Top Gaming Emulators [2020 Edition]


Before looking at the top gaming emulators for the coming year, let us first know what emulators are all about and how the technology has evolved through time. These are a kind of computer software that allows a computer system to simulate a different environment or operating system and acts as a host. This allows one to run an application on the computer that is designed to run in a foreign system. Many would have tried to download console emulators, simply to know how such software run on computers as the gaming consoles work.

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Different Kinds of Emulator Software

These come in two kinds, mainly, of the low and the high level. The difference lies in knowing what kind of emulation you wish to achieve.

Emulation of the Low-Level Kind

This is when you wish to make your PC act as a console for video games. The technology is also called LLE. It emulates or simulates the behaviour of certain hardware. Host computer creates an environment on which the application can run so that it can be processed as close as possible, as emulated hardware would. In order to achieve accurate emulation, the components are usually simulated and their signals as well. If a system is complex, one could add on more chips or complicated ones, but then LLE becomes difficult. There are add-on cards that one can install in their computers to emulate hardware that runs as PlayStation 2 or 3.

Emulation of the High Level

In such cases, PC has software hooks that can have the software run on the hardware. The approach is different when it comes to high-level emulation. Here functions of hardware are simulated. For instance, in the nineties hardware abstraction spread to several computer systems.

High-level emulation uses hardware abstraction in a way that it hides intricate details of how the hardware is controlled. Developer sets in a number of actions and the details are executed in an automatic manner. An example is how interfaces of storage drive work.

At the time, video games were invented, it was often limited to TV video units and console boxes. However, since Nintendo was released in 1983, the frenzy around such entertainment increased, and soon PlayStation came about. Hence, the scene was changed, and Microsoft then launched Xbox in the year 2001. With such inventions, new eras in entertainment came about and soon the demand was felt to see such software played on computers. Xbox was soon integrated with Windows operating systems. The default feature was launched for the latest operating systems by Microsoft.

Best GBA Emulators for Android

Android is deemed to be a mobile operating system that is powerful, advanced and versatile. The open-source and customisation possibilities, as well as free availability of the same, makes it most versatile. It also makes it ideal for gaming on smartphones that are palm-sized. One can now play several mobile apps on Android devices by making use of popular gaming emulators.


This is an Android emulator which is all-powerful and an all in one platform. It can support games of a wide range that include Nintendo 64, PlayStation 1, and GameBoy Classic, GameBoy Advance, GameBoy Colour and so forth. One can simply download the emulator software using the QR code. It is free software that even has joystick support. It can support up to 4 players, and there are features such as “auto-save” and “restore game” functions.


This is a software that is built for fast titles. It is available for Android devices and can run most of the old ROM games. It is a software that is all in one, and there is a wide range of different games supported by this software. This software is available for free and is good for playing retro games.

My Boy!

This is an emulator that is the best paid for the application. It has high ratings in play store and is one of the most downloaded versions for Android. It is known to run Game Boy Advance category titles, and the emulator works on different Android smartphones, both on the low end as well as with high-end configurations. It is known for being the fastest platform and offers smooth performance on different devices. The features that it offers are normal rendering and OpenGL. A customer can save games at any stage and start later. Controllers can be added externally as well, and saved titles can be synced on Google Drive.

Zafiro Simulator

The Glass edition is a free GBA emulator, and it is considered the ultimate for Android. The ratings are high for this edition as one can find on Play Store. Being a product of Sapphire Studio developer, it guarantees about 60 fps even on old hardware configurations. The emulator works fastest on any device and players can enjoy slow motion as well as fast forward gaming. The software also provides save and restore options.


This is another emulator that comes with advanced features and is a paid app. With high star ratings, it is a software that one can opt for since it promises good performance across a variety of Android-based devices. It has been tested on different Nexus, Sony and Samsung devices and hence, players are guaranteed good output with this emulator software. It supports cheat codes as well.

Gaming Emulators for iPhones

Those who are looking for such software on iPhones in 2020 can find several options. Once a user has installed Cydia on their iOS device, they would be ready to install game emulators easily on their smartphones or tablets. There are some emulator apps that are available at the app store, but often the choice is limited. Today there are several emulator apps released outside Cydia as well. Hence, players can play their favourite games that they play on consoles on their mobile devices as well.

Here is a lowdown on the top game emulator apps for iOS devices:

Delta Em

This is one of the newest applications. It has been released recently, and one of the advantages that it offers is that there is no need for Cydia to run this application. If one misses playing GameBoy or Nintendo, then these games will work seamlessly on this platform. It offers support for SNES and N64 titles. The choice is vast, and one can choose from old, arcade-style titles to the latest or blockbuster titles as well. Delta emulator is a product of Riley Testut, and it is designed to work on iOS devices built with iOS 10 version. It replaces the GBA4iOS and is suitable for the latest versions of iOS. The software is free for download and works easily.


This is another platform that is a new addition and is sure to gain popularity in the coming year. The support it offers is across a wide range of console software such as Gameboy, PPSSPP, Gameboy Colour, Gameboy Advance, PS1, Nintendo and others. The range of support for games is large as well. It can play classic titles like Donkey King and Tetris as easily as the latest released titles such as Call of Duty, GTA and others. The software is designed to work on different iOS devices, especially on those that have more memory than 2 GB RAM. It also supports online gaming for multiplayer. There is LAN support provided for certain games without any Wi-Fi. The software can work through cloud hosting and offers one-click play. There is no requirement for separate emulators for different consoles. One can simply click and play any game. There are in-app customisations available as well.


This is yet another app that one can try, especially for those who are fans of Nintendo software as well as Gameboy. The app is known to work on different devices, for older versions up to iOS 9, 10 and higher. If one is running this kind of software on devices with more memory than 2 GB RAM, then it would work smoothly. It is possible to run titles of the retro kind, latest releases, support multiplayer and online gaming, cloud hosting for download and storage. There is one-click support available as well, and it allows users to customise the controls and maps.


This is an application suitable for those who look for SNES titles. MeSMU was originally known as SIOS. It was developed as a unit for Super Nintendo by Lucas Mendes Menge. This app is known to be fast and best performing among similar apps. There is support provided for gaming full screen, running files of configuration SMC ROM and ZIP supports auto-save and other controllers with simple support through plug and play. It is designed to work on iOS devices until 13 version and is free for download and use.

How to Make a Choice?

With several choices available in this category of software, a player needs to decide based on certain considerations. For instance, one needs to think about the memory space requirement that an app would take of this category. Also, you can choose between free and paid versions and check their limitations and advantages on offer. Finally, the kind of titles you wish to run or the console you wish to mirror on your mobile platform will also make a difference. You can look up reviews of the different software available for the varied platforms and choose the one that seems most suitable as per your preferences.




Adam is the owner of BC-GB, find him on Twitter. BC-GB is the place to get CSGO tips, news and blog.

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