Remember the original Xbox from years and years ago? It seems like the console has faded out of people’s memories as bigger and brighter things take its place, such as the Xbox 360 right after it, followed by the Xbox One, and now, the Xbox One X. But, if you want to still play with the original Xbox, there is a way that you can: through an emulator. Emulators are great, because they allow you to, well, emulate the experience of the original Xbox. With an emulator, you’ll be able to play all of your favorite Xbox games — Star Wars: The Old Republic, the original Battlefront games, Battlefield, you name it!
But, how can you get such an emulator on your Android device? Truth be told, it’s extremely difficult because Microsoft has such a tight hold on digital rights, hardware rights and basically, just a bunch of red tape. That said, Xbox emulators for Android are far and few between; however, we found one that’ll work just perfectly for this situation.
Installing an Xbox Emulator
To even install an Xbox emulator, there are a few things you should know. First, they aren’t available on the Google Play Store at all. Again, this is largely because of the red tape Microsoft has on the original Xbox. You can find emulators for different consoles a-plenty on the Google Play Store, just not the original Xbox.
That said, to get an Xbox emulator on your Android smartphone, you will need to download an APK from the Internet — this is an Android app, but not one that was approved for the Google Play Store, so proceed at your own risk.
To even download an APK from an unauthorized source, we need to change some Settings within your smartphone. If you’re running Android 4.0 or higher, head into the Settings app. Scroll down to the Security tab, and then make sure “Unknown Sources” is checked. This will allow you to download and install any APK off of the Internet onto your smartphone.
Keep in mind that you should be wary of what APKs you are downloading off of the Internet. Some can be plagued by malware and potentially infect your smartphone; however, do note that, for the most part, you are safe from stuff like this. This is because Android employs a “sandbox” sort of mechanism to keep viruses contained — this prevents them from reaching other parts of your phone and destroying your operating system install of Android.
Downloading the APK
Now, we just need to download the APK file. You can download The Original Xbox Emulator from this link right here (Mega File Sharing).
In some cases, you might need a Virtual Private Network (VPN) to download this emulator. That’s easily solved by an application from the Google Play Store. If you download and install FlyVPN (free), you can easily access the Mega site to start the download of the APK. You’ll have to connect up to FlyVPN once the app is installed, though.
Once it is downloaded in your phone, you can either click on the notification or find the file in yours Files app. Once you locate it, simply tap on the completed download, and The Original Xbox Emulator will begin to install. Once the installation is finished, you should be ready to play the original Xbox with an emulator on your smartphone.
Concerning Games and Controls
One element that is worth keeping in mind is that the original Xbox is from a completely different generation. It was a time when people weren’t even thinking about the touch controls we come into contact with everyday now. With that in mind, many of the games you play on this emulator might feel a little wonky or even not work properly. Things might be a little easier if you pick up a Bluetooth (or wired) Xbox controller for Android phones (there are adapters that make this possible) — and make sure that is an original Xbox controller, too.
It’s also worth noting that you might be hard pressed to find games for your Xbox Emulator. You can find ROMs for the Xbox Emulator here — just make sure that they are compatible with Android first (each game will tell you what platform you can use it on).
The CXBX Project
While Microsoft has a pretty tight leash on Xbox emulation, there’s at least one project in the works to get an Xbox emulator up and running. That project is called CxBx Reloaded, and it’s a Windows 10-based program where Xbox emulation should work. At a minimum, you will need 64-bit based Windows 7 at least for this to work. Windows 7 and newer versions of Windows that are 32-bit will not work with CxBx Reloaded.
There are a couple of other important requirements:
- You need a GPU that at least supports Direct3D 9 (HLE) and OpenGL 3.3 (LLE).
- Visual C++ 2015 and 2017 redistributables are required for CxBx to run as well. Most people should already have these on a Windows machine, but sometimes that isn’t the case. So, you can get them here for free. Make sure to install the 32-bit version of the program even if you are on a 64-bit machine, as the 64-bit build does not include both.
There’s one other important thing to note — CxBx is not ready for general release. It’s still in the development stages, but if you’re dying for a proper Xbox emulator, you can try the development version. Keep in mind that it’s a little on the buggy side, with some kinks still to be worked out. Check it out here.
Keep in mind that this is just an emulator, and you will still need ROMs of your favorite original Xbox games to try!
By following the steps above, you were able to successfully download and install an Xbox Emulator for Android on your phone. Once again, there are very few original Xbox emulators out on the market because of all the red tape, but this one should work for you just fine.
Or, you can try the CxBx Reloaded emulator, which is an Xbox emulator for Windows. It’s not Android, but still a way you can get around Microsoft’s red tape on Xbox emulation!