Arcade emulators

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Revision as of 19:55, 5 January 2015 by Jackos (talk | contribs) (Added consoles and mobile tables.)
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Example of a Ms. Pac-Man arcade cabinet.

Arcades are not a single console, but rather hundreds of separate arcade system boards. Most arcade emulators focus on emulating many systems in one program, with some focusing on a few systems, and others attempting to emulate every system.

Emulators

PC
Name OS Version # of systems emulated Libretro Core Recommended
MAME Windows, Linux, OS X 0.213 ? ✓*
Final Burn Alpha Windows 0.2.97.29 ?
DICE Windows, Linux, OS X 0.9 18
Supermodel Windows, Linux, OS X 0.2a 1 (Sega Model 3)
Raine Windows, Linux, OS X 0.63.10 1058
Kawaks Windows v1.63 3 (Neo Geo, CPS1, CPS2) ?
Model 2 Emulator Windows 1.1a 1 (Sega Model 2) ?
CPS3 Emulator Windows 1.0a 1 (CPS3) ?
DEmul Windows 0.582 ? ?

*as MAME (0.157), MAME 2010 (0.139) and MAME 2003 (0.78)

Consoles
Name OS Version # of systems emulated Libretro Core Recommended
UO CPS1PSP PlayStation Portable 2.3.1 1 (CPS1)
UO CPS2PSP PlayStation Portable 2.3.1 1 (CPS2)
UO MVSPSP PlayStation Portable 2.3.1 1 (Neo-Geo)
UO NCDZPSP PlayStation Portable 2.3.1 1 (Neo-Geo CD)
Mobile
Name OS Version # of systems emulated Libretro Core Recommended
MAME* Android 0.157 ?
Mame4droid Android 1.6.1 ?
aFBA Android 2.1 ?

*Only available on mobile as a libretro core (e.g. RetroArch).


Comparisons

  • MAME is very extensive, with the majority of arcade system boards from the 70's, 80's and early 90's supported. Do not expect support for more recent boards, such as atomiswave. MAME focuses on accuracy and archiving arcade games, which means it does not always focus on usability for the end user. Only the most up to date romdumps will work in the latest MAME. There are many MAME front-ends available.
  • Final Burn Alpha supports a few boards, such as Neo Geo, Capcom CPS1-3 and a few others. It is very good for the boards it supports. Rumor has it that Neo-Geo X system in fact uses FBA.
  • DICE is made for emulating old arcade machines from the early 70's at a very high level of accuracy. Since these machines had no CPU, the emulator instead emulates discrete logic components in the circuit board. This method is very system-intensive, and getting full speed requires at least a mid-range gaming PC along with the 64-bit version of the emulator.
  • Supermodel emulates Sega's Model 3 arcade platform focusing in accuracy. Presently, Supermodel is in a very early "alpha" stage of development, meaning it lacks many planned features. It does not yet have a user-friendly graphical interface, game compatibility remains low, and all CPUs are emulated using straightforward (and slow) interpretation rather than fast just-in-time translation.