5 Best Games Emulator For Android

games emulator for android

A few months back, one of my gamer friends asked me an interesting question - “Hey dude! I want to play old-school games with an old-school controller on my smartphone. What should I do?”.

I replied to him with five simple words- “Use games emulator for android.” Then he left and tried many emulators to play some of his favorite old-school android games. But none of these could make him satisfied.

Then he came to me again with his sad face and asked me to give some recommendations regarding the decent quality emulators for android. But I couldn’t give him the best guidance as a reply. Because there exists no emulator that can act as an allrounder in all cases. 

The interesting fact is, every good emulator has its weak point, and every average emulator has its strong point in terms of performing. So it’s very natural; choosing the suitable emulator will vary from user to user.

The question is, what emulator will be suitable for you? What emulators should be included within the “05 best” list?

Let’s find out the answers.

Some Points Before Choosing Best Games Emulator for Android

I spent a decent amount of time finding the best emulator for android to help my gamer friend. During this process, I found tons of apps claiming themselves best for all users to use. But people should pick up those that can meet their desire.
There exist some common criteria that ensure an game emulator for android apk is good or not good. Let’s be introduced to these first. A decent quality emulator holds the following standards-

  • Easy to set up
  • No video or audio lagging will exist.
  • No audio delay will occur while playing.
  • The emulator will be lightweight.
  • Satisfactory rating on Google Play Store
  • OpenGL rendering support

best emulator games for android

Before you select a particular emulator for your android phone, check out whether your selected emulator is meeting all these criteria or not.

What are the 5 Best Games Emulator for Android in 2021?

Imagine a situation as per I say. Suppose you are willing to play a legendary game Final Fantasy VI Advanced, as you are in super nostalgic mode. You have selected some emulators by your research, but every one of these holds some limitations. You are trying one by one, but you are not getting the appropriate one. What should you do now? Just passing day and night with trying and trying?

Ok, let me help you with the 5 best list of mine. I’m pretty confident that multiple apps that have been mentioned in the list will become your favorite.

1. Dolphin Emulator

Dolphin emulator was first introduced in 2003 with a dumb version! - I mean audio free version. This emulator could play games within 2 to 20 FPS (Frame per second). In 2004 the Dolphin team decided to close this project for some strong reasons.

In 2013 this games emulator for android introduced itself on the android platform targeting the gamers who are big fans of GameCube and Nintendo Wii games. And then it won millions of gamer’s heart.

This emulator’s virtual controller was designed to provide a seamless and convenient gaming experience, and it can still do the same. Let’s see some of the decent features that every good emulator holds.

  • User-friendly Virtual Controller

When you will start playing your favorite game with Dolphin Emulator, you will notice the overall interface is very linear and simple.  It was designed this way only to provide a hassle-free gaming experience. See the picture; you will get an idea regarding the virtual controller.

Dolphin emulator

  • Small-sized Emulator

The size of this emulator is around 16 MB, which is good. This thing indicates this emulator can perform on low-end devices as well. We will list the minimum required specs for running this emulator seamlessly and providing you the best gaming experience.

  • Decent Compatibility

Dolphin emulator holds the potential to run the files from different formats such as ISO, GCX, CISO, WBFS, etc. A suggestion - before downloading and playing your desired game, check out its format first, whether it is compatible with this emulator or not.

  • External Controller Support

This particular android game emulator comes with the external controller supporting feature. I am personally not a big fan of playing games using the virtual controller. Cause I believe it hurts my smartphone screen significantly while gaming. If you are a person like me, then this feature will be proven helpful to you.

  • Adjustable Settings For Smooth Gaming

Dolphin emulator comes with general adjustable settings to allow the gamers to enjoy the superior level gaming experience as much as possible. For instance, you can set your CPU core to JIT ARM64 Recompiler. It will improve this emulator’s performance by 40% to 60%, which will allow you to play most of the games at up to 60 FPS.

Minimum Required Specifications

Make sure your device keeps the following specs before installing Dolphin Emulator.

