How can you play Super Mario kart, Final Fantasy 4, Street Fighter 2, and all the other games the Super Nintendo gave the world decades ago? You could buy a Super Nintendo. But it would be easier to get ZSNES. Then again, some people are not convinced that the ZSNES emulator is worth all the hype.

What is ZSNES?

A lot of people have fond memories of the ZSNES because it was such a big deal when it was first released. Developed by zsKnight and _Demo_ and released in 1997, the emulator was discontinued in 2007. 

Compatible with Windows, DOS, Linux, Xbox, and macOS, the emulator was eventually GPL’ed, with the source code finally becoming available to the public in 2001.

Zsens

Despite gaining popularity at a relatively rapid pace, ZSNES had a short life. It started falling out of favor in the early 2000s. People stuck with it for a while because it could emulate most SNES enhancement chips, though only to a certain extent. It was one of the first emulators to record this achievement.

However, even though the developers kept assuring their fans that the emulator was far from dead, development on ZSNES kept slowing until it finally stopped in 2007. 

During its heyday, critics loved the program. But it was heavily criticized in the years that followed for prioritizing speed and sacrificing accuracy in the process. As a result, it was saddled with a multitude of bugs. For instance, Super Mario RPG will freeze at different moments. 

Games like Mecarobot and Jurassic Park do not display correctly in v1.51. Star Ocean has crashing issues and Star Fox runs too fast. This is just a small portion of the glitches that people who use the ZSNES emulator have noticed. 

The ROM Hacks and tools that people developed using ZSNES are just as inaccurate. 

ZSNES Features

  • Written in x86 Assembly
  • Compatible with Xbox, Windows, Linux, DOS
  • Joystick Remapping
  • Bad Sound Emulation
  • Adjustable Screen Resolution

How To Install ZSNES?

Step 1. Download ZSNES from a secure source

Step 2. Extract the files from the zipped folder

Step 3. Run the executable file

Where to download ZSNES?

ZSNES Windows913.1 KB1.51
ZSNES DOS847.4 KB1.51
ZSNES LinuxMB1.51

How To Use ZSNES?

The emulator’s interface is straightforward. You can load games by simply going to the ‘Game’ option and then selecting ‘Load’. To configure your controls, you can go to ‘Config’ and then ‘Input’. You also have the option of using the ‘Cheat’ function to add cheat codes to a particular game. 

The emulator does an impressive job of recreating the experience you would normally encounter with the SNES. 

Conclusion

The ZSNES emulator has its charms. It is compatible with a decent collection of games and you can use cheat codes to make your favorite classic games even more exciting. However, it does not hold a candle to modern emulators because it was developed with speed in mind rather than accuracy, which is why it has so many glitches.

You can use it as a platform to test ROM hacking tools. But it cannot compete with recent SNES emulators. More than likely, the bugs you will encounter while gaming will frustrate you.

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