November 28, 2020

Official Citra 3DS Android port launched, bringing smoother emulation

The official Citra port for Android has a number of performance gains over unofficial ports.

Samsung Galaxy S20 Ultra Nintendo 3DS Emulation Super Mario 3D Land

Emulation is one of the coolest things about Android devices, allowing you to easily play loads of console games on your smartphone. Now, an official version of the Citra 3DS emulator has launched on the platform, allowing you to play your 3DS games on your phone.

You might be thinking that Citra already launched on Android a couple of years ago, but the Citra team noted on its blog (h/t: Android Police) this was actually an unofficial port. The team added that this version suffered from “quite a lot� of performance problems.

“This led to an increase in support and feature requests of the official team — who had nothing to do with that unofficial Android port. So while the team applauded the efforts of this developer, we had to deny providing support for it because it was unofficial.�

The team says they implemented a number of features to deliver performance gains, such as GPU emulation on one of the CPU cores, and OpenGL ES tweaks. Other general additions include gamepad support, the ability to use your phone keyboard in games that need it, motion control support, and camera/mic functionality.

The Citra 3DS team recommends a device with 64-bit Android Oreo support and OpenGL ES 3.2. More specifically, the team recommends a Snapdragon 835 device or better, while adding that performance also depends on GPU driver support. Here’s to chipset vendors and device manufacturers bringing regular GPU driver updates via the Play Store to improve performance as well.

We’re glad to see an official Citra emulator come to Android then, as this should mean better support and faster, bigger updates in theory. You can check out Citra 3DS for Android via the Play Store button below. 

More posts about emulators