GBA4iOS Custom Skin Tutorial

- 3 mins

One of the coolest new features in GBA4iOS 2.0 is the ability to use custom controller skins. Before, you were limited to only a couple of skins to choose from; now, there is no limit to how many skins you can download and use in the app! This means you can have different skins for different games, and switch between them as you see fit. Or maybe you prefer having a smaller game screen that isn’t covered by the controls in landscape; skins can do this too.

However, the process of actually making skins has been rather confusing, due mostly to the fact that there was no official set of instructions on how to do it. Some have discovered how to replace the images in skins, but this is only scratching the surface of what skins can do. Until now, only a handful of people have known the exact process of how to make skins, but that’s changing today.

Introducing, the official tutorial on how to make GBA4iOS Controller Skins.

This tutorial covers everything you need to know about making skins, from the basics of changing the name and controller images to the more complex such as customizing the button mappings and game screen location. It may seem like a lot to read at first, but once you’ve made a few skins you’ll realize how straightforward the entire process is.

Of course, what fun is making a tutorial without also having a friendly competition to go with it? Now that the steps for making skins have been revealed, we want to see what you can come up with! Once you’ve made a cool, unique skin you think everyone would enjoy, send the final .gbaskin or .gbcskin file to Two weeks from today, we’ll look through all the submitted skins and pick out our favorites. We’ll then put these skins up for download within GBA4iOS so everyone can download them!

Some helpful hints on how to be picked:
• There is nothing wrong with simply replacing the images in one of the default skin templates with a creative image, but since this will probably be the most common type of submission, it will be harder to stand out.
• Currently, we have lots of GBA iPhone Portrait skins available for download. We’ll definitely accept some more, but we’re especially looking to fill up our GBC, landscape, and iPad skin selections (bonus points if you combine some of these into one skin!).
• Be creative. We want to see what crazy ideas you guys can come up with, and the better yours stands out the more likely you are to leave an impression on us! (But please, make sure the button layouts are actually useable.)

Remember, if your skin isn’t picked, it doesn’t mean we didn’t like it. We’re expecting a lot of submissions, and with any competition it’ll be hard to narrow it down to our favorites. However, if you don’t get picked, don’t feel discouraged! Our friends over at just today launched their “User Submissions” section, which will post skins submitted to them by fellow skin designers. If you want to get your skin out there, you should submit it to them; they are the number one GBA4iOS skin downloading website after all!

Hopefully, making skins will no longer be something of confusion, and you can get to work making your own custom skins today. As always, if you have any questions, please read the GBA4iOS FAQ, but if your question isn’t answered there, feel free to send it to, where we’ll try to answer your question as soon as possible.

Oh, and one last thing. Have fun making those skins!

Riley Testut

Riley Testut

Independent iOS developer, USC student, and Apple fan.

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