Nintendo DS emulation is one of the most performant forms of emulation on Android. In comparison to other platforms, there’s a lot of DS emulators, and that’s why you’ll need to know the best Android DS emulator.
Keep in mind that the best Android DS emulator will be custom-built for DS games. If you also want to play Nintendo 3DS games, you’ll also need the best Android 3DS emulator. Of course, we have you covered there as well. (We also have the best Android PS2 emulator, just to say!)
Best Android DS Emulator: DraStic
As far as DS emulators on Android go, DraStic is by far the best option. However, the app is a premium experience which can be off-putting for some; go further down for a free alternative.
At $4.99, DraStic is still cheap, and it’s absolutely worth the price of entry. Not only is DraStic the best Android DS Emulator, but it has been for almost a decade. Despite being around for so long, it’s yet to be beat.
Released in 2013, this app changed the state of emulation on Android. Almost all Nintendo DS games run flawlessly outside of a few bad apples. Furthermore, the app can run on even low-power devices. That’s just a benefit of being around for so long.
DraStic offers a lot of options for those who like to tweak their emulation experiences. For starters, you can increase the resolution of 3D rendering in DS games. Additionally, there’s also save states, speed options, screen placement changes, controller support and game shark codes.
One major missing feature is multiplayer support. However, with most DS multiplayer servers now offline, you’re only missing local multiplayer.
Best Free Android DS Emulator: EmuBox
While DraStic might be our top pick for Best DS emulator, you might not want to spend anything on purchasing a premium app. For that reason, we’ve also included EmuBox.
EmuBox is free to download, and funded by ad revenue. This does mean that ads may display while it’s in use, something that some might find intrusive. This also means that the emulator can only be used on a device that is online, with is a bit of a downer.
While there are some negatives, there is a big positive to EmuBox. It is a multipurpose emulator, and isn’t restricted to only DS ROMs. You can run ROMs from several different consoles, including the original PlayStation and Game Boy Advance.
Will DraStic play 3DS or GBA games?
While DraStic may be the best Android DS emulator, it does not play anything other than that.
It’s also unlikely that any other platforms will ever be supported by DraStic. After being around for over nine years, DraStic updates are ramping down, and adding an entirely new system is far too big an ask for any emulator.
However, most emulators surrounding other platforms have beautifully made free options. You just won’t find that here.
Can I get DraStic for free?
DraStic is only available in a paid, albeit cheap, form. As the best Android DS emulator, DraStic’s asking price of a few dollars is absolutely worth the money. In fact, we’d even pay more for it.
However, not everyone will want to pay that entry cost. While there are always ways to get apps for free on Android, we will not tell you how. Instead, we would urge you to pay the few dollars in order to support the devs. After all, developing emulators is extremely hard work.