Nintendo Gamecube/Wii (Dolphin)¶
A Nintendo Gamecube/Wii emulator for Android, Windows, Mac and Linux, written in C++.
The Dolphin core is licensed under
A summary of the licenses behind RetroArch and its cores can be found here.
- OpenGL/Open GL ES 3.0 or higher for the OpenGL renderer.
- Vulkan for the Vulkan renderer.
- Direct3D 11 for the Direct3D 11 renderer.
For running properly, the Dolphin core requires to have the Dolphin
in the proper location.
After downloading the core within RetroArch, execute the following steps:
Installing from the 'Core System Files Downloader'¶
If your frontend version has
Main Menu > Online Updater > Core System Files Downloader then that's the easiest solution, just download 'Dolphin.zip' from that menu and you're all done!
Installing from the 'Content Downloader'¶
If your frontend version has
Main Menu > Online Updater > Content Downloader:
- Inside the 'Content Downloader' menu, select 'Nintendo - GameCube - Wii' and download 'dolphin-data.zip'.
- Navigate to your frontend 'downloads' folder, if the download finished properly you should see a new 'dolphin-emu' folder inside.
- Now simply move that 'dophin-emu' folder to your frontend 'system' folder and you should be good to go!
Installing from the GitHub repo¶
Get a copy of the Dolphin
Sysfolder. This can be done by downloading the
current source code. We provide two methods: one using Git and one without.
- If you have Git (if not, see the next option)
Just clone the most recent version of the code by running:
git clone --depth=1 https://github.com/libretro/dolphin.git
- **If you don't have Git **
You can download a zip file of the source code with the following URL:
You can then extract it.
- If you have Git (if not, see the next option)
After getting the code, enter in the folder containing it.
Sysfolder you need is located in Data/Sys.
This is the folder we will need to move/copy.
- Find RetroArch's system folder path
Unless you customized your installation, the RetroArch configuration path is
the one listed in the
If you didn't change any value, the system folder is:
If you changed the default directory configuration, you should check the
system_directory option in the RetroArch configuration file (usually
retroarch.cfg) to see which folder is used.
- In the
RETROARCH_SYSTEM_FOLDER, create the dolphin-emu directory and
Sysfolder within it.
Sys folder should be placed at a location similar to:
There is also currently a bug with this core and the GL driver that can be worked around by going to settings > user interface > show advanced settings ON and then going to settings > core > allow cores to change the video driver OFF.
The Dolphin core will now work without issues.
The (optional) BIOS file goes in the directory
retroarch/saves/User/GC/<USA or EUR or JAP>, with the file name
IPL.bin for all regions. It is not necessary to provide a BIOS for most games, but certain titles (particularly those which make heavy use of the system fonts, like Star Fox Assault) can be unplayable without it.
Content that can be loaded by the Dolphin core have the following file extensions:
RetroArch database(s) that are associated with the Dolphin core:
Frontend-level settings or features that the Dolphin core respects.
The Dolphin core's library name is 'Dolphin'
Geometry and timing¶
- The Dolphin core's core provided FPS is 60 (for NTSC) / 50 (for PAL)
- The Dolphin core's core provided sample rate can be either 32000 Hz or 48000 Hz depending on user configuration
- The Dolphin core's base width is dependent on the 'Internal Resolution' core option
- The Dolphin core's base height is dependent on the 'Internal Resolution' core option
- The Dolphin core's max width is dependent on the 'Internal Resolution' core option
- The Dolphin core's max height is dependent on the 'Internal Resolution' core option
- The Dolphin core's core provided aspect ratio is 4/3.
When the 'Language' core option is set to automatic, the default Dolphin language setting will be pulled from RetroArch's Language setting.
Disabled by default.
Dolphin's OpenGL renderer can be used by setting RetroArch's video driver to gl.
The common option for all operating systems is OpenGL, requiring hardware that supports OpenGL/Open GL ES 3.0 or higher. It is an older, pre-Vulkan API, slower than Vulkan but with better compatibility. If you encounter problems with other APIs, try this one.
Dolphin's Vulkan renderer can be used by setting RetroArch's video driver to vulkan.
This is the latest and fastest API currently. It is most recommended for demanding less of your CPU, thus being the fastest.
Dolphin's Direct3D 11 renderer can be used by setting RetroArch's video driver to d3d11.
In some cases Direct3D 11 may offer better performance than OpenGL, especially on integrated Intel graphics.
The Dolphin core has the following option(s) that can be tweaked from the core options menu. The default setting is bolded.
