Gameboy games are a timeless classic. From final fantasy to the original Pokémon games, many people have fond memories of playing multiple games on the original Gameboy platform. With the platform now outdated and bulky, as well as the price of game cartridges on the rise, nostalgic gamers should look into installing a Gameboy emulator on their computer and/or mobile device. Below are several options to look into.
Visual Boy Advance is perhaps one of the top emulators for the windows platform. It is freeware, meaning all that one must do to install it is hit download. The releases are constantly being updated, and there is a small community built around the software. One can report bugs to the emulator’s owner for review.
Other emulators for Windows include BGB, Higan, TGB Dual, KiGB, zBoy, BasicBoy, and GnuBoy. All of these emulators are free as well, and use different Windows programming to achieve the same end result. They are worth looking into if one is having issues with Visual Boy Advance or other alternatives.
Nothing seems able to compare with OpenEmu for Mac. OpenEmu is an all in one emulator, capable of emulating not only the Gameboy, but also capable of emulating Sega Genesis and the Nintendo Entertainment System. The software is free and open-source, making this the best emulator for the Mac.
Other Mac alternatives include KiGB, Boycott Advance, and Visual Boy Advance. These are geared towards the Gameboy only, however, and lack the ability to emulate other systems. However, they are free and worth looking into.
For the IOS there are emulators one can install in the app store (or access online) without having to jailbreak their phone—Ben MIDI’s Gameboy (a browser based emulator for Safari) and GBA4IOS (a full app, now removed from the IOS but hopefully just temporarily). Both are available for free without a jail broken phone, and both are focused on emulating Gameboy games only. However, there are many other alternatives for other platforms.
Another browser based emulator is webNES. Just like Ben MIDI’s Gameboy, this emulator allows the user to play classic games in the Safari app. However, this is only a NES emulator.
The Android has many more options. Perhaps the best is My Boy!, a free GBA emulator app. My Oldboy is produced by the same company and is capable of emulating the older Gameboy color games. Both are free, but there are also paid versions available. However, the apps are cheap–$5 for My Boy and $4 for My Oldboy.
Other android alternatives include John GBC emulator at $3.50 and GameBoid (free for a short time). These are both capable emulators, the first for Gameboy color and the latter for Gameboy advanced.
Once one installs an emulator, he or she can begin playing included ROM games or search for others. Freeroms is perhaps the best place to start looking for Gameboy Roms. Additionally, multiple other sites and forums are dedicated to creating and/or distributing ROMS. Remember, the hunt is half the fun!