Dolphin Emulator Setup Guide (2023)

In this guide, you’ll learn how to setup Dolphin Emulator.


RequirementsUSB PreparationsDolphin EmulatorDownload GamesDolphin On XboxController SettingsMultiplayer ControllerFor Wii cONTROLLERSGraphics SettingsTextures pack


1- First, ensure your USB drive is set up to run properly within Xbox Retroarch, Xbox dolphin, and potentially any other Homebrew apps that might require security permissions to run properly.

2- For this, use an external thumb drive or SSD for best performance and make sure that it supports fast file transfer.

3- Mechanical hard drives also work but if you want to do HD texture packs, they’re not going to work as well. You’ll miss out on some textures they might not load at all, so an external thumb drive or SSD is recommended.

4- Make sure, that you have a Windows 10 or 11 PC. So if you are on Mac or Linux, you must get a VM with Windows 10 or 11.

USB Preparations

1- First, you need to be able to access the Windows security Tab, which is only available on Windows 10 and 11. Also, make sure your drive is formatted as NTFS.

2- If it is not formatted, then just right-click on it and select Format. Choose NTFS, then click on the Format button, and press the Start button.

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3- Once the drive is formatted, right-click on it, then select properties and click on the Security tab. Click on the Advanced button, tap on Add select a principle, and type in all application packages. Click on the check name button, so it gets correctly placed, and then tap on Ok.

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4- Now click on full control, then click on ok, and finally tap on replace all child object permission entries with inheritable permission entries from this object and then press ok.

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5- If an error pops up about replacing defined permissions, just click on Yes. And if you get an error for a certain file like the security volume information, you need to click on Continue and your drive will be ready to use.

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6- Once you have the security permissions set, go ahead and open your USB drive folder. Now, make a new folder in it and name it Dolphin Emulator.

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Dolphin Emulator

Now, download the latest Dolphin Emulator for uwp beta from the following link: It will bring you to the official GitHub site and once you are on this page, navigate under the Assets tab and click on Dolphin Emulator for uwp file to download it.

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Download Games

1- Once the Dolphin emulator is downloaded, you will need GameCube and Wii games that you want to emulate. GameCube games can be in a number of formats you can have them compressed as gcz and leave them in GCM format.

2- You can change them from a clean rip and rename them to ISO. So if you want to save the most space, GCC is a good format to use.

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3- You can compress those using the Standalone PC version of dolphin or use the end kit. Wii games could be in a variety of formats as well, you’ve got ISO so you can compress them into ciso or wbfs. But if you have a large physical collection of Wii and GameCube games, you can rip those using a modded Wii.

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4- Once you have your game sourced, then you just need to add them to your USB storage device. Copy your games over and paste them into the games folder of Retroarch.

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Dolphin On Xbox

1- Once you have your games placed on USB, then start the installation process of dolphin. For this, boot up your Xbox and get it to the dev mode dashboard.

2- Once your Xbox is booted up into Dev mode, you have to make copy of the remote access of your IP and then just access your Xbox’s device portal.

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3- Now, go under My games and apps, click on ADD and choose the file. Then choose dolphin, click on Next, and press the Start button.

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4- Once it is finished installing, go ahead and close out of the device portal as you don’t need it anymore. So go to your Xbox menu and make sure you get your USB drive plugged in.

5- Then select the Dolphin Emulator and press the back button on your controller. Scroll down to View Details and change the uwp type from an app to a game.

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6- From here, just go up and restart your console to make sure the change takes effect. Once the Xbox has finished rebooting launch into Dolphin Emulator, and once dolphin is finished loading up, just scroll down to the USB drive Istanbul here and load up a GameCube game or a Wii game.

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7- Then just wait for the Shader compilation to finish and then you can change your user directory over to USB once your gamekeeper Wii game is finished loading.

8- Now, you need to access the dolphin in-game menu. Press the left click, then the L3 button and your back button on your Xbox controller. It will bring up this little menu.

9- Now using your left analog stick, scroll down and select config location. Press A, scroll down, select dolphin user folder location, then press A and then it will bring up the file browser.

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10- Navigate to your USB drive and select your Dolphin Emulator folder. Once you have your Dolphin Emulator folder selected on your USB drive, just press back, then choose and quit out a dolphin by pressing the Exit Game button.

