SSF is a Windows-based emulator of the Sega Saturn and Sega Titan Video (ST-V, an arcade board very similar to the Saturn). Despite the historical difficulty of emulating the Saturn's rather idiosyncratic and complex architecture, and the fact that SSF is developed by a sole developer (Shima), it has overtaken other Saturn emulators to the point of being able to run the majority of games with few to no issues. It is designed to run game CDs directly, so images must be mounted with a virtual drive program (e.g. Daemon Tools) in order to be played.
SSF currently has a very high level of compatibility, running more than 80% of known Sega Saturn games. A frequently updated compatibility list is available at segasaturn.org, and the SSF Tribute sites (see below) also offer lists.
|Operating system||Windows 2000, Windows XP, Windows XP 64-bit Edition|
|CPU||Any CPU supporting: FPU, MMX, SSE, SSE2, TSC (P4-class or higher)|
|RAM||256 MB or more|
|Graphics card||DirectX 9.0c capable, graphics card supporting Vertex Shader 3.0 and Pixel Shader 3.0|
|Sound||DirectX 9.0c compatible, able to play 44100 Hz stereo PCM|
|CD drive||Drive supporting MMC3 read command|
File: SSF_012_beta_R4.zip (1.19 MB) (info)
Current version: 0.12 alpha, revision 4''
The most recent version is usually the best to use, though a few games may work better with previous ones (see compatibility lists). A repository of previous versions (starting from version 0.06 alpha 4) is maintained on the official site. For convenience, those available at the time of writing have been bundled below.
The emulator has a certain amount of input lag, which can't be reduced to the levels of e.g. Yabause. This can be problematic for games that require fast reaction, such as shooting games. The author acknowledges these input lag issues but and gave reasons for these on the project homepage. He also offers some suggestions to reduce the problem, e.g. use a high spec PC, disable V-sync (emulator settings, causes tearing) and enable "VDP2 RAM write timing".