How to Play NES ROMs on PC and Android

6 Min Read
Play NES ROMs on PC and Android

Remember the days when you blew into cartridges, jiggled them just right, and crossed your fingers, hoping your NES would load your favorite games? Well, say goodbye to those struggles, because in this article, we’re going to show you how to play NES ROMs on your PC and Android devices, bringing a wave of nostalgia and gaming joy back into your life. Plus, we’ll explore the vast world of NES ROMs, including new ROMs, Nintendo ROMs, DS ROMs, and the best methods to NES games download.

What are NES ROMs and how to play on PC and Android

Before we dive into the ‘how-to,’ let’s understand what NES ROMs are. NES, short for Nintendo Entertainment System, was a revolutionary gaming console released in the ’80s. ROM stands for Read-Only Memory, which refers to the data stored on game cartridges. NES ROMs are essentially digital copies of these game cartridges, which can be played on a variety of platforms.

Setting Up an Emulator

The first step to playing NES ROMs on your PC or Android device is to install an emulator. An emulator is a piece of software that replicates the hardware of the original console, allowing you to run ROMs on your modern devices. There are numerous NES emulators available, and we recommend popular choices like Nestopia, FCEUX, or RetroArch.

Installing on PC

  • Download Your Emulator: Start by visiting the emulator’s official website and downloading the latest version for your operating system (Windows, Linux, or macOS).
  • Setting Up: Once downloaded, install the emulator following the on-screen instructions. You may need to configure the controls and video settings to suit your preferences.

Installing on Android to Play

  • Get an Android Emulator: Head to the Google Play Store and search for NES emulators like NES.emu, John NES, or RetroArch.
  • Install and Configure: Download and install your chosen emulator, then follow any setup instructions provided. Configure the emulator settings as needed.

Downloading NES ROMs

Now that you have your emulator set up, it’s time to find some NES ROMs to play.

Where to Find NES ROMs

  • Legal Sources: Some websites offer NES ROMs legally, often as part of bundles or promotions. Keep an eye on Nintendo’s official site or authorized retailers for such opportunities.
  • Public Domain ROMs: Some NES games have entered the public domain, which means they are no longer under copyright protection. You can find these legally and for free on various websites.
  • Community-Maintained Databases: Some enthusiasts maintain databases of homebrew games, fan-made games, and ROM hacks that can be legally downloaded.
  • Backup Your Own Cartridges: If you own physical NES cartridges, you can create ROM backups using specialized hardware and software. This is a legal way to obtain ROMs for games you own.

Playing NES ROMs

With your emulator and ROMs in hand, it’s time to play some classic NES games on your PC or Android device.


  • Load ROM: Open your emulator, go to the File menu, and select “Open ROM” or a similar option. Locate the NES ROM file you downloaded and select it.
  • Customize Controls: Configure the controls to your liking using the emulator’s settings. Most emulators allow you to map keyboard keys or even connect a game controller for an authentic experience.
  • Start Playing: Once everything is set up, simply click on the game title, and you’re ready to go. Enjoy your NES gaming experience on your PC!


  • Load ROM: Open your emulator app, and you’ll usually find an option to browse for ROMs. Navigate to the folder where you saved your NES ROMs and select the one you want to play.
  • Customize Controls: Similar to the PC, configure the on-screen controls or connect a physical game controller to enhance your gameplay experience.
  • Start Playing: Tap on the game title, and you’re ready to immerse yourself in the world of NES gaming right on your Android device.

Exploring New NES ROMs

While the classics are timeless, there’s a world of new NES ROMs out there to discover. Fan-made games, ROM hacks, and homebrew creations can provide fresh experiences in your favorite retro format. Websites and forums dedicated to NES emulation often host these gems, so don’t hesitate to explore and try out some of the latest offerings.


With the knowledge of how to play NES ROMs on your PC and Android devices, you’re now equipped to embark on a nostalgic journey through the golden era of gaming. So, fire up your emulator, load your favorite NES ROM, and let the gaming nostalgia wash over you once again!

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