF, press the ‘O’ button to enter ‘FileBrowser‘. The following screen would appear…

  • Navigate to ‘mass’ and press the ‘O’ button to select it.

You would be able to see the contents of your USB media, which includes the ‘packed_fceu.ELF’ file and the ROM files.

  • Navigate to the ‘packed_fceu.ELF‘ file and press the ‘O’ button.

The FCEU PORT will now load and the FCEU browser would get displayed.

FCEU Browser controls:

Up/Down for navigation
‘X ‘ = Select file or directory
Select = Enter Brower Menu
Triangle = Browse back or exit menu

  • Navigate to ‘mass’ and select it by pressing the ‘X’ button.
  • Navigate to the ROM files and press the ‘X’ button.

The game would load if it was compatible with FCEU. (as lame as it sounds Mario bros 1 doesn’t work with FCEU, but for the rest of the games I did not find any troubles)

Default Controls while playing the game:

Cross=a , Square=b, Triangle=FCEU menu,  L2=load state,  R2=save state. NOTE: the direction buttons and the start and select buttons retains the same functions of NES.


1) If the screen looks messed up…. Press the ‘Select’ button while you are on the browser, then select the ‘Center Screen’ option. And then center the screen using the directional buttons and once you are done, press the ‘Start’ button to update the screen position.

2) Press the R2 button to save a state and the L2 to load a state, while playing a game.

If you had troubles with saving game states…. Press the ‘Select’ button while you are on the browser , then select ‘Configure Save Path’. And then browse to any location on the memory card and press the ‘Start’ button. You could also configure FCEU to save the states on your USB media, but it often gives me errors… (I created a folder on the memory card named ‘NES Saves’ using ULaunchELF and i use that folder to save states.)

3) Once the FCEU.elf is loaded, you could remove the ULaunchELF CD from your PS2 and hence save your lens from dying, or else  the CD will keep spinning.

If you have any doubts post a comment and I’ll get back on you.. And Enjoy old school gaming 🙂   ~ ICE

About ICE

I keep a low profile... sorry .. : P

Posted on November 30, 2009, in Gaming, News, playstation 2, Tutorials and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 36 Comments.

    AND THIS: FCEU 0.90 OR 0.93 ???

    • 1) What was your method of launching the FCEU.ELF ?
      2) Did you use swap magic or a modchip to launch the UlaunchELF CD, or did you use Free Mcboot ?

      The version on this thread is FCEU 0.90…. I did not like V o.93 0r V 0.92 or V 0.91 , just because the screen was all messed up.

      Go to http://www.sksapps.com/index.php?page=emus.html
      And try the other versions of FCEU.
      (the other versions will have a messed up screen, so you should press the ‘select’ button. And then select ‘Center Screen’ and try to fix the X and Y axis)

      If you still had no luck, check out Dlanor’s Infones. But in infones the Roms can only be loaded through CDs.

  2. i cant save the state

    • I updated the thread… Read the second point from the ‘Troubleshooting’ section..

      I also updated the links on the thread… So check out the latest version of FCEU. It runs smoother than the previous one !!

  3. It’s interesting to see just how permeant memory has become in our every day lives. It seems like everywhere I turn, I see something with a card slot or USB port, lol. I guess it makes sense though, considering how much more afforable memory has become as of late…Gahhhhh… I shouldn’t be moaning and groaning. I can’t get by a day without using my R4 / R4i!(Submitted using Nintendo DS running R4i W3B)

  4. Digital memory is something that I seem to be unable to ever have enough of. It feels like megabytes and gigabytes have become a permanent part of my day to day existence. Ever since I bought a Micro SD Card for my NDS flash card, I’ve been on the constant lookout for large memory at cheap prices. It’s driving me absolutely nuts.(Posted using Nintendo DS running R4i SDHC S3)

  5. I’m using an 8gb pendrive & Ulaunch elf on memory card with free McBoot. When I try to go down to mass and click 0, the Ps2 freezes. But it works with my external hdd, any idea?
    I want my 8gb pendrive to be for emus and the external hdd to be only Ps2 games.

  6. But why do Open PS2 loader & SMS read the pendrive?
    Is it a problem with UlaunchELF? Like incompatible pendrives with UlaunchELF?

    • The problem is with your Pen-drive’s drivers…
      Go to psx-scene.com and search ‘USB pen-drive compatibility’, I’m sure they have a big thread for that.

  7. Can you use the same flashdrive for NES roms and for Sega roms? Also when you say to take out the CD wouldn’t pressing the eject button stop the rom?

  8. when i try to load MASS in FCEU it freeze

  9. I have a Sandisk Cruzer, 2GB, and I formatted it to FAT32. But when I put it into my PS2, it doesn’t display anything in “mass:/”. Is it my USB drive?

  10. Alright, I shall try that. 🙂

  11. I should also mention that I have Free Mcboot running, no modship or swap magic. 🙂

  12. I only have Free Mcboot on my memory card. Never tried or had a mod chip. 🙂

  13. thnx dude u r kooooooooool!!!!………

  14. It worked! At first, it didn’t work. But then I turned on the PS2 and then put the USB stick in, and it worked! For some reason, PS2 only accepts USB sticks after its already on. xD

  15. How can I configure L2 to be the save state and R2 to be the load state? Because I’m used to always use the R2 in games, I’m saving when I’m supposed to be loading.

  16. Now boot the ULaunchELF CD on your PS2, by
    using a mod chip or swap magic. how to installl it plz reaply

  17. I’m getting a black screen when I launch packed_fceu.ELF I’m using McBoot

  18. CraftyMaelyss

    I have tried setting my tv to ntsc and downloaded ntsc isos to play on the fceultra but when I select it with O it brings me back to the file browser and if I select the file it freezes. The same thing happens if I use PAL (I’m Australian) and even pal isos have the same result. Also selecting with the X button doesn’t work I have to use O just like when I’m usong Freemcboot (which also wont play games even after following the tutorial several times) Do you know how to fix this issue?

  19. Hey man can you give me a link to download fceu 0.92 because sksapps downloads links are not working

  20. Sorry to revive an old topic, but I have a question about this emulator and the type if cable that must be used. I am using a ELUTENG PS2HDMI Adapter, when using the HDMI adapter and HDMI cable I do not get picture or sound. However when I switch to the SCART AV cable everything works fine. Any advice other than constantly swapping cables?

  21. I can get the save and load state working, but when I turn the PS2 off the settings are reset and my saves are gone. I have to remap every time. Is there a way around this or does save state only work for the current session?

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