- Renderer [dolphin_renderer] (Hardware|Software)
- Internal Resolution [dolphin_efb_scale] (x1 (640 x 528)|x2 (1280 x 1056)|x3 (1920 x 1584)|x4 (2560 x 2112)|x5 (3200 x 2640)|x6 (3840 x 3168))
- Widescreen (Wii) [dolphin_widescreen] (ON|OFF)
- WideScreen Hack [dolphin_widescreen_hack] (OFF|ON)
- Shader Compilation Mode [dolphin_shader_compilation_mode] (sync|a-sync Skip Rendering|sync UberShaders|a-sync UberShaders)
- Wait for Shaders before Starting [dolphin_wait_for_shaders] (OFF|ON)
- Progressive Scan [dolphin_progressive_scan] (ON|OFF)
- PAL60 [dolphin_pal60] (ON|OFF)
- Max Anisotropy [dolphin_max_anisotropy] (1x|2x|4x|8x|16x)
- Skip Presenting Duplicate Frames [dolphin_skip_dupe_frames] (ON|OFF)
- Scaled EFB Copy [dolphin_efb_scaled_copy] (ON|OFF)
- Force Texture Filtering [dolphin_force_texture_filtering] (OFF|ON)
- Store EFB Copies on GPU [dolphin_efb_to_texture] (ON|OFF)
- Texture Cache Accuracy [dolphin_texture_cache_accuracy] (Fast|Middle|Safe)
- GPU Texture Decoding [dolphin_gpu_texture_decoding] (OFF|ON)
- Fast Depth Calculation [dolphin_fast_depth_calculation] (ON|OFF)
- Bounding Box Emulation [dolphin_bbox_enabled] (OFF|ON)
- Disable EFB to VRAM [dolphin_efb_to_vram] (OFF|ON)
- Load Custom Textures [dolphin_load_custom_textures] (OFF|ON)
- CPU Core [dolphin_cpu_core] (JIT64/JITARM64|Interpreter|Cached Interpreter)
- CPU Clock Rate [dolphin_cpu_clock_rate] (100%|from 5% to 300%)
- Fastmem [dolphin_fastmem] (ON|OFF)
- Wiimote IR Mode [dolphin_ir_mode] (Right Stick controls pointer (relative)|Right Stick controls pointer (absolute)|Mouse controls pointer)
- Wiimote IR Vertical Offset [dolphin_ir_offset] (10|from -50 to 50)
- Wiimote IR Total Yaw [dolphin_ir_yaw] (15|from 0 to 100)
- Wiimote IR Total Pitch [dolphin_ir_pitch] (15|from 0 to 100)
- Rumble [dolphin_enable_rumble] (ON|OFF)
- Sensor Bar Position [dolphin_sensor_bar_position] (Bottom|Top)
- Wiimote Continuous Scanning [dolphin_wiimote_continuous_scanning] (OFF|ON)
- Use ports 5-8 for GameCube controllers in Wii mode [dolphin_alt_gc_ports_on_wii] (OFF|ON)
- Audio Mixer Rate [dolphin_mixer_rate] (32000|48000)
- DSP HLE [dolphin_dsp_hle] (ON|OFF)
- DSP Enable JIT [dolphin_dsp_jit] (ON|OFF)
- Language [dolphin_language] (English|Japanese|German|French|Spanish|Italian|Dutch|Simplified Chinese|Traditional Chinese|Korean)
- Internal Cheats Enabled [dolphin_cheats_enabled] (OFF|ON)
- OSD Enabled [dolphin_osd_enabled] (ON|OFF)
- Log Level [dolphin_log_level] (Info|Notice|Error|Warning)
|RetroPad Inputs||GameCube Controller||Wiimote||Wiimote (sideways)||Wiimote + Nunchuk||Classic Controller||Classic Controller Pro|
|D-Pad Up||D-Pad Up||D-Pad Up||D-Pad Up||D-Pad Up||D-Pad Up|
|D-Pad Down||D-Pad Down||D-Pad Down||D-Pad Down||D-Pad Down||D-Pad Down|
|D-Pad Left||D-Pad Left||D-Pad Left||D-Pad Left||D-Pad Left||D-Pad Left|
|D-Pad Right||D-Pad Right||D-Pad Right||D-Pad Right||D-Pad Right||D-Pad Right|
|X||Analog X||Tilt X||Tilt X||Nunchuk Stick X||Left Stick X||Left Stick X|
|Y||Analog Y||Tilt Y||Tilt Y||Nunchuk Stick Y||Left Stick Y||Left Stick Y|
|X||C-Stick X||Tilt X||Right Stick X||Right Stick X|
|Y||C-Stick Y||Tilt Y||Right Stick Y||Right Stick Y|
- Official Dolphin Website
- Official Dolphin Github Repository
- Libretro Dolphin Core info file
- Report Libretro Dolphin Core Issues Here
- Gameplay Videos