Arcade Game Emulators – Play games on your PC or Phone.

The Western Weekender has asked me to do a selection of articles on topics of interest to their readers. Arcade Game Emulators allow you to play old-style arcade games on your phone on your PC or Mac.

Last week, we covered emulating Android on your PC or Mac. Similarly, there are arcade game emulators to run your favourite games on your Computer or Phone. The use of emulators is completely legal; many games are covered by copyright, though in saying that, there are loads of public domain games that can be run on these emulators.

As we grew up, most of us had a game that defined our childhood. For me, that was playing Galaxian in the local milk bar. For you, it may have been an arcade game like Space Invaders, PacMan, SNES, Gameboy or a PlayStation. Most of these platforms have emulators that can run on Android or Windows.

Android Arcade Game Emulators

Arcade game emulators can run on your Android device (or last week’s Android Emulator). They are all available on the Google Play Store; these emulators include

  • ClassicBoy: Runs Playstation, N64, GameBoy, Sega Games
  • Dolphin: Runs Gamecube and Wii Games
  • DraStic DS: Nintendo DS Games
  • EmuBox Nintendo DS, PSX, SNES, Gameboy and NES
  • ePSXe and FPse: Playstation emulators

They are all easily and quickly set up and installed.

Mac, Windows and Linux Arcade Game Emulators

The most popular arcade game emulator for these devices is the Multiple Arcade Machine Emulator (MAME). MAME is free and open source. It recreates the feel of the arcade games, both old and new. It now supports over ten thousand games. There are many non-copyrighted or abandoned games that will run on MAME. A lot of them are well-known popular games. Many enthusiasts use MAME to build Arcade machines.

There is both a Command line version and a Windows Version. Choose the Windows Version called MAMEUI. Download both versions from Several copyright-free ROMs are also available from

Once installed, you can play these games on your PC or, perhaps like I did, build up an arcade machine or two. Building an arcade machine is a fun but challenging project that you can work on over a few weekends. They make a great centrepiece in any games room or man cave.

I have built up several arcade machines, a cocktail table machine (sit down) and a Lowboy (standup) machine. They do take a few weekends to build, but it was well worth the effort.

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