  • Android OS Version:  Android 5.0 or higher
  • Processor: Arm64 or AArch 64
  • Processor Core: Dual Core
  • RAM: 1 GB
  • Graphics Hardware or GPU: OpenGL ES 3.0
  • Free Storage: 20% of your total ROM

Recommended Specifications

If your smartphone’s budget is decent or already using a highly configured smartphone, this part is recommended to keep this on your checklist.

  • Android OS Version:  Android 10.0 or higher
  • Processor: Snapdragon 835 or equivalent
  • Processor Core: Quadcore or more
  • RAM: 4 GB
  • Graphics Hardware or GPU: Adreno 540 or equivalent with OpenGL ES 3.0  and Vulcan support
  • Free Storage: 20% of your total ROM

2. PPSSPP - PSP Emulator

This name sounds weird, right? But its performance is not. This games emulator for android is available with both free and premium versions on Google Play Store. The free version compelled more than 100M people to download this app by impressing them with its performance. More than 1.3M people reviewed this emulator and had positive discussions.

The Interesting fact is, there is no difference between the premium and free versions. Considering the features and outlook, both of these are completely identical. They the question is, why the developers released the sam app as premium? The answer is to give you an option to support the developers.

Already more than 100K people have supported them by installing the premium one. Excited to know what exciting features PPSSPP is offering? Let’s get started-

  • Gaming in High Resolution

PPSSPP is set to provide you the ultimate gaming experience with high resolution. As you have already tried many emulators, you already know that there is a common problem playing free games for android with emulators. 


Most of the time the graphics remain poor while you are playing your favorite game. But PPSSPP has not such kinds of issues. You can play almost every game in HD resolution without any problems.

  • Play in Bigger Screen

PPSSPP will not limit your gaming experience within your smartphone. You can play almost all of your favorite old-school games on your tablet or phablet and have fun. No extra instruction is needed to be implemented in regards to enjoying your gameplay on a bigger screen.

  • Customizable Touch Controller

When you install this  games emulator for android and start gaming after finishing the configuration, PPSSPP will set a virtual controller by default to allow you to navigate and so on while gaming. But you can customize your virtual touch screen considering your convenience. You can rearrange all the virtual parts of this controller.

  • Backup Facility

You are going through a long mission while playing a particular game. Spending hours and hours is making you bored. What can you do then? The saving and restoring feature of PPSSPP can help you to get rid of this. You can save your game progress and restore it anywhere whenever you want.


Minimum Required Specifications

If your smartphone holds the following specs, then you can at least play the low-end games with this emulator on your smartphone.

  • Android OS Version:  GIngerbread version 2.3 or higher
  • Processor: Arm64 or AArch 64, Cortex-A9, Karbon A9, Cortex-A7, Cortex-A8,  Cortex-A15, etc.
  • Processor Core: Single Core
  • RAM: 128 MB
  • Graphics Hardware or GPU: Any basic level GPU
  • Free Storage: 20% of your total ROM

Recommended Specifications

If you want to taste the pro-level gaming experience, then the following list should be kept as your checklist.

  • Android OS Version:  Android KitKat version 4.4 or higher
  • Processor: Snapdragon 625 or equivalent
  • Processor Core: Quadcore or more
  • RAM: 4 GB
  • Graphics Hardware or GPU: Mali- 400 or equivalent with OpenGL ES 3.0  and Vulcan support
  • Free Storage: 20% of your total ROM

3. Redream Emulator

Redream emulator is an entirely free and decent quality games emulator for android available on Google Play Store. According to the info of Google Play Store, this emulator was first introduced on 19 May. 2019. But within this short span of its journey, it has made a family consisting of more than 100K members.

More than 5.7K of them reviewed this emulator. The average rating of this emulator is 4.3. After all of these, this is still one of the most underrated and less popular emulators for unknown reasons. I don’t want you spent time digging out the actual reason behind this.

Instead, I want to introduce you to some of the exciting features that helped this emulator popular among its users.

  • High Definition Gaming

This feature allows you to play games in Full HD (1080P) to 4K resolution. But before getting excited, be sure that your desired games came with the Full HD or 4K support.


