Over the course of the last few months, I’ve shown MakeUseOf readers how they can individually emulate NES and SNES games using their desktop or laptop. If ZSNES and Nestopia don’t do the trick for you, I’m pleased to reveal that just recently I’ve come across what some may consider to be the emulator of all emulators - BSNES.
Traditionally, video game emulation on the computer means you’ll need to individually download the console (the emulator) and the games (the ROMs). BSNES strives to create a bridge between some of our favorite classic Nintendo consoles and make the emulation process much easier.
Not only does BSNES succeed in creating this all-in-one emulator, but BSNES takes an approach far different from the rest. The emulator focuses on truly emulating the actual experience that one would get from playing on the console. There are no extra measures taken to create forms of compatibility that may exist in other emulators, and the code is very clean. That being said, the minimum system requirements for BSNES are a little higher.
BSNES is an emulator with support for 8 consoles:
- Super Nintendo
- Game Boy
- Game Boy Color
- Game Boy Advance
- Super Game Boy
- BS-X Satellaview
- Sufami Turbo
The website includes binaries for both 32 and 64-bit Windows systems, and is open source to the Windows, OS X, and Linux platforms. The BSNES has been cited as being 100% compatibile with every SNES game ever released, and I’ve yet to run into any issues emulating games for the NES or Game Boy Advance.
The BSNES system requirements, as listed on their website, are as follows:
- Intel Core 2 Duo or AMD Phenom processor.
- Video card that supports Direct3D 9.0 or OpenGL 2.0.
- Linux port: hardware-accelerated video driver with OpenGL or X-Video support.
The interface is extremely clean and straightforward. To load a ROM, you’ll simply click into the Load menu and select which console you’re wanting to emulate. For Nintendo consoles, BSNES uses the traditional Japanese name (Famicon).
From there, it’s very simple. Just navigate to the folder where your ROMs are located and load the ROM of your choice.
Your game should load, just as beautiful and authentic as you’ve ever seen it.
As mentioned earlier, BSNES is all about a true emulation experiencing and preserving the old. BSNES includes different video filters and shaders by default. Remember having that crappy TV that always turned fuzzy and had scanlines? Even that can be emulated with BSNES.
BSNES includes most every feature of every other major emulator that you know of. You can completely tweak your video and audio settings, your input (with support of gamepads), driver usage, and more.
BSNES even has a Cheat Editor and State Manager, features that other SNES emulators will often leave out.
If you were a Nintendo kid like I was, this emulator is a dream to you. BSNES has a permanent spot on my desktop! If you’re interested in knowing how you can go about finding ROMs, check one of my previous emulation articles (like this one), as they explain. The BSNES, and any classic gaming preservation project, is something to truly appreciate. Let me know what you think of it in the comments.
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