The Legend of Zelda: Four Swords Adventures

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The Legend of Zelda: Four Swords Adventures
Developer(s) Nintendo EAD
Publisher(s) Nintendo
Series The Legend of Zelda
Platform(s) GameCube
Release date(s) JP March 18, 2004
NA June 7, 2004
EU January 7, 2005
AUS April 7, 2005
Genre(s) Action-adventure
Mode(s) Single-player, Multiplayer (4), Co-op (4)
Input methods GameCube Controller, Game Boy Advance
Compatibility 5Stars5.pngEdit rating: The Legend of Zelda: Four Swords Adventures
GameIDs G4SE01, G4SP01, G4SJ01
See also...

Dolphin Forum thread
Open Issues
Search Google
Search Wikipedia

The Legend of Zelda: Four Swords Adventures is a video game in Nintendo's The Legend of Zelda series. It was released for the Nintendo GameCube in Japan on March 18, 2004; in North America on June 7, 2004; in Europe on January 7, 2005; and in Australia on April 7, 2005. The Game Boy Advance hand held game console can be used as a controller when using the Nintendo GameCube Game Boy Advance Cable bundled with the game.

Emulation Information

Game Boy Advance <-> GameCube Connectivity

NOTE: Some versions of VBA-M may not work properly with the latest version of Dolphin. To ensure compatibility, make sure to try various revisions of VBA-M. The version of Dolphin after the GBA <-> GCN rewrite does not matter.

This title supports GameBoy Advance connection support can be supported via joybus emulation. Such requires VBA-M (r947 or newer) and a dump of GBA BIOS (see here for an excellent dump guide). To connect GBA:

  1. Launch Dolphin, start Legend of Zelda: Four Swords Adventures and choose multiplayer;
  2. While in connection screen, in Dolphin, go to Config => GameCube and change the controller ports to GBA;
  3. Launch VBA-M, go to Options => Emulator and uncheck "Pause When Inactive". Then, go to Options => Link => Joybus options, mark "Enable Joybus Connection" and use default settings (
  4. After enabling joybus in VBA-M, Dolphin will freeze (don't panic, its OK!). Now load the GBA BIOS in VBA-M, after the splash screen Dolphin will recognize the joybus link and game will detect that a GBA was connected.

To connect other GBAs, just open another instance of VBA-M and repeat last instruction. Remember to unblock Dolphin and VBA-M in your firewall, some may block joybus link, leaving Dolphin stuck in connection screen. You can also refer to this video for more details.

Navi Tracker Audio Issues

VBA-M does not correctly handle the audio from the Navi Trackers mode. This is not a fault of Dolphin, as a modified version of mGBA does not share the issues and works properly.


Multiple GBAs

HLE audio can only support 1 GBA as of the New-Zelda-HLE rewrite. Use DSP-LLE (with a DSP ripped from a Wii/GC) in order to play with multiple players.

HLE Navi's Trackers Hang (JP version)

When using HLE audio emulation the game will hang when trying to use Navi's Trackers mode /w a GBA. Navi Trackers requires DSP-LLE (with a DSP ripped from console) in order to function properly.

No Audio Upon Connecting With VBA-M

As of Dolphin 5.0, no audio will play after connecting VBA-M except that which plays through the Gameboy. To play with audio, use Dolphin version 4.0.2 or lower and VBA-M version r947.


16:9 Aspect Ratio Fix

The Built-in Widescreen Hack does nothing in this game. The following Gecko code works as a replacement.


F6000001 80008180
ED8B5024 ED4B0024
D2000000 00000004
91C27000 C2627000
ED5302B2 ED8B5024
60000000 00000000
E0000000 80008000
F6000001 80008180
ED494024 ED090024
D2000000 00000004
91C27000 C1E27000
ED0F0232 ED494024
60000000 00000000
E0000000 80008000


This title does not need non-default settings to run properly.

Version Compatibility

The graph below charts the compatibility with The Legend of Zelda: Four Swords Adventures since Dolphin's 2.0 release, listing revisions only where a compatibility change occurred.

5.0-15581 (current)
2.0 (r5384)
Compatibility can be assumed to align with the indicated revisions. However, compatibility may extend to prior revisions or compatibility gaps may exist within ranges indicated as compatible due to limited testing. Please update as appropriate.


