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Game Boy


The Game Boy was released by Nintendo in 1989 thus kicking off the era of handheld gaming and Pokemon.

Emulator Rom Folder Extension BIOS Controller Config
lr-gambatte gb .7z .gb .zip gb_bios.bin (optional) /opt/retropie/configs/gb/retroarch.cfg
lr-tgbdual gb .7z .gb .zip none /opt/retropie/configs/gb/retroarch.cfg
lr-mgba gb .7z .gb .zip gb_bios.bin (optional), sgb_bios.bin (optional) /opt/retropie/configs/gb/retroarch.cfg

Emulators: lr-gambatte, lr-tgbdual, lr-mgba

lr-gambatte is the preferred single-player emulator, while lr-tgbdual runs two instances of the same game for either two-player link cable games or parallel play on the same system. lr-gambatte supports playing link cable games over network (not to be mixed up with netplay).

lr-mgba is a modern emulator that aims to be fast and accurate, supports local cable games, external BIOS, Super Game Boy emulation, among many other features. It also emulates [[Game Boy Color]] and [[Game Boy Advance]].


Accepted File Extensions: .7z .gb .zip

Place your Game Boy ROMs in



lr-gambatte can load external BIOS for Game Boy (gb_bios.bin).

lr-mgba can load external BIOS for Game Boy (gb_bios.bin) and Super Game Boy (sgb_bios.bin).

Place these BIOS in


The correct MD5 for gb_bios.bin is 32fbbd84168d3482956eb3c5051637f5and for sgb_bios.bin is d574d4f9c12f305074798f54c091a8b4


All the emulators utilise Retroarch configurations

Add custom retroarch controls to the retroarch.cfg file in

For more information on custom RetroArch controls see: RetroArch Configuration


Syncing Save Games

For games which can share save games, such as Pokemon Blue and Pokemon Red, it is possible to link one save to the other.

This procedure assumes you have one save game. If you've played both games, you'll need to delete one save, it's not possible to combine both after you've played them.

Get to the command line with F4 or SSH, change directory to the Game Boy folder, and look at the save files:

cd RetroPie/roms/gb
ls *.srm

You should see your existing save game, for example:

Pokemon Blue.srm

If you have two save files, such as:

Pokemon Blue.srm
Pokemon Red.srm

Then delete the one you don't want to keep:

rm Pokemon Red.srm

Now create an "imaginary" save for the other game by creating a symbolic link.

ln -s "Pokemon Blue.srm" "Pokemon Red.srm"

The above example takes an existing Blue save and makes an imaginary Red save.

Changing colour palette

Change the Core Option for GB Colorization to Internal and then change *Internal Palette to your preference. See Setting Core Options.

Custom Palettes

You may also add custom palettes by adding your new .pal file to

To select, change the Core Option for GB Colorization to custom. See Setting Core Options.

You can define different palettes for specific games by creating a .pal file in the "palettes" folder with "INTERNALROMNAME.pal" or "rom-name.pal". If no specific palette is found for a ROM then the default palette is used.

Using lr-tgbdual

To play two-player link cable games with lr-tgbdual, turn on the Link cable emulation option from the Core Options and restart the game. Two synced game screens will be displayed side-by-side by default. Player one is able to control the left screen, while player two controls the right, but the screens can be switched using the Screen layout core option.

The above configuration will enable playing the same game using link cable emulation, but if two different games need to be linked, the process is a bit more involved and it involves setting up the games through the Subsystems RetroArch menu. Here's a rundown of the steps needed:

  • Start a Gameboy game using lr-tgbdual (doesn't have to be one of the games linked). Make sure the Link cable emulation core option is enabled and the ROM files for the games to be linked are not zipped
  • Open the RetroArch menu and then press back (mapped to the B button) to access the main menu
  • Open the Subsystems menu and then choose Load 2 Player Game Boy Link *. A file browser menu will open to choose the 1st game ROM file
  • Open again the Susystems menu and choose Load 2 Player Game Boy Link *. A file browser menu will open to choose the 2nd game ROM file
  • Open a 3rd time the Subsystems menu and choose the Start 2 Player Game Boy Link * option. This will start restart the core with the 2 ROM files loaded side-by-side with link cable emulation enabled

Using lr-gambatte

To play two-player link cable games with lr-gambatte, two RetroPie systems in the same network are needed. Change the following Core Options to the values below (see Setting Core Options):

System 1 (Server, e.g.

Core Option Value
gambatte_gb_link_mode Network Server
gambatte_gb_link_network_port 56400

System 2 (Client):

Core Option Value
gambatte_gb_link_mode Network Client
gambatte_gb_link_network_port 56400
gambatte_gb_link_network_server_ip_1 1
gambatte_gb_link_network_server_ip_2 9
gambatte_gb_link_network_server_ip_3 2
gambatte_gb_link_network_server_ip_4 1
gambatte_gb_link_network_server_ip_5 6
gambatte_gb_link_network_server_ip_6 8
gambatte_gb_link_network_server_ip_7 0
gambatte_gb_link_network_server_ip_8 0
gambatte_gb_link_network_server_ip_9 0
gambatte_gb_link_network_server_ip_10 0
gambatte_gb_link_network_server_ip_11 0
gambatte_gb_link_network_server_ip_12 1

For older versions of lr-gambatte use this config parameters:

System 1 (Server, e.g.

Core Option Value
Link Mode Network Server
Network Port 56400
Network Server IP Octet1 0
Network Server IP Octet2 0
Network Server IP Octet3 0
Network Server IP Octet4 0

System 2 (Client):

Core Option Value
Link Mode Network Client
Network Port 56400
Network Server IP Octet1 192
Network Server IP Octet2 168
Network Server IP Octet3 0
Network Server IP Octet4 1

To begin the network game first start the game on system 1 and then join system 2.

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