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Nintendo 3DS is one of the best game consoles developed by Nintendo. It has features that allow you to play even Nintendo 2DS, and XL games on it. Now, Macs aren’t known for their gaming capabilities. But what if we told you that you can play Nintendo 3DS games on your Mac? Combined, Nintendo’s 3D graphics and Mac’s retina screen make it an excellent game.


For the rest, we find a fast and stable emulator with which to enjoy the best titles that Nintendo has developed for its portable game console.

The list of games that can be executed with this program is long, but as it is evident you will not find them in the program but you will have to resort to different websites to be able to download them: Animal Crossing, The Legend of Zelda, the brilliant Super Mario 3D Land, Pokémon X/Y or Sonic Generations are some of them.

The emulator for Mac OS X Citra allows us to play the games of the 3DS console in desktop environments and Full HD quality. To begin with, this is a project that for the moment has not reached the level of compatibility and accuracy of Dolphin (the emu specialized in Wii), but it works quite well, and is constantly being improved. And is that the success of this type of programs, makes the developers and maximum responsible for them do not stop working to improve their product.



This way today we can already use Citra 3DS to enjoy a good number of the most popular games of the 3DS from the PC emulator itself. One of the biggest advantages that this software offers us is that it is not under the limitations of the original 3DS hardware, so we will have the ability to run the above games at a much higher resolution in Citra than what we could do on the console.

  • At the same time we can make some graphic and aspect adjustments to eliminate black serrated lines in Pokémon Sun / Moon, for example, to gain in graphic experience.
  • Citra 3DS is an emulator for Mac that you can download for free from Gums Up, where we can download software, drivers and premium programs or pro in an easy, fun and reliable way.
  • On the other hand, we can also use the Bleeding Edge versions of Citra, which are the same compilations as nightly but with additional features. Once downloaded the corresponding executable, we will only install it in the system as usual.


In Citra, the best and most advanced 3DS emulator, it is necessary to use decrypted backups, so we need a Nintendo 3DS system (with CFW) and the game to make them. We will be able to make use of our games of the 3DS in Citra extracting the same ones of our original cards by means of the software GodMode9, for example, or with the program Decrypt9WIP.

  1. We created the following directories in the console SD: SD:files9D9Game
  2. We install Decrypt9WIPand we run it through the Homebrew Launcher.
  3. If we are going to backup an installed title, go to Content Decryptor Options > SD File Options > SD CXI Dumper (SysNAND dir) for titles installed in the sysNAND, if the title is installed in the emuNAND, we choose SD CXI Dumper (EmuNAND dir).
  4. If we are going to make a backup of a title in cartridge, insert the cartridge and go to Gamecart Dumper Options > Dump & Decrypt Cart (trim).
  5. Now we select the Title ID of our game according to this web by pressing the crosshair, once selected we press A to begin the process of copy.
  6. Once the process is finished, we will have the title decrypted for use with Citra in the SD:files9D9Game folder of the SD console.

Then, to open these 3DS games in Citra once downloaded, we go to the file in question and click on âOpenâ.

Also, if we decide to make a continued use of this emulator for Mac, we recommend that you customize the options to configure the software in a similar way as in other emulators. In this way we can adjust parameters such as audio, graphics system, keys to enjoy games, etc..


Citra is perhaps the only Nintendo 3DS emulator currently running on Mac OS X. Allows you to play with any homebrew ROM or 3DS decrypted ROM and games on your Mac system.

  • Once downloaded, you will need ROMs or games to play in this emulator. You can transfer games from your Nintendo 3DS XL, or a simple Google search of 3ds decrypted ROMs will give you a lot of games for your Citra emulator.
  • Installing the Citra emulator for Mac OS X is quite simple. Once you have downloaded it, the dmg file from the link above. Simply double click to open it. It will now display an image of the folder.
  • Here, simply control+click on the icon, and select the option open, in the drop-down menu.
  • Now, click on the Continue button to move on to the next step, choose which version you’re staying.
  • Enjoy split-screen and full-screen 3D gameplay on your Mac!


The latest version of the 3DS Mac emitter, Citra has a number of exceptional features and advantages, such as the dual screen, and the emulator can run several different display modes adapted to each game. We can view one or both screens at the same time and alternate between them with a key, although the best system is to use the top screen in full screen and leave the lower one in its small original resolution in a corner in case you need it. The touch control is done through the mouse by clicking directly on the screen. In addition:

  • SAVE AUTOMATICALLY: With this 3DS emulator, you can play, pause and recharge the game if you need a break.
  • TEXTURE FORWARDING: Finally render games at HD resolutions, at any resolution, and run much faster.
  • REALISTIC EXPERIENCE: This 3DS emulator will give you an aliasing filter which means that the game looks realistic.
  • TELEMETRY: A framework for informing your server about how Citra is used, and using that data to discover which games and hardware configurations are most popular, and also to solve problems.
  • HLE AUDIO: Preliminary audio support for high-level emulsion (no more deafening sound of silence on many titles).



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