Ryujinx vs. OpenEmu: Which Emulator Is Right For You

In the world of emulators, there are plenty of different pieces of software to choose from. From open-source emulators and closed-source emulators to emulators for handheld consoles, your options really are limitless. Today, we’re going to be taking a look at the Ryujinx Emulator, a Nintendo Switch emulator, and OpenEmu, a rather unique emulator that actually covers numerous systems.


One thing that a lot of people find frustrating about emulators is the fact that most of them don’t work with macOS. While there are a lot of developers out there trying to push the boundaries, only a few emulators can be successfully used with the operating system.

Luckily, both Ryujinx and OpenEmu do blue the boundaries when it comes to the way that they have been developed.

Ryujinx Emulator

Ryujinx Emulator was first introduced to us back at the start of 2018, several months after development began. At first, it was only capable of running a couple of homebrew applications, but it could also handle a Puyo Puyo Tetris game. That isn’t to say it could initially handle it well, with a ridiculously slow frame rate…one that we would say was too slow for even tetris. 

Since then, Ryujinx has grown with numerous developers offering support in different areas. They work on audio, configurations, HLE, GPU emulation and more. Development isn’t finished either, with numerous developers still working on Ryujinx Emulator and ensuring that more games are available to those who use it.


OpenEmu is an open-source emulator, meaning that users are welcome to go in and modify the code as they see fit. This allows developers to add new cores to the system and plays a massive role in how versatile OpenEmu is when compared to other emulators.

We first saw OpenEmu released in 2007, back when it was called openwas. But, OpenEmu 1.0 wasn’t released until 2013. When it was released, it broke a number of perceived emulator boundaries, with cores that enabled it to emulate Nintendo, Sega and tabletop games. Since then, it has grown with more cores for Sony, Bandai and even GameCube.


Before you choose an emulator that suits your needs, you need to make sure that that emulator is updated regularly. Some emulators are created and left, but that leaves you very limited in what you can do when you do encounter problems. Luckily, both Ryujinx and OpenEmu have a full team of people working together behind the scenes. 

Ryujinx Emulator

With a skilled team working on Ryujinx, it’s easy to see how they manage to keep it so updated. They’re constantly working on new features that they believe will improve gameplay and fixing things so that more games can be accessed on the system.

In recent months, the development team have released audio rendering support, in-game video support, resolution scaling, a profiled persistent translation cache and more. Naturally, all of these things can be used to improve your own experience, regardless of what you’re playing.


When it comes to OpenEmu, one of the most important factors that needs to be taken into consideration at this point is the number of systems that it emulates. Over the years, developers have added the following systems to OpenEmu with the help of other open-source developers:

  • Atari 2600
  • Atari 5200
  • Atari 7800
  • Atari Lynx
  • ColecoVision
  • Famicom Disk System
  • Game Boy/Game Boy Color
  • Game Boy Advance
  • Game Gear
  • Intellivision
  • NeoGeo Pocket
  • Nintendo (NES)/Famicom
  • Nintendo DS
  • Nintendo 64
  • Nintendo GameCube
  • Odyssey/Videopac+
  • PC-FX
  • SG-1000
  • Sega 32X
  • Sega CD/Mega CD
  • Sega Genesis/Mega Drive
  • Sega Master System
  • Sega Saturn
  • Sony PlayStation
  • Sony PSP
  • Super Nintendo Entertainment System (SNES)
  • TurboGrafx-16/PC Engine/SuperGrafx
  • TurboGrafx-CD/PC Engine CD
  • Virtual Boy
  • Vectrex
  • WonderSwan

With OpenEmu, all of the different platforms are referred to as cores. With each new large update, we have seen different cores get added to the system.


Before you download either Ryujinx or OpenEmu, you need to make sure that your own gaming computer is compatible. Different emulators have different compatibility specifications, with some requiring stronger machines than others.

System Requirements

One of the best things about Ryujinx is the fact that it is compatible with most major operating systems. This means that you won’t have to worry if you are running a macOS. OpenEmu is a little bit different as it has been designed with a macOS in mind. 

If you’re wanting to use either of these emulators, we would always recommend having at least 8GB of RAM to ensure that everything runs smoothly. When it comes to processors, an i7 would be ideal. Essentially, the better your equipment is, the better your emulator is going to run.

Graphics Card Compatibility

When it comes to graphics cards, we would highly recommend investing in the best graphics card you can. For Ryujinx, you will probably need a NVIDIA GTX 1060 to make sure that most games run as smoothly as they can. Without that, you might notice that your emulator is struggling and your games are stuttering.

Remember that the requirements for running emulators are usually quite high. This is just because they are usually incredibly demanding, especially when you’re playing games that use a lot of your computer’s resources.


While choosing an emulator can be quite hard, we would always recommend taking into consideration the games that you want to play. If the emulator that you’re looking at can’t be used with them, you might want to look for another emulator. 

Ryujinx Games

When it comes to Ryujinx, some of the best games that are currently available on this Nintendo Switch emulator include:

  • Pokemon Mystery Dungeon Rescue Team DX 
  • Pokemon Quest
  • Mario Kart 8 Deluxe
  • Luigi’s Mansion 3
  • Super Mario Maker 2 
  • Kirby Star Allies
  • Team Sonic Racing
  • Final Fantasy XV Pocket Edition HD

OpenEmu Games

OpenEmu is quite unique when it comes to the games that are available because of the number of cores that there are. Some of the best games that are currently available include:

  • Super Mario World (SNES) 
  • Super Mario Kart (SNES) 
  • Super Mario All-Stars (SNES)
  • Final Fantasy 2 (SNES)
  • Sonic the Hedgehog (Genesis)
  • Ecco the Dolphin (Genesis)

The Overall Winner

For us, OpenEmu is the clear winner here, but Ryujinx is definitely an amazing option for anyone who is looking to play Nintendo Switch games. The thing that makes OpenEmu so impressive is the sheer number of cores that it has and the number of games that are available. For many of us, it offers the nostalgic throwback that we all crave from time to time.