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Emulation (Games) Classic Games (Games) Handhelds Hardware

NES Emulator for iPhone Emerges 111

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the from-the-depths-of-the-lake dept.
An anonymous reader writes "The first emulator for iPhone, iPhoneNES has been released. It run very slow, and has no sound, but hacker NerveGas has managed to modify the source to release an optimized version that is playable. " My favorite bit is that your controller is a clickable picture of the NES controller. Not exactly the ideal UI but still an amazing accomplishment.
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NES Emulator for iPhone Emerges

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  • The Real Question... (Score:5, Interesting)

    by jellomizer (103300) * on Tuesday August 07, 2007 @10:42AM (#20142645)
    How do you install it on the iPhone. Or is this an Ajax app?
    • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

      by dakameleon (1126377)
      Search around for all the info on Jailbreak, or the iphone-dev wiki.
    • by wannasleep (668379) on Tuesday August 07, 2007 @10:55AM (#20142813)
      Basically you have to connect the iphone to a computer, run a program called jailbreak that makes the file system readable and writable. Then you just copy files here and there on the iphone. Turn off and on and you will have an icon to the emulator on your screen. More details: you take the files in the zip and install them into the directory /Applications, you add the application to the list of applications to be shown on the screen by editing a file called DisplayOrder.plist, and finally you chmod +x the NESApp.
  • Why not iPhoNES (Score:1, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward
    Seems quicker.
  • by Anonymous Coward
    I have heard that the iPhone changes the CPU frequency depending on usage; anyway 600 MHZ (maximum) is a lot for a hanheld device.
    My Nokia N800 Internet Tablet has a CPU half the speed (320MHZ) and manages to do things at a reasonable speed.
    • by Anonymous Coward
      I remember being able to use some NES emulators back in the day on my AMD K6-2 333. Meanwhile, others would be dog ass slow on my newer Athlon 600. Hell, they'd be dog ass slow on my XP 1500+. :p

      Can't say I've ever programmed an emulator, but from what I can tell, there's either a good number of people out there who don't know what they're doing, or it's very easy to bork something and cause horrible performance.
      • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

        by Ailure (853833)
        You have to remember that the faster emulators tend to be either inaccurate, such as the old infamous nesticle emulator. or use lots of low-level tricks such as ZSNES (which kinda also locks them into one platform). Some emulators where close to perfect accuracy is the goal is also some of the slowest, at least in the NES emulation scene.
    • by Wicko (977078)
      My old Pentium 200mhz can handle Zsnes, although its not perfectly smooth, but definitely playable. I'd imagine the iPhone has difficulty because emulation is not the only thing its doing.
      • IIRC Zsnes is written heavily in x86 asm plus it uses hacks to get certain games to run faster.
        • by Wicko (977078)
          Programs would be coded in the iPhone's own assembly language, wouldn't they? Probably not as fast as x86 asm but still, NES should not be a problem at all.
    • by feijai (898706)
      The N800's OMAP2420 has twice the cache, among other things, than the iPhone's S36400. I suspect that half the clock speed doesn't mean half the chip performance here.
  • Looking at the video, I imagine the controls would absolutely suck.

    Just buy a DS instead for games:/
    • My guess would be people who have an iPhone...
      • by rolfwind (528248)
        One of the reasons to get excited about the iPhone was, despite being a hybridization of devices is that it does its many tasks well unlike all the devices that came before it.

        But this is not one of those tasks. It's hard to enjoy a game when the control is less than adequate. I think I rather play a game designed for touchstream (why not, DS has that too -- could be done for iPhone) than trying to clunk through a game designed with a physical controller in mind.
    • Yes, nice accomplishment indeed.

      It seems that, for any device that comes out these days, we first see the NES emulator, then other emulators. This is then followed by ports of Doom, Heretic, Hexen, and maybe Duke3D. This is then followed by Linux, Quake, and Descent. It's only after all that do we see actual new things being made for a platform.

      I swear, some people have nothing better to do but port old games to every platform imaginable.
    • Obviously, what is needed is a Bluetooth gamepad.
  • Interesting... (Score:2, Interesting)

    by chadwik01 (1124433)
    Seems like a good idea but I can't imagine trying to play NES with that small of a controller. I think it would be strange on a touch screen. Button mashers sure would be fun though.
    • by CastrTroy (595695)
      I can't imagine playing a video game without having actual tactile feedback on the buttons. I think this would suck in a big way. It's a nice little hack, but I can't seriously see this being any fun. First, if you put your thumb on the screen, then it would immediately interpret a button press. but if you don't put your thumbs on the top of the screen, then it's probably going to fall out of your hands. also, telling what buttons/directions you're pressing would be quite difficult without continually m
      • by pragma_x (644215)
        I disagree. I wouldn't expect the control scheme to be any less distracting than a classic gameboy.

