Retropie, Buster and RPI4 nightmare!

Heads up - the Picade is absolutely great - as is the RPi 4. It seems that they dont get on too well with Retropie…

Really pulling my hair out - have a open day at school - wanted to show retropie on Piarcade along with some games my students have made - so brought one - only to find that Retropie doesn’t work on RPI4.
“There are workarounds” I hear you cry such as - with heaps of updated posts and “New” approaches on the way there. I don’t even know if this is the latest thinking or is reliant on some version of something somewhere. Nothing works so far - errors - “Cant install” and so forth.
To be fair I am trying to make retropie work on top of Buster - so I can demo a few other things as well and not be tied solely to retropie.
So im going to try - and use a huge image that purports to work.
Will probably end up using Buster - with the Pimoroni Picade hat installed and manually set up playing the games that my students have put together.
My point is Pimoroni - could you write an article explaining the situation and any possible workarounds. At the moment - the investment in the arcade has been a bad one - based on poor information. Don’t get me wrong -its a fantastic piece of kit - I cant wait to get it up and running. Seems like I’m going to have to wait until Retropie release a Buster RPi4 compatible version though.
Wish I had known and not blown the weekend going nowhere…

I don’t think things went quit to plan for the Pi foundation with regards to the Pi 4 release. Debian Buster wasn’t officially released when the Pi 4 was released. I think a lot of retailers were caught off guard and a lot are still playing catch up. The Pi foundation is still working on Buster, a new release was just put up for download the other day. 2019-09-26.
I “think” a lot of retailers had the hardware but not (Raspbain) the software. Only Buster will boot on a Pi 4B. I’m not making excuses for anybody, just posting what I’ve observed since release day.
And it appears there are just enough things done different in Buster that stuff like Retropie gets broken and or won’t work without some modification.

One thing you could do is swap in a Pi 3B+ for the Pi 4, as an interim fix. As far as I know the Hat will work with a 3B+. And you could use Stretch instead of Buster.

My Pi4 is still in the box and my Picade is running on a Pi3b+ for now until Retropie is available/stable on the Pi4 :)

Lol - thanks - that’s probably the best approach. I may dig out an old Pi3 and swap them over. Feel like I have been working on this project for days and days!

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OK - well I did some more reading having discovered I don’t have a spare RPi3b - only RPi1s and came across a different version of the unofficial Retropie release here

So I made a boot SD with Etcher and put it in the Pi4 - it booted! Hooray - but no screen. Thats to say the screen came on to say the usual HDMI then went off again - with “No Signal”. In the meantime the green “doing stuff” light was busily flashing away.

I think this means that it is now booting - but can not talk to the screen. I think I recall reading about this - so ill get back with any developments.

Have a look at this

hdmi_force_hotplug=1 is “I think” what you need to add. You can edit the config.txt file on a Windows PC. Its on the visible fat Boot partition. Ignore the needs to be formatted prompt though. Close that box by clicking the X in the upper right corner.

I actually set the config to HDMI safe mode - this worked and I now have retropie!! :-)
Ill work out precise settings later. Now just figuring how to map the buttons to be the most effective.
Thanks for your help!

Ah, good to hear you got it working. I was going to go poke around on the Pi forum to what actually had to be set but got side tracked by another thread here.
I think its an issue with the monitor EDID not being read correctly or something?
Anyway, have fun. =)