You remember back when you used to always play your Pokemon games on the long car rides down to Florida? For some of you, that could have been years ago, for others, maybe a week, I know I still do it. Well this App will let you do that again, without the need to bring along your Gameboy.
What does it do?
This App will allow you to load Roms of any Gameboy advance game so that you can play the game right on your phone. It will essentially give you access to the catalog of 949 games available on the Game Boy Advance.
Overall, I have found this app to run extremely well. I constantly use it on my Backflip, which is notably one of the slower Android phones on the market, and is still stuck on Android 1.5, but every game I have tried runs phenomenally well. The graphics are exactly like they were on the original Gameboy Advance so that really depends on which game it is you are playing. No game has ever frozen on me. The developer clearly put a lot of effort into making this app run just like the Gameboy Advance. In the Gallery below, you can see a few images of the App running to view the graphics for yourself.
offers a variety of different settings to help you make the most of your Gaming experience. In my opinion, the most useful settings to change are the input settings, which you can adjust depending how you intend to play the game. You can map the keyboard to choose which key corresponds to which button on the Gameboy Advance, which is very helpful if you are using a device such as the Game Gripper
. If you're phone does not have a physical keyboard or you just prefer not to use it, you can have it overlay a virtual keypad onto the screen. You can change the layout of these buttons as well as the size and transparency. You can also use your trackball, or in the case of the Backflip, the track-pad, as your D-pad. Another option for your input settings is a special input method, such as a Bluetooth game-pad, although I have not personally tested this so I can not comment on how well this works.
The are also other user settings, such as hiding the system notification bar while playing, or changing the orientation of the game screen. Also, it provides a link to a ROM search engine, which is very helpful to find games to play (NOTE: It is illegal to download and play a game that you do not own). You can also change the video and audio settings to improve the quality of the game, or the performance of the game.
If you want to pay the $2.99, you can get the full version of Gameboid
. The only feature that this offers over the lite version is the ability to save game states. This will allow you to save the game at any point, and re-load from right where you started off. In the Lite version, you will still be able to save as you normally would on a Gameboy Advance, by going to a save point in game or by opening up the menu and hitting save, or however it was done in a particular game.
This section was hard to write as there really are not many drawbacks I could think of for Gameboid
. The App was clearly very well developed and any bugs that may have existed early on are now fixed. One thing that annoys me is that it does not come with a GBA Bios file which is required to play games. However, if you open up "Help" from within the App, it will tell you how to get it. You can view this in the Gallery below. I am assuming it is not allowed to include the file for legal reasons. It also does not come with games but this is understandable as there are far too many to include them all and the App does include a search function to find ROM's to play.
Overall, I found this to be a wonderful app. This is probably my favorite app available on the Android market as while there may be a limit of good games available for android, this lets me play all of the games that I always loved. The performance on this is great even on my slower phone. It offers features found in all major emulators and over all, it's just an awesome app. I would recommend this App to anyone who likes any old Gameboy Advance game and if you like it, you could even spring for the full version.
Reviewed by Aaron Neyer
Used Motorola Backflip running Android 1.5