One of gaming’s first big rivalries was between the SEGA Genesis and the Super Nintendo Entertainment System (SNES). We know that Nintendo ultimately won the rivalry, but plenty of people still enjoyed the Genesis and there were plenty of great games for the system. If you’re aching for some nostalgia and the Genesis is your flavor of choice, we think you’ll enjoy the best SEGA Genesis emulators for Android! Please note that most of these should work with Mega Drive games and a few even work with SEGA CD, SEGA Mark III, and the SEGA Master System.
The best SEGA emulators for Android
Price: Free / $5.99
ClassicBoy Gold bills itself as an all-in-one type of emulator. It has support for PlayStation, Nintendo 64, NES, three different Game Boys, and the SEGA Genesis. The emulator seemed to work well in our testing. Additionally, most of the user reviews are generally positive. The features include local multiplayer support, customizable gamepad layouts, and the usual stuff like save and load states. It’s a great option for people who are looking for more than just SEGA Genesis emulators.
You can also try it before you buy it to make sure that it works. This one replaced the original ClassicBoy and the developer still has some wrinkles to iron out, but given the success of the previous one, this one should get fixed up eventually.
Lemuroid is an all-in-one emulator platform similar to RetroArch. Both use Libretro cores for emulation, meaning that both can emulate multiple systems. This one is a bit more user-friendly since the setup and UI are a bit cleaner. The emulator itself is pretty good. It supports hardware controllers, save states, load states, cheat codes, and stuff like that. It also features the same level of support as RetroArch since they both use the same SEGA emulator. It’s free, it works well, and it’s also nice if you decide to try out other systems.
Price: Free / $2.99
MasterEmu is one of the newer emulators on Google Play. This is a Sega emulator with Master Drive and Game Gear support. There are some interesting features with this one, including Android TV support, hardware controller support, excellent game support, and more. This is an early emulator from a new developer. Thus, there are some bugs here and there. However, with some time, this has the potential to grow into one of the best Sega emulators. There is a free and pro version, but the pro version is reasonably priced. We don’t have a lot of complaints about this one.
Price: Free / $4.99
MD.emu is probably the best solution for SEGA Genesis emulators. It’s an open-source project that most other SEGA Genesis emulators are based on. This one works with SEGA Genesis/Mega Drive games as well as SEGA CD and Mark III games. This makes it the most versatile emulator of the group. It also has the longest list of additional features, including hardware controller support, support for cheat codes, auto-saving, and support for various controller setups. It’s the one we’d recommend that you start with because it seems to be the most complete.
Retroarch is a multi-emulator app that supports dozens of systems. As you might have guessed, SEGA is one of them. The app supports Master Drive, Genesis, Sega CD, Game Gear, and 32X in total so it should work for pretty much all of your needs. It has configurable controls and the usual array of emulator features such as save and load states, cheat codes, and more. The compatibility is really good and this is a great option if you want to explore more than one emulator at a time.
It’s also open-source and completely free. The only downside is the learning curve. It will take you a while to figure out how to make this one work. However, once you do, you have a seriously powerful emulator on your hands since you can install many other systems using the same process.
Bonus: SEGA Forever games
Price: Free / $1.99 each (usually)
Here’s the funny thing. SEGA has launched a number of its retro games on Google Play. That includes games like Sonic the Hedgehog, Gunstar Heroes, Altered Beast, Streets of Rage, VectorMan, and dozens of others. These are official games by SEGA from the SEGA Genesis on Google Play. Thus, it is possible to play a lot of your old favorites without the need for emulation. The games all feature their original mechanics but have touch controls.
It’s a good way to support the retro-gaming community and encourage SEGA to keep up the good work. It’s worth checking Google Play for your favorite SEGA games because you may not need an emulator for them anymore. However, we do miss stuff like fast-forward support and save states on these official releases.