Are you looking for the best emulators for iPhone? Us too!
Android VS iOS.. the battle of the 21st century.
I am personally team Android… but I am also team MacOS for my computer, so what do I know really?
A quick Google search did prove that iPhone devices make up about 54% of the mobile market.
In gambling odds, that is a nice margin for the house.
With roughly 7 billion cell phone users in the world, that is approximately 3.75 billion people out there who are for sure looking for some good emulation programs to run on their iPhone.
(Because yes… we believe 100% of iPhone users are also retro game enthusiasts.)
So if you are one of the iPhone users in need of some mobile game play right on your phone, here’s our list of the best emulators for iPhone in 2023.
(In no particular order, cause sometimes ranking sucks)
Table of Contents
Eclipse emulator is one of the best for iOS, as it boasts the title of “The Unrevokable Multi-Emulator”.
The team over at Apple runs a pretty tight ship when it comes to what is allowed to be on the official App Store.
And a big problem for questionable apps is the dreaded “revoke”.
Which means Apple bans their app from the App Store, and people cannot download it through those means.
Many emulators will require some tinkering to get them installed.
So how does Eclipse work around the iOS limitations? Well, it’s actually web based!
That’s right, you can play your roms directly on any web browser on any device strong enough to support it.
Offering near perfect game play for NES, GB, GBC, and GBA games… the Eclipse emulator is perfect for Nintendo-heads, like myself.
And because of it’s easy access formula, Eclipse is easily one of the best emulators for iPhone in 2023.
Citra is a Nintendo 3DS emulator, which is actually not a very common console to find emulation for.
Because 3DS emulation is so new, not all games are gonna play perfect.
But the library of playable games is constantly growing and the team of dedicated developers make updates constantly.
Citra has ports available for Windows, Mac, Linux… and also has two new experimental ports for Android and iOS that are being tested.
So if you are a fan of the 3DS and have been looking for a way to play some of your favorite games on iOS, now is the time to try it out!
PPSSPP is the best emulation program currently available for playing Sony Playstation Portable games…
And needless to say, it also comes with an iOS port, making PSP game play easy on the iPhone!
The reason PPSSPP is the best program to play PSP games is because of the many enhancements for HD game play.
You can expect to run games at double the original resolution while playing on iOS!
So if you are the type of player who does not need an all purpose program, and just wants to get straight to the point to play PSP games.. this is gonna be the best emulator for you on iPhone.
Check out our list of the Best PSP Games while you’re at it.
iNDS is a Nintendo DS console emulator made for iOS.
The original iteration of the program was only available on jailbroken iOS devices, but the latest iteration works on just regular iOS devices.
The creators if iNDS have the parent application called iEmulators which works as the jump off point to get iNDS setup on your iOS device.
The iEmulators app also includes its own ROM search feature to make finding games super easy.
So the team behind the program has thought about how to work around the strict Apple limitations.
Okay people… by now, you are probably sick of hearing about it.
That’s right, it’s RetroArch, our number one favorite emulation program (not just for iPhone).
It made an appearance on our list of the Best Mac Emulators and the Best Emulators For PC, so you probably saw it coming.
We did say this list would be in no particular order, but sorry… RetroArch is numero uno.
The list of console support is constantly growing. Right now it includes NES, SNES, GB, GBA, Sega Genesis, Nintendo 64, Atari 2600, Nintendo DS, Sega Dreamcast, Sony Playstation just to name a few. It plays almost everything.
Many of the emulation programs developed for retro consoles are open-source and typically happy to allow their code to be reworked or repurposed in other programs.
So one of the main reasons you may want to just skip most of the solo-console type emulation programs is because RetroArch includes many of those all in one package.
If you have one specific console in mind, and there is an app for it… grab that. But if you want an all purpose gaming solution, RetroArch is easily the one for you.
And as you may have guessed by its appearance, it also has a full port to the iOS, making it the absolute best emulator for iPhone in 2023.
If we make a list of emulators, RetroArch will probably always take the number one spot. So this list is no difference.
Anyone looking to download the best Pokemon emulators for iPhone need look no further.
Delta brings tonnes of exciting features to the table (or your iPhone, in this case) including skins that turn your phone screen into a bonafide classic handheld.
Delta emulates all of our favourite old Nintendo consoles; we’re talking all the Gameboys from DMG to GBA, the SNES, and the mighty N64!
Ocarina of Time, Killer Instinct, Pokemon Gold, all from your iPhone.
And unlike the old days where I used to have to worry about batteries dying before I found a save point, players can make save states and sync them with the cloud wherever they are. Use cheats too to get the upper edge over those tougher levels!
And perhaps the best part about this app as that you just need to visit the AltStore – there’s no jailbreaking needed anymore!
Before Delta, the world as introduced to GBA4iOS. It’s an exciting program that feels very similar to its bigger brother and is super simple to both download and use.
If you’re playing Pokemon on this bad boy, then wirelessly connecting other iPhones to your emulator in order to trade and battle friends is a piece of cake too.
Like Delta, cheats and progress saves are welcome features. Just bear in mind that you’ll need to use Buildstore on older iPhones to be able to run GBA4IOS, so Delta should still be your go-to if you’re rocking a newer phone model.
If you want to play GameCube and Wii titles on your iPhone, then DolphiniOS could well be the best emulator for iPhone that you’ve read in this list so far.
I’m going to say this now though before I go on – don’t be trying to run this on an iPhone 4. GC and Wii games take A LOT of processing power, so we recommend that you have a newer model for the best results. It will work on Iphone 6 and up, but the faster your chip, the better the performance will be.
DolphiniOS is only for emulating Nintendo consoles, but are there really any other consoles that matter?
Contractually I have to say that there are, but we all know how I really think.
Add cheats, play online, and take all your favourite Nintendo games with you!
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Anthony has been a video game lover ever since he can remember. He became a fulltime nomad in 2018, living throughout most of Asia. He focused his passion in retro gaming and began creating a game for the Game Boy Color while living in Nara, Japan during the 2020 pandemic. He is now in Chiang Mai, Thailand, where he spends most of his time gaming, going on long walks and meeting as many stray dogs as possible.