I won’t lecture you on the history of the Nintendo DS or attempt to justify your sudden compulsion to play the Nintendo DS. I’ll get right to it because I understand your motivation for being here. For your convenience, we’ve compiled a list of some of the top Nintendo DS emulators for PC and Android.
You’re playing Pokemon DS, a series of video games for the Nintendo DS that are only available here. I appreciate having a Nintendo DS emulator for the PC because of Pokemon. Other Nintendo games like Mario, The Legend of Zelda, Metroid Prime Hunters, etc., might be something you wish to play. However, the finest Nintendo DS emulators for PC and Android are listed below, so you can play Pokemon games.
Best Nintendo DS Emulators (2022)
|1||DeSmuMe||Windows and Mac|
|2||MelonDS||Windows and Linux|
|4||RetroArch||All platforms including Android|
|7||Citra||Windows, Mac, Linux, and Android|
Best Nintendo DS Emulators for your PC
The pronunciation is much worse than the name, which may be a little strange. But one of the greatest DS emulators for PCs is DeSmuMe. It works with both Windows and Mac.
While playing Nintendo DS games on maximum graphics on both platforms, I experienced frame dips in my MacBook Air (2017 model). Performance will ultimately be influenced by how your PC is set up.
On the plus side, there are numerous customization options for graphics and emulator settings. Other helpful features include a cheat code organiser and support for USB controllers. The NDS emulator also provides a save slot feature that lets you pick up where you left off in a game.
Although DeSmuMe is well-liked among Nintendo DS enthusiasts, the open-source project has few issues. For example, developers hardly ever work on the project, and the most recent stable update was released in 2015. Other than that, you may still play a lot of Pokemon games even though the emulator does not support them. There is no WiFi emulation either.
Availability macOS and Windows
Why use DeSmuMe?
- Graphics customization
- High Compatibility
MelonDS often makes the list of top Nintendo DS emulators for the PC. This emulator and the popular NDS emulator DeSmuMe have frequently been contrasted.
This PC emulator, unlike DeSmuMe, is deficient in many emulation and graphic features, but it excels in others, such as the extremely faithful representation of DS games.
The Nintendo DS emulator now supports extreme resolutions even on devices with average performance, and Melon can emulate quickly thanks to a new JIT recompiler. MelonDS is the ideal choice if you want to play Pokemon games on your computer. The best DS emulator for Windows is this one.
The ability to play multiplayer games locally over Wi-Fi is another standout feature of MelonDS. Even though the function is experimental and only works with a select few titles, it is quite satisfying to witness it in action. In addition, there are a few screen layout settings, a save slot option, and the usual joystick functionality found in other PC NDS emulators.
Availability Linux and Windows
Why use MelonDS?
- High performance at increased resolutions
- High accuracy
Despite having its roots in Gameboy Advance emulators, NO$GBA is still regarded as one of the top Nintendo DS emulators for Windows. First and foremost, this DS emulator has the benefit of supporting games for the GBA, Nintendo DS, and Nintendo DS Lite (DSi).
Only a few graphic options are available with the DS emulator. But with a little settings adjustments, one can get decent game graphics that are on par with DeSmuME. The compromise does, however, have a bright side. First off, even on slow PCs, the Nintendo DS emulator runs quickly. In comparison to the other top NDS emulators listed here, it uses extremely less system resources.
But the absence of screen layout features is the issue. Furthermore, the multiplayer option is experimental and in my instance did not function. There is just a Windows version of the emulator. The save state feature and joystick support are the only other features. Additionally, NO$GBA features internal cheat code support.
Why use No$GBA?
- Low memory usage and offers high speed
- Also supports GBA a Nintendo DSi games
4. RetroArch (Most versatile DS emulator)
RetroArch is an all-in-one emulator that enables users to play games on almost all classic consoles, in contrast to other Nintendo DS emulators available here. The concept is to combine various emulators (also known as cores) into a single piece of software.
In this instance, RetroArch provides DeSmume and MelonDS for NDS game emulation. Games from all Nintendo platforms (NES, SNES, DS, DSi, 3DS, 64), Atari, MAME, and more can be played on this all-in-one emulator.
The user interface may seem intimidating at first, but after some practise, it becomes much simpler. However, compared to the other Nintendo DS emulators present, running games is rather challenging.
It also contains all the necessary graphic and emulator options. Up to 4K native resolution can be added, and shaders can be used to radically alter how the games seem. There is support for joysticks, a choice of save slots, and many screen layout options.
RetroArch’s potential drawback is that it consumes more PC resources than other programmes. Overall though, it’s still one of the top PC emulators.