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11- Launch back into Dolphin Emulator to make sure that the change is working properly, you don’t really need to load up another game here but you can anyway just to make sure that the folders are created within your USB drive. Then you can begin playing games.

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12- Now exit out a dolphin now because you need to configure the program to be more to use on your PC so quit out a dolphin.

13- From here, just get your USB drive taken out of the Xbox and put it back into your PC. Once you have your USB drive plugged back into your PC, you’ll find that there is now a new Dolphin Emulator folder inside of it.

14- It will have all of your dolphin system folders and config folders and save folders.

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15- Now, get started configuring dolphin for your Xbox series X and S. For this, you will need to download the Standalone PC version of dolphin from the following link It will help you to make configure it a lot easier than manually typing in things in a command line and ini files.

16- So head over to the dolphin download page, you can just grab the latest development version and for any reason, if you try to launch the latest Dev version of dolphin and you get some sort of area you might need to download the 64-bit Visual C++. You will find its link on the same download page of Dolphin.

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17- Once the Dolphin is downloaded, extract it and open up the dolphin folder. After that, make a new text file here and the name of the file should be portable.

18- Now launch Dolphin and you’ll find a new user folder has just been created inside of your dolphin folder and it matches the same one that you have on your USB drive.

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19- Close the dolphin and then open the USB drive. Then open the My Dolphin Emulator folder on your USB drive and copy everything that’s in here into the user folder of the Dolphin folder on My PC dolphin.

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20- After that, all the settings that you are starting with in PC dolphin match that on your Xbox already has assigned. Once it’s done, just launch back into a dolphin.

Controller Settings

21- The first thing you have to do is get your controls to actually work, so click on the Controller tab on the top and select the GameCube standard controller.

22- Now, get your Xbox controller plugged into your PC and click on the Configure tab. In the drop-down box, you will find your Xbox controller showing up.

23- There are a couple of different options to choose from, the one you want to pick to make it actually work with the series xns version of dolphin is WG input Xbox controller. Then just go through and assign your buttons according to your choice.

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24- If you want to have your thumbsticks match those of a GameCubes a little bit better, click on the Calibrate button on both the control stick and the C stick.

25- If you decide to do this, make sure that you are using the controllers that you calibrate in that slot every time. Otherwise, you can mess up things like not all controllers are going to be the same.

26- But it’ll just match your controller’s thumbstick range better suit that of an actual GameCube, so you just go through and rotate it a few times. It will be calibrated and then do the same thing with the other stick, so you will notice that this stick doesn’t really go down as far as the other ones unless you press it really hard.

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Multiplayer Controller

1- For multiplayer, you can turn on more controllers and configure them.

2- For this, turn ON the second controller and make sure that the second controller is plugged into your PC.

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3- After that, configure it and choose the WG input one, so zero is player one and one is player two.

4- Then assign the buttons for this controller as well and then for player 2, you must calibrate it as well and again make sure that when you calibrate a controller that is the controller slot you are always going to use it, otherwise it can impact things and for this, use the Port1.

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1- Now do the same thing for Wii remotes and Wii remotes are going to be a bit tougher just because of how many different options you have available to use.

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2-Select WG input 0 so for player one Xbox controller and just start assigning my buttons here and then you can assign some hotkeys to choose between sideways or upright toggle.

3- Then you have all the motion input stuff that you need to configure as well depending on the game and there are a lot of options for an Xbox controller so you just have to really go in and fine-tune it according to your choice.

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Graphics Settings

1- For this, click on the Graphics tab from the top of the screen and then choose either direct 3D 11 or 12. Direct 12 should theoretically have a slight performance advantage over direct3d11 but you can choose any one of them.

2- If you want to change aspect ratios you could do but leaving it on auto works fine for most use cases, you can force it to a 16×9 stretch or 4/2 so set it according to your choice.

3- You can enable things like v-sync if you want to have the FPS show up in the corner you can also have that there but under Shader compilation, you must choose hybrid Uber shaders and enable compile shaders before starting so that way you just don’t get any Shader compilation stutter like you were seeing on the rhetoric version of dolphin.

