How To Slow Down VisualBoy Advance Speed

To lower the playback speed on your Visual Boy Advance (VBA) emulator, you only need to change the relevant settings on the emulator. In this regard, you need to disable throttling as well as enable Vsync and Synchronize features on the emulator. Enabling filters on the VBA emulator can also lower the speed a bit. Following an upgrade to the 10.04 beta version, a considerable number of gamers noted that the speed on their Visual Boy Advance (VBA) increased considerably—to around 200% in most cases. 

Lowering the video playback speed on your VBA emulator requires you to configure the relevant settings accordingly. Right from throttling to enabling filters, this guide illustrates the various methods that may be used to lower VBA emulator speeds. 

What Does the VBA Frame Skip Feature Do? 

To begin with, you should note that frame skipping is not the same as throttle speed on the VBA emulator. The Frame Skipping functionality is used to skip a preset number of frames while maintaining the real-time playback speed of the game. The Visual Boy Advance emulator allows you to skip between  0 and 9 frames on your games. 

The base frame rate on the VBA emulator is 60 frames per second (FPS). If you set the Frame Skipping setting to 1, the emulator will skip every other frame. This results in a lower frame rate (0f 30 FPS). Setting the Frame Skipping setting to 2 will lower the frame rate for the game you are playing even further (to between 15 and 20 FPS).

The Frame Skipping setting does not affect the actual playback speed of the game, but the game may look less smooth when played at a lower frame rate. Skipping frames reduced the time required to process data by the CPU. By so doing, this feature can make your emulation timing more accurate, especially on slower computers. 

How To Lower Speed on the Visual Boy Advance Emulator 

Various computer games run at different speeds. As such, you may need to configure speed settings on your emulator every time you are playing a different game. If you feel that the game is running too fast, open the Options menu on your emulator, and select ‘Frame Skip’.

Ensure that the ‘Automatic’ option is not checked as it may result in a stuttering visual effect as you play. Instead, set the Frame Skip to 0 by selecting it on the menu. However, you may need to set the Frame Skip setting to different values to get the smoothest playback for different games. 

If the game appears to be running too fast, here are some of the methods and procedures you can use to slow it down to the required speed: 

Method 1: Disable ‘Speed-Up’ on the Emulator 

The speed-up key functionality on the VBA emulator allows you to increase the playback speed using a hotkey on your keyboard. Though convenient, this functionality is known to malfunction from time to time. When this happens, you will find your games running too fast on the emulator.

In such a case, disabling the Speed-up feature should fix the problem. The following steps will help you disable Speed-up on the Visual Boy Advance emulator: 

Step 1: Launch the Visual Boy Advance emulator on your desktop, by double-clutching on its shortcut on the Desktop. 

Step 2: Next, you need to load a game on the emulator. To do this, click on File, and then select the Open option. Locate the game you would like to load within the folder, select it and then click on the Open button on VBA. 

Step 3: Once the game has loaded, click on Options, and then select the Emulator option. 

Step 4: Now click on the ‘Speed up toggle’ option to uncheck it. 

This will disable the Speed-up functionality and possibly lower the playback speed on your VBA emulator. 

Method 2: Using the Throttling Feature 

Once installed on your computer, the Visual Boy Advance emulator allows you to play the various Game Boy Advance games on the PC. The software allows you to either speed up or slows down the video playback speed for the games you are playing. If you need to slow the game a bit, the throttling feature will come in handy. 

To throttle VBA speed down, you first need to launch the Visual Boy Advance emulator on your desktop.  On the VBA emulator, click on File and select Open. Now find the game you would like to slow down in your folder, select it and click on the Open button. 

Click on Options from the VBA emulator toolbar and scroll down to select the ‘Frame Skip’ option. Next, you need to select the Throttle option, and then click on Other—towards the bottom of the drop-down menu. If you want the game to run at a speed that is lower than its normal speed, select a percentage between 5 and 99, and then click OK.

NOTE: selecting a 50% throttle speed will slow the game to half its normal speed. You may need to change the throttle speed with every game you play since different games run at different speeds. 

Method 3: Enable and Increase Video Rendering 

If the above-described methods do not work out, you need to go an extra mile to slow the video playback speed on your VBA emulator. As you may be aware, the more effects applied to a game, the slower it tends to run. 

In this regard, you should start by enabling the SFX filters. To do this, click on Options on your VBA emulator, and select Video. You should then proceed to enable SFX. This operation will enable rendering effects for the emulator. Next, you should consider increasing rendering on the emulator. 

If forced to render more pixels for any particular game, the VBA emulator will slow down. To increase rendering, navigate to Options> Video. You should then choose a setting that is high enough to slow the game, with x1 being the lowest rendering setting. 

Method 4: Enable Vertical Synchronization (Vsync)

The Vsync feature on the VBA emulator improves the visual appeal of the video game. It is particular beneficial for the games happen to have a fast-paced vertical scrolling screen. Enabling the Vsync functionality requires the computer to work even harder, and can slow the playback speed a little. 

Just as is the case with the other methods discussed above, you need to launch the emulator and open a game in it. With the game loaded on your VBA emulator, you need to click on the Options button, and then select the ‘Video’ option. 

Now you need to check the checkbox adjacent to the ‘Vsync’ option by clicking on it. 

Method 5: Enable Filters 

While their effect may be negligible in a powerful computer, enabling filters can help slow your VBA games. Having launched the emulator and opened a game, click on Options on the grey toolbar at the top of the window.

Next, select ‘Filter’, and choose any of the listed filters to apply. The default setting, in this case, is ‘Normal’. Other filters you can choose include 2xSel, TV Mode, Super Eagle, Super 2xSel, Motion, and Pixelate. You may choose any of these filters, say the TV Mode. Having chosen this filter, you should see the scan lines appear on the screen. 

You can always go back and choose whichever filter you desire using the above-described procedure. This setting also allows you to choose your preferred Inter-frame Blending mode—between Motion Blur and Smart. 

 Final Verdict 

Updating to 10.04 beta from the previous version can cause games on VBA to run at about 200% the normal playback speed. In most cases, this makes the games impossible to play. To enhance the gaming experience, you need to lower the gaming speed to 100% or less. 

As you have learned throughout this guide, different methods may be used to achieve this. In most cases, disabling the Speed-up functionality and adjusting throttling settings should do the trick. However, you may need to do much more to slow down the video playback speed on visual boy advance.

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