Do you miss the classic style of playing games? The times when we were used to having fun with handheld gaming devices? That feels like many years ago, right?
The evolution of technology has taken us far enough in this modern world, and yet, most of us still prefer the classic way of doing things. However, you can still access and play these games through the GBA Emulator. In this article, we discuss some of the best GBA Emulators for your computers, especially Windows 10.
What Is GBA Emulator?
Game Boy Advance, short for GBA, was one of the most popular handheld gaming consoles developed by Nintendo. This model had a 32-bit system with a better color display, larger screen, and strong & advanced hardware. It provided several options of games for the players, and they were able to enjoy it anywhere and anytime they wanted. Alas, GBA gaming consoles had stopped producing since 2010. People still want to experience these games even now. Luckily, there is a solution, i.e. GBA Emulator.
GBA Emulator is software that instantly allows you to play your most-treasured GBA games on your PC. The best thing about GBA Emulator is that it comes with even more features that were not present in the GBA consoles. Once that the software is installed, your computer will act as the gaming console itself, and you can play any of your classic games again.
How Does GBA Emulator Work?
There are especially two steps by which the GBA emulator will work properly on your computer. These steps are briefly explained as follows:
Download The Emulator
First of all, you need to download a GBA emulator on your computer. There are many kinds of emulators available, which I have listed further in this article. The website’s name is related to the particular emulator that you’re about to download. So, you can choose the emulator’s version, and make sure to check the compatibility of the software with your computer while downloading it. Once the download is complete, you need to install it into the computer, and then activate the software.
Download The ROMs
ROMs are simply the files that are used by emulators to run the GBA games. They are just like a software package of the game, which stores the game data on the computer. There are multiple websites to download ROMs for the GBA emulator.
In my suggestion, doperoms.com is the most preferable one. It is trustable and free of the virus as well (although doperoms.com shows notification of virus alert, it is just a hoax, so you can ignore it).
After you visit the website, choose the game you want to play. Make sure to check the ratings of the game to check its authenticity. Then, download the game as the ROM allows you to do so. Then, install it on your computer. Once it is done, select the emulator to activate the software and open the game. Now, you can enjoy your classic game on your computer.
Is It Safe & Legal To Download?
While downloading emulators for the device, people often ask if they are safe to download or not. Such questions usually arise based on the software’s legality, i.e. is it okay to have it or will there be consequences for this.
In fact, emulators are not illegal. As they are simply remade versions of the original consoles, one can safely have them for their devices.
But beware about the ROMs. Since you download the ROM from a website and simply use it, this process is deemed as “piracy”. Because the ROM files are probably licensed by the company, and downloading them would cause copyright infringement.
The only way to play it safe and legally is to own the physical copy of the game and the ROMs as well. Also, you should avoid distributing the ROMs to others, as those people won’t have legal copies of the game.
Best GBA Emulator For Windows 10
Here are some of the best GBA emulators for your PC with Windows 10:
mGBA is one of the best-recommended emulators on this list. mGBA is highly preferred because it is easy to set up and simple to use on your computer. It also supports a lot of GBA ROMs.
mGBA allows you to save the game wherever you want. It also allows you to enable ROM patches by overriding the game. Plus, this emulator is frequently updated, as it provides support for the games which are usually not supported by others.
mGBA application is very lightweight. It also enables to use of cheat codes while gaming. But, being a simple-to-use emulator, mGBA lacks some advanced features that are provided by other GBA emulators nowadays.
VisualBoy Advance (VBA-M)
VisualBoy Advance is the oldest GBA emulator on this list, and it is widely used by gamers around the world. In its early years, this emulator was very slow to operate and deal with. But, things have changed for VBA, as this issue is already fixed, and also, it gets regular updates with new advanced features.
VisualBoy Advance supports all kinds of GBA games, along with Game Boy and Game Boy Color as well. It works for all operating systems, whether the latest models or older ones. Along with this, VBA also enables joystick support, which will definitely let you have a real gaming experience.
VisualBoy Advance features the ability to save your game progress whenever you want. It allows you to take screenshots, and even record your game easily. Furthermore, VBA also supports remapping your keyboard buttons and lets you use cheat codes for your games.
No$GBA is short for No Cash GBA, as it is stated to be used for free. This is a powerful and vastly featured GBA emulator available for your computer. This emulator is very much stable, and it ensures your gaming satisfaction with great optimization.
No$GBA is capable of emulating both GBA and Nintendo DS games. While it may not support all Nintendo games efficiently, it still provides numerous options from both gaming consoles. Besides, this emulator is also a lightweight application for your computer.
No$GBA allows you to play multiplayer games, which is a distinct feature that other emulators have. It supports gaming controllers just like VBA and even lets you arrange your game in any way you want. The only thing people complain about No$GBA is the lack of progress in the Nintendo DS games for this emulator. But, the available games in this emulator will not disappoint you, as there are several finest you can play with.
BatGBA is one of the simplest GBA emulators available today. This emulator especially focuses on simplicity more than anything else. It provides reliable performance for players, as it can run almost every GBA game.
BatGBA is also a lightweight application, because of which it runs very smoothly on your computer. It supports both commercial and non-commercial games, along with all the GBA ROMs too.
The user interface of BatGBA is no longer under development, as it has already stopped since 2002. Therefore, you won’t be getting any updates and new advanced features for this emulator. For this reason, BatGBA is a simple-to-use and easy-to-setup emulator, which gives you a satisfactory result for gaming.
Higan is one of the best choices of the GBA emulator for Windows 10. It is easy to set up and is very much simplified on every part. The main reason for this emulator to suit your PC is that it offers enhanced color reproduction for your games.
Another best thing about Higan is that it not only allows you to play every GBA game, but it also supports games from multiple other consoles, such as Sega Master System, Mega Drive, Game Gear, and many more. Thus, this emulator can run any kind of hardware you can test it with.
Higan allows you to easily control the emulator in any way you want. However, the audio appears to be a bit laggy while playing games with this emulator. But, this issue is limited to a few games only.
Boycott Advance is the best GBA emulator option for macOS users. It is one of the most advanced emulators available for your computer. It is simple to use and its user interface is easy to handle.
Unlike other emulators listed here, Boycott Advance cannot emulate the classic Gameboy games. But, it supports a wide variety of commercial games. This emulator has a highly optimized emulation that enables your device to run at full speed while gaming.
Boycott Advance supports all GBA video features, such as scaling and rotation. It allows you to play with USB joysticks and gamepads. Furthermore, it allows full-screen mode and manages audio effects on your game.
RetroArch is the last one on this list of GBA emulators. This emulator has been overall ranked as good for an emulator. The installation process might be a bit complex, but there are detailed guidelines available on YouTube for this process. So, you’re good to go on this.
RetroArch also supports a wide range of operating systems and gaming consoles. You can download the key emulators only, which will allow you to enjoy your game consoles altogether in a single place.
RetroArch includes many options for gaming so that you can experience a smooth performance of the games through this emulator. It also supports keyboards and joysticks. However, these multiple options could irritate you as you explore all of them. Also, you might have issues with the emulator’s files being crashed in some cases.
So here is my list of some best GBA emulators for Windows 10. All of these emulators are available to download for free. However, note that the games you would download are still copyrighted by specific companies.
As I have mentioned earlier, downloading ROMs from online sources could lead you to copyright problems. But downloading the emulators is not illegal at all. So, no worries about this part.
At last, I have briefly explained all you need to know about the best GBA emulators in use these days. I hope this was helpful for you to choose the specific emulator for your computer. I’d suggest that you try them and decide the one that suits properly for your computer.