Hands on with N64oid for Android

A friend of mine recently got a Samsung Galaxy S 2 smartphone, the latest and greatest in the Android world. Since it uses a lot of the same hardware as any Android tablet, I couldn’t help grabbing it to try out one of those emulators that I’ve written about being pulled from the Android Market. Having played Super Mario 64 on both my Nintendo 64 and Nintendo DS, I figured it was the perfect game to try on an emulator as well, so I downloaded N64oid from the third-party app store SlideME and loaded the ROM. The game played perfectly and while the screen was a bit cramped, I could even use the controls pretty well. The video above shows my first level playing the emulator, and as you can see and hear the video and audio worked pretty well. Some users have videos that show audio bugs when playing certain games, but I’m not sure if that’s hardware or the game itself that’s different from this one.

Emulators is a somewhat gray area since they require ROMs which are copies of game cartridges. Some countries classify the use of ROMs as illegal even if you own the original game, while other countries (e.g. Norway where I live) allow converting between formats for private use, a law that supersedes anything that e.g. Nintendo puts on their cartridge stickers. I have a stack of old games and no consoles to play them on which is why emulators interest me, though I don’t think I’d ever play through a full game on an emulator like that. I have good memories from playing games like Zelda Ocarina of Time, Super Mario 64, Banjo Kazooie, Advance Wars, Pokemon etc and it’s a pity that these games drown in a world dominated by practically identical first person shooters.

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Andreas Ødegård

Andreas Ødegård is more interested in aftermarket (and user created) software and hardware than chasing the latest gadgets. His day job as a teacher keeps him interested in education tech and takes up most of his time.

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