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Cemu is a Wii U Emulator.

Website: https://cemu.info/

GitHub: https://github.com/cemu-project/Cemu

Compatibility List: https://compat.cemu.info/

This page is for the native build of Cemu. EmuDeck includes the native build of Cemu as an optional install. Both versions will remain installed. One quick way to tell the difference is to compare the two GUIs. For the Proton version of Cemu, visit Cemu Proton.

Native Cemu:

Proton Cemu:


Cemu Native Table of Contents

  1. Getting started with Cemu

  2. Common Issues

  3. Cemu Tips and Tricks


Getting started with Cemu

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IMPORTANT: Cemu is shifting away from encrypted ROMs (WUX, WUD). It is strongly recommended you use decrypted ROMs (Loadiine, WUA). Decrypted ROMs do not need any additional configuration and should launch without any issue.

Cemu is a fairly straight-forward emulator to set up, if you use decrypted ROMs. Place your ROMs in Emulation/roms/wiiu/roms. Do not install your games. No additional setup is required.

Read the Configuration section to learn more about Cemu and its folder locations.

For updates and DLC, read How to Manage DLC and Updates.

To launch your ROMs in game mode, use Steam ROM Manager and use one of the following parsers to play your Wii U ROMs:

  • EmulationStation-DE
  • Nintendo WiiU - Cemu (.rpx) - Native or Nintendo WiiU - Cemu (.wud, .wux, .wua) - Native
    • Read the File Formats section to learn more about these various file formats
    • .rpx and .wua are decrypted ROM formats
  • Emulators

If you intend on using encrypted ROMs, proceed to the Setting up Cemu Questionnaire.


Setting up Cemu Questionnaire

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IMPORTANT: Cemu is shifting away from encrypted ROMs (WUX, WUD). It is strongly recommended you use decrypted ROMs (Loadiine, WUA). Decrypted ROMs do not need any additional configuration and should launch without any issue. If you use decrypted ROMs, you do not need the following questionnaire.

Setting up Cemu Questionnaire

  1. Is your ROM encrypted? If yes, do you have a keys.txt in the right place with the correct keys for your games in the keys.txt file?
    1. What are keys?: Keys are required to decrypt Wii U ROMs. Your keys.txt needs to contain keys (one key per game) that must be dumped from a Wii U console. Any other method of obtaining keys is piracy and cannot be discussed here or on the EmuDeck discord.
    2. Which Cemu ROM Formats are encrypted?: File Formats
    3. keys.txt Location: /home/deck/.local/share/Cemu/
    4. If your ROM is NUS Format (a folder with .h3 and .app files), you will need to decrypt your ROM into the Loadiine format (folder format with three subfolders - code, content, meta). Decryption methods cannot be discussed here or on the EmuDeck discord.
      • The NUS format cannot be used through ES-DE, Steam ROM Manager, or Pegasus.
  2. Is your ROM decrypted?
    1. Which Cemu ROM Formats are decrypted?: File Formats
    2. If your ROM is decrypted, place the ROM in Emulation/roms/wiiu/roms. Your game should launch without needing any keys.
  3. If you are getting an Unable to launch game error, did you place the keys.txt in the right place?
    1. keys.txt Location: /home/deck/.local/share/Cemu/
  4. If you placed the keys.txt in the right place, and your ROM is still not working, does your keys.txt have the correct key for the ROM?
    1. Even if you placed a key for your game in keys.txt, you may still have the incorrect key.
  5. Did you transfer your ROM from another computer and did you compare file sizes to ensure it transferred successfully?
  6. Did you turn on Proton in Steam? If yes, turn it off. If you are unsure, check.
    1. How do I check?: The Dangers of Proton

Cemu Native Configuration

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IMPORTANT: Cemu is shifting away from encrypted ROMs (WUX, WUD). It is strongly recommended you use decrypted ROMs (Loadiine, WUA). Decrypted ROMs do not need any additional configuration and should launch without any issue.

