The rarity of the Bandai WonderSwan has led to a surge in interest among retro handheld gaming fans looking to experience these relatively obscure handheld games.
Emulation has emerged as the most viable solution for gamers eager to delve into the diverse library of titles that the WonderSwan boasts. Among the myriad options available, the quest to find the best WonderSwan emulator remains a subject of fervent discussion.
Some of these prominent emulators include ares, a multiple-system emulator that emulates both WonderSwan and WonderSwan color games on Windows. RetroArch is a versatile option that supports multiple platforms that offers the Beetle Cygne core for WonderSwan emulation. Another emulator worth considering is Mednafen, which boasts robust compatibility with WonderSwan Color games and also offers additional support for a wide array of classic consoles.
Here are our recommendations for the best WonderSwan emulators.
Best WonderSwan Emulator For PC, Mac & Linux
Introducing ares, the rad open-source emulator that’s a chip off the old higan and bsnes block! This bad boy is all about accuracy and keeping those vintage game vibes alive.
Ares is a multi-system emulator which also conveniently emulates the WonderSwan and WonderSwan Color magnificently well. But the great thing is, you’ll no doubt download it for the WonderSwan emulation, but you’ll benefit from a bunch more system emulators too.
Most of ares’ cores are fresh and original, with the project’s early days led by Near. There’s a small exception: the Nintendo 64 core’s graphics get their mojo from Themaister’s ParaLLEl-RDP Vulkan renderer and MAME’s software renderer. Oh, and they tossed in an Atari 2600 core later on for good measure.
WonderSwan emulation with Ares is excellent boasting the best compatibility around – 100%!
Not only does Ares emulate the original WonderSwan, but it does an equally grand job of emulating the WonderSwan Color.
Ares offers a multitude of features including:
- A native multi-platform UI
- Adaptive sync and dynamic rate control
- Save states
- Rewind and fast-forward
- Pixel shaders and color correction
- 6th-order IIR audio filtering
- Input multi-mapping
- Built-in games database
- Debug mode
Best WonderSwan Emulator For Android
The recommended way to play WonderSwan and WonderSwan Color games on your Android device is using RetroArch and the Beetle Cygne core, a standalone port of Mednafen WonderSwan to Libretro.
The best RetroArch WonderSwan emulator core is Beetle Cygne, it is super reliable and is easy to get up and running, simply install RetroArch, then download the Beetle Cygne core, then load up a WonderSwan game ROM and off you go!
The Beetle Cygne core supports a number of RetroArch features, including:
You can also benefit from the excellent RetroArch Shaders that are available as part of the RetroArch application, where you can simulate retro display effects such as LCD handheld and CRT effects, perfect for the finishing touches to your emulator experience!
Best RetroArch WonderSwan Core
If you are looking to use RetroArch on your PC, Mac or Linux machine, then you’ll be pleased to know that the Beetle Cygne WonderSwan emulation core is available across all versions of RetroArch.
Get all the same benefits listed above as well as any of the additional features when using the RetroArch desktop app.
Visit the RetroArch site and download RetroArch today via the below button.
A lifelong avid gamer and computing enthusiast, Matt has decades of Retro Gaming experience. Now over 40 years old, Matt now even considers himself retro, but fortunately, nobody has developed a Matt emulator (not yet at least!).