In our previous blog – How to play GBA games online without downloading an emulator – we presented some of the best online GBA gaming platforms. But of course, you need an internet connection to play games online, which is not always convenient. In this blog, we will introduce you to the best GBA emulators that you can download on your Windows 10/11 computers to play your favorite GBA games offline.

best gba emulators for windows

In this guide, we will introduce you to the features, pros, and cons of each GBA emulator we have selected for you. So, grab your gaming gear and get ready because you are about to be overcome by the nostalgia of your childhood!

Best GameBoy Advance Emulators for Windows 10/11

Good GBA emulators allow you to play GBA ROMs, while the best ones not only allow you to play the ROMs but also save progress, customize controls, and even use cheat codes. Below you will find a list of the best GBA emulators for Windows:

  1. VisualBoy Advance Emulator – M
  2. NO$GBA Emulator
  3. RetroArch
  4. mGBA Emulator
  5. Mednafen
  6. RascalBoy Advance
  7. Higan GBA Emulator
  8. Boycott Advance
  9. BatGBA

VisualBoy Advance Emulator – M

VisualBoy Advance (VBA-M)is the best GBA emulator that lets you play Game Boy, Game Boy Color and Game Boy Advance games on your computer. Also, you can play Super Game Boy and Super Game Boy 2 games on VBA – M emulator. It is one of the most popular game emulators for GBA titles that lets you play retro games on your PC.

vba-m emulator


Some of VisualBoy Advance’s functions are:

  • Auto Fire: VBA – M allows the automatic firing of keys at intervals.
  • Cheats: VBA – M allows the use of cheats.
  • GameShark Support: VBA – M comes with built-in GameShark support.
  • Debugging: VBA – M supports advanced debugging options for game developers.
  • Speed Up: VBA – M can increase emulation speed with a single click on the spacebar.

vba-m emulator

Free and open-source GBA emulator
Known to have some bugs
Cross-platform availability (Windows, Mac OS, Android, etc.)
Default keys for Windows are complicated
Simple and user-friendly interface
Improper functioning of default keys
Supports a large collection of GBA ROMs
Allows saving the game at any stage
Supports joystick controls
Allows remapping of control keys
Low system requirements, runs on older or low-powered PCs

NO$GBA Emulator


NO$GBA, also known as No Cash GBA, is another free GBA emulator for PC available on the Internet. In addition to GBA games, the NO$GBA emulator also allows you to play commercial and homebrew Nintendo DS games.


  • Compatibility: NO$GBA is compatible with various Nintendo consoles, such as DS ROM, GBA ROM, and homebrew packages.
  • Multiplay Mode: NO$GBA supports multiplayer mode, which allows you to play with your friends.
  • Debugging: NO$GBA supports advanced debugging options for game developers.
  • Custom Configuration: NO$GBA lets you configure and optimize graphics, controls, audio, etc.


Free and open-source GBA emulator
No longer in development and support
Very simple interface and controls
Not all DS games can be played
Allows playing GBA and Nintendo DS ROMs
Allows saving and loading games at any time
Allows you to keymap control keys
Supports multiplayer games on PC



RetroArch is an arsenal of emulators that allow you to play retro games on so many platforms, including game consoles like GBA, GBC, PS2, PS3, PSP, PS Vita, Wii, Wii U, 2DS, 3DS, Switch and more! RetroArch is based on “Cores.” You can add the core of the emulator you want to play to RetroArch and play them without installing multiple emulators.


  • Cross-platform: RetroArch works on common platforms such as Android, Windows, Mac OS, Linus, etc. In addition, it allows you to play games from various devices such as PSP, PS2, GBA, 2DS, 3DS, and many more!
  • Highly Configurable: RetroArch has an advanced settings interface that allows you to optimize every possible option for running and displaying games. Moreover, it has a logical preset that sets the best possible settings for your device.
  • Automatic Controller configuration: RetroArch can automatically detect the connected gaming controller and configure the controls accordingly.
  • Cheats: RetroArch is equipped with cheat code functionality.


