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Can I Play SEGA Games On My iPhone?

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The statement “they don’t make them like they used to” is a statement gamers can relate to in regards to SEGA games. Games are now different in terms of what they offer and the features.

This is neither good nor bad but makes you decide what you want in games and which ones you are going to play. There is no denying that contemporary games are different.

A true gamer always has quite an appetite for the original games that were once offered.

If you currently have an iPhone then you will understand quite well that an iPhone along with other Apple devices are technical and have a few restrictions. So, it is not strange to wonder if you can play SEGA games on your iPhone.

There are a few available options for you to play your favorite SEGA games on your iPhone. You can either:

  • Download the games from the App Store
  • Download an Emulator

In this article we will go into more details about those two options.

While there are other games on the market, the craving for the originals will  never go away. In a world where everything is so accessible by a simple touch on the phone, people also want to have that same access to original games like SEGA. 

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Options to play SEGA Games on iPhone

There are two routes to access and play SEGA games on an iPhone:

  1. Download SEGA Forever.
  2. Download an emulator.

Play SEGA Forever On Your iPhone

In 2017, SEGA got the grand idea of bringing their best retro games to the smartphone arena. The service was named SEGA Forever.

SEGA Forever hosts a classic line up of the well-beloved SEGA games, especially from the Sega Genesis. At launch, five games were released. The five games were:

  • Sonic the Hedgehog
  • Comix Zone
  • Altered Beast
  • Kid Chameleon
  • Phantasy Star II

This lineup is filled with classic games that were the most loved games of the SEGA era. These games are available for free but they include ads. Ads can become quite annoying because they interrupt the game. 

If you prefer to play without ads, all you have to do is pay a one time fee of $1.99. While the game is an old game developed in the ’90s. SEGA Forever in its development was created with modern features. 

These features include saving your gaming progress on the cloud, Bluetooth controller support, and online leaderboards to see how you match up against other gamers. While the online leader board is only accessible on the internet, the game can be played offline which is also a plus.

How to download SEGA Forever

Downloading SEGA forever on your iPhone is a simple process. Head straight to the App store and type in the specific SEGA forever game you want whether it be Sonic the Hedgehog, Comix Zone, Altered Beast, Kid Chameleon, or Phantasy Star II.

You will then simply download the game. After it is downloaded,  you will be able to enjoy all the game has to offer right there on your phone.

Concerns of SEGA Forever being played on iPhone

SEGA Forever is celebrated worldwide with overwhelming support. However, there are still some concerns and some would also say a turn off that some gamers have. The concern is that SEGA Forever has performance issues caused by the emulators that are used.

The emulators are an imitation of the original hardware of SEGA games. The game was not developed with ports that would be just right for your ios device which is the software that your iPhone uses. SEGA forever has a few authentic emulations and ported games across all retro eras of SEGA Gaming consoles such as Master System, and Mega Drive/Genesis games.

However, there are still a few games from SEGA’s Saturn and Dreamcast that remain direct ports meaning it’s not transferable across gaming platforms. As a result, these games will not be offered on your iPhone App Store. .

Download An Emulator On Your iPhone

There is an alternative option to play SEGA games on your iPhone without downloading SEGA forever. There is a warning however that this option might not be considered legal even though it is done daily by millions of people.

Now that you are aware of what you might be getting into let us get into it. The original games that SEGA has offered over the years in console format are not necessarily the exact version of what is produced in SEGA Forever, and also it does not carry all the retro games that SEGA offers.

To play the console version Emulators are needed to facilitate this.

To recreate this original experience, downloading an emulator or in extreme circumstances, jailbreaking your iPhone are the options that are available to you. The not so legal aspect of it is that jailbreaking your iPhone or downloading specific emulators and ROMS is not allowed in Apple’s terms and conditions. 

This is a result of Apple not officially allowing console and handheld emulators to be listed on the app store and for that reason you cannot download emulators from the app store. Emulators that are available on iPhone via App Store are a scam and not useful.

How To download Emulators On Your iPhone

As established, to play SEGA games on your iPhone if you opt-out of SEGA Forever you will have to download an emulator. The following steps are how to download an emulator for your phone, or you can simply watch this short video.

Since the Appstore does not have good emulators the first step is to find a website that does allow a gamer to download an emulator. Two of the most popular emulators are iEmulators and BuildStore.

After going to one of the previously mentioned websites, you can now download an emulator to act as a port to play your favorite SEGA Games. The emulators that will be compatible with the iOS system on your iPhone, are GBA4iOS, Happy Chick, nds4iOS, newGamePad, and PPSSPP. The best part is these methods do not require you to jailbreak your iPhone.

Concerns When Using Emulators To Play SEGA Games On iPhone

While this is a good alternative to play all the SEGA games you possibly want, gamers have a few concerns about it.

  • Firstly, it is a risk that you take on because as said before this method is not necessarily right.
  • Secondly, an emulator is normally created by a third-party developer. Since you are working around the Appstore and the constraints of Apple, often the emulator might not run so well. The first time it may even crash and the access to using the emulator gets revoked. This mostly happens with iEmulator especially since it is free as opposed to BuildStore which charges subscription fees.


The major takeaway from this is you now know that you can play SEGA games on your iphone. If you are a gamer with a lot of appreciation for retro games especially SEGA Games this is good news.

There are two options to play SEGA games on your iPhone: downloading SEGA forever or downloading a third-party emulator.

SEGA forever was a venture made by SEGA to fill the gaps and offer a contemporary style of playing a retro game. While it does not have all of the SEGA games, it is still a viable option.

The other option which is downloading an emulator is another way to get SEGA games on your iPhone. As a word of caution, this option is not necessarily right because it works around the restrictions of Apple.

With the emulator however you can access all of the SEGA games and it has a more original feel to it.

No matter what option you choose, whether you are a law breaker and like to live on the edge, or you always abide by Apple’s policy, you now have the option to play SEGA games everywhere you go right on your Iphone!