  • Type of Emulator: AppImage
  • Executable Location: /home/deck/Applications/Cemu.AppImage
  • Configuration: /home/deck/.config/Cemu/
  • Emulator Folders Location:
    • /home/deck/.config/Cemu/
      • Contains the following folders and files:
        • controllerProfiles
        • gameProfiles
        • settings.xml
    • /home/deck/.local/share/Cemu/
      • Contains the following folders and files:
        • graphicPacks
        • memorySearcher
        • log.txt
        • title_list_cache.xml
    • /home/deck/.cache/Cemu
      • Contains the following folders and files:
        • shaderCache
  • Persistent Storage: Emulation/roms/wiiu/mlc01/
  • ROM Location: Emulation/roms/wiiu/roms
    • Note the second roms folder in the path.
    • Do not put DLC / update files in the ROM path. Refer to How to Manage DLC and Updates
    • Place your game ROMs here, do not install your game ROMs
  • keys.txt Location: /home/deck/.local/share/Cemu/
    • The keys.txt is only necessary if the Wii U ROM is encrypted.
    • keys.txt needs to contain keys (one key per game) that must be dumped from a Wii U console. Any other method of obtaining keys is piracy and cannot be discussed here or on the EmuDeck discord.
  • Saves Location:
    • Symlink: Emulation/saves/Cemu/saves/
    • Target: Emulation/roms/wiiu/mlc01/usr/save

Works With

  • Steam ROM Manager
  • EmulationStation-DE

Cemu Native Folder Locations

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These file locations apply regardless of where you chose to install EmuDeck (to your internal SSD, to your SD Card, or elsewhere). Some emulator configuration files will be located on the internal SSD as listed below.

$HOME refers to your home folder. If you are on a Steam Deck, this folder will be named /home/deck (you will likely not see deck in the file path when navigating using the file manager).

Paths beginning with Emulation/.. correspond to your EmuDeck install location. If you installed on an SD Card, your path may be /run/media/mmcblk0p1/Emulation/roms/... If you installed on your internal SSD, your path may be /home/deck/Emulation/roms/..

Note: Folders with a . (.var, .local, .config, etc.) at the beginning are hidden by default. In Dolphin (file manager), click the hamburger menu in the top right, click Show Hidden Files to see these folders.

$HOME/.config/Cemu/

Cemu/
├── controllerProfiles
│   ├── controller0.xml
│   ├── controller1.xml
│   ├── controller2.xml
│   ├── controller3.xml
│   ├── Deck-Gamepad-Gyro.xml
│   ├── Deck-P1.xml
│   ├── Deck-P2.xml
│   ├── Deck-P3.xml
│   └── Deck-P4.xml
└── settings.xml

$HOME/.local/share/Cemu/

Cemu/
├── graphicPacks
└── memorySearcher

$HOME/.cache/Cemu

Cemu/
└── shaderCache
    ├── driver
    ├── precompiled
    └── transferable

Emulation/roms/wiiu/mlc01

wiiu/mlc01/
├── sys
│   ├── sys
│   ├── title
│   └── usr
└── usr
    ├── boss
    ├── save
    └── title

The Dangers of Proton

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IMPORTANT:

There is outdated info on the internet that indicates you need to set Proton on Cemu or on games added for this console by Steam ROM Manager in Steam. Turning on Proton is not necessary. DO NOT set Proton Compatibity on Cemu or Cemu games added to Steam. Do NOT set STEAM_COMPAT_MOUNTS in parameters.

Turning on Proton is not necessary because this is the native linux version of Cemu.

Do not open the Compatibility screen in Game Mode. Do not touch any of the settings on the Compatibility screen in Game Mode.

proton


How to Update Cemu

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How to Update Cemu

  • Through the Update your Emulators & Tools section on the Manage Emulators page in the EmuDeck application
  • Manual file replacement of Cemu.AppImage

How to Launch Cemu in Desktop Mode

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How to Launch Cemu in Desktop Mode

  • Launch Cemu AppImage from the Applications Launcher (Steam Deck icon in the bottom left of the taskbar)
  • Launch the script from Emulation/tools/launchers, cemu.sh
  • Launch the emulator from Steam after adding it via the Emulators parser in Steam ROM Manager

Cemu Native File Formats

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  • Loadiine (rpx)
    • Three folders (code, content, meta)
    • Folders should be inside a folder with the name of the game. This game folder is placed in Emulation/roms/wiiu/roms (note the second roms)
    • Visual Reference:
    • Decrypted, does not require keys.txt
  • WUA
    • Decrypted, does not require keys.txt
  • WUX
    • Encrypted, requires keys.txt in /home/deck/.local/share/Cemu/
  • WUD
    • Encrypted, requires keys.txt in /home/deck/.local/share/Cemu/
  • NUS
    • A folder with .h3 and .app files
    • Encrypted, can be decrypted into a Loadiine (rpx) folder. Decryption methods cannot be discussed here or on the EmuDeck discord.
    • The NUS format cannot be used through ES-DE, Steam ROM Manager, or Pegasus.