Free and open-source emulator
Very complex user interface
Allows saving and loading game progress
Setup takes a long time and is complicated
Supports cheats and hacks
Takes up too much space on the drive
Works on multiple platforms like Windows, MacOS, Android, etc.
Plenty of gaming cores are available
Gaming performance can be highly tweaked from the settings

mGBA Emulator


mGBA is another popular Gameboy Advance emulator for PC. It is a lightweight and fast GBA emulator compared to others. It also supports GameBoy and GameBoy Color games.


  • Multi-Window Support: mGBA supports multiple windows so that you can run multiple ROMs at once.
  • Speed Up: mGBA allows you to speed up the actions of the game using the fast-forward menu.
  • Load Game Patches: mGBA allows loading game patches to improve your gaming experience.
  • Cheat Codes: mGBA also supports most cheat codes without any problems.


Free and open-source emulator
Lacks advanced and additional settings
Allows fast saving and loading of games
The emulator has some bugs but is updated regularly
Works smoothly on Mac, PC, and Linux
Some cheats do not work
Simple controls and hotkey configuration
Supports cheat codes for most GBA ROMs
Works great even on low-end PCs



Mednafen emulator has the most badass name among all emulators available on the Internet. The acronym MEDNAFEN stands for “My Emulator Doesn’t Need A Frickin’ Excellent Name” It is a free, open-source, cross-system emulator that works flawlessly on most devices. Besides GBA ROMs, it also supports NES, WonderSwan, PC-FX, Sega Systems, Sony Playstation, etc. But it is also one of the most complex emulators unless you are a techie.


  • Create and Save Audio-Video Files: Mednafen lets you create and save audio and video files in QuickTime file format. It also supports a variety of lossless codecs, making the gaming experience even more flexible and customizable.
  • Hotkey Functions and Virtual System Inputs: Mednafen lets you map hotkey functions and virtual system inputs to a keyboard, joystick, or all at once.
  • Screen Snapshots: Mednafen lets you take snapshots that are saved in PNG file format.
  • Real-time Game Rewinding: Mednafen saves game progress in real-time and is stored in save states.


Extremely accurate and compatible emulator
Difficult and complex interface
Provides a very stable gaming experience
Command line interface is not suitable for everyone
Supports hotkeys and joysticks simultaneously
Settings and setup are insufficient or complex
Supports a variety of lossless codecs

RascalBoy Advance Emulator


RascalBoy Advance is a Windows GameBoy Advance emulator. This emulator can help you play hundreds of GBA ROMs with ease. With its multiplayer support, you can play together with your friends.


  • Multiplay Support: RascalBoy Advance has a multiplayer plugin that allows you to play with your friends on the same computer.
  • Cheat Codes: RascalBoy Advance supports cheat codes for most games.
  • Audio-Video Recording: RascalBoy Advance lets you save audio in WAV format and video in AVI format.
  • Developer Tools: RascalBoy Advance comes with hacking and debugging tools that let you manipulate gameplay.

rascalboy advance

Open source and free
Available only for Windows
Simple and clear interface
Some GBA games cannot be opened, "Corrupt file" displayed
Supports debugging and cheat codes
Built-in frame indicator
Supports multiple languages

Higan Emulator


Higan multisystem emulator available for Windows, Mac OS, Linux, and FreeBSD 10.0+. With the Higan emulator, you can play not only GBA ROMs but also Sega Genesis, Sega Master System, SNES, GameBoy, GameBoy Color, and many other ROMs. It supports over 10 game systems, including GBA.


  • Full-Screen Support: Higan emulator supports full screen mode without any glitches.
  • Multi-Emulator Support: In addition to GameBoy Advance, Higan also supports SNES, GameBoy, GameBoy Color, Master System, PC Engine, WonderSwan, and more!
  • Cheat Support: Higan emulator allows you to use cheat codes while gaming.


