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Emulators from pre 2600 to the latest stable systems


Yellow355F1
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I have been emulating since I discovered it years ago for trying games I want to buy, or have just never gotten to play. But, we all know sometimes the sources for them can be a bit shady. I haven't downloaded one in a long time from emulator/rom sites since a source I used was loaded with viruses. But, I bring this thread forward to compile the various systems currently emulated in to one place. I have searched for a thread like this to no avail. So, with the community's help I would like to fill in the holes in my emulation library.

So far these are what I have used.

 

Stella

Prosystem

Frodo C-64

MESS (Though I haven't had the best of luck with it)

MAME 32 v1.03

PCEjin

J-NES

ZSNES v1.36 - ZSNES v1.51

Gens 32 1.29

1964

DOSBox 0.74 With D-Fend

 

For the most part these were all downloaded from various ROM/emulation sites. I recenly had trouble with ZSNES 1.36 working with Win. 8.1, so I went to thier website to get a later version. And, also just recently discovered DOSBox for old PC games.

 

I had also tried later systems such as PSX, and PS-2 back years ago, but they were just so bug laden, that I just gave up. From what I have been reading on here though, they seem to have come a long way from the early stages of those emulators.

Edited by Yellow355F1
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Epsxe is good for PS1.

Mess/mame are still pretty lousy with their software libraries & lists. PS2 is still not there yet.

Thanks, that fills the PS1 gap. I forgot what that Emulator was for PS1 that I used? Do know it was summer of 2001 when I tried it. It was just an early example, so I couldn't really complain about the bugs. Yes, I have tried to learn MESS, but it is very unforgiving.

Edited by Yellow355F1
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There's little reason anymore to have dozens of individual emulators on your system. RetroArch provides cores which cover a large range of platforms.

 

http://www.libretro.com

 

I'd still suggest separate emulators for Sega Saturn (SSF), Dreamcast (a recent trunk build of NullDC or DEMUL), PlayStation 2 and for classic computers. Also, MAME is still better experienced separately with a full featured front-end.

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There's little reason anymore to have dozens of individual emulators on your system. RetroArch provides cores which cover a large range of platforms.

 

http://www.libretro.com

 

I'd still suggest separate emulators for Sega Saturn (SSF), Dreamcast (a recent trunk build of NullDC or DEMUL), PlayStation 2 and for classic computers. Also, MAME is still better experienced separately with a full featured front-end.

Man they have a lot of neat things going on over there. Looks like they are keeping current on new builds, and updates. A lot of my preferred emulators have been orphaned, or just plain forgotten about with exception to a few.

Thanks, with all the plans they have on the RetroArch will be interesting to see where it leads over time.

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Mm.. Oftentimes individual emulators, per machine, are more versatile and accurate.

 

 

With LibRetro you're still using separate emulators, but you simply don't have to treat them a such. Many of the emulators you already use have cores for LibRetro, so you end up using that core emulation. The only difference is you get you share a common interface and can even share configuration options (which can also be kept separate if desired).

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I need to start experimenting with RetroArch. So far I have been using individual emulators but I am not interested in a ton of different systems so it's not too hard to keep track of really.

 

That said, I would recommend Kega Fusion for Sega. It emulates SMS, MD/Genesis, 32X, and Sega CD all in one.

 

Edit: I think it also does the SG1000 and SC3000

Edited by marlowe221
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I need to start experimenting with RetroArch. So far I have been using individual emulators but I am not interested in a ton of different systems so it's not too hard to keep track of really.

 

That said, I would recommend Kega Fusion for Sega. It emulates SMS, MD/Genesis, 32X, and Sega CD all in one.

 

Edit: I think it also does the SG1000 and SC3000

This was another reason for this thread, so others could discover new systems as well. I will have to check Out Kega I have seen it, but never gotten around to trying it out. What I plan to do is test out all the suggested emulators, and eliminate ones that aren't as stable, or with less options.

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Ehh.. with emulators physical space is not a problem. So it's alright to have more than one emu for any one given system.

 

That's very true since the Roms interchange, (sometimes that is) the Roms for later systems are larger than most emulators. Afraid I didn't see that coming till now...

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ROMS do not change... roms are roms and just dumps of chips from cartridges or from arcade boards and any system that has chips. The problem in emulation is that most folks refer to anything you load into an emulator is a rom.... it isn't. Tapes, disk images, hard drive images, cd/dvd all are not roms even though the masses refer to them as such.

 

higan would be a better option for SNES and it also emulates other systems. I also agree with Keetah that space for emus is not an issue as it's a small part of the space needed for emulation especially for modern systems. ccs64 is a nice C64 emu and Vice is as well and covers many Commodore systems.

 

Since you say sources where you get stuff are/can be shady why don't you just download emulators from their homepage?