        But you have to admit, at least the iPhone is multi-touch capable. If it had the touch capability of, say, a blackberry, this would have been a huge waste of time; imagine trying to play with a caps-lock style button mode.

        As for grip, I could easily see myself resting my thumbs elsewhere on the device when not pressing a button, cradling it with my fingers.
        • by darthflo (1095225)
          Um could you point me to whatever Blackberry has a touchscreen or isn't able to process more than one simultaneously pressed key?
          • by pragma_x (644215)
            My bad... I was thinking more about PDAs in general; Blackberries seem to be the most ubiquitous at the moment. I completely forgot that the Blackberry has a full QWERTY keyboard on it. :(

            Perhaps a more fair explanation as to how important multi-touch is, would be to try to play an NES game on a PalmPilot using *only* the stylus.
            • Perhaps a more fair explanation as to how important multi-touch is, would be to try to play an NES game on a PalmPilot using *only* the stylus.
              How hard is it to tap a cartoon duck with a plastic stick so that the dog doesn't laugh at you?
    • The Game King can play NES and GB/GBC games. It is also a 1GB Portable MP4/MP3/FM/Voice/Camera/JPEG/TXT W/SD Slot AND 2.3'' LCD for $70

      GAMEKING-II [geeks.com]
    • by noTe (1139513)
      I'm sure it would be better if you held the phone in the landscape position and had the control pad on the left side and the A/B buttons on the right side similar to a PSP or old Game Gear.
    • The nes and snes emulator for PocketPC had the same type of input method. It works well for some types of games like RPGs, and very badly for "action" games that require multiple buttons to be pressed at the same time.
  • by noSignal (997337) on Tuesday August 07, 2007 @10:56AM (#20142823)
    I'm pretty sure I had one... [wikipedia.org] the phone reception sucked, but the sound worked and it had a brilliant UI.
    • by Zekasu (1059298)
      Where's the touch screen, and where's the ... Oh, I don't know, NES emulation?
      • by tepples (727027)

        Where's the touch screen, and where's the ... Oh, I don't know, NES emulation?

        Right here: nesDS [pocketheaven.com]. If you have a DS but don't run homebrew, you can buy a Games n' Music card and use the "DLDI-Capable Devices" instructions.

        ObTopic: I have a phone to make calls. I have a DS to play games.

        • by edwdig (47888)
          nesDS does a really bad job of emulation. It seems to have horrible graphics issues in most games (as in your backgrounds come out as garbage or your sprites are missing).
      • I think the parent meant to link to this obscure [wikipedia.org] product.
    • i think it has [benheck.com] been done before.
    • by ImaLamer (260199)
      You forgot to mention it was the top selling consumer electronics device of all time (my favourite GameBoy tidbit).

      (And no I'm not British, favourite, Firefox just thinks I am during spell checks. And btw: Firefox isn't a word based on their dictionary)
  • looks cool, but I'll keep my TI-89 version thank you.
  • Now, if that loser who runs vNES can get it working on the iPhone. (Disclaimer: I'm that loser and iPhone doesn't have java.)
  • WOW! (Score:4, Funny)

    by Clockwurk (577966) * on Tuesday August 07, 2007 @11:13AM (#20143087) Homepage
    Now the iPhone is like a smartphone from 3 years ago!
  • Eh... (Score:3, Funny)

    by iamdrscience (541136) <michaelmtripp&gmail,com> on Tuesday August 07, 2007 @11:18AM (#20143159) Homepage
    I can't imagine playing NES games on the iPhone would be much fun. I'll buy that the tactile sensation of real buttons is unnecessary for dialing a phone or browsing a web, but it seems like it would be essential for playing most fast-paced games like most NES titles. So for the benefit of iphone users and software developers, here is a non-exhaustive list of what the iPhone is and isn't:

    The iPhone is...
    • A phone
    • A music player
    • A very nice mobile web browser
    • Expensive
    • Shiny
    The iPhone is not...
    • A video game platform
    • The dawn of a new revolution of electronic communications which will render all devices before it obsolete and bring eternal enlightenment to all those who lay their eyes upon its glory.
    • by tepples (727027)

      The iPhone is not...
      • A video game platform
      Then how can we get a video game platform that runs *n?x [wikipedia.org] into the hands of English-speaking customers?
      • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

        by dreamchaser (49529)
        Why does it matter what OS a handheld gaming device runs? It's an OS, not a religious text...oh wait this is Slashdot...my bad.
        • by tepples (727027)

          Why does it matter what OS a handheld gaming device runs?
          Because the operating system for every handheld gaming device other than GP2X is intended to lock out hobbyist developers and microstudios. And because handheld devices that run *n?x are on-topic in this article, as iPhone runs a derivative of Mac OS X.
          • by prockcore (543967)

            Because the operating system for every handheld gaming device other than GP2X is intended to lock out hobbyist developers and microstudios.