Open source and free
Setup is difficult and complex
Very accurate in dealing with GBA and other ROMs
The interface is not user-friendly
Supports a wide range of game systems
You have to download individual BIOS files
You have to assign controls for individual games
There is an issue with the music output

Boycott Advance

boycott advance

Boycott Advance is another GBA emulator developed by Lino Maglione specifically for the Windows platform. This emulator is able to run almost all GBA ROMs and also supports multiplayer games.


  • Supports Language Packs: Boycott Advance supports language packs like VisualBoy Advance.
  • Multiplayer Gaming: Boycott Advance allows you to play with your friends as it supports up to 4 players.
  • Wireless Joystick: Boycott Advance also supports external wireless joysticks for even more gaming fun.
  • Hacking and Debugging: It comes with a wealth of tools for hacking and debugging. This allows developers to improve the gaming experience.

boycott advance

Free and open source
Doesn't support sound
Very simple user interface
Glitches in the gameplay
Supports cheat codes
Built-in multiplayer support for PC
Allows key mapping



BatGBA is a simple and lightweight GBA emulator that lacks many advanced features and works well on low-end computers. It takes up very little space on your computer and runs almost all GBA ROMs available on the market.


  • Displays Frames Per Second: BatGBA shows you the frames per second and helps you monitor the performance of the game.
  • GameBoy Color Support: It also lets you play GBC games along with GBA games.
  • Stable, Reliable, and Smooth: BatGBA works on almost any hardware with great ease. It’s lightweight and doesn’t need many resources when running.


Free and open-source emulator
Lacks advanced features
Works great on low-end and old computers
Debugging tools are limited
Supports GBC games as well
No support for cheat codes
User-friendly interface with simple controls
Some games don't boot up
Allows remapping of keys and controls
Allows saving and loading

Which One is The Best GBA Emulator for PC?

8+ best gba emulators for windows 10/11

Playing GameBoy Advance games is quite easy with the best GBA emulators for Windows presented above. However, when testing each emulator, we liked the simplicity of the mGBA emulator the most. If you are looking for a simple but powerful emulator for your computer, mGBA is a good choice. Also, if you want to play other retro gaming systems on your PC, RetroArch is just great. With its ability to download multiple emulator cores, it’s a true arsenal of emulators you’ll ever need.

And for the overall experience, we would recommend VisualBoy Advance – M; it really is the best GBA emulator for PCs. It works best even on low-end PCs and is able to run all GBA ROMs just effortlessly.

FAQs About Best GBA Emulators for Windows 10/11

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Yes, most Game Boy Advance (GBA) emulators are available for free download and use. However, the legality of downloading and using ROMs (game files) is a separate matter and may depend on the jurisdiction you're in and whether you own the original games.

No$GBA, Boycott Advance, and RascalBoy Advance are the popular GBA emulators that supports multiplayer games on the same computer. They allow you to connect multiple emulator instances together to play multiplayer games using the "Link" feature.

Yes, you can save your game progress while using these GBA emulators. For example, VisualBoy Advance, No Casg GBA, RetroArch, and many other emulators in our list allow you to save your game progress at any time.

Yes, there are emulators that support controllers and joysticks and even allow you to remap the buttons to your liking. You can connect a controller to your computer and configure the emulator's settings to use the controller for gameplay. This allows for a more authentic and comfortable gaming experience.

Yes, you can take screenshots or record gameplay while using the above GBA emulators. Most emulators offer built-in features or hotkeys to capture screenshots during gameplay. Additionally, you can use screen recording software or game capture programs to record your gameplay sessions while using the emulator.

Yes, you can use cheat codes while using the above GBA emulators. Many GBA emulators provide built-in cheat code functionality, allowing you to input and activate cheats during gameplay. These cheat codes can provide various advantages, such as unlimited lives, extra items, or unlocking hidden features.

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