IMPORTANT:

  • Some of these formats may require keys. We cannot help you get these. Place your keys.txt in: /home/deck/.local/share/Cemu/
    • keys.txt needs to contain keys (one key per game) that must be dumped from a Wii U console. Any other method is piracy and cannot be discussed here or on the EmuDeck discord.
  • Once you put ROMs in place, you must refresh the list of games by right clicking in the Cemu UI and clicking Refresh Games List.
    • Your game will not show up in Cemu until you refresh.
  • Refer to How to Manage DLC and Updates, for DLC and Updates specifically

How to Convert to WUA

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The WUA format is a compressed version of the Loadiine format. It contains your base game, DLC, and updates all in one single file. The WUA format is a lot less fuss than the other formats, requires no keys, and is the most friendly format for EmulationStation-DE.

Here's how to convert to WUA:

Note:

  • Encrypted ROMs (WUX, WUD, NUS) cannot be converted to WUA.

Tutorial

  1. Open Cemu
  2. Click Tools, Title Manager
  3. Either search for your ROM or find it in the list
  4. Select the ROM with the word base in the Type column
  5. Verify the pop-up prompt has your base game, your update, and your DLC files
    1. You can either place these update and DLC files in Emulation/roms/wiiu/roms temporarily or install them: How to Manage DLC and Updates
  6. Wait, it may take a while
  7. Right click in Cemu, and click Refresh Game List to refresh your file path in Cemu to the newly created WUA file

How to Manage DLC and Updates

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Preface

DLC and Updates must be installed using the title manager. DLC and Updates are saved to mlc01, in the Emulation/roms/wiiu folder.

IMPORTANT: Do not keep your DLC and update files in Emulation/roms/wiiu/roms. After installing these, you may either delete or move the files to a backup location. Keeping DLC and update files in this directory will create duplicates in Steam ROM Manager.


How to Install DLC and Updates

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Preface

DLC and Updates must be installed using the title manager. DLC and UPdates are saved to mlc01, in the Emulation/roms/wiiu folder.

IMPORTANT: Do not keep your DLC and update files in Emulation/roms/wiiu/roms. After installing them, you may either delete them or move them to a backup location. Keeping DLC and update files in this directory will create duplicates in Steam ROM Manager.


How to Install DLC and Updates

  1. Launch Cemu on Desktop Mode
  2. Click File in the top left, click Install game title, update, or DLC...
    • Visual Reference:
  3. Navigate to to your Update or DLC files
    • If your files are on your SD Card, click Other Locations, Computer, run, media, and navigate to your SD Card
    • Example SD Card Path: /run/media/mmcblk0p1
  4. Select the Update or DLC and click Open
    • Visual Reference:
  5. Wait a moment, and your DLC or update will be successfully installed. Repeat for each DLC or update

Cemu Native Hotkeys

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Cemu comes with a Steam Input profile for Hotkeys. When playing Cemu ROM shortcuts through Steam, the EmuDeck - Controller Hotkeys profile will automatically be applied so you may use the below hotkeys. For more info, see Emulator Button Combinations Profile.

When using a frontend (ES-DE, Pegasus, or the emulator itself), the EmuDeck - Frontend Controller Hotkeys will automatically be applied. Hold Start for a few seconds to switch to the action set required to use the below hotkeys. For more info, see Emulator Frontends Button Combinations Profile.

Hotkey Cemu
Toggle Full Screen Select + R3
Toggle Screens L4 or R4 or Start + DPad Left or Select + Y
Swap Screens L5 or R5 or Start + DPad Down or Select + X
Stop Emulation Select + Start or hold L5 or hold R5
Blow Mic R3

Note


Common Issues

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Game Compatibility

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This section collects which games currently do not work on the native version of Cemu. These games likely work on the proton version of Cemu.

