The Nintendo Switch is by far one of the best portable consoles of this generation. Although it is a portable device, it rivals Playstation and Xbox in terms of popularity and sales. However, taxes, import fees and availability make it difficult for someone to buy a Switch console in some parts of the world. In such cases, Nintendo Switch emulators are the solution.
You can play Nintendo Switch games on PC and Android using emulators. Playing with a keyboard and mouse seems like a better alternative than dealing with the problems of the Switch joy-con. Nowadays, many emulators are available on the Internet, how to know which one is the best?
Here are some of the best Nintendo Switch emulators available today.
Best Nintendo Switch Emulators for PC
Yuzu emulator is by far the most popular Nintendo Switch emulator for PC. With it, you can also play almost any Switch game with an excellent performance rate. Yuzu was designed by the developers of Citra, a popular Nintendo 3DS emulator.
They even have a compatibility list so you can check the performance of your favorite games. It can be quite tricky for novice users, but you can get a handle on it after watching some online guides.
The Yuzu emulator is available for Windows and Linux and has very few bugs. Its popularity has even led to it being used as the basis for other emulators on this list. With the Yuzu emulator, it is possible to play games with a resolution of up to 4K with an adequate PC configuration.
The emulator even supports AMD and Nvidia graphics cards. But the main factor is that it supports heavy AAA Nintendo games with high compatibility. You can even play AAA games like Super Mario Odyssey and Legend of Zelda: BOTW.
-Better performance. -Free and open source. -Large library of games. -Stable. -Constant updates.
-Difficult to configure. Frame rate problems in high-end games or on low-power PCs. -Limited controller support. -Texture and rendering inconsistencies in some games (rare).
Ryujinx is another popular Nintendo Switch emulator for PC, known for being easy to use. It is available for Windows, Mac and Linux. Ryujinx is probably one of the best Nintendo Switch emulators for beginners. It can run major Nintendo Switch games at 60 FPS with the right hardware.
This emulator is probably the best option for beginners who don’t want a very technical configuration and want a simple and easy to use interface. There are more than 1000 games available; however, only some of them can work properly.
You can check the compatibility of these games on their website. Currently, this is the best and only option for Mac users. The developer, Gdkchan, also promises to add proper macOS support. Users can play games like Super Mario Odyssey, Animal Crossing New Horizons, Mario Cart 8 and Astral Chan on this emulator.
-Easy to install. User-friendly interface. -Integrated resolution scaling.
-Underperformance in some titles. Slow start-up for new users.
Although it is not precisely a Switch emulator, Cemu can run GameCube, Wii U and Nintendo Switch games. It was one of the first emulators to run Nintendo Switch games consistently. The developers frequently update the emulator, adding new features and improving performance.
You even have the ability to modulate these games directly from the launch settings, which can make the experience even more fun. You can play most games at 1080p/60fps. It has many advanced features such as graphics packs that allow you to play with mods, rendering quality, resolution, anti-aliasing, shading and various other settings.
Cemu is primarily a Wii U emulator, so don’t be surprised if it can’t run many Nintendo Switch games. It can run games like Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, Bayonetta 2, and Super Smash Bros.
-Advanced functions. -Can run WiiU and Switch games. -Mods. -Graphics packages.
-Complicated configuration. -The configuration of the controller is complicated. -Only some major Switch games are supported.
There are a few emulators that can run Switch games on your high-end Android phones. However, they don’t work well and require a lot of configuration, which is not worth it. We also have to warn you because they are a bit sketchy, like most mobile APKs.
The Skyline emulator is still an open-source Nintendo Switch emulator in development. It is built from the ground up and designed specifically for Android. At the time of writing, there is not much to say about this emulation program, as it is still under development. However, keep an eye on this one in the future.
You can download it directly from GitHub and try it. However, you may encounter only game crashes. The emulator can run games like Sonic Mania, Crash Bandicoot 4, Celeste and Hollow Knight.
-Excellent emulation. -Good support from developers.
This little Nintendo Switch emulator appeared last year and was apparently able to run some Nintendo Switch games. These games include Pokémon Sword/Shield, Super Mario Odyssey, The Legend of Zelda: Link’s Awakening and Pokémon Let’s Go.
As you would expect from a mobile emulator, it cannot run these games properly. It supports 81 playable games, of which only a few are currently playable. The biggest red flag is that the emulator uses a subscription model to give users access to the application.
Another drawback is that it might be in violation of the MIT free software license because it uses code directly from the Yuzu emulator. You can watch the video above to learn more. Users must also use Nintendo-style controllers to play video games on this application.
The app is even blocked by Google Play Protect because it can collect data that can be used to track you. In short, we do not recommend using this emulator at all.
How to emulate Nintendo Switch games on PC and Android?
Emulating Switch games on PC and Android can be complicated because it requires technical knowledge. It is not easy for beginners, but some emulators have set the entry level relatively low.
Yuzu is the best Nintendo Switch emulator available. After testing all the emulators, we found Yuzu to be the most stable, with an extensive library of compatible games. On the other hand, Android emulation is a bit difficult because its hardware is severely limited. Even the highest-end smartphone will have low FPS issues and bugs.
We hope you were able to find the best Nintendo Switch emulator for you to enjoy the latest games.
Are Switch emulators illegal?
Most emulators fall into a legal gray area, but any form of emulation is completely legal. Whether it is Yuzu, Ryujinx, Cemu, or any other emulator, they are all legal. You can download emulators legally without worrying. However, downloading and playing a game through ROMs is considered illegal.
What is the best emulator for the Nintendo Switch?
Yuzu, Ryujinx and Cemu are the best emulators for the Nintendo Switch. Egg NS is also a good alternative for Android emulation.
Is Yuzu better than the Nintendo Switch?
Depending on your hardware, the Yuzu emulator may be better than the Nintendo Switch. There is also the fact that you can customize your graphic settings and add mods to your game.