The best Nintendo DS emulators for Android

The Nintendo DS is one of the most popular handheld consoles of all time. Its iconic value lives up to that of the Game Boy and the PSP. There were some amazing games for the system and sometimes it’s easier to keep those games on your phone than to carry around a second device to play them. Unfortunately, Nintendo DS emulation platform development is still a small niche, so there aren’t a ton of options to choose from. Nonetheless, we found a few that worked well, so here are the best Nintendo DS emulators for Android!

We would also like to give an honorable mention to nds4droid. It’s really old and hasn’t had an update for a while, but it might work fine if you have an older device.

The best Nintendo DS emulators for Android


DraStic DS Emulator

Price: $4.99

Screenshot of DraStic Nintendo DS emulator google play store best nintendo ds emulators for android

DraStic DS Emulator is probably the best Nintendo DS Emulator right now. In our testing, it played just about every game we threw at it. There are probably only a handful of games that don’t work properly. The emulator comes with a host of features including screen layout customization, controller customization, hardware controller support, fast forward, Google Drive support, and devices high-end can benefit from an improved graphics rendering if they wish. The price is $4.99. It’s cheaper than before. It’s a good thing. This is the one we recommend first by a long shot. The other emulators on this list are just in case this one doesn’t work for some reason.

EmuBox - best nintendo DS emulators for Android

EmuBox is a newer emulator with a bunch of compatible systems. This includes PlayStation, SNES and yes, Nintendo DS. It is one of the few emulators with Material Design. It makes him beautiful. Luckily, it works just as well. We had no serious issues playing the games we tested. Some have complained about a few bugs with the emulator when using too many cheat codes, but otherwise Google Play reviews are also mostly positive. It is a free emulator with advertising. We hope that a pro version without ads will arrive eventually.

NDS emulator - best nintendo ds emulators for android

NDS Emulator is one of the new Nintendo DS emulators. It has all the basic features such as external controller support, save states, load states, and customizable on-screen gamepads. It also played most of the games we tried during testing. It’s far from perfect and there are bugs. However, it is one of the best free Nintendo DS emulators available. There are ads and they are rather annoying. We would have liked a way to pay to remove them. It’s not the one we recommend first, but it’s definitely in the top five.

RetroArch is an all-in-one emulator. It supports a variety of game systems. This includes the Nintendo DS, Game Boy, SNES, Game Boy Advance, and many non-Nintendo systems. You must download and install each system individually in the application. That means you will have to download it, get the Nintendo DS core, and then you can finally play games. It supports all basic features. It’s not the easiest to use. However, it is completely free, with no in-app purchases or ads. It is also in active development at the moment. There is another emulator very similar to RetroArch called Lemuroid (Google Play link). We recommend giving it a try if RetroArch just doesn’t work for you.

SuperNDS screenshot

Joe Hindy / Android Authority

SuperNDS is the last Nintendo DS emulator on the list. It seems to work pretty well according to its reviews and it seems to work well in our tests. It supports NDS, ZIP, 7z, and RAR file types and includes most of the stuff you’d expect from an emulator, such as save states and the like. It’s a pretty basic emulator without a ton of features and you might have to dig into the settings to get it working properly. It crashes more often than we’d like, but it’s newer than most, so hopefully future updates fix that.

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