Android PS2 Emulator Dev Quits After Receiving "Death Threats"

Published: January 5, 2023 11:03 AM /


A shot of the Android PS2 emulator AetherSX2 running a public domain game or tech demo

It's a dark day for the Android emulation community, as one of the leading PS2 emulators on the platform has decided to call it quits. The dev behind AetherSX2 says he's received "complaints, demands, and now death threats", and that developing the project isn't fun for him anymore.

If you head to the official AetherSX2 website, you'll see a short message from the developer, whose username is Tahlreth. He says he's "done" with the project; it was "always meant to be a fun hobby...not profit-driven", but since it hasn't become fun anymore, it's time to walk away, he says.

Tahlreth also says that "neverending impersonating" has led him to this point; he says "multiple people" are claiming to represent AetherSX2 online, but that none of them are "legit", so you should be careful and watch out for scammers if you're trying to get hold of him.

A shot of a Space Invaders-style game being played on the Android PS2 emulator AetherSX2
You can still play PS2 games on Android via AetherSX2, but active development has been postponed indefinitely.

A Reddit comment from Tahlreth from a couple of weeks ago sheds some more light on why he's decided to quit. A user on the EmulationOnAndroid subreddit posted a screenshot of a Discord message sent by Tahlreth, one in which he says that people "prodded and pushed" him too much and that he's "seriously considering just stopping for good".

In response to that post, Tahlreth commented that he receives thousands of emails regarding changes his fans think he should make to his emulator. He says that these emails are "nagging" for various features including 32-bit support, changes to certain games, or improvements for old or slow devices. He also points out that the Twitter account that shared his Discord message is itself "a scammer" and doesn't belong to him.

Whatever the reason might be, it sounds like Tahlreth is done with AetherSX2 development. On the emulator's official website, he says that older archived builds are still available for download, and that AetherSX2 will "continue to work for the foreseeable future". However, if you want regular updates, you're going to have to wait for another PS2 Android emulator to come along, it seems. In the meantime, hey, if you're thinking of sending an aggressive message or a death threat to a developer working on an app for free, maybe don't do that.