The best NES emulators for Android

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Steven L. Ken
@stevenlken
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android.com play.google.com

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The Nintendo Entertainment System, stylized NES, is one of the most iconic game consoles of the 1990s. There were plenty of popular games with a simple controller and lots of family content. The system is obviously no longer active, but many remember the great games that were made there. NES emulation is relatively stable, and most of the options on this list are extremely solid. Most of them work extremely well, have high game compatibility, customizable controls, and very few bugs. However, we will let you choose which one is best for you. Here are the best NES emulators for Android.



The 5 best NES emulators on Android

EmuBox

EmuBox is one of the newer NES emulators on the list. It is also an all-in-one concept. It includes emulators for Nintendo DS, PlayStation, SNES, GBA and GBC as well as SNES. EmuBox supports basic features such as save and load states, along with some extras such as fast forward, hardware controller support, and various performance settings. It is easy to use and is one of the few emulators that supports material design. You have to bring your own ROMs to the party, but it's a great emulator with very few issues.

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John Ness

John NESS is a dual emulator for SNES and NES consoles. The developer is very talented and has apps on other top lists as well. It covers all the basics, including cheats, save and load states, hardware controller support, customizable software controllers, turbo buttons, and even idle support. You also have the option to sync Dropbox with the John DataSync plugin app if you want. This is a complete emulator without any real issues. Most of the negative reviews are from people who bought previous John emulators and don't like buying this one again. In terms of pure functionality, this one is a slam dunk.



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Nostalgia.NES

Nostalgia.NES is another solid option in the NES emulator space. It uses the famous FCEUX emulator for other platforms. This gives him a good pedigree. Some of the features include the usual things like save and load states, hardware controller support, turbo buttons, and even a WiFi controller mode. You also get support for all available regions, Zapper emulation, cheat codes, and unique rewind functionality in case you messed something up. It's one of the more expensive versions on the list for the premium version, but it has some unique features to help you save that price.

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Retro8

Retro8 is one of the newer NES emulators on the list. It comes from the same developers of SuperRetro16, one of the best SNES emulators. This one looks great on paper. It features thousands of cheat codes, Bluetooth controller support, in-game guide integration, a turbo mode, and Zapper gun support. There is also cloud synchronization for various devices. The game guide integration is new to us, we have never seen this feature before. However, this is still fairly new and there are some bugs, especially with wireless controllers and some ROMs. We know for sure that the situation will improve over the next year, so keep an eye on it.


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RetroArch

RetroArch is arguably the most powerful multi-console emulator on Google Play. It can emulate a ton of devices and of course that includes the NES. This one has a bit of a learning curve, though. You must use the official site and download cores. These cores open emulation for a specific console. So it doesn't run any games on game exit and requires additional configuration before it can. The application is also completely free and open source, and you can also have many other kernels for other consoles. It's a solid option if you don't mind the extra work.


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If we missed any of the best NES emulators for Android, tell us about them in the comments.


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