How to Emulate OLD Pokemon Games on Your Android Phone
Playing Pokemon games on Android has never been easier. This game took the world by storm when it debuted back in the late 90s, instilling a feeling of nostalgia among fans and attracting new players.
Some Android devices have Pokemon games, but many mobile games lack the originals’ feel.
There’s no need to despair if you’re missing some old Pokemon games. Read on and find easy ways to play the games on your Android device today.
Which Pokemon Games Are Supported on Android?
While there are different Pokemon emulators, you can emulate everything from the originals to Nintendo DS titles on Android. Here’s the breakdown:
- Game Boy (GB): Yellow, Blue, and Red
- Game Boy Color (GBC): Crystal, Silver, Gold
- Game Boy Advance (GBA): Sapphire, Ruby, Emerald; LeafGreen and FireRed
- Nintendo DS (NDS): Pearl, Diamond, and Platinum; SoulSilver and HeartGold; Black and White; Black and White 2.
Note that each system requires a separate emulator. We highlighted the main series games, but you can also emulate other titles, such as Pokemon Pinball.
Besides, it’s more difficult to emulate a newer console. Sure, 3DS will operate on Android, but it’s somehow unstable. Other games that you can emulate on Android include Sun and Moon, Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire, Pokemon X and Y. However, this article focuses on the classics only.
Play Pokémon Games on Android
Once you test your preferred game, find the following tools to get Pokemon on Android.
The first thing you need is an emulator for the system that the game was originally on. An emulator is a software that differently imitates a game system on NDS, GBA, and GB games. The emulators don’t necessarily have to be backward-compatible, like the consoles.
In addition, the emulators you find should support fast-forwarding, and custom save states, both of which come in handy for Pokemon games. Notably, the custom save states helps you open multiple files at once. It also lets you save even in crucial instances, such as during a battle.
Similarly, the fast-forwarding feature helps you address issues such as characters talking too slowly or skipping a directive.
The second tool that you need to run Pokemon on Android is the game’s ROM. This is a file with all the game’s data. For instance, you need a Pokemon HeartGold ROM to play the Pokemon HeartGold game.
But what emulators should you use, and how do you find ROMs? Read on.
Best Emulator for Pokémon
Your choice of emulator depends on the console you look to emulate. Note that the PlayStore is flocked with spam emulators that are copies of other emulators with distracting ads that deny you the good Pokemon Android experience.
We highlight each console separately, and you should probably avoid any that is not highlighted below.
Game Boy and Game Boy Color
You can emulate the Game Boy and Game Boy Color on My OldBoy. The emulator comes in both the free and paid version, with the former working wonders for casual use. It also allows customizing the controls, entering cheat codes, fast-forwarding up to 2X speed, and regular in-game saves.
The paid version goes for about $4, allowing you a fast-forward beyond 2x, save at any time, and link up to trade Pokemon with other users. So, if you plan to play several games, the paid version is the best option.
Nonetheless, expect the best experience on both the free and paid version since the systems have no ads during play.
Game Boy Advance
The GBA also has “My Boy” as the stand-out emulator. My Boy is identical to GB/GBC’s “My OldBoy” as they come from the same developer but play different games.
Notably, the free version has become obsolete, but the paid version allows you to fast-forward up to 16x speed, save at any time, and link up to battle or trade with friends.
If you still want to play GBA Pokemon without spending a dime, use John GBAC’s free alternative to emulate GBA and GBC games.
Nintendo has the “nds4droid” free option and DraStic, the paid option. The nds4droid emulator may not be that impressive, but it functions well on most devices. The free version lets you put your D-pad and buttons wherever you want. Like other emulators, nds4droid supports cheat codes and custom save states, but you can only operate at normal speeds.
If you’re willing to spend some bucks, you should try out DraStic. This option supports fast-forwarding and has noticeably better performance. You can also use it to play Pokemon games on smartphones, Android TV, or tablets.
How To Get Old Pokémon Game ROMs
You may have come across readily available Old Pokémon Game ROMs across the internet, but know that acquiring ROMs for games you don’t own is piracy. Companies such as Nintendo also have their own guidelines on using ROMs, one of which is to discourage and warn against piracy.
However, we have a few tips to help decide the best ROMs for you.
The first thing to consider is the version of your region. Most ROMs have their names followed by some letters such as (E), (U), (J), or some other letter. E represents Europe, U for the United States, and J for Japan.
Every emulator has a designated region, and you must find the one matching your location. You don’t want to download a Japanese game version. Also, check the downloading file. Most ROMs come in RAR or ZIP files that don’t require unzipping.
Beware of alleged ROM files presented in EXE or APK files as they could be malware in waiting.
Moreover, the files’ size is relative to the console’s age. For example, Pokemon Black measures 110MB, while Pokemon Red is around 400KB.
Play Your Favorite Pokémon Game
Getting Pokemon games for your Android device is that easy. You can check out that generation you missed or start reliving your favorites. Take it a top-notch higher by opening the Pokemon challenge in one of the games.