Sega Dreamcast on Your Android Smart Phone Anyone?

Who wants Dreamcast games on their Android smart phone?

Nothing says geek like emulating old console games on another device and given Android’s reputation as the smart phone platform of choice for those who like to tweak and hack, it comes as no surprise that a Sega Dreamcast emulator is very much in the works for the operating system. Successful emulation normally requires a device running 8-12x faster than what is being emulated and given the Dreamcast’s 200 MHz processor and 100 MHz graphics card, I doubt that this will be a problem. Don’t worry, the team behind the Android port of the nullDC Dreamcast emulator already has made substantial progress if you’re desperate to play Panzer Dragoon Saga on the train to work.

Sega Dreamcast BIOS booting on Android OS through nullDC:


As you can see, the emulator is still in the very rough stages (creator drk|Raziel admits that his Android port of nullDC is still in alpha testing and design). The video shows nullDC running on an overclocked Samsung Galaxy S Captivate. Expect large speed improvements to come as the engine is optimized for smart phone hardware.

I also have another video for you. This one shows nullDC actually playing a game on an Android smart phone. Enjoy!

Android version of nullDC running the Dreamcast game Power Stone:

See how awesome the emulator is running already? Most early versions of emulators incorrectly display three dimensional graphics and have visible artifacts popping up everywhere. drk|Raziel helped write the original version of nullDC—which is one of the best Sega Dreamcast emulators available—so it comes as no surprise that the Android version is working so well already.

On his blog, drk|Raziel’s most recent post states that he is done with the “initial porting” of the emulator and is looking for a tablet to use to work on the user interface. Right now, the UI is pretty rough obviously but that doesn’t affect actually playing emulated games. He also doesn’t want to announce a release date yet, but from the progress he has shown off on his blog, things look to be rolling along quite well.

Will you be playing Sega Dreamcast games on your Android smart phone once nullDC is ready for release? How well the Dreamcast’s controls translate to touchscreen only phones? Lots of questions to work out but for those who just absolutely have to have a Dreamcast emulator on their Android phones, nullDC is shaping up to be a viable option.

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