BlastEm - The fast and accurate Genesis emulator


BlastEm has the goal of being an extremely accurate Genesis emulator while still running on relatively modest hardware by using advanced techniques. Currently, there's a lot of work left to do on the accuracy front and there are a lot of optimizations I want to do, but BlastEm is still quite usable for certain purposes. Many commercial and homebrew games run well and the performance seems to be good on my relatively modest AMD E-350 powered laptop and Intel Atom based HTPC.


BlastEm requires a computer with an x86 processor running Linux, OSX or Windows. The current version depends on SDL 2, GLEW and OpenGL 2. You may be able to use it on other Unix-like systems if you're willing to compile it yourself.



Sonic 2 Title Screen Sonic 2 ingame shot Comix Zone ingame shot Vectorman Sega logo screen Day Trip direct color DMA section


BlastEm 0.3.1 32-bit Linux 64-bit Linux OSX Windows Changelog
BlastEm 0.3.0 32-bit Linux 64-bit Linux OSX Windows Changelog
BlastEm 0.2.0 .tar.gz Changelog
BlastEm 0.1.0 .tar.gz


Extract the tarball to a directory of your choosing. If you wish to change the configuration settings, copy default.cfg to ~/.config/blastem/blastem.cfg and modify the copy. You may also whish to add the blastem directory to your PATH environment variable.


BlastEm currently lacks a proper GUI so it must be invoked from the command line. The only required argument is the name of the ROM file you wish to run. For a list of all command line options, run blastem -h.

Source Code

The code to BlastEm is available under the GNU GPL v3 or later. You can get it from the Mercurial repo.

Known Issues

Commercial Game Compatibility

Homebrew Compatibility

Unimplemented Hardware Features

Accuracy (incomplete list)


I can be reached via email at Follow me on Twitter for news on the latest releases.