to Prophet's Pocket
PC section of Retrogames! This section of Retrogames is
dedicated to these wondrous devices and the emulation projects
available for them. You'll find many interesting related links
here as well, so look around. And if you don't own a Pocket
PC, get one!
go to Pocketgamer.org
and it's superb webmaster, Mike Wagstaff, for many of the
links I've gathered here. If you know of new/other Pocket
PC emulation projects, PLEASE let
me know and I'll report it on our news page and add it
to this list ASAP. :)
Note: All emulators listed below are free unless
marked as *commercial*.
- Boris' arcade emulator for the Compaq
Aero (older Pocket PC), dedicated to old z80 and 8080
based games like Space Invaders. Although the author
now owns a Casio 505f, he has made the source code available
for any interested developers.
- Gandalf's Compaq
iPaq specific build of MAME.
Binaries and sources are available, however updates seem
This Emu also uses slightly older roms and uses older
samples sets before they switched over. However the only
games that are included (or should we say SWITCHED ON,others
are still there with some programming experience) play
almost perfectly or at least around 28-30FPS with sound
at 44khz, that was the reasoning behind they playlist
choice of games. Highly recommend this for those iPAQ
users out there!!! -WorldRave
- Lopantu's Laser arcade emulator was ported to the iPaq.
However, I can't seem to find the file... (?)
Since I have a 150Mhz Casio EM-500, Marconelly's MAME
port seemed the best one to try first. Here is a brief
history of MAMEBoy according to Marconelly himself: "Mameboy
is derived from Darren's MAMECE E10X, not MAMECE3 (With
a lot of Darren's help :) Darren's version is derived
from the initial Ben's MAMECE." As Johnny Carson used
to say, I did not know that. :) I downloaded the normal
1.3 build and tried a few games like Frogger, Galaxian,
Pooyan and Donkey Kong. Keep in mind the current MAME
ROMs aren't all compatible with MAMEBoy, so you might
need to find older 0.35 ROM sets for some games. But the
four I mentioned should work fine.
Setting up the executable is easy; one simply copies
the entire MAMEBoy directory (for your specific model)
to memory. The user interface is simple and functional.
You can turn sound on or off before launching a game,
filter your game list and a few other things. My one gripe
with MAMEBoy is that you must use the "record"
button to exit a game to the menu. But it also brings
up the Notes application, forcing the user to exit Notes
to get back to the MAMEBoy menu. According to Marconelly,
if one remaps the button to the Start menu, because it's
a WinCE 2.11 app, the emulator will cleanly exit back
to the MAMEBoy menu. But I kinda like using it for record...
Performance-wise, MAMEBoy delivers a very playable
experience with sound off for all the games I tried. Here
are some average approximate speed examples: Frogger 17fps,
Donkey Kong 25fps, Galaxian 17fps, Pooyan 23fps. Those
numbers reflect gameplay speeds at 100% or close to it.
Demo screens and intro displays often clock higher, but
even at 17fps gameplay looks surprisingly smooth. With
sound on, speeds take a dive. And the sound support appears
to be experimental anyway - it's often incomplete or sounds
Definitely give MAMEBoy a try if you own a Casio.
Overall it's amazing that MAME is even available on a
PDA! And the Casio screen and controls make it a pleasant
- Techmaster's famous port of MAME for Pocket PC's! Builds
are available for every Pocket PC CPU, and there are also
"MEGA" builds with many enabled
games added. :P Once again, check out the
MAMECE3 messageboard here at Retrogames, moderated by
10x - Darren Fink's MAME build for Casio Pocket
PC's. The web page appears to be down however. :(
Arcade Pack - A wickedly fast *commercial*
emulator written by none other than coding king, Larry
Bank! You might recall Larry's terrific free PC emulator
HiVE - well, this package was actually derived from
that project. While only 3 games (Pac-Man, Ms.Pac-Man
& Dig Dig) are included, the quality is rock solid.
Hopefully more work from the BitBank will show up on Pocket
PC's soon. Also, check out the Developer's
Corner with Larry Bank at the superb Brighthand.com
if you're inclined to learn Pocket PC game programming techniques.
Overall Rating: A
This emulation package costs $30. As stated above,
it includes only 3 games, but at least they're good ones:
Ms.Pac-Man & Dig Dig. No doubt that's
not many games. It would've been ideal if Galaxian &
Galaga were also included since Microsoft apparently has
excellent licensing relations with Namco. Had there been
more games in the package, I would have scored it an A+.
But the price and number of games is the only negative
- everything else is fantastic!