This title has been tested on the environments listed below:

Test Entries
Revision OS Version CPU GPU Result Tester
r4598 Windows Vista Intel Core 2 Duo E4500 @ 2.2GHz Intel GMA 945 Fully playable: 50-80FPS with default settings and DX9 plug-in
r6315 Windows Intel Core i7-720 ATI Radeon HD 5730 Fully playable, even with multiplayer (GBA Link with Dolphin and VBA-M)
r6887 Windows Vista Intel Core 2 Duo T8100 @ 2.2GHz ATI Mobility Radeon HD 3470 Playable: Could play until the Moon Gate crash. 50-60FPS with DX9 plug-in and OpenCL enabled.
r7303 Windows 7 AMD Phenom II X3 N850 @ 2.2GHz ATI Mobility Radeon HD 4250 Slow: 10-30FPS with DX11 Autofire
r7440 Windows XP Intel Core 2 Duo @ 2.93GHz NVIDIA GeForce GTX 260 Playable: Some massive slowdowns and the known glitches. First Moon Gate worked fine, second crashed the game. Proto
r7714 Windows 7 Intel Core i3-370M @ 2.4GHz ATI Radeon HD 6370M Fully playable: No slowdowns, no known glitches.
3.0-377 Windows 7 Intel Core i7-2600K ATI Radeon HD 6850 Work great, but the game can freeze/slowdown on when you enter a moongate. Fixed the problem with "Skip EFB access from CPU".
3.0-436 Windows XP Intel Core 2 Duo E4500 ATI Radeon HD 2600 XT Runs okay, 25-35FPS.
3.0-681 Ubuntu 12.04 AMD Athlon 64 X2 @ 3.2GHz NVIDIA GeForce GTS 450 Work great, but the game can freeze (issue 5490). RyDroid
Unknown Revision Android Krait 300 @ 1.9 GHz Adreno 320 Zelda Four Swords with Android Dolphin Emulator on S4 i9500 bitnbytes01
3.5-1769 Windows 7 Intel Core i5-650 @ 3.2GHz ATI Radeon HD 5570 Runs great till Level 2-2. Transparency issues and similar minor graphical bugs are still there, but the game runs mostly at full speed. There is only some lag when the screen becomes busy. No audio problems discovered. No crashes, even not at moon gates. When entering those gates, there is an extreme lag, but no crash or freeze. This can be easily fixed by enabling "Skip CPU EFB Access". No error messages on reboot. No control issues. Enabled EFB copy to texture, anything else were standard settings. But when playing Level 2-3, the sound can stuck and the "can't hold button" bug is again there. Didn´t test the game further. Multiplayer untested. DARK
4.0.2 Windows 7 Intel Core i5-3570K AMD Radeon HD 7870 I spent a few days configuring until I finally got it to work. DSP LLE always caused a crash during VBA-M connection, so using HLE worked. If I left "Enable GBA Linking" on, one of the VBA-M's would crash after a few minutes, so disabling that made things better. I found turning off "turbo mode" and setting the VBA-M's throttles low (25%) helped achieve steady framerates for dolphin and the VBA's. Lastly, since I was using HLE for audio, I would get occasional sound hangs, so I changed dolphin's audio backend to DSound. Everything runs great, except I still have the z-order issue with the trees. ziggybozbo
4.0-4811 Windows 10 AMD 8350 NVIDIA GeForce 970 I tried a million things, but finally got it to run ONLY on this version of Dolphin with VisualBoyAdvance-M (SVN1206)! Dolphin needs ports 1-4 to be set to GBA for 4 players. Each VBA instance needs to have its input set to the appropriate option for each port. I needed Enable GBA Linking DISABLED or else it would crash, then connect using the Joybus Options menu. You also need to have speed throttled to 100%, or else Dolphin will lag. You need to have Bios Files set in the VBA-M settings, and then launch the bios file. Once launched, it should connect. Be sure to do them in the order of their inputs. For some reason I couldn't get any other combination of these two emulators to work. Coty
5.0 Windows 10 AMD FX 6350@3.9GHz NVIDIA GeForce GTX 660 OpenGL, HLE, 3xNative, 8xMSAA, 16xAF

Stable until you attempt the massive headache that is multiplayer. Audio completely cuts out when connecting to VBA-M besides audio from the Gameboy. VBA-M crashes on LLE. There is some minor slowdown that can affect gameplay.


Gameplay Videos