4- You could also try exclusive Uber shaders this will probably work better on the Xbox series X than S but it can be quite demanding where as hybrid Uber shaders should work fine for most use cases.

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5- Then come under the enhancements tab, and choose your resolutions according to your monitor’s native resolution.

6- If you’re on series X or S you could try doing 4K and see what happens but the fact is that 1440p works great on this series. Then you can choose an anti-aliasing method if you want anisotropic filtering also some post-processing effects.

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7- Now click on the hacks tab you should not need to change anything here lastly go to the Advanced tab, this is where you can enable things like load custom textures if you are interested in using them so turn on the load custom texture Tab and prefetch custom textures.

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Textures pack

8- If you want to use custom textures head over to the dolphin forms for this click on the link:

9- Once you are on the site then find their HD texture pack thread then just look through the games that have texture packs available and download them.

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10- Once the texture pack is downloaded then extract it. Then open the folder, inside the texture folder you should have a folder that is named after the game’s code so for Metal Gear Solid twin snakes it’s ggsea4, and inside will be all of your textures so load these up into our Xbox series X and S version of dolphin.

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11- Now, go back into your USB drive go then go into the Dolphin Emulator folder find the load textures folder and then drag the downloaded texture folder and drop it right on in.

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12- Now the HD texture pack for twin Snakes is ready to use when you load up the game and if you want to have the GameCube boot animation appear on your Xbox series X and S version of dolphin then first you’ll need to have an ipl.bin file.

13- Add this to your user folder in the PC version of dolphin so you can configure it. So the IPL bin file goes into your GC folder under the region of the IPL you have to set the IPL region according to your region.

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14- Now relaunch the Dolphin Emulator and then under the config, tab you have to select GameCube. You will find that there is a checkmark for skip main menu this means it will skip the GameCube main menu when you load up a game so if you want that animation to appear, just uncheck this.

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15- Now when you boot up a GameCube game, the GameCube menu will appear and you can manage memory cards and things like that within that menu. For Memory cards, go under the device settings on the GameCube tab and you will notice that slot A is set as a GCI folder. It means you don’t have to worry about running out of saved space.

16- Set Slot B to Memory card. This is important for games like Fantasy Star online if you want to create a network configuration file because it will crash when you are using a GCI folder but having a standard memory card under slot B will fix this issue.

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17- Also, set the sp1 to a Broadband adapter hle, then click on the three-dot button here and you’ll notice that there’s an IP address, It is set to the stack private server by default. If you play on the stack, it will be fine but if you play on silver, then you will need to change it over to the silver on DNS.

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18- Under the General tab if you want to use cheats for any of your games, you can enable the cheats and then you can turn on change disks automatically.

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19- To get the cheats set up for your games, double-click in your menu and choose your USB drive. Then find your Wii and GameCube games, so you can get them to appear in the menu.

20- To activate the cheats, all you need to do is right-click on a game, then click on properties and go to AR codes. You can just start enabling cheats, you can also use cheat codes to activate 60fps patches or widescreen patches so for Metal Gear Solid twin Snakes under that HD texture pack thread.

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21- Now you are ready to move your configuration files and settings back over to your USB drive to use on the Xbox series X and S versions of dolphin. Copy all the Folders in your user folder on your PC and then paste them into your USB drive.

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22- Whenever you load up the dolphin on the Xbox series X and S it overwrites your dolphin ini file which then, in turn, resets everything that you have just done so set the dolphin ini file to read-only.

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23- Go back to your Xbox take the USB drive out of your computer put it back in your Xbox plug your controllers into the Xbox. Then back into Dolphin EmulatorUSB drive, load up a GameCube game to play any game, and see if all the settings are working properly.

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24- After that, unplug your USB drive from your Xbox, plug it back into your computer and then launch the PC Dolphin emulator.

25- Then enable the Hyrule Field speed hack, just right-click on it, go to Patches, and checkmark the Hyrule Field speed hack. Then set the twin Snakes a 4 16 by 9 aspect ratio. For this, right-click on the game, go to properties and then go into the editor. Then go down here in user config.

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Click on the presets button editor and then open in an external editor. After that, paste that code in here, so you don’t need an auto aspect ratio.

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