HOWTO guide: sselph/scraper

Mame cubelindo

You can be a messy in your life, your sexual orientation or your room, but the vast majority have well cataloged our films & TV shows, and above all our ROM emulators: With its covers, description,... an odyssey if not exist tools like I am going to present today, called scraper.

Scraper in the world of emulators are those programs with the goal of search for us all the information about a game to present it in our Front-end favorite with the best looking possible.

RetroPie comes with a very powerful scraper programmed in Python, ES-scraper. Today I present an alternative programmed on Go simply called scraper, running on the terminal of your operating system.

[ Requisites ]

First we need to install the Go language. You have packages for any operating system, including source code on this link. I'll teach you to install it on any of them. At the time of publishing this article, the latest version of Go is the 1.4.2. According to the process, sometimes you don't get the latest version (is the case of Ubuntu), but no matter.

Mac (through brew):

ruby -e "$(curl -fsSL"
brew doctor
brew update && brew upgrade
brew install go

Linux, Raspberry Pi, ODROID (Ubuntu) (+ info):

Ubuntu/Debian: sudo apt-get install golang

Fedora, CentOS/RHEL: sudo yum install golang

For the rest of ARM boards, visit the next link.

Now download the source code and compile scraper:

mkdir ~/go && cd $_
export GOPATH=$HOME/go
export PATH="$GOPATH/bin:$PATH"
(Mac only) export PATH="$PATH:/usr/local/opt/go/libexec/bin"

go get
go build

[ Use ]

With scraper -help we can see all the available parameters. Click to enlarge

NOW you can use the program from any directory with ROMs, typing scraper in most cases. With mame ROMs, we will use scraper -mame. It is interesting to know some of the parameters. For example with ROMs for mame, we can use scraper -mame -mame_img "t, s" to download the title img or catch a screenshot if not find the first one.

scraper dir

Scraper generates a gamelist.xml file and the images dir

Once we have made the whole process, we would just to copy the images directory and the gamelist.xml file to the path ~/.emulationstation/gamelists/console_type on RetroPie, Recalbox or any project with EmulationStation.

To help you to know if failed to recognize a title, I recommend you when run the scraper, copy its output to a file with scraper > Games.txt and then cat Games.txt | grep 'ERR '

If EmulationStation have problems with recognize the images, execute the following command that point to the file gamelist.xml previously generated:

sed -i -e 's/.\/images\//~\/.emulationstation\/downloaded_images\/fba/ig' /path/to/gamelist.xml

[ Conclusion: The Perfect scraper ]

This system will save much time and effort to have all your ROMs with their pictures and some interesting info. It is a very valid alternative to the scraper that comes with EmulationStation, but more customizable. It takes a few seconds to recognize and download the information of each ROM. In my case (iMac), 685 ROMS has been scanned in 14 minutes. Now you can choose if you want to go from this...

RetroPie img 01

to this

RetroPie img 02


Link: > sselph/scraper

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