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ROMS do not change... roms are roms and just dumps of chips from cartridges or from arcade boards and any system that has chips. The problem in emulation is that most folks refer to anything you load into an emulator is a rom.... it isn't. Tapes, disk images, hard drive images, cd/dvd all are not roms even though the masses refer to them as such.

 

higan would be a better option for SNES and it also emulates other systems. I also agree with Keetah that space for emus is not an issue as it's a small part of the space needed for emulation especially for modern systems. ccs64 is a nice C64 emu and Vice is as well and covers many Commodore systems.

 

Since you say sources where you get stuff are/can be shady why don't you just download emulators from their homepage?

You are right there, they are either bin files, or ISOs amnong the many others. As far as why ask around? There are a crap ton of them out there most just aren't that easy to get running, or are just beginning to be worked on. I figured the forum members that have been emulating with the various systems, would have good info for systems that aren't over complicated, or are still in their infancy. Thanks to the suggestions here I am set for a while with all the new ones to try out.

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I think "roms" is becoming an all-encompassing generic term for many things like disk images, tape images, dumps, .bin, .iso, rips, .chd, and others. Kinda-sorta like Kleenex means bathroom tissues or napkins, or handy wipes..

 

I also never really saw a shady official homepage for any emulator. The shady sites would be mirrors or rom sites.

 

The key thing to starting with any emulator is understanding where to put the files and remembering the commands - like how to get to settings and menus and keyboard mappings. And it's alright to make up a nice reference chart or keep parts of the documentation at the ready.

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In thinking about individual emulators .. I like Altirra and Stella for Atari 8-bit and VCS emulation. They're pretty well developed, in active development now, and feature rich.

 

WinUAE for the Amiga. The configs look daunting, but it helps to understand there are two parts. The host and the emulated system. Understand they can be kept separate and loaded/saved separately, and you'll do alright.

 

Astrocade has only one emulator really, that's MAME/MESS.

 

VICE for C64 & Vic-20. Be sure and get a nightly build because the one on the homepage has fucked up colors, been that way forever. The nightly builds give you the right color palette out of the box with no settings to change other than to select pal/ntsc.

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I think "roms" is becoming an all-encompassing generic term for many things like disk images, tape images, dumps, .bin, .iso, rips, .chd, and others. Kinda-sorta like Kleenex means bathroom tissues or napkins, or handy wipes..

I also never really saw a shady official homepage for any emulator. The shady sites would be mirrors or rom sites.

The key thing to starting with any emulator is understanding where to put the files and remembering the commands - like how to get to settings and menus and keyboard mappings. And it's alright to make up a nice reference chart or keep parts of the documentation at the ready.

LOL! Like in some areas here a Coke means any carbonated drink no matter the flavor.

As far as shady site mirrors, those seem to have been cleared up. However my favorite site is stupid now, you now have to watch a video to get the download link. Not happening over Android because the site. The M. Site forces phone base emulators, forcing desktop gets you to them, but since Android don't have the plugin needed. But, right now phone internet is all I have.

I always check either the site, or read me file that is packed with a particular emulator. That helps a lot especially if you have to edit the .cfg file to make changes. I make a cheat sheet for MAME with as many features it has. I try to make all of them as close as possible as far as button layout makes things a ton easier.

 

 

In thinking about individual emulators .. I like Altirra and Stella for Atari 8-bit and VCS emulation. They're pretty well developed, in active development now, and feature rich.

 

WinUAE for the Amiga. The configs look daunting, but it helps to understand there are two parts. The host and the emulated system. Understand they can be kept separate and loaded/saved separately, and you'll do alright.

 

Astrocade has only one emulator really, that's MAME/MESS.

 

VICE for C64 & Vic-20. Be sure and get a nightly build because the one on the homepage has fucked up colors, been that way forever. The nightly builds give you the right color palette out of the box with no settings to change other than to select pal/ntsc.

I grabbed Altirra just need some A 8 bit games to check out. Stella has been the best VCS emulator I have tried.

 

You know, I have never had any kind of experience with the Amiga. Sounds like it will be a task to set up, but manageable. I learned to get games running on DosBox + DeFend. Some of those are a pain to get right.

 

I have Frodo for C64 but it seems a little buggy in the running of software, but emulates the system okay. VICE I will give it a shot. Good to know of that alternate version. I regret selling my C64 now..... You don't think of those systems till it's gone. I miss all the Basic programming books that came with it, used to sit for hours trying the various code out. Customizing the main screen colors was cool.

