Sony’s PlayStation Portable remains one of the greatest handheld gaming systems ever. It packed stunning 3D visuals and console-quality titles into a slick, portable device. Now thanks to the wonders of emulation, we can enjoy PSP classics on our Android phones and tablets. But which emulators actually do the PSP justice? Let’s rank down the top PSP emulators available on Android!
Kicking off the list we have the legendary RetroArch. This open-source emulation front-end allows you to download “cores” that replicate vintage game systems. The PSP core leverages PPSSPP’s code for excellent compatibility. Beyond just playing titles, RetroArch opens up enhanced graphics settings, save states, cheat codes, and much more. While complex, it’s a powerful all-in-one solution for mobile classic gaming. With over 40 million downloads, RetroArch has earned its reputation.
2. Rocket PSP Emulator
Don’t let the generic name fool you – Rocket PSP Emulator is a respectable choice for Android. Built in C++, it uses OpenGL for smooth graphics rendering while supporting Vulkan. The minimalist interface is easy to use with good layout options for external controllers or touch. Rocket doesn’t have the most advanced features, but it nails the basics. For casual on-the-go PSP gaming, Rocket hits the spot with its low footprint and solid performance.
Brought to you by the same devs as RetroArch, Lemuroid delivers excellent unified emulation. The benefit? Lemuroid downloads optimized “cores” for each system like PSP that emulate hardware with precision. The PSP core leverages PPSSPP’s excellent codebase. This means you get great performance and high compatibility without RetroArch’s complexity. One purchase unlocks multiple perfect emulators for vintage systems. That premium quality makes Lemuroid worth the price.
As an all-in-one option, ClassicBoy emulates over 20 retro systems including PlayStation Portable. The PSP performance is quite good, and the app has useful features like save states and customizable touchscreen controls. External gamepads are also supported if you prefer physical controls. While not the most accurate PSP emulation available, ClassicBoy offers an appealing package for gamers who also want to play Game Boy, SNES, Genesis and more on their phone.
Don’t let the cute canine name fool you – behind the corny branding, CorgiDS is a surprisingly capable PSP emulator for Android. It uses the same core code to also emulate Nintendo DS games. While the DS support needs work, CorgiDS handles less intensive PSP games pretty well. The clean UI and material design look great too. For running simpler PSP titles on the go, CorgiDS is an approachable pick that brings some charming personality.
6. PPSSPP Gold
This official fork of the popular PPSSPP emulator is optimized for Android and mobile GPUs. Gold uses Vulkan for buttery performance and boasts HD rendering at 2K/4K resolutions. Of course, you’ll need a high-end device to benefit. But on phones with Snapdragon 835 and up, Gold makes PSP games shine. Thanks to continual improvements, it just keeps getting better. For peak PSP gameplay on premium Androids, PPSSPP Gold is ideal.
7. Matsu Player
Buzz keeps building around this scrappy underdog. Matsu Player started as a fork of open-source PPSSPP, but now includes custom speed hacks and optimizations tailored for Android. The result is silky smooth PSP emulation that exceeds official PPSSPP. Dynamic resolution scaling also adapts for optimal visuals during action scenes. While still rough around the edges, Matsu Player’s stellar performance establishes it as a top mobile PSP emulator.
Don’t overlook this indie emulator – MagicPlay can run even demanding PSP games at full speed on Android thanks to dynamic recompiling. Optimized runtime environments for popular titles like God of War and GTA provide further speed boosts. Everything just feels faster and more responsive. Combined with intuitive touch or controller support, MagicPlay delivers an uncompromising PSP experience. The premium version’s extra features make it a steal.
Okay, I know what you’re thinking – this is a PlayStation 2 emulator! But hear me out – AetherSX2 utilizes PCSX2’s code, which itself can emulate PSP flawlessly. So with the proper bios and settings, AetherSX2 becomes an incredible PSP emulator. The extra effort involved is rewarded with phenomenal performance, upscaling, and compatibility. If you want the very best PSP experience on Android – no compromises – look no further than this unexpected option.
Drawing on the Nintendo 64 emulator Daedalus, DaedalusX64 expertly replicates the PSP environment with incredible accuracy. The result is games running just as smoothly as they did on real PSP hardware – if not better. Yes, it’s a more demanding emulator requiring a higher-end phone. But for pixel perfect PSP emulation on Android, DaedalusX64 simply can’t be beat. Its steadfast dedication to perfecting PSP on mobile secures it the top spot.
And there you have it – the best PSP emulators available today for Android devices! Our options have expanded greatly, moving beyond just PPSSPP. Passionate developers are leveraging mobile hardware in creative ways to bring PlayStation Portable games to life on phones and tablets. No matter your device, there’s a solution for on-the-go PSP fun. Which emulator do you rely on? Let me know in the comments!
Harfoo is an avid retro gamer and Android enthusiast. He loves discovering new emulators and reliving his favorite childhood games on mobile. Harfoo has extensively tested all the top PSP emulators for optimal performance across Android devices. He hopes his guides will help fellow classic gaming fans play their cherished titles on the go.