  • Tekken Tag Tournament 2
    • Date added to this page: May 6th, 2023

Cemu Version Issues

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This section collects a version history of Cemu and seeks to detail compatibility and general issues with the emulator.

  • Cemu Version 2.0.36
    • No Known Issues
    • Date added to this page: May 6th, 2023

Cemu Tips and Tricks

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How to Configure Gyro

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Gyro for Cemu requires SteamDeckGyroDSU. SteamDeckGyroDSU can be installed via EmuDeck, or it can be installed manually.

Gyro only works with the Wii U Gamepad (enabled by default). If you changed your controller layout to the Pro Controller, gyro will not work.

Read How to Use the Wii U Pro Controller Configuration to learn how to apply the Pro Controller layout on a per game basis.

Visit SteamDeckGyroDSU to learn how to install and utilize SteamDeckGyroDSU.


How to Configure Gyro With External Controllers

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Some external controllers, including the Sony DualSense and the Nintendo Switch Pro Controller feature gyro controls. Cemu allows you to use this gyro with a little bit of set up.

Here's How

Desktop Mode

  1. In Desktop Mode, exit out of Steam
    • Your controls will switch to Lizard Mode. Use L2 to right click, R2 to left click, and the Right Trackpad to move the mouse
  2. Click the bluetooth icon in the bottom right of your taskbar and connect your controller
  3. Click the Steam icon in the bottom left of the taskbar and open Cemu AppImage
  4. At the top of the Cemu GUI, click Options, click Input settings
  5. Under the Controller 1 tab, press the - button to the right of the Controller drop-down twice
  6. The drop-down box will be empty and your controls will no longer be mapped, this is expected behavior
  7. Under the Controller 1 tab, press the + button to the right of the Controller drop-down
  8. Select SDLController for the API drop-down and select your controller under the Controller drop-down
  9. Click the Add button and Cemu will auto-map your controls
  10. Click the Settings button under the drop-down with your controller name
  11. Check the box to the left of Use motion
  12. Click the OK button
  13. Give the profile a unique name under the Profile drop-down box at the top and click Save
  14. Your controller is now configured with gyro, proceed to the Game Mode section to start using your controller in Game Mode

Game Mode

  1. In Game Mode, connect your controller
  2. Select your Wii U game
  3. On the Play screen, select the Controller icon to the right of the screen
  4. Select your controller tab at the top
  5. Click the Gear icon to the right, and click Disable Steam Input
    • You may need to restart first for this setting to properly apply
  6. Your controller's gyro will now work for this selected game, repeat as needed for your other games

Post-Configuration

This section went over creating a new Player 1 profile for your external controller.

To switch between your new controller profile and the Steam Deck controller profile, open Cemu and open the input settings, select your preferred option in the Profile drop-down menu and click Load.

To switch back to the Steam Deck controls, select the Deck-Gamepad-Gyro profile:

(Optional) To restore Steam Input:

  1. Select your Nintendo Wii U game
  2. On the Play screen, select the Controller icon to the right of the screen
  3. Select your controller tab at the top
  4. Click the Gear icon to the right, and click Enable Steam Input
    • You may need to restart first for this setting to properly apply
  5. The controls will be reverted to Steam Input and the Steam Deck controls will be restored

How to Optimize Performance (Power Tools)

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Visit Power Tools to learn how to optimize performance using Power Tools.


How to Configure Multiplayer

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  1. Open Cemu
  2. It's recommended you enable multiplayer on a per-game basis. Turning on additional controllers can disable single player controls in a handful of games
  3. Right click a game, click Edit Game Profile
  4. Click Controller
  5. To the right of each Controller (Controller 2 through Controller 4), select the respective Deck # profile (Deck 2 for player 2 and so on)
  6. (Optional) You may need to re-arrange the controller order in Game Mode for your controllers to function as expected. See How to Re-Arrange the Controller Order for more information


How to Use the Wii U Pro Controller Configuration

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In some some games, the initial screen will prompt for a controller configuration: Wii U Gamepad or Wii U Pro Controller. Some games will automatically switch to the Wii U Pro Controller configuration if you choose it.

For example:

If you prefer to use the Wii U Pro Controller layout, you need to change the controller profile in Cemu. Make sure to change controller profiles on a per-game basis so it is persistent on EmuDeck updates.