  • Ready To Play

Redream emulator doesn’t need any kind of complex configuration. You don’t need to configure the BIOS or any other Flash Files. You will install the games emulator for android, and your phone will be ready to go.

  • Codebreaker Cheat Support

I know it’s a kind of hypocritical move to use cheat code while gaming. But you know the famous proverb; everything is fair in love and war! Right? That is why it’s always fun to play games with cheat code while gaming. The codebreaker cheats support feature will allow you to do so within this emulator.

Minimum Required Specifications

If you are using a low budget smartphone, then please make sure your smartphone has the following specs.

  • Android OS Version:  Lollipop 5.0 
  • Processor: x86_64 compatible with AVX2 or SSE2 support
  • Processor Core: Dual Core
  • RAM: 512 MB
  • Graphics Hardware or GPU: OpenGL 3.1
  • Free Storage: 20% of your total ROM

Recommended Specifications

The following specs are recommended for gamers. 

  • Android OS Version:  Android 8 or higher
  • Processor: Snapdragon 835 or equivalent
  • Processor Core: Quadcore or more
  • RAM: 4 GB or more
  • Graphics Hardware or GPU: Adreno 530 or equivalent with OpenGL ES 3.0  and Vulcan support
  • Free Storage: 20% of your total ROM

4. Drastic DS Emulator

Drastic DS Emulator was first released on Aug 7, 2013. The developers behind this emulator released the latest update on Apr 24, 2020. But still, in 2021, many gamers search on google to search for this emulator.

This games emulator for android could make more than 1M people engaged with this emulator and gained an average rating of 4.5. More than 111K people reviewed this particular emulator to express their overall reaction to this.


It keeps some exciting features that made this emulator extensively popular among the community.

  • Screen Layout Customization

You have already noticed for sure; this customization feature is common for almost every decent quality emulator. Drastic DS Emulator is offering the same to you. This particular feature will be super helpful for the left handy gamers. They can customize their navigation layout as per their convenience.

  • Speed Customization

This emulator will allow you to increase or decrease the emulation speed at your convenience.

This feature was introduced targeting the hardcore gamers who like to play games in more challenging mode. If you are a part of this community, you can try this feature while gaming.


  • Synchronization With Google Drive

You can synch your emulator with Google Drive to save your game progress in realtime. You know there are many games that are in big size. Generally, those kinds of games keep the longer missions to complete.

Any kinds of unavoidable condition can occur that may interrupt while you are gaming. In that case, there is almost zero possibility of losing your game data if you are synced with Google Drive. 


  • Using Cheat Code

Drastic DS emulator will allow you to use thousands of cheat codes as per your need. The instruction for using this feature is pretty linear and simple. You can figure it out easily whenever you decide to play. There are thousands of cheat codes available for thousands of games online. You can find the codes as per your need by Googling them easily.

Minimum Required Specifications

Keep this list as your checklist before installing this emulator on your game. This games emulator for android will ensure your smartphone is meeting the minimum requirement or not.

  • Android OS Version:  Gingerbread version 2.3 or higher 
  • Processor: Any ARM-based processor
  • Processor Core: Single Core
  • RAM: 256 MB
  • Graphics Hardware or GPU: Any basic level GPU
  • Free Storage: 20% of your total ROM

Recommended Specifications

The following specs are recommended for the gamers. 

  • Android OS Version:  Android 8 or higher
  • Processor: Snapdragon 435 or equivalent
  • Processor Core: Quadcore or more
  • RAM: 3 GB or more
  • Graphics Hardware or GPU: Adreno 512 or equivalent with OpenGL ES 3.0  and Vulcan support
  • Free Storage: 20% of your total ROM

5. ePSXe Emulator

When I started to write this article, the ePSXe emulator came to my mind first. Keeping the file size small and providing rich features at the same time is a difficult task. ePSXe emulator did this with almost 100% perfection. 
This legendary app released two separate versions considering the free and premium users. The free version has been downloaded more than 1M times so far. More than 9K people reviewed this article on Google Play Store.

