GBAtemp Exclusive hands-on
Homebrew enthusiast and GBAtemp member darkchen has been busy developing a Game Boy Advance emulator for the Nintendo DS, and we've tried it! The result? Some extremely impressive work!
How did darkchen manage to emulate the GBA given the hardware limitations of the DS? The clever guy used the extra power that the DSiPlayer (slot-1 media player) provides to get the extra juice needed to emulate GBA at a decent speed. Unfortunately of course, this means that this emulator will only work on the iPlayer.
We've tried a handful of games using darkchen's emulator and the results have been extremely impressive. The majority of games (even 3D intensive games) work extremely well with almost perfect video and sound output. There is a little bit of slow down in some games (using a frameskip setting of 2), but the results are astonishing for a first release. I didn't even see a single graphical glitch. But, not only is the emulation side of things impressive, the emulator GUI itself is also very well done and offers a great number of useful and well implemented options such as save states, screenshots, frameskip and more. It even supports zipped ROMs, but has some issues with 256Mbit games when zipped.
You can check out our hands-on video of the emulator above to see it in action for yourself. (We apologise for the poor video quality - watch in HQ on YouTube for a better picture). Well done to darkchen for a great piece of software and we hope you'll continue to improve it.
Also, please be aware that darkchen has not yet released this emulator publicly, so please do not request download links.
*UPDATE*: GBAtemp are proud to announce that we are now able to release the emulator publicly TONIGHT (GMT). So stay tuned, iPlayer owners!