Edited by Yellow355F1
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Current List/Preference looks like this:

 

Consoles:

Atari 2600 = Stella

Intellivision = Nostalgia

ColecoVision = blueMSX

Vectrex = MAME

Atari 5200 = kat5200

NES = Nestopia Undead

Atari 7800 = MAME

SMS = Kega Fusion

TurboGrafx-16 = Ootake

Sega Genesis = Kega Fusion

SNES = bsnes 0.85 i686 accuracy via ssnes 0.9.5 x64 [Alt higan]

Atari Jaguar = Virtual Jaguar

Playstation = ePSXe

N64 = Project64

 

Computers:

Apple II (c/e) = AppleWin

Commodore Vic-20 = WinVice [v2.0]

Atari 400/800/XL/XE = Altirra

Tandy/DOS PC = DOSBox SVN Daum 20140127 build

Coleco ADAM = MAME [Alt ADAMEm via DOSBox]

Commodore 64/128 = WinVice [Nightly Builds]

MSX(2) = blueMSX

Atari ST = Hatari

Commodore Amiga = WinUAE

X68000 = WinX68k HighSpeed

 

Handheld:

Game & Watch / Misc = MADrigal Collection

Game Boy (Color) (Advance) = Visualboy Advance [kode54 build]

Game Gear = Kega Fusion

Atari Lynx = Mednafen

Neo Pocket (Color) = NeoPop

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Current List/Preference looks like this:

 

Consoles:

Atari 2600 = Stella

Intellivision = Nostalgia

ColecoVision = blueMSX

Vectrex = MAME

Atari 5200 = kat5200

NES = Nestopia Undead

Atari 7800 = MAME

SMS = Kega Fusion

TurboGrafx-16 = Ootake

Sega Genesis = Kega Fusion

SNES = bsnes 0.85 i686 accuracy via ssnes 0.9.5 x64 [Alt higan]

Atari Jaguar = Virtual Jaguar

Playstation = ePSXe

N64 = Project64

 

Computers:

Apple II (c/e) = AppleWin

Commodore Vic-20 = WinVice [v2.0]

Atari 400/800/XL/XE = Altirra

Tandy/DOS PC = DOSBox SVN Daum 20140127 build

Coleco ADAM = MAME [Alt ADAMEm via DOSBox]

Commodore 64/128 = WinVice [Nightly Builds]

MSX(2) = blueMSX

Atari ST = Hatari

Commodore Amiga = WinUAE

X68000 = WinX68k HighSpeed

 

Handheld:

Game & Watch / Misc = MADrigal Collection

Game Boy (Color) (Advance) = Visualboy Advance [kode54 build]

Game Gear = Kega Fusion

Atari Lynx = Mednafen

Neo Pocket (Color) = NeoPop

 

Alright! Now that is what I'm talking about! Thanks very much for that.

 

 

Can we pin Trebor's list? ... awesome compilation with links.

 

Agreed, that is beyond helpful!

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Glad to assist guys. The above list does try best to balance overall compatibility with overall effect/experience while playing.

 

For instance, with the ColecoVision emulator of choice:

 

-MAME has the best, most varied display output and interface tweaking options (including the entire gambit of native console controller support), its core ColecoVision console emulation is very good, but it lacks MegaCart and SGM support.

 

-CoolCV has overall excellent system simulation and the most cartridge type support (Including SGM and MegaCart), but only provides basic display output and audio options.

 

-BlueMSX has NTSC/Composite tweaks as well as audio and most popular controller options. However, it is not as robust as MAME for those options, and while having MegaCart support (I.E. Pac-Man Collection and Ghost Blaster), it currently lacks SGM support.

 

IMHO, it leaves BlueMSX as overall the first 'go to' choice for ColecoVision emulation.

 

When a similar breakdown is be made with other emulators, the differences (or similarities) can become extremely close. A great alternative to Nestopia Undead, for instance, is puNES. what makes or breaks a first choice for someone, may be different for another.

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Surprised no one has mentioned Mednafen more frequenty. Yes I use it for Lynx as well but I also use it for most of the systems I emulate. It's pretty sweet and emulates everything I throw at it.

 

The following systems are supported(refer to the emulation module documentation for more details):

  • Atari Lynx
  • Neo Geo Pocket (Color)
  • WonderSwan
  • GameBoy (Color)
  • GameBoy Advance
  • Nintendo Entertainment System
  • Super Nintendo Entertainment System/Super Famicom
  • Virtual Boy
  • PC Engine/TurboGrafx 16 (CD)
  • SuperGrafx
  • PC-FX
  • Sega Game Gear
  • Sega Genesis/Megadrive
  • Sega Master System
  • Sony PlayStation
Edited by ClassicGMR
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Some other options to consider.

 

Altirra also emulates the 5200 very well. The 5200 is just a modified 400/800. I would be surprised if kat5200 was better.

 

For Gameboy(Color) there is KiGB which is cycle accurate and something I do not think Visualboy Advance ever tried. Also for GBA I would imagine that No$GBA also would be better than Visualboy advance as it was sold as a dev tool with debugging feature which now is free. Higan is a great choice for SNES and also the other systems it supports as it is another emu focusing on cycle accurate emulation which delivers an experience closer to the real thing than those that aren't cycle accurate.

 

 

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