How to play VBA emulator with a friend on one computer

Michael Langerman
5 min readJan 24, 2020


I’ve been watching my little son plays Pokemon games on my computer for while. You know how it goes…I want to play too! It’s possible to play simultaneously 2 VBA emulator games on one computer. Players have to use different controllers.

For example let’s Player1 in Pokemon emerald VBA emulator with pokemon Torchic to use a keyboard as a controller.

Click: Options > Emulator > Uncheck: Pause when inactive window.

Click: File > Load >Auto load most recent.

Click: Options > Joypad > Default Joypad > 1.

Click: Options — Joypad > Configure > 1…

Make sure it set for keyboard. Click: OK.

Now let’s save the game.
Click: File > Save game > Oldest slot > 1 …/…/…

Click: File > Save…

Give your file a name. Let’s say: Player1.
Click: Save

Your game is saved in the default folder under the given name.

Start the VBA emulator.
Click: File > Open…

Choose the game. It should load the latest game you played with all settings.

Connect a Joypad to your computer.

Start another session of VBA emulator in a new window.

Rearrange both windows. I place the PLAYER1 window on the left.

Click the second window. It is active window now.

Click: File > Open gameboy…

Choose the game. I want to play the same game.

I will play it from the beginning.

Click: File > Reset
The game starts from the beginning.

Let’s set up Joypad for the second window.

In the second window click:
Options > Joypad > Configure > 2

Press buttons on your Joypad to assign them appropriately.

Click: OK

Click: Options > Joypad > Default Joypad > 2

Now you control the second window with a Joypad.

And you control the first window with a keyboard. The sound of the game comes from the active window.

Let’s name the second player Gamer2. The Gamer2 got Treecko to go with.

Now you can play simultaneously two different games on one computer!

Let’s save the game in the second window under different slot.
Click: File > Save game > Oldest slot > 10 …/…/…

Save the file under different name.
Click: File > Save…

Give your file a different name. Let’s say: Gamer2.

Click: Save

Now you can exit the game.

Remember to always save your games before exit.

Next time you start the game it opens the last session.

Load the session you want to play. Let’s say the 1st in this window.

Open the second window and load a different session in this window.

Follow the steps described previously to set up joypad/ keyboard.

Have fun and happy game :)

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