We all need a break from time to time. While there are plenty of great games available in the Play Store, very few are as charming as those that we used to play as children. A great way to bring back the incredible memories of joyful afternoons spent with our fingers clenched on a PlayStation controller is to download an emulator for your Android smartphone or tablet. Those powerful applications are very easy to use and allow you load ROMs with your favourite childhood games.
With your inner child in mind, we've put together a list of 6 game emulators for Android. Since most of them work with just one platform, you will probably end up downloading more than one. Don't worry, though, they are all awesome and come with a bunch of features you wish you old console had. The controls are customizable so you can change the look and feel of the interface as you see fit. Loading a ROM is a breeze and if you're ready to step into Mario's red shoes once again, take those apps for a spin.
Note: Apps are in no particular order.
VGBA (GameBoy Advance)
Probably the most powerful GBA emulator in the Play Store. Apart from playing games such as Pokemon and King of Fighters, with VGA you can share your game progress with friends, battle and trade other users via Wi-Fi, and even find cheats using the built-in Cheatopedia. VGA offers a variety of controls, including touch screen, accelerometer, and hardware keyboard. Third-party gamepads and joysticks are supported, too.
Spectaculator (ZX Spectrum)
A real treat for hardcore console fans who miss the good old ZX Spectrum. Spectaculator, with quality visuals and support for external keyboards and joysticks, will take you back to the 1980s. The emulator comes with 5 famous great games: Factory Breakout, Firelord, Laser Snaker, and Wizard's Lair. Thanks to built-in cloud save feature, you can start playing a game on your phone and have your progress transferred to your tablet seamlessly.
FPSE (Sony PlayStation One)
In my view, FPSE is the best Sony PlayStation One emulator on the market. It comes with a range of advanced features that let you adjust graphics, sound, and controls. The app comes with support for the most popular gamepads and keyboards. Moreover, if you want to enchance the experience, you can download a plugin and enable OpenGL support. FPSE is compatible with img, .iso, .bin, .cue, .neg, and .Z game image formats.
PPSSPP (Sony PlayStation Portable)
Sony's PlayStation Portable is a neat little console that you can get for just a few pounds now, but if you'd rather enjoy the experience on your phone, PPSSPP is your best choice. Fortunately, the app is not as complicated as its name. In actuality PPSSPP is a rather easy to use program that allows you to load game image files from the PSP console as well as customize interface, controls, graphics, and audio.
SuperN64 (Nintento N64)
SuperN64 is based on an open-source Nintento N64 emulator called Mupen64. It is not particularly rich when it comes to features and settings, but it will meet your expectations. Load an image, adjust controls, and play. SuperN64 is a very simple app and with its good-looking, unobtrusive interface, it lets you enjoy your favourite games even on smaller devices.
Nostalgia.NES (Nintendo Entertainment System)
Just recently I have felt a strong urge to jump up and down, trample walking mushrooms, avoid flying bullets, and eat flowers. Because I do not own a Pegasus machine anymore and Nintendo did not release their awesome Super Mario Bros games on Android, I decided to emulate it. I've tried various NES emulators from the Play Store and Nostalgia.NES turned out to be the best option. It loads files in the blink of an eye and allows you to save your gamestate locally so you could pick up where you left off (or restart from the point when your jumping plumber still had three lives).
If you recommend any other great game emulators for Android, be sure to leave them in the comments below and we may add them to the post.