Tutorial

  1. Right click the game, click Edit game profile
  2. Click the Controller tab
  3. Change the profile to Deck-P1
  4. When you launch a game, one of the following two things will happen:
    • Some games will prompt you to choose a controller layout, select the Wii U Pro Controller
    • Some games will automatically switch to the Wii U Pro Controller configuration

How to Configure Cemu Native to Work With EmulationStation-DE

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In order to use Cemu Native through EmulationStation-DE, you will have to enable it in the settings menu.

Here's How

  1. Open EmulationStation-DE
  2. Press Start
  3. Press Other Settings
  4. Press Alternative Emulators
  5. On Wiiu, select Cemu [Native]

How to Optimize Breath of the Wild

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IMPORTANT: You need Version 208 of Breath of the Wild to use FPS++. Read How to Manage DLC and Updates to learn how to install game updates for Cemu.

How to Configure Cemu

  1. In Desktop Mode, open Cemu AppImage
  2. Right click Breath of the Wild, click Edit graphic packs
  3. Click Download latest community graphic packs
  4. Click the to the left of Mods
  5. Check the box to the left of FPS++
  6. Change the mode to Advanced Settings
  7. Change the Framerate Limit to 40FPS
  8. Close out of Cemu

How to Configure Game Mode

  1. In Game Mode, open Breath of the Wild
  2. Click the ... (the QAM) button
  3. Click the battery icon
  4. Click Advanced View
  5. Enable Use per-game profile
  6. Set the refresh rate to 40
  7. Read Power Tools to learn how to optimize performance using Power Tools. to learn how to use the battery menu and Power Tools to further increase performance for Breath of the Wild

After doing the steps in the above two sections, Breath of the Wild will run at a stable 40 FPS with temporary occasional hiccups in new areas while it compiles shaders.


How to Roll Back Cemu to an Older Version

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Preface

Your ROMs launch using a script created by EmuDeck, cemu.sh in Emulation/tools/launchers.

The script launches the corresponding emulator in /home/deck/Applications and specifically looks for two traits:

  • The most recently downloaded version of the emulator in /home/deck/Applications, based on the file/release date.
  • The emulator name at the beginning of the file. Anything after the emulator name is ignored.
    • For example, if the latest version of the emulator is 1351 and you would like to downgrade to 1349. When you download version 1349, you could rename it to EMULATORNAME-1349.AppImage, and EmuDeck's script will ignore the -1349 in the file name, allowing you to record which versions of the emulator you are using through the file name.

How to Roll Back Cemu

  1. Download the version of the emulator you would like to use from Cemu's GitHub: https://github.com/cemu-project/Cemu/releases
  2. Move the downloaded emulator from Step 1 to /home/deck/Applications
  3. (Optional) Rename or delete the original emulator file
  4. Right click the newly downloaded emulator, click Properties, click Permissions, check Is executable
  5. Your games will now launch using the version of the emulator you downloaded

How to Configure Language Settings

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UI

  1. In Desktop Mode, open Cemu
  2. Click Options at the top
  3. Under Interface, click the Language drop-down menu and select your preferred language
  4. Restart Cemu

In-Game

  1. In Desktop Mode, open Cemu
  2. Click Options at the to
  3. Click Console language and select your preferred language

How to Configure Online Multiplayer Via Pretendo

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You need a physical Wii U to play online multiplayer via Pretendo. You cannot play online multiplayer without a physical Wii U.

For instructions on how to dump the online files from a Wii U, see https://cemu.cfw.guide/using-dumpling.html#copying-online-files-to-cemu.

For more information on Pretendo, see https://pretendo.network/.

For Pretendo's installation instructions, see https://pretendo.network/docs/install/cemu.

  1. From your Wii U, you will need to dump two files: otp.bin and seeprom.bin
  2. On the Steam Deck, place these two files directly in the $HOME/.local/share/Cemu folder
    • Folders with a . (.var, .local, .config, etc.) at the beginning are hidden by default. In Dolphin (file manager), click the hamburger menu in the top right, click Show Hidden Files to see these folders
  3. In Desktop Mode, open Cemu, click Options, General Settings, click Account, select your PNID in the Active Account drop-down menu and select Pretendo under Network Service
  4. Pretendo is now configured for Cemu