Nearly 8 years after the console launched, we now have a working emulator.
Spine is now the first, and currently the only, PlayStation 4 emulator to successfully boot into commercial games. The emulator first popped up all the way back in mid-2019, where a YouTube video showcased Megaman Legacy Collection and Stardew Valley booth booting into the game. Other emulators do exist, but none of them getting this far yet. Orbital is currently not ready for public release, and GPCS4 can’t run games at the time of writing.
There are a few differences though between those projects and Spine. Currently, Spine is closed source, as Zecoxao, the dev, has stated they want to avoid “diluting” the emulator’s development. Another thing is that, at least for now, the emulator is Linux only, which adds onto the list of things Linux users can use to brag about using Linux. Nowadays there’s many flavors of Linux to choose from, many of which being fairly easy to use, but installing a whole operating system just to get access to an emulator is probably not going to happen for most people
I should also note that another emulator “exists”, but is entirely a scam. PCSX4 was announced also back in 2019, but has since been shown to be fake. Do not download it.
Spine can currently run over 300 PS4 games, but don’t get too excited just yet as that list is pretty much entirely consistent of indie games. Don’t expect to be running any AAA titles, at least not yet. It’s still an impressive feat nonetheless, and is a great step forward for the emulation community.