Why use RetroArch?
- All-in-one emulator
- A few pre-loaded games
Availability every platform
Another front end programme for other console emulators is called OpenEmu. Regarding supported consoles and emulation choices, this PC emulator isn’t all that different from RetroArch.
However, OpenEmu stands out from all the other emulators because to its incredibly simple user interface. The user interface will make you think of iTunes if you use a Mac. For instance, the emulator sorts games by platform and displays their box art. DeSmuMe, an emulator for Nintendo DS games, is included with OpenEmu.
The lack of numerous graphical options could annoy some users. Additionally, during my testing, I didn’t notice a way to raise internal resolution. The Nintendo emulator pretty much has everything else, including settings for screen layout, save states, support for cheat codes, etc. Multiple controllers, including DualShock, Switch Pro, Wiimote, and others, are supported. Overall, one of the top DS emulators for Mac is OpenEmu.
Why use OpenEmu?
- Streamlined UI
- All-in-one emulator
Best Nintendo DS Emulator For Android In 2022
People naturally want to play Nintendo DS games on Android as Nintendo DS was a handheld gaming console. And DraStic is the best DS emulator available right now for Android.
When it comes to features, the programme is on par with DS emulators for PC. As a result, you have button mapping, save states, and controller support. Additionally, you can boost the internal resolution using the app. The best potential should only be anticipated from high-end cellphones, though.
The app makes up for the fact that smartphone screen dynamics are very different from Nintendo DS (dual-screen) by providing six different layout possibilities. In addition to the single view, stacked view, and option to keep one screen shorter than the other, there is also the default view (both screens are equally large).
The main drawback of DrasTic is that it is a $4.99 premium Android app. However, given the variety of features, the cost hardly matters.
Why use DraStic?
- Online Google Drive space to save data
- Increase emulation speed
2. Citra (Nintendo 3DS Emulator)
Citra is without a doubt the best Nintendo 3DS emulator for PC gaming. Several 3DS games can be played at full graphics and high quality even on a subpar system.
Users of the Nintendo 3DS emulator may modify internal resolutions up to 4K, which completely changes the way that Pokemon games and The Legend of Zelda are played. Regarding the games, Citra’s official website offers a section where you can check out the Nintendo 3DS games that are compatible with the PC emulator.
Returning to the programme, it has options for screen layout, cheat code support, and joystick compatibility. An internal screen recorder is included with the Nintendo emulator. Citra also simulates the local Wi-Fi on the 3DS. To put it another way, you can play online multiplayer with other players using the DS emulator.
The only functional Nintendo 3DS emulator for Android is Citra, which is also accessible on Android.
Windows, Mac, Linux, and Android are all available
Why use Citra?
- Multiplayer support
- 10x internal resolution
Another Nintendo DS emulator for Android users is Lemuroid. This one is fully free to use and ad-free, unlike DraStic.
Lemunroid provides compatibility for a wide range of devices in addition to the Nintendo DS, including the Atari 2600 (A26), Atari 7800 (A78), Atari Lynx, Nintendo (NES), Super Nintendo (SNES), Game Boy (GB), Game Boy Color, and many more.
You will discover all the required features, including support for gamepads and rapid saving. Additionally, you can connect more than one gamepad. You may view all of your games in a directory on the Android app for playing Nintendo games.
Why use Lemuroid?
- Connect multiple gamepads
- Support for zipped ROMs
You can also read our post about Nintendo Switch emulators for PC and Android right here while you wait!
Bonus apps for DS Emulation
To play Pokemon games, you can also check out some additional DS emulators. Ten Nintendo DS emulators that we tested were unsuccessful in making our list. They should still be mentioned because of their widespread acclaim in the neighbourhood.
Are Emulators even legal? Will you get in trouble for using DS emulators?
Not so much with ROMS. Any form of emulator is just a piece of software that simulates a gaming console. The issue is very comparable to that of torrent clients, which are legal to use yet downloading torrents is not.
Comparably, while PC emulators are legal, downloading and using the same emulator to play games is not. However, there have been a variety of perspectives on the matter. Even though Nintendo no longer develops DS games and does not profit from it, the company’s official website asserts that it is unlawful to make digital copies of classic NDS games.
These DS emulators for PCs were some of the best. The finest Android emulators and iOS emulators for PC may be of interest to you if you want to play mobile games on your computer.
Pokemon games can be played on a computer using Nintendo DS emulators like MelonDS, NO$GBA, OpenEmu, and others.
DeSmuME is among the top.
DeSmuME has not been given up, no. Although the most recent executable patch is still applicable, the last stable build was issued back in 2015.