After troubled development in the first years, Dolphin became free and open-source software and subsequently gained support for Wii emulation.
How to Use Dolphin on a Mac
Soon after, the emulator was ported to Linux  and macOS. Dolphin has been well received in the IT and video gaming media for its high compatibility, steady development progress, the number of available features , and the ability to play games with graphical improvements over the original consoles.
Audio was not yet emulated, and there were performance issues. Many games crashed on start up or barely ran at all; average speed was from 2 to 20 frames per second FPS. Its name refers to the development code name for the GameCube.
Dolphin: the Gamecube & Wii Emulator for Mac
Dolphin was officially discontinued temporarily in December , with the developers releasing version 1. As of February , the software was able to successfully boot and run the official Wii System Menu v1. Shortly after, almost all versions of the Wii system software became bootable. By April , most commercial games, GameCube and Wii alike, could be fully played, albeit with minor problems and errors, with a large number of games running with few or no defects. Adjustments to the emulator had allowed users to play select games at full speed for the first time, audio was dramatically improved, and the graphical capabilities were made more consistent aside from minor problems.
By late October , several new features were incorporated into the emulator, such as automatic frame-skipping, which increased the performance of the emulator, as well as increased stability of the emulator overall.
- Step 1: Download Dolphin.
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The emulator's GUI was also reworked to make it more user-friendly, and the DirectX plug-in received further work. On 12 April Dolphin 2. By the end of November , the developers had fixed most of the sound issues such as crackling, added compatibility with more games, and increased the overall emulation speed and accuracy. In June , version 3. The release notes state that the majority of games "run perfectly or with minor bugs. The 3. On 25 December , version 3.
On 6 April , the Dolphin development team released the first builds for Google 's Android mobile operating system. Games run at an average of 1 FPS. The developer has cited the Samsung Galaxy S4 as one of the first phones capable of playing games at higher speeds, but even it will have considerable performance limitations. On 22 September , version 4. On 12 October 4. The Dolphin Team explained this, stating that the plug-in was "inherently flawed" and that trying to evade its several flaws "wasted time and slowed development.
On 19 May , the Dolphin Team announced that bit support for Windows and Linux would be dropped. Furthermore, the vast majority of their users were already using bit CPUs, and most users of bit builds were bit compatible yet were using bit by mistake. The combination of these factors made bit support unnecessary.
Throughout , several features were implemented into Dolphin, including disc loading emulation, native support for GameCube controllers,  perfect audio emulation,  and bug fixes for problems which had been present since the emulator's earliest days. In August , the Dolphin developers announced further improvements with audio   and throughout December the Dolphin project fixed audio issues on TR Wii Remotes. On 24 June , version 5. Development of a Vulkan-based graphics renderer began in June In September , Dolphin's developers announced the emulator was now able to boot all official GameCube titles.
The last title to be supported for boot-up, Star Wars: The Clone Wars , had been particularly difficult to emulate due to the game's use of the memory management unit. In March , support was added for the Wii Shop Channel. Two experimental features, both of which never reached maturity, were removed in May Continuing this year's earlier work on graphics performance-related matters, Dolphin developers implemented a solution for the long-standing problem known as shader compilation stuttering.
The solution that the Ubershaders — in development since  — present to the problem was to emulate the Wii's and GameCube's rendering pipeline by way of an interpreter running on the host system's graphics processor itself until a specialized shader has been compiled and can be used for future frames, at a lower cost to performance. Support for Wii File System, an encrypted file system that was originally designed for the Wii U , was also added after a rigorous amount of reverse engineering.
In the first half of Dolphin's developers deprecated the wxWidgets GUI and replaced it with one based on Qt because the original GUI's limitations stood in the way of implementing new features.
Step 2: Configure the Controller
Features of Dolphin include the ability to start games regardless of region , record tool-assisted speedruns ,    and the use of cheat codes with Action Replay and Gecko. Two kinds of network play are supported by Dolphin: Emulated local multiplayer  and Nintendo Wi-Fi Connection.
It applies to games that by default have no online option. The second kind is for online gameplay for WFC supported Wii games with other Dolphin users as well as real Wii users. Game progress can be saved on virtual GameCube Memory Cards , emulated Wii flash memory , and save states.
