10 free PlayStation games you can play on Gamma and RetroArch for iPhone, iPad, and Apple TV right now

Gamma PS1 Emulator on iPhone
(Image credit: Future)

“Do Not Underestimate the Power of PlayStation.” This marketing slogan was meant to hype Sony’s foray into the gaming industry in the mid-90s. Looking back, they were important words to remember.

Sony’s PlayStation console became a behemoth after its worldwide launch at the end of 1995. It was initially developed as a partnership between Nintendo and Sony in the early 90s as a CD add-on for the Super Nintendo console — before the deal fell apart and Sony went at it alone.

Yet as the console was flying high in the mid-90s, Sony had the smart insight to offer a version of the PlayStation to independent developers, called Net Yaroze. This was Sony’s effort to offer consoles that were made to be developed on, as well as being packaged with a development kit. You could tell the difference between a normal console and a Net Yaroze variant, due to its jet-black color. If you used to buy Official PlayStation Magazine in the UK, now called PLAY, this would usually come packaged with a demo disc featuring demos of games from major publishers. These discs would also have complete games created by developers who had used Net Yaroze.

This software development kit is still in use today, but developers have been using newer software kits with better tools to create games with, instead of the now-antiquated Net Yaroze.

With the release of Gamma, the first free PlayStation emulator for iPhone and iPad, as well as RetroArch, a multi-system emulator that can also play games meant for Sony's first console, we’ve listed ten free games that you can download and play on your Apple device right now.

Total Soccer

Total Soccer on Gamma Emulator

(Image credit: Future)


Football! Or soccer for those living in the U.S. There was a time when sports games weren’t the dominant category in video games, but some titles rose above the rest, such as Sensible Soccer. Total Soccer, released in 1999, clearly draws inspiration from that title, with a top-down viewpoint that features a bunch of teams from the English Football League. Even if you have no interest in the sport, its addictive, fast-paced gameplay will keep you playing for hours — especially in two-player mode.

Time Slip

Time Slip on Gamma Emulator

(Image credit: Future)


If the concept of a time-traveling snail appeals to you, this is the game to play on Gamma first. Time Slip is a platformer made using the Net Yaroze development kit, and it’s a classic. You control a snail that has to reach the end of a level. At several points, you’ll come across switches and doors that can only be accessed by your past self. This requires you to jump into a time portal, taking you into the past, so the ‘ghost’ version of you can help flick a switch so your ‘other self’ can access a door.

Time Slip is incredibly innovative, even in 2024, and you’ll find yourself coming back to the game after several playthroughs.

Magic Castle

Magic Castle on Gamma Emulator

(Image credit: Future)


Developed with Net Yaroze in 1997 before being canceled and then resurrected in 2020, Magic Castle is another classic. Set in Medieval times, you can control a Knight, a Wizard, a Brawler, or an Archer. As a 3D platformer, you have to fight your way through several levels of a castle, finding treasure chests and avoiding traps along the way.

Hover Racing

Hover Racing on Gamma Emulator

(Image credit: Future)


Some games don’t require a lot of depth or any storytelling to be fun — Hover Racing is a great example of that. Released in 1997, it’s a straightforward racing game inspired by Nintendo’s F-Zero series where you control a futuristic hoverbike. You’re given a ‘power bar’ to let you boost at top speeds to try and beat the computer-controlled racers so you can finish in first place. It’s worth mentioning that the soundtrack in Hover Racing is fantastic — reminiscent of NAMCO’s Ridge Racer series.

Terra Incognita

Terra Incognita on Gamma Emulator

(Image credit: Future)


Every system has a collection of games that are seen as the showcase for that product — Tomb Raider for the original PlayStation, or Metal Gear Solid 2 for the PlayStation 2. Terra Incognita is that very game for Net Yaroze. Inspired by Square Enix’s Final Fantasy series, you control a young boy who has just arrived on an island full of mystery.

In some sections, you need to move blocks to reach ledges and new platforms — in others, you need to fight against dragons and other enemies with a sword. You can complete Terra Incognita in an hour, but it’s a fantastic showcase for what the Net Yaroze development kit could do, and still does.