On the other hand
Let’s be introduced with some exciting features about this Games Emulator For Android


  • Super HIgh Compatibility

In accordance with the ePSXe team’s claim, this particular app’s overall compatibility is almost 99% percent. Only this point helped this emulator to gain authority within this industry.

  • Multiplayer Feature

According to the developers’ claim, ePSXe can simultaneously handle up to 4 players while deciding to play with your friends. They developed this emulator so that if four persons play a high-resolution game, then no lagging will be noticed while rendering.

  • HD Enhanced Graphics

ePSXe supports 2x/4x software renderer that allows the user to have a decent quality gaming experience in graphics rendering. To empower this feature OpenGL rendering support is present behind the scene.


Minimum Required Specifications

The following specification is needed for your device to run this emulator seamlessly

  • Android OS Version:  Android 2.3.3 or higher 
  • Processor: ARM or x86/intel atom processor
  • Processor Core: Dual Core
  • RAM: 256 MB
  • Graphics Hardware or GPU: Any basic level GPU
  • Free Storage: 20% of your total ROM

Recommended Specifications

If you want to have pro-level experience, then you should go for the following specs-

  • Android OS Version:  Android 8 or higher
  • Processor: Snapdragon 635 or equivalent
  • Processor Core: Quadcore or more
  • RAM: 4 GB or more
  • Graphics Hardware or GPU: Adreno 512 or equivalent with OpenGL ES 3.0  and Vulcan support
  • Free Storage: 20% of your total ROM

I know, an interesting question has appeared in your mind to ask me  - “Why didn’t you mention this games emulator for android earlier?”  The simple and hilarious answer is - to surprise you! We have explained the free version of this app. But the premium one can offer you something more interesting.
But as a loyal fan of Android Blue you don’t have to pay a single penny in order to get this emulator on your phone.

The free download link of the premium version is provided in a separate article based on PSX Emulator. Just visit the article to get the link.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Some frequently asked questions are asked so often regarding the best emulators for android. I am trying to cover all these questions to help you choose the appropriate emulators for you considering your requirements.

Q- What are the best android emulators under 2GB RAM?

  • You already have known the answer to the question as I have reviewed the whole article in detail. But for your convenience, I can mention the name separately- 
  1. ePSXe
  2. RetroArch
  3. Drastic DS Emulator
  4. My Boy and so on

Q- What are the best emulators for iPhone and Android for Mac?

  • The entire article was about the top-notch emulators available for android. You can feel free to pick one of those considering your choice and taste.
    But recommending useful emulators for iPhone and Mac is not that easy task. Hopefully, I will try to express my research-based opinion in a separate article regarding this soon.

Q- What are the best thing to do on a terminal emulator? (Android)

  • This is an advanced, different, and vast part of the discussion that many general level users can’t understand. But in simple instruction, we can mention the procedure.
  1. Root your android device
  2. Install BusyBox
  3. Install Hackers Keyboard
  4. Now you can play with the system files of your phone.

Q- What are the popular and best emulator games for android?

  • Here is the list of some extensively popular android games 2021 that won many gamer’s hearts.
  1. Drill Dozer
  2. WarioWare
  3. Gunstar Super Heroes
  4. The Legend of Zelda: A link to the past and four swords
  5. Mario Golf: Advance tour
  6. Mario & Luigi: Superstar Saga
  7. Final Fantasy Tactics Advance
  8. Mario Tennis: Power Tour
  9. Mario vs. Donkey Kong
  10. Street Fighter Alpha 3
  11. Kirby & the Amazing Mirror\
  12. Maro Kart: Super Circuit
  13. Final Fantasy VI Advance
  14. Pokemon: FireRed & LeafGreen
  15. Fire Emblem
  16. Need for Speed Most Wanted

I will write an entire article regarding the top 10 games for android very soon. Keep engaged with us. 

End of The Discussion

I believe in the meantime, you have already figured out which particular emulator can meet your need adequately. Every games emulator for android has some limitations. But considering your requirement, you have to take the final decision. I hope the entire article keeps the potential to give you the ultimate guide regarding this. But this is not the end. I will keep updating the article for you to help you to make proper choices.