            Yeah and the iphone is just so open. what?
    • by AndersOSU (873247)
      The iPhone is not...

              * A video game emulation platform

      I see no reason why games designed for the iPhone couldn't catch on.
    • I disagree (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Brigadier (12956)


      The iPhone is a rectangular 115 x 61 x 11.6 mm touch sensitive screen, WiFi, 8 GB of memory a reasonable amount of processing power on a fairly common OS. The truth is you can use it for whatever is applicable. It also supports USB so you can plug almost anything into it. Steve Jobs isn't stupid he has a platform that can be adaptable for many things.

      Video, Audio, Data Sharing, Communication, Interactivity the list goes on.

      Shoot My palm I use as a web browser, video game console, organizer, music player fl
    • by Firehed (942385)

      The iPhone is not...

              * A video game platform
              * The dawn of a new revolution of electronic communications which will render all devices before it obsolete and bring eternal enlightenment to all those who lay their eyes upon its glory.

      Fine, I'll give you it not being a game platform. But my right pocket, at least, is feeling pretty enlightened, thank you very much.
    • What about a DS emulator ? It would make perfect sense with the touchscreen interface !
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by thedbp (443047)
      this post requires a "short sighted" mod. Its been out just a hair over a month ... And the 3rd party app scene is already bustling. Just because you dont have an ounce of imagination or innovation in you doesnt mean that someone else couldn't look at the platform and devise a way to make it work, and work well.

      It amazes me how the only people who are voiciferously negative about the iphone are the ones who haven't actually used one... As for myself, having used one extensively, I can absolutely see the pot
      • by k8to (9046)
        Rumplestiltskin!
      • I'm not saying that there isn't a lot of potential in the iPhone as a platform, I'm just saying that for this particular use, it's less than ideal. There are plenty of other apps that I imagine would be great.
      • by Slashcrap (869349)
        this post requires a "short sighted" mod. Its been out just a hair over a month ... And the 3rd party app scene is already bustling. Just because you dont have an ounce of imagination or innovation in you doesnt mean that someone else couldn't look at the platform and devise a way to make it work, and work well.

        Yes, that's right. It was Apple's imagination and innovation that caused them to lock down the iPhone to prevent 3rd Party apps being run on it.

        Of course, I'm sure you would say that Apple applied on
      • I haven't seen an iPhone, much less bought one, but I do have experience with games on phones. On my samsung (which has tactile buttons), I got several arcade games with the actual roms (Pac-Man, Joust, Galaga). Unfortunately, they were almost unplayable due to the small screen and buttons being too close together. Still, I think the idea is cool. And Chessmaster 9000 works just fine on it.
      • by Nazlfrag (1035012)

        And the 3rd party app scene is already bustling.

        Which would be nice if Apple supported such a thing, which they don't. Meanwhile, there are plenty of mobile devices with APIs that encourage 3rd party development. Sure, people can develop wonderful 3rd party tools for the iPhone, but until you have the blessing of Apple I wouldn't boast about it too loudly.

    • "The dawn of a new revolution of electronic communications which will render all devices before it obsolete and bring eternal enlightenment to all those who lay their eyes upon its glory."

      Actually, that is exactly the new marketing slogan Steve Jobs is rolling out this week...
    • by J44xm (971669)
      The iPhone is a very viable gaming platform. Just not for games like "Super Mario Bros."
  • I can't wait until they can support gun-based games with the multi-touch interface. Touch the duck to shoot it! I'll show that smartass dog what's what...
  • bluetooth (Score:4, Interesting)

    by mzs (595629) on Tuesday August 07, 2007 @12:28PM (#20144177)
    The iPhone has bluetooth, maybe it will be possible to use a separate fold-out bluetooth keyboard for things like this and the terminal emulator.
  • In the youtube video, he is using the B button to jump. That's wrong. It's the A button.

    http://www.consoleclassix.com/gameinfo_smario_ne s.html

  • now if we can just get my cruddy old nes to emulate an iphone. =)

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