While all of Broglia’s emus are good, MD.emu is one of those that definitively smashes the competition. The emulation is near perfect, and it allows for manual region settings, which stop games like Monster World IV from playing in other emus. It also supports the SVP chip used in Virtua Racing and has early (somewhat buggy) support for Sega CD, for anyone who wants some Snatcher on the go. There’s even proper support for the 8-bit Sega Master System, with true controller support in games like Penguin Land and Bomber Raid that don’t work with Genesis controllers. Alas, it doesn’t support SMS peripherals, nor its handheld cousin the Game Gear, but there’s always MasterGear or Gearoid for that.
Robert Broglia’s original Snes9x EX was already one of the best-kept secrets on Android. Although it was never available on the Play Store, it outclassed all of the other Super Nintendo emulators on the Android with broad compatibility, and support for touch-friendly SNES peripherals like the Super Scope and mouse. The “plus” refresh not only brings the emulator to the Play Store at last – while still keeping it free – it updates to a more modern code base, bringing the compatibility up to par with its PC counterparts. EX+ is a bit slower than the older version, so those with pokey phones might want to snag the original instead, but for anyone with a dual core or better, this is near-perfect emulation on your phone.
SuperGNES may have slightly lower accuracy and compatibility than Snes9x EX, but it does boast a very nice graphical interface that helps to organize your library and downloads box art so you can browse through your carts graphically. It’ll even find and download games for you with a built in ROM search. It’s also worth noting that it’s the fastest SNES emulator on the Android, so if you’re still holding onto that Droid 1, this is your ticket.
The TurboGrafx was the dark horse of the 16-bit gen, but it held its own with a library of hundreds of games, including a lot of classics like Blazing Lazers and Bonk’s Adventure. The selection of emulators is understandably a bit slim, but PCE.emu does the trick. Support for the SuperCD means you’ll be able to play Rondo of Blood and Ys Books I & II , and it doesn’t get much better than that.
Ever since its initial release back in 2000, ePSXe has been the gold standard in PSX emulation on the PC. Before it, PSX emulators tended to fall into two classes: accurate and “enhanced,” but thanks to its use of plugins, ePSXe offered the best of both worlds. This tradition has carried over to the handheld version, at least somewhat, allowing for faithful emulation of the original chunky, low-res graphics (especially ideal for 2D games), or higher-res emulation of a game’s 3D visuals. In addition to fast, very accurate emulation and high compatibility, it boasts some interesting extended features, including a split-screen two player mode that can turn a tablet into a head-to-head nostalgia trip.
Before ePSXe rolled around, this was the de facto standard for PSX emulation on the Android. It leans more toward the “enhanced” graphics side, which means 2D elements can look a little funny and textures might have seams, but in some games it looks fantastic. The price is nearly identical to ePSXe, though, and the emulation is simply not as good, so this should be reserved asa back up.