Are you looking for an excuse to play Halo at work or Minecraft on the train? Sounds like you need the best emulators for original Xbox to help you procrastinate!
Retro Dodo has become the go-to place for emulator tips and tricks in recent years. We’ve covered the best PS2 emulators, the best N64 emulators, and even the best Nintendo Switch emulator programs on the internet.
It would be rude to leave the original Xbox out, wouldn’t it?
Whether you’ve got an old PC or a brand-new Mac, we’ve got an emulator for you, with tonnes of games available to play on each. You could almost say that there’s something for everyone here, and you’d be right.
Enough chit-chat; let’s jump right into this list and check out the creme de la creme of all emulators for original Xbox!
**PLEASE NOTE – This article is purely for the scientific, inquisitive minded, and**
brainiacs of the gaming world and should be treated in the same way as a legendary scroll obtained from an NPC in a mysterious cave. Retro Dodo does not condone illegal downloading or any other dark arts that might get anyone (namely us) into trouble. Please check the legality of ROM downloading in your region. Always follow government guidelines on both internet safety and copyright laws.
Table of Contents
- Windows 8 or above
If you’re looking for an emulator that produces graphics so close to the original Xbox that you could be playing on the console itself, then Xenia is one of the best original Xbox emulators out there.
Xenia is a kick-ass emulator, just like the Warrior Princess it so nearly sounds like. While one wears a lot of leather, the other is just an emulator. But it plays all your favourite emulators flawlessly, so that’s a bonus.
So how does it all work then?
Well, it’s written in Python, C, C++, and Assembly. All you’ll need is 2GB of RAM and either your controller or keyboard, and you’re good to go!
Producing results comparable to the graphics of the original Xbox, Xenia is regarded by many as being the best of the best Xbox emulators on the internet.
- Windows, MacOS, Linux (Ubuntu) compatible
Xemu is up next, a reliable program that works on Mac, Windows, and Linux.
Over 79% of the best original Xbox games work on the program. That’s surely enough to keep you going for a couple of years before you get bored!
We like emulators that receive regular updates here at Retro Dodo. It doesn’t have to be every other day; all we ask for is at least a couple of times a year!
Xemu last received an update on October 11th at the time of writing and has a full list of playable games available on the Xemu website!
Let’s jump on board for another open-source emulator in our best original Xbox emulators list.
Most Xbox games for both the original Xbox and the Xbox 360 work for this programme. The main drawback is that it won’t work if you don’t have a fast enough PC.
Make sure you have Windows 7+ x64, otherwise you’re going to be crying into your keyboard.
There are currently 166 games available to play on the emulator. You might not think that’s very many, but don’t forget that this is a free program which is updated and worked on by devs for free.
Speaking of updates, it gets them regularly too. The last update was in November 2022, which is a month ago at the time of writing!
4th place in our best original Xbox emulators goes to Xeon, commonly known amongst Xbox fans as the Halo NTSC emulator.
Why is that, I hear you ask?
Well, the emulator only plays one game, and it’s the NTSC version of Halo.
I read on one website recently that this was the best emulator for only running Halo NTSC, which is like saying jam is the best and only three letter spreadable substance for spreading on your toast.
Still, if you love Halo more than life itself and want an emulator dedicated to it that will run on low-spec PCs, then today will truly feel like Christmas Day!
- Windows, MacOS, Linux
- Open Source
That name sounds very similar to Xemu, right?
Well, Xemu was an offshoot of XQEMU. This open source emulator allows users to play both Xbox and Sega classics in one place.
The games compatibility list isn’t massive, but the graphics are good and you don’t need the type of super computer that you’d find at CERN to be able to run it.
It works well on all low-end computers, but the audio remains pretty bad on any system.
Why have I included this emulator? Well, it has the potential to be brilliant but just needs a little helping hand. Head over to the page and give some support; let’s hep XQEMU live!
This article may contain affiliate links. If you use these links to purchase an item we may earn a commission. Thank you for your support.
Seb Santabarbara has bought every Nintendo console that has ever been released in his 33 years on Planet Earth. His favourite game franchise is Zelda, and he’s patiently waiting for Banjo-Kazooie to come back to the fold. When he’s not playing games, he’s travelling the world in his self-converted camper van.