How to Play Old Metal Gear Solid Games – All There is to Know with FAQs and More

Metal Gear Solid games are celebrated as one of the pioneers in the combat-story genre. It has a long list of playable games that started way back in 1996. 

Since old consoles aren’t readily available now, you can face difficulties in playing older titles. 

This is why we have developed a detailed guide on how to play old MGS games. 

Quick Summary

By the end of this post, we’ll cover the following topics:

  • Guide to play old MGS games
  • Various emulators
  • Important tips and FAQs

Let’s get you started.

Quick Guide to Play Old MGS Games

It is quite easy to play old Metal Gear Solid games on your PC. However, it includes being aware of emulators and how they work. 

So, before we jump into the guide, let’s discuss what emulators are and how they work. This will help you operate your MGS games better. 

Emulators for MGS Games

The use of emulators to play console games on PC is not a new idea. People have used emulators for a long time to play PS1, PS2, and PS3 games on PC. 

Even though they are not intended by the developers, it still removes the necessity of having a console to play respective games. 

How do emulators work?

In basic terms, emulators provide a basic OS to run the game. This is mainly because the format and OS required to read these files are completely different from PC.

So, an emulator acts as read and write software to help you access the game files. You can find multiple emulators for all sorts of games that include SEGA, Nintendo, and Konami. 

Which emulators do I need to play MGS games?

When it comes to Metal Gear Solid games, people have released specific emulators to provide full compatibility. There is a separate emulator for every console generation. 

For MGS1 and MGS2, you’ll need the MSX emulator. For MGS3, you’ll need the PCSX2 emulator. Moreover, you’ll also need a PS3 emulator for MGS: Portable Ops. 

Where can I find these emulators? 

There are multiple ways to download emulators on your PC. You can find respective emulators on GOG or with the games as well. 

Simply head over to their website and download your emulators. Make sure that you check the compatibility of the emulator with your PC. 

Are there any specific requirements for emulators?

For PS1 and PS2 games, you won’t need anything special. However, for a PS3 emulator, you’ll need an NVIDIA GTX 740 or equivalent. 

This is mainly because PS3 games were far better in terms of graphics and demand a dedicated GPU for optimal results. 

Now, let’s check out the step-by-step guide to play the MGS games. 

Download the Emulators

The first and foremost step is to find and download the respective emulators on your PC. Make sure that your choice of emulator supports the game you want to play. 

Otherwise, it won’t read or launch the game. Simply head over to GOG to find the respective emulators. 

Should I download every emulator for MGS games?

It depends on your preference. If you only want to play MGS1, there is no need for any emulator other than the MSX emulator. 

Install the Emulator

For the next step, you’ll have to install the emulator in a drive with at least 20 GB of free space. This will provide enough space for you to store your game files.

Once the installation is complete, run the recovery program to check the integrity of the emulator. In some cases, this can detect and fix any broken files. 

Where can I find the recovery program?

The recovery program usually starts an automatic check after the installation is complete. If it doesn’t, check the emulator folder for a recovery program. 

Download MGS Game Files

Once you are sure that the emulator works, download the game files from the aforementioned websites. 

These files are downloaded in the form of a compressed folder. After it finishes downloading, simply extract the files into a separate folder. 

Where should I extract the files? 

It doesn’t matter where you extract the files but it is recommended that you use the emulator folder. This will help you keep track of your game files. 

Launch the Emulator

After you extract the files, go to the emulator folder and launch it. A new program will open with a blank screen. 

Find the load game option located in the top left corner. It is located in the File drop-down menu. 

Select Game File

Next step is to load the game file for your MGS game. The game file will be labeled the same as the game’s title. 

Simply double-click on it and the emulator will load the game. As soon as the file completes the loading sequence, the game will automatically launch.

Calibrate your Controls

Before you get into the game, it is important that you check your controls. There is a separate menu for it located in the top left corner. 

Here you customize your controls for the mouse, keyboard, and d-pad controllers. It also provides the feature to test your keybinds as well. 

Activate Full-Screen Mode

For the final step, you have to turn the emulator to full-screen mode. You can either do this by pressing Alt+Enter or through the display settings. 

To turn on the full-screen from display settings, head over to the View menu in the top left corner. It contains all the settings you need. 

Close the Game

Once you are done playing, simply exit the game. It will take you back to the emulator with a blank screen. 

Now you can easily load and launch another game. However, it is necessary to clear the cache before you do so. 

Do the game files automatically save?

Every emulator has its own specific folder for saved progress. You don’t have to move these files manually. 

The emulator automatically reads respective saved files and shows the progress in-game. 

This is all you need to know to play old Metal Gear Solid games on a PC. Now, let’s check out some important tips.

metal gear solid

Important Tips to Keep in Mind

Here’s a list of important things you need to keep in mind at all times. 

  • Always clear your cache. This will keep the emulator in optimal condition and remove the possibility of file corruption.
  • Make sure that you download the right game for your emulator. Sometimes, game files are not read by certain emulators. 
  • Use mouse and keyboard to play the games. Some controllers might not be compatible with emulators. 

Wrapping Things Up…

With this, we come to the finish line of our guide on How to Play Old Metal Gear Solid Games. We hope this information proves to be useful for you. 

Metal Gear Solid games provide a thrilling campaign-driven experience. However, you need an emulator to enjoy the MGS games before the release of MGS4. 

Do let us know what you think in the comments below. 


  • Victor Marquez

    Victor is the Editor in Chief at Techtyche. He tests the performance and quality of new VR boxes, headsets, pedals, etc. He got promoted to the Senior Game Tester position in 2021. His past experience makes him very qualified to review gadgets, speakers, VR, games, Xbox, laptops, and more. Feel free to check out his posts.

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