Do you know that you have to no longer buy smart phones to play your favorite android games?

Though most of the devices are capable of running the latest android versions, the devices that were bought 4 years back like my HTC Desire isn’t capable of running the latest games due its limited hardware capabilities.

What if I told you that you can play android games on desktops? Yes, just follow the below steps and you can start playing your android games on your local machine.

Setup Genymotion Android Emulator

  • Genymotion is an android emulator that will help us to simulate the android experience on desktop. Genymotion is available in three versions – Free, Indie and Business. In the free version you just won’t get the Screencast widget, Remote control widgets and premium support. Let’s download the free version for now.
  • Before downloading Genymotion you have to sign up and create an account. You will have to login in order to create a virtual android device.
  • Genymotion depends on VirtualBox, so make sure you have it installed on your machine. If you don’t have it on your machine download the Windows 32/64 bits (with VirtualBox) version which is available only for windows users. Mac and Linux users have to install virtual box first and then download the Genymotion setup file (25 MB).
  • Run the genymotion-2.0.3.exe setup file and install it on your machine. The default location in windows should be C:\Program Files\Genymobile\Genymotion.
  • When you run Genymotion for the first time you will be prompted to add a virtual device. Click Yes.

Add your first virtual device

  • Select the Android version and the device model that you want to create in the device creation wizard. I chose Android version 4.3 and HTC One as the Device Model. Select the listed virtual device and click Next.

Create Virtual Device on Genymotion

  • Provide a name for your virtual device or leave the default one as it is and click Next.
  • Your virtual device will be downloaded (170 MB for HTC One) and deployed.

Play Android Games on Desktops

  • Our HTC One is now ready but we need to tweak it a little bit so that we can run apps on the device.
  • Download the Android SDK (480 MB) and extract the contents.
  • Open Genymotion configuration panel (Settings) and navigate to ADB Tab and select Use custom Android SDK tools and set the path to the extracted SDK folder. Example: C:/Downloads/adt-bundle-windows-x86_64-20131030/adt-bundle-windows-x86_64-20131030/sdk

Configure Android SDK Path

  • Launch your HTC One and in the first run your device may apply some Android updates.
  • Click on the Menu as you interact with the actual device to bring up the Apps and widgets screen.

HTC One Android Device

Play Android Games on Desktops

  • If you look into the Apps section you won’t find Google Play Store, so go ahead to the Google Apps Wiki page and download the gapps-jb-20130813-signed.zip file
  • Drag and drop the gapps-jb-20130813-signed.zip file on to the virtual device screen.

Install Google Play Store

  • The player will prompt you with a message to flash the gapps file onto the device. Click OK.

Flash Google App

  • Once installed you have to reboot the device, so go ahead and close the virtual device and launch it again.
  • If you ever happen to see the message “Unfortunately, Google+ has stopped“, click OK and ignore it.
  • Now if you go to the Apps section you should see Play Store installed.

Google PlayStore installed

Sign in using your Google account and download your favorite android games and start playing it. And that’s me playing Hill Climbing in the below image :-)

Hill Climbing Android Game on Desktop

Can I have a quick minute of yours?

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