Larry Bank is a true master at squeezing performance
out of Pocket PC's. All 3 games run at 100% speeds, and
they quite simply look, sound and play like they do on
the real arcade machines. Except you can carry your Pocket
PC around with you. The user interface is attractive,
with a seperate motif for each game and the ability to
setup several options like free play, scoring, lives etc.
And yes, there is full save state suppirt as well.
For me, the money was well spent. These are real classics,
and they've been emulated perfectly on my Casio! Hey,
I'm happy. :) -Prophet
CE - Dato & Fitie's Pocket PC port of this Commodore
64 emulator. Note: the site's gone, but the files are
still available there for download.
CE - A *commercial* Palm OS emulator
by Conduits. It's reportedly slow and doesn't work with
all Pocket PC's. However, it's a good indicator of Palm
emulators to come, no doubt. ;) As a Pocket PC fan, I won't
say what I think of Palm OS devices, but I think it says
quite a lot when one PDA platform can emulate the other,
but NOT the other way 'round...
Spectrum Emulator - Sinclair Spectrum emulator
by TomTom. NOTE: This emulator is actually for Handeld PC's,
NOT Pocket PC's. It might still work, but I'm not
sure. So I've included it here just in case...
Pina - An Apple II emulator by Kitaro based on APPLEWIN 2.0 Project.
- Erik Chong's super fast Sega Master System & Game
Overall Rating: A+
CE/gg was the first emulator I tried on my 150Mhz
Casio EM-500, and in a way, that's a shame. Why? Because
Erik Chong's CE/gg is so darn good! This emulator ran
EVERY single SMS and GG game I threw at it, most of them
perfectly. Using a frameskip of 3, I also had full sound
and very smooth gameplay. Save states are fully implemented
and make games like Phantasy Star a true portable pleasure
to play. Sadly Erik has stated he no longer intends to
work on CE/gg, but as it stands, it's near perfect anyway.
If you have a Pocket PC, go download CE/gg immediately.
& Watch - Not really an emulation, but a simulation
of those Nintendo handheld games like Octopus and
Pocket - Mic's NeoGeo Pocket emulator. I *must*
try this soon since I own the real thing and love it! :)
CE - Kevin's Nintendo NES emulator. *Casio
Overall Rating: B-
NESCE is a very decent NES emulator, but it's still
in a preliminary state. Initially you're presented with
a nice looking image of a NES game pad, and you must map
your keys there. Unfortunately the mappings don't seem
to be saved, so you must do this each time you begin.
There are no save states either. The very few games I
tried played well enough with sound off, but with sound
on performance dropped big time. Hardly surprising. Overall
this emulator is worth trying, and could develop into
something great if the author gives it more attention.
I hope he does! -Prophet
FC - Alex Zhu's Nintendo NES emulator. *iPaq
GB - A *commercial* Nintendo Gameboy
GB - Aaron Oneal's *commercial* multi-console
emulator. So far it emulates Gameboy, SMS/GG, NES and eventually
actually several emulators in one. I purchased the Gameboy
module for $20. It supports Gameboy and Gameboy Color
games, and also gives you full use of a preliminary (i.e.
NES emulator. There is also a Sega SMS/GG module for another
$20, but I'm quite happy with CE/gg.
was a bit disappointed with PocketGB. The version I have
is 1.35, and my registration is good up till version 2.0.
So there is hope that things will improve. Had this been
a free emulator, I would've rated it much higher, but
when you pay for something, you expect more...
it's a good package. The user interface is very well done
and attractive. Unfortunately, it's also a bit buggy.
The emulation seems rock solid, running every Gameboy
game I threw at it. With sound on, you must use a lot
of frameskips to get good speeds, especially on more complex
color games. With sound off you'll still need to use quite
a few frameskips, though not as many. Overall gameplay
was decent. RPG's and puzzlers are great, but scrolling
games can get a bit choppy. I had expected a bit better
performance, but it's still pretty good.
is currently working on a TurboGrafx-16 module, one of
my favorite systems. I'd love to see that, but I'm not
sure my 150 Mhz Casio will be fast enough. Time will tell.
You can actually download PocketGB now as shareware, but
you'll only get 3 minutes of playtime - not really enough
to gauge the product in my opinion, but you can at least
try it a little that way. The good news is that PocketGB
is an active project, and hopefuly the author can squeeze
out more performance in future revisions. -Prophet
NES - Richard Rice's Nintendo
The best NES emu i've used yet!!! This emulator so
far has played all the games I own , and pretty fast.
Supports Save States! Save states DO come in handy! Highly
recommmended emu. Uses vitual buttons and joystick also
in combination with the buttons to make it playable for
all systems. -WorldRave