Dolphin is an open source Nintendo GameCube, Wii, and Triforce emulator for Microsoft Windows, Linux, and OS X. It was the first emulator to successfully run commercial Nintendo GameCube and Wii games, and is the only emulator capable of running commercial Wii games. Its name refers to the Nintendo Dolphin, which was the development codename for the GameCube.
Dolphin became an open-source project on July 13, 2008 when the developers released the source code publicly on a SVN repository onGoogle Code under the GPLv2. At this point, the emulator even had basic Wii emulation implemented. Upon its open sourcing, various developers were attracted, and development on the emulator has been continuous since, with regular releases of SVN builds, unlike before, when it was closed-source. These preview builds and unofficial SVN builds were released with their revision number (e.g., RXXXX) rather than version numbers (e.g., 1.03). As with previous builds, differences between consecutive builds are typically minor.
Dolphin's Wii emulation reached a milestone in February 2009 when it made a breakthrough, managing to successfully boot and run the official Wii System Menu v1.0. Shortly after, all versions of the Wii OS became bootable.There is, however, no full support for Wii channels, except for the disc channel.
By April 2009, most commercial games, Gamecube and Wii alike, could be fully played albeit with a few minor problems and errors, with a large number of games running with virtually no defect. Improvements to the emulator had allowed users to play select games at full speed for the first time, audio had dramatically improved, and the graphics capabilities were fairly consistent except for a few minor problems.
By late October 2009, numerous new useful features were incorporated into the emulator such as automatic frame-skipping, which increased the performance of the emulator as well as increased stability of the emulator overall. Also improved was the NetPlay feature of the emulator, which allowed players to play multiplayer Gamecube and Wii games online with friends, as long as the game does not require a WiiMote. The GUI was reworked to make it more user-friendly. The DirectX plug-in also received huge developments, and is now often faster than the OpenGL plug-in.
By the end of November 2010, the developers fixed most of the sound issues (such as crackling), added compatibility with even more games, and increased the overall emulation speed and accuracy.
In July 2011, version 3.0 was released and the emulator reached its final stages of development. There was roughly 2500 code commits between 2.0 and 3.0. Strange UI behavior, crashes, graphical glitches and other problems were fixed. For example, many games which did not boot at all in Dolphin, now work. The configuration dialogs were restructured in a more sensible manner to ease Dolphin usage for new users. The video config dialog received a complete overhaul and features a description panel for each option now. Various features were added including support for the Wiimote speaker, EFB format change emulation, graphics debugger, audio dumping, and many others. Because of numerous fixes to the LLE emulator engine, audio emulation in Dolphin is close to perfect now (provided that one has the necessary DSP dumps). The developers also added a Direct3D 11 video backend and anXAudio2 audio backend. The 2.0 release already had seen the introduction of plugin rewrites; the new plugins have been brought to feature parity and were replaced so well, that it was decided to merge all plugins into the Core. Further improvements are better suited as additions in the current infrastructure since this architecture allows for a much better integration with the other parts of Dolphin. A set of eight translations (Arabic, Brazilian Portuguese, French, Greek, Hungarian, Portuguese, Spanish, Turkish) is also included with Dolphin 3.0. There have been some performance optimizations (especially in the texture decoder), but generally speaking, performance decreased in favor of more accurate hardware emulation.
The Windows builds are compiled with MSVC 2010; Linux and OS X use the CMake build system.
To Run the Dolphin Emulator you need to install Visual Studio 2010"
(Click Here to Download Visual Studio 2010" fo 32 bits)
(Click Here to Download Visual Studio 2010" fo 64 bits)