You are here

There’s no Nintendo Switch emulator

Share this page

If you can’t get your hands on a Nintendo Switch gaming system, you may think an emulator is the next best thing. Think again. Online ads for emulators, sometimes with Nintendo branding, say they can run Switch’s games on your desktop. But there is no legit Nintendo Switch emulator. It’s a scam.

Even worse, when you try to download a Nintendo Switch emulator, you can install unwanted applications on your computer. These apps give you misleading information about computer problems that aren’t really there, then ask you to pay to fix them.

Other times, when you go to an emulator site, you get a link to a survey that you must complete to get a code to unlock the emulator. Again, the emulator doesn’t really exist. Don’t give personal information and don’t sign up for anything requiring your credit card information. You’re still not getting an emulator.

What can you do to avoid this scam?

  • Don’t download anything that says it’s a Nintendo Switch emulator.
  • Don’t complete a survey to get an “unlock code.” That’s a red flag for a scam.
  • Keep your security software current. Set it to update automatically. Installing unknown programs can lead to malware.
  • Play Nintendo Switch at your friend’s house until you’re able to buy the real one yourself.

And if you think you’ve been the victim of a scam, report it to the FTC.


how much longer do we have to put up with these scams before you get teeth into the laws that are on the books??????

If they put teeth into existing laws, then those trying to download emulators would be guilty of piracy.

Actually, you're a bit wrong here. While downloading a ROM off of the internet is illegal, the emulator to play said ROM is completely legal. However, it is completely legal to dump a ROM from a physical cartridge of a game.

Actually, even downloading games is entirely legal. The only illegal thing is uploading them. It's a strange law, but it exists.

You can't stop people you can't find. They may not know where these people are located, or if what they're doing is considered illegal where they live.

Just be smart and don't fall for such transparent scams. The government isn't made to babysit you and protect you from such foolish decisions such as these.

Yeah, like the "no bamboozle" laws. When you you gonna start implementing those UNITED STATES GOVERNMENT???

Greetings Steddod. The laws aren't the problem, catching the criminal is the problem. They are overseas or layered so deep and the focus of law enforcement is on violent crimes. Although we would prefer neither, I would much rather have a violent criminal off the streets than worry about some cybercriminal poking around the internet. I respectfully say we must be proactive and vigilant and not depend on the government to "save us" from everything malevolent.

Well said

I won't fall for this, since I already am aware of these types of scams, as websites offering GBA games installed malware. It's not limited to the Switch.

It is illegal to obtain a game from a method not authorized by the publisher. I'm only aware of independent publishers that release downloadable ROMs.

no-intro set releases, from torrents, are where to go

To be completely fair, that's just the internet being the internet. It's full of terrible people; but GBA emulators and ROMs are very real, very easy to find, in a grey area ethically speaking (basically the whole "I own this game legitimately, so I can legally have a backup" thing), and not loaded with malware as long as you take proper precautions (trusted sites, have some sort of AV available, and a contingency plan in case things go to hell). I'm not sure if this was your point, but not all emulators are scams... in fact, most aren't. Basically the only systems you won't find emulators for, are PS4, Xbox One, and the Switch. Pretty much anything else, there's an emulator for (although cxbx-reloaded, the Xbox emulator isn't really all that good yet, and the same goes for Xenia [Xbox 360], and RCPS3 [PS3]).

You're on the wrong site then if GBA games are giving you malware, GBA emulation is very much a real and non-scam thing. You just need to be more careful.

There are several perfectly healthy, legitimate, reputable GBA emulators out there. The Switch is different because, since it's so new, no real emulators have been made for it yet.

actually, GBA emulators are legit and there are tons of sites that safely distribute ROMs

I'm surprised the government is this informed about this sort of thing, great on you for posting this information.

Parents should take note of what their children are doing on their personal computers these days, recently I found MY personal computer had a virus from clicking ads!

The primary cause is scalpers.

These 'emulator' scams are just an all too common, unfortunate byproduct of idiots falsely claiming 'capitalism' without having ANY knowledge as to what Capitalism even is.

Is this consumer protection or corporate protection?

Definitely consumer protection. They are saying there is currently no such thing as a Nintendo Switch emulator. And not "don't download an emulator".

Thanks for the advice but i'm afraid it is too late for me, I installed a switch "emulator" days ago and now my windows ubuntu doesn't open my apks

Thanks for putting this up!

My grandson got one of those Nintendo Switchers, it's amazing what his little fingers can do on that thing!!!

any kind of survey site most likely a scam

I'm embarrassed to admit I used to like doing surveys until just a few years a go, when I finally realized the REAL purpose of surveys is usually to add my personal information to a bunch of marketers' databases, aaarrrrrrggg!

Can the FTC release a statement regarding the "Ness is Sans" scam?

Yeah, everyone knows Sans is actually Wario.

there is a switch emulator.

Are you trying to scam people or are you just hiding the fact that there is at least one limited emulator for development/debugging purposes only, that as of this time is completely incapable of running any commercial games?

There are so many scams out there. I'm surprised at the amount of calls I get from family members asking if it is a scam. I've not made them understand that if they aren't 100% sure, avoid it.

Sadly, my mother is so far out of the digital loop that I have to babysit her from across state. While she has a paypal and ebay account, whenever she want to make a purchase she has to have me handle the online payments. I feel safer that way.

Wow... Next you'll tell me there's no psXX emulator!

Oh, do enlighten me on where you've seen a Switch emulator.

Oh wait.

I disliked and reported a couple of YouTube videos and I wish you all do the same.

Leave a Comment