It's hard to believe that Nintendo's Game Boy is now over 30 years old. Like the Sony Walkman, it was a device that defined a generation, letting them play Tetris, Super Mario Land, and The Legend of Zelda: Link's Awakening wherever they wanted. It also paved the way for modern hand-held gaming, from PokÈmon on a smartphone to the success of the Nintendo Switch and even Valve's hugely hyped Linux handheld, the Steam Deck. What's even more remarkable is that the CPU in the Game Boy was based on the humble Z80, with only 8KiB of internal memory expanded by the ROM cartridges and a screen resolution of 160x144 pixels. Despite this, the playability of many of its games still stands up, all these years later, which is of course why we have emulation.

SameBoy is a Game Boy emulator that's easy to use and presents all the options you'll ever need. It's also authentic, sticking with the super low resolution of the original display, which can look comically pixelated on today's screens. However, SameBoy can also emulate the later Game Boy Color console, which modernizes things a little and requires very few resources from a modern system. It's also easy to use. You simply drag and drop the game you want to play into the main window and SameBoy will react just like the original console. You can change the graphical scaling algorithms, the keyboard and joystick input assignments, and the audio quality. There's even an option to mix background interference into the audio, just like on the original, and the entire experience feels very accurate. If you've not played with a Game Boy for a couple of decades, SameBoy is the perfect excuse to give it another try.

Project Website

SameBoy features a rollback mode, letting you replay the last several seconds to avoid making a mistake.

Buy this article as PDF

Express-Checkout as PDF
Price $2.95
(incl. VAT)

Buy Linux Magazine

Get it on Google Play

US / Canada

Get it on Google Play

UK / Australia

Related content

  • Free Software Projects

    DJs don’t need expensive decks now that Mixxx offers a competitive computer-based alternative. The Liquidsoap programming language provides a fully automated approach to generating flexible streams.

  • Anki

    Anki brings a virtual flash card box to the desktop. Thanks to a useful collection of add-ons, you can adapt Anki to suit your needs, making it one of the most efficient learning tools.

  • Steam Deck Linux-Powered Gaming System Set to Take Over the Handheld World

    A Linux and KDE-powered portable gaming platform is set to be released by Valve.

  • FOSSPicks

    Graham looks at Gimp 2.10, Font Finder, Mixxx 2.1, SoundStage VR, VVave, and more!

  • FOSSPicks

    This month Graham looks at Ardour, FluffyChat, PlugData, Cameractrls, hiSHtory, CadQuery Editor, and more!

comments powered by Disqus
Subscribe to our Linux Newsletters
Find Linux and Open Source Jobs
Subscribe to our ADMIN Newsletters

Support Our Work

Linux Magazine content is made possible with support from readers like you. Please consider contributing when you’ve found an article to be beneficial.

Learn More