Nintendo Switch emulators are all fake, FTC warns

The Nintendo Switch is Nintendo’s fastest selling console ever and as a result it’s not always easy to get your hands on one. No matter how desperate you are, though, the US Federal Trade Commission is warning you not to fall for the scam emulator ads that are popping up online. 

These emulator ads promise that once you’ve downloaded the software you’ll be able to play Nintendo Switch games on your desktop until you can get your hands on the real console. 

It sounds too good to be true – because it is – and the FTC has said all of these ads without exception are sketchy: “There is no legit Nintendo Switch emulator. It’s a scam.”

No Joy-Con

The FTC warns that those who download the software are likely to find their computer flooded with apps that will pester them to pay to fix non-existent problems, rather than verdant Hyrulian fields. 

It also warns to disregard sites which promise emulator access following the completion of a survey. 

You’re likely to find that these surveys are much more interested in your credit card information and other personal information than a standard online survey. And you still won’t get an emulator for your trouble. 

It’s all very well for the Commission to warn you not to download this emulation software – it probably already has a Switch like seemingly everyone else in the world that’s not you. Well, the FTC has some advice for you if you feel this way: “Play Nintendo Switch at your friend’s house until you’re able to buy the real one yourself.”

Emma Boyle

Emma Boyle is TechRadar’s ex-Gaming Editor, and is now a content developer and freelance journalist. She has written for magazines and websites including T3, Stuff and The Independent. Emma currently works as a Content Developer in Edinburgh.