Projects / DGen/SDL


DGen/SDL is an emulator for Sega Genesis/Mega Drive systems. The latest version supports save states, interlace mode, Game Genie, Linux joystick support, compressed ROM images, and other nice features.

Operating Systems

Last announcement

DGen/SDL is back 25 Oct 2011 18:34

The last announcement was made about 10 years ago, so I think it's time to dust off this page. I'm the new maintainer, and I've been working on DGen/SDL for a couple of months from the 1.23 codebase. The current version is 1.27 with many bugfixes and various improvements (hopefully, no regressions). Check it out!

Recent releases

  •  09 Feb 2013 21:35

    Release Notes: Many debugger-related enhancements and bugfixes (stepping over multiple instructions, instructions tracing, registers and memory can now be modified, and breakpoints finally fixed). VDP enhancements (interrupts, planes switching, 2-cell vertical column scrolling, sprites boxing, sprites priority, collision, and overflow). ARM-specific CPU cores (Cyclone 68000 and DrZ80, which are much faster on the Raspberry Pi). MJazz has been implemented, and joystick/joypad/keyboard bindings have been completely reworked.

    •  17 Nov 2012 22:20

      Release Notes: Improvements: VDP (sprite masking and half-submitted commands, fixing many games), joystick handling, and ROM region (auto) selection. New features: FM2612 debugging and the ability to bind arbitrary commands to joystick buttons.

      •  11 Mar 2012 02:14

        Release Notes: M68K debugger support, screen initialization refactoring, prompt support (with commands and interactive configuration), improved ZIP archives support, international (non-US) keyboards support, scale2x filters, and other UI-related changes. Windows (W32 and W64) binaries are now also available.

        •  29 Jan 2012 22:08

          Release Notes: This release reduces CPU usage, fixes OpenGL regressions from version 1.28, improves memory handling routines (this allows more games to run), includes hqx filters, improves fonts handling, and adds miscellaneous bugfixes.

          •  17 Nov 2011 22:53

            Release Notes: This release adds emulation improvements (YM2612, SN76496, CZ80), a new optional dependency on libarchive to manage compressed ROMs, saved files compatible with the Gens v5 format, console regions which can be set with a commandline option, and OpenGL, sound buffer management, and various other enhancements/bugfixes.

            Recent comments

            02 Jul 2001 18:10 joegroff

            Problem with NASM in RedHat 7.x
            It appears that the NASM that comes prepackaged
            with RedHat 7.x (and possibly other gcc
            2.96-based distributions) is broken. Also, compiling
            NASM from source under RedHat 7.x using gcc 2.96
            seems to produce a broken NASM. DGen compiled
            with such a NASM will segfault on start up. Until I
            can figure out exactly what's going on, use the <a
            from 6.2.

            Any information from other developers about
            success or defeat building nasm with gcc 2.96 (or
            3.0, now that it's out) is appreciated.

            26 Feb 2001 21:07 juhtolv

            All your base are belong to us
            Best feature in this emulator is, that it can run Sega Genesis-version of that game called "Zero Wing". All your base are belong to us.

            24 Jun 1999 18:42 phillipk.h

            Christopher Columbus Wasn't the First Either... :)
            Anyone interested in other alternative projects related to emulating a Sega Genesis/MegaDrive on Un*x based workstations may want to look at these links:


            DGen/SDL isn't actually the first Linux Genesis emulator, but it is the first to have almost flawless sound, and interlace mode. Sorry for any confusion this may have caused.

            24 Jun 1999 13:53 phillipk.h

            The First REAL Sega Genesis/MegaDrive Emulator for Linux/X11
            I am glad to be a part of the DGen/SDL project, the first REAL Sega Genesis/MegaDrive emulator for Linux/X11. I hope that others enjoy using it as much as I enjoy working on it with Joe and Dave.


            Multiple 68000 CPU cores available. StarScream, Musashi...
            YM2612, SN76496, and Z80 sound chip emulators. Currently supports 2 different Z80 cores (ZZ80 and MZ80)...
            Uses SDL portable graphics library...
            Linux joystick support. Uses new joystick drivers like those in recent kernels, support Gravis Gamepad Pro, Flightsticks, etc...
            Interlaced video support for split screen modes in Sonic 2 and 3... Exclusive! No other emulator to date is capable of this...
            Assembly language used for optimization in many places, using NASM...
            Game Genie patches...
            Gzipped ROM support. Loads .SMD and .BIN formats...
            Savestate support. Save games that don't have battery backup RAM. 10 selectable slots...
            Resource configuration file support, don't need nasty commandlines...
            Crap TV filters, renders different effects, expandable...
            On-screen-display, similar to Snes9X...
            Under development, so more is underway... =)

            Based on original code by Dave, original author of DGen (DirectX/DOS.) Visit the homepage for more information, full source code, binaries, and help on compiling, etc. Re-live those old Sega games, and do it in style with DGen/SDL!


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