- Play GameCube Games on Mac or PC.
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- Installing Dolphin Emulator on Your PC?
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Dolphin features a Memory Card Manager which allows transfer of save files to and from virtual GameCube memory cards. Like many other console emulators on PC, Dolphin supports arbitrary resolutions,    whereas the GameCube and Wii only support up to p. Dolphin can load customized texture maps. Dolphin can output stereoscopic 3D graphics on any platform Dolphin runs. Special hardware such as Nvidia 3D Vision is also supported. The ability to play games in stereoscopic 3D is a feature the original consoles never had,  although Nintendo did originally plan to release stereoscopic 3D add-on screen for the GameCube.
Additional features to further enhance the graphics quality are also available. Dolphin supports spatial anti-aliasing , anisotropic filtering , post-processing pixel shaders , and a widescreen hack for forcing widescreen output on games that do not support it natively. The Dolphin emulator has been well received by the gaming community, with the program's ability to run games at a higher resolution than the GameCube's native i and Wii's native p resolution receiving particular praise from the gaming community. Dolphin has been used by some people as a tool to mitigate certain shortcomings for gamers; in , business owner and father Mike Hoye, who had been playing The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker with his daughter and realized that the game referred to the main character as a male individual regardless of the inputted name, changed all of the game's cutscene dialogue text to refer to a girl instead of a boy by editing it through a hex editor, testing out the game's ISO using Dolphin.
A version of Dolphin made to emulate the Triforce arcade system titled Dolphin Triforce was in development by the Dolphin team, but was eventually disabled after development priorities shifted and the feature became unmaintained. The latest release is 5. The fork attempts to remedy performance problems present in Dolphin such as microstuttering due to shader compilation. For instance, you can add lots of cool additional enhancements like depth of field , ambient occlusion , various types of color correction and a whole lot more […].
It's also worth noting that this version of Dolphin helps avoid the shader compilation stutters that plagued the official release of the emulator and it leads to a much more fluid experience. As with Dolphin, development is hosted on GitHub. Official website. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Dolphin Dolphin 5. Windows 7 bit or higher OS X Yosemite Retrieved 9 June Emulation King. Retrieved 25 July Dolphin Emulator Project. Retrieved 7 July Retrieved 28 May Retrieved 25 November PC Magazin in German. Weka Media Publishing GmbH.
Retrieved 1 November PC Gamer. Retrieved 10 July Mayflash DolphinBar". Retrieved 2 July Retrieved 10 June Retrieved 13 April Nintendo Wire. Android Police.
Dolphin free download for Mac | MacUpdate
Future US. Retrieved 26 May It's really good". Retrieved 6 June This is because of an unprecedented level of accuracy, performance features, and enhancement capabilities. Much of the wisdom learned here can be applied to installation and configuration on other operating systems as well, and we even have an Ubuntu Linux installation guide here. When installing Dolphin Emulator, you have two options: Stable versions are released once every year or two, while Development versions can have multiple within the same day.
At the time of writing, Dolphin 5. Before we dive straight into configurations themselves, check if you have any of the following controllers on hand:. These profiles will support the following:. I highly recommend investing in actual controllers and adapters to play it all, though. Click here to download this configuration pack. Installation instructions are included.
Loading configuration files in Dolphin is fortunately pretty simple. Humbly speaking, I think mine are a pretty great place to start. V-Sync will reduce screen-tearing at the cost of some performance. Enable if you can handle that, otherwise leave it alone if it causes lag spikes in-game. Using Fullscreen will make your games automatically launch in Fullscreen. Internal Resolution corresponds to game resolution. I recommend starting at 2x Native as a baseline and moving up until you start seeing performance hitches. This will have the biggest effect on your FPS.
Anisotropic Filtering is pretty much free visual fidelity on PC. Set to 16x or 8x if that gives you performance problems. Ubershaders will add shader compilation to your initial game launches but will otherwise save you lag spikes in games that are prone to it, like Xenoblade or the Metroid Prime Trilogy.
Post-Processing Effects will add post-processing to your images.