Play Nintendo 64 games in your browser using this new emulator

By on August 17, 2012, 11:30 AM

Many of us that grew up as gamers in the ‘90s still hold fond memories of what could easily be described as one of the greatest eras in video game history. Sony’s first PlayStation console was supposed to be a joint project with Nintendo to develop a CD-ROM drive for the Super Nintendo but the deal ultimately faltered over revenue disputes. Instead, Sony released their own PlayStation in 1994 followed by the Nintendo 64 two years later and the rest is history.

Those in search of a trip down memory lane might be interested in a new Nintendo 64 emulator developed by Paul Holden. The program uses JavaScript and although it’s still very raw, Holden says it works with a small number of titles including Super Mario 64. Users will need to load the emulator using Google Chrome or a Firefox Nightly build as these are the only browsers that currently have the necessary features to run the app. Furthermore, you will be responsible for supplying your own ROMs.

As you can see in the video above, it’s not perfect as the game seems to run extremely slow. This is likely a software problem as today’s computers should be able to handle mid-90s graphics with ease.

Neowin points out that you might recognize Holden’s name if you follow the emulation scene. He was the original developer of Daedalus, a multi-platform emulator that eventually morphed into an open-source N64 emulator for Windows and the Sony PSP following his departure with the project.




User Comments: 19

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SNGX1275 SNGX1275, TS Forces Special, said:

The biggest problem with emulators isn't really their reproduction of the game... its the controller. I know there are adapters for old school controllers to work on PCs, but most people don't have them. So trying to play Mario 64 on a keyboard, or some PS2esque PC controller just doesn't work. Need the same 'feel' of playing, and the controller is a big part of that.

alcarin2030 alcarin2030 said:

The biggest problem with emulators isn't really their reproduction of the game... its the controller. I know there are adapters for old school controllers to work on PCs, but most people don't have them. So trying to play Mario 64 on a keyboard, or some PS2esque PC controller just doesn't work. Need the same 'feel' of playing, and the controller is a big part of that.

Most people don't have $12?

Guest said:

Just plug in your PS3 or 360 game controller into your USB port and configure away!

TomSEA TomSEA, TechSpot Chancellor, said:

That's pretty cool. The N64 was the last console I owned and I played the hell out of it. Would be nice to relive some of those games.

Dukenukemx Dukenukemx said:

How's that a big problem? Just get yourself a universal adapter to plug in old game controllers. They sell them online, and as long as you have the original controller, then you can enjoy old school gaming. Only with better graphics and save states.

Littleczr Littleczr said:

Unless its and rpg! FF7 and FF6 ftw!

amstech amstech, TechSpot Enthusiast, said:

The biggest problem with emulators isn't really their reproduction of the game... its the controller. I know there are adapters for old school controllers to work on PCs, but most people don't have them. So trying to play Mario 64 on a keyboard, or some PS2esque PC controller just doesn't work. Need the same 'feel' of playing, and the controller is a big part of that.

You can buy SNES, N64, PS2 and several other gamepads using USB.

I bought 2 SNES USB gamepads for my ZSNES and they work great.

NoNamesLeft said:

Isnt this pretty much piracy?

killeriii said:

Isnt this pretty much piracy?

No.

Supplying the roms would be piracy.

slamscaper slamscaper said:

Emulators themselves are completely legal in every aspect. However, almost all the ROMs are copyrighted so it's illegal to obtain them for free. It's also illegal to sell or share ROMs without the consent of the copyright holder. Dumping ROM's yourself is legal, provided that you own the game in question.

There are a few older ROM's that can be legally downloaded by anyone. This is because the developer\publisher has released the copyright. The MAME developers offer these ROM's on their website.

I would love to see another great N64 emulator get released. Project 64 is decent, but there are quite a few games that just aren't emulated correctly. Mario Tennis is a great example. I've been wanting to play this game for ages, but every emulator available has issues with it (this is a tough game to emulate correctly).

Funnily, the excellent Dolphin emulator (mainly a Wii emulator) can emulate the N64 version of Mario Tennis perfectly. However, the Wii actually uses emulation to run N64 games, therefore Dolphin runs these games the same way. That essentially means you're running an emulator inside an emulator when you run N64 games on Dolphin, which means they'll run slow. Mario Tennis runs at 50%-80% speed, which makes it unplayable. So, I can run Mario Tennis at full speed with a ton of graphical errors (PJ64), or run it at 50%-80% speed with no graphical errors (Dolphin). Man, I need to just buy a Wii and be done with it, LOL.

Guest said:

If you have a moral objection to people downloading ROMs for games from 15 years ago, that are no longer for sale other than second hand on eBay for a few bucks (which the original developers wont see a penny from either) and that the people downloading most likely already bought and own or owned at some point then you need to get a life.

Guest said:

PS, 1964 is the best N64 emulator, slamscaper. Not sure if it plays Mario Tennis but it is much more mature than Project 64 was, and is still in active development.

slamscaper slamscaper said:

Actually guest, PJ64 has overtaken 1964 as the best N64 emulator. The latest stable release of PJ64 emulates more games than 1964, plus it's coded more efficiently.

PJ64 is also still under development. The PJ64 team has been working on v1.7 for a long while and they plan to release it in the future. A beta version can be downloaded from their site, however a donation is required.

Mario Tennis suffers from the same issues on 1964. This is because both emulators use a similar graphics plug-in. That said, PJ64 can be tweaked to minimize the graphical anomalies, while you just have to deal with them all when using 1964.

treetops treetops said:

For free legal roms go here, btw if that thing wont let you use a controller you can get a emulator here.

http://vimm.net/?p=vault

Game102 Game102 said:

Dumping ROM's yourself is legal, provided that you own the game in question.

While I don't care that you rightfully backup your copies, I just wanted to point this out.

That's a common misconception even if you have your own game, even if it's just one copy or "backup."

Even though each game manual legal information is different.

Nintendo even points out their issues of backups.

If you're interested just google "The nintendo legend of zelda minish cap pdf" then go to the last page there is a whole page dedicated to what I said about backups .

DKRON said:

didn't anyone else see the obvious massive lag with that video, would just give me a headache playing it at 5FPS

ANTIjailbreak ANTIjailbreak said:

if your a noob with emulaters they can be a real pain. iv pretty much only cared about putting epsxe 1.7.0 which is still the latest version. its really good and fun. my biggest deal with it at the end of setting it up was the controllers left analoge stick was not working. at the time I was trying to play a game that in my opinion is the best game ever. APE ESCAPE 1 on ps1. I dont think they call it rumble on pc controllers cause that what sony calls them if I remember right. I think rumble is what makes the analoge sticks work. pc controllers have a different name but the same feature. some of them at least. please correct me if im wrong.

Xenos1257 Xenos1257 said:

Project 64 is obviously the superior N64 Emulator out there, but I've been waiting 5+ years for the new version to be released, and I'm pretty convinced that all these years of waiting equals no 1.7 in the future.

q19pz q19pz said:

Guest said:

PS, 1964 is the best N64 emulator, slamscaper. Not sure if it plays Mario Tennis but it is much more mature than Project 64 was, and is still in active development.

PJ64 has some bugs that 1964 doesn't, but it doesn't make up for the 100000+ bugs 1964 has, and the original purpose of 1964, was for people with low PC performance, Project 64 was just a normal n64 emulator, and is compatible with almost any n64 game you play on it without difficulty.

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