There are a few different Game Boy Advance emulators out there. The most popular one is called mGBA. It’s free and open source, which is always a bonus.
You can find the mGBA download page here. Scroll down to the “Downloads” section and grab the version of mGBA for your operating system.
Finding Game Boy Advance Games
Now that you have an emulator, you need some games to play on it. You can’t just download any old Game Boy Advance ROM from the internet, though. Those files are copyrighted, and downloading them is technically illegal.
There are a few ways to get your hands on some legal GBA ROMs, though. You can download freeroms from sites like freeromsdownload.com or roms-download.com or rip them from your physical copies of the games.
If you want to rip your games, you’ll need a particular cartridge that allows you to do so. These aren’t too expensive, and they’re easy to find online. Once you have one of these, you can follow a tutorial like this one to rip your own GBA games.
Installing The GBA Emulator
Once you have the mGBA emulator downloaded, installing it is a breeze. Just double-click the downloaded file and follow the prompts.
Once mGBA is installed, launch it, and you should see this screen:
You’ll see a list of all your installed Game Boy Advance ROMs on the left side of the window. If you don’t have any game ROMs yet, click the “Open” button in the middle of the window and browse to where you saved your games.
Setting Up mGBA Controllers
mGBA supports both keyboard controls and gamepads. If you want to use a gamepad, plug it in now and press the “Configure” button.
In the “Controller Configuration” window, ensure “Gamepad” is selected in the drop-down menu at the top. Then, press the buttons on your gamepad, and mGBA will automatically map them to the corresponding controls.
When you’re done, click “OK,” and you’re ready to play!
Launching Game Boy Advance Games In mGBA
To launch a game, double-click it in the list on the left of the mGBA window. The game should start up automatically.
If you want to change any settings before starting a game, click the “Config” button. This will bring up the mGBA configuration window, where you can tweak things like graphics and audio settings.
And that’s all there is to it! With mGBA installed and configured, you’re ready to relive your childhood (or play some classic games for the first time) by playing Game Boy Advance games on your PC.