Flappy Adventure X

Flappy Adventure X on Gamma Emulator

(Image credit: Future)


Some homebrew games are simply direct clones of games that have disappeared in years previous, which is where Flappy Adventure X, inspired by Flappy Bird, comes in. If you remember playing the original game on your iPhone way back in 2012, the same gameplay trope applies here — which is to simply tap a button to ‘flap’ the bird so obstacles can be avoided.


AirBob on Gamma Emulator

(Image credit: Future)


If you’ve seen the 1993 film Cool Runnings, you’ll enjoy AirBob. It’s a ridiculous racing/rhythm bobsledding game which we strongly recommend using a controller for. You’re required to repeatedly tap the square button so a team of four can build up enough speed for this bobsled to take off. Once it does, you need to pilot the bobsled in a straight line, until you fall off a cliff, and you have to press a series of buttons in a certain order, just so the team can perform the correct rhythms in order to gain enough points to win the race.

If that’s not a potential game of the year for Apple to consider toward the end of the year, it’s missing out on a trick.

Alien Looter

Alien Looter on Gamma Emulator

(Image credit: Future)


Inspired by arcade games such as Space Invaders and Galaga, Alien Looter requires you to control a ship that moves side to side, avoiding missiles and objects so you can gain a high score.

It’s to the point, but Alien Looter is the kind of game that’s great to play if you’re waiting for a DoorDash order to arrive.


SQRXZ 4 on Gamma Emulator

(Image credit: Future)


Released in 2014, SQRXZ 4 is heavily influenced by the colorful platforming games of the Amiga personal computer, which first debuted in 1985. You control a rabbit wearing boxing gloves who has to run, jump, and push blocks across ten challenging levels, each with a catchy theme tune that’s reminiscent of Amiga games such as Zool and James Pond.

SQRXZ 4 has its moments with floors suddenly disappearing as well as constant enemies trying to get in your way. Yet it’s the challenge that will keep you coming back for more.

Roll Boss Rush

Roll Boss Rush on Gamma Emulator

(Image credit: Future)


Roll Boss Rush was in development for 11 years before being released in 2022. Was it worth the wait? Almost, but that’s mainly down to the incredibly challenging gameplay, such as countless projectiles being fired upon you on some levels, making it impossible to dodge them.

That’s likely why the game is called Roll Boss Rush — you face a plethora of bosses, one after another, each with their own unique stage and powers. Each boss is innovative and clearly inspired by other games, such as CAPCOM’s Mega Man and lesser-known titles like Gunstar Heroes on the SEGA Mega Drive.

Play anywhere — on your Apple device

All of the games mentioned above can be played on either Gamma or RetroArch — it's up to you which emulator you prefer to use on your Apple device.

As RetroArch has the added benefit of working on Apple TV, you may want to play some of these games exclusively through Apple's hockey puck on your TV. This may be because of games like Total Soccer that work great in two-player mode. Pairing two 8BitDo controllers to an Apple TV is easy enough by going to Settings > Remote and Devices > then pairing them to the box.

Independent games may not have the latest 4K graphics or a big budget compared to the ones of today, but they're free to download on these emulators and don't breach copyright law. Above all though, they're simply fun to play.

Daryl Baxter
Features Editor

Daryl is iMore's Features Editor, overseeing long-form and in-depth articles and op-eds. Daryl loves using his experience as both a journalist and Apple fan to tell stories about Apple's products and its community, from the apps we use every day to the products that have been long forgotten in the Cupertino archives.

Previously Software & Downloads Writer at TechRadar, and Deputy Editor at StealthOptional, he's also written a book, 'The Making of Tomb Raider', which tells the story of the beginnings of Lara Croft and the series' early development. His second book, '50 Years of Boss Fights', came out in June 2024, and has a monthly newsletter called 'Springboard'. He's also written for many other publications including WIRED, MacFormat, Bloody Disgusting, VGC, GamesRadar, Nintendo Life, VRV Blog, The Loop Magazine, SUPER JUMP, Gizmodo, Film Stories, TopTenReviews, Miketendo64, and Daily Star.