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Butano is a modern C++ high level engine for the Game Boy Advance.


  • Create and display sprites, backgrounds, text, raster effects and more with only one line of C++ code.
  • Custom standard library without heap allocations nor exceptions, based on ETL.
  • Import and use your own assets with ease.
  • Multiple development tools like asserts, emulator logging and code profiling.
  • Based on modern C++ concepts like shared ownership and RAII.
  • Detailed documentation.
  • Multiple examples of most aspects of the engine.
  • The source code and assets of two full games (Butano Fighter and Varooom 3D) are provided with this project.

Supported platforms

Butano is built on top of the devkitARM toolchain, so it supports Windows, macOS and Unix-like platforms.

What's new

Curious about what was added or improved recently? Check out the changelog in the documentation.

Getting started

The best way to get started is to read the download, install and start using Butano guide.

Third party libraries

Butano would have not been possible without these libraries:

Contact and support

If you spotted a bug, need a feature or have an awesome idea, the best you can do is to head over to the issues page, to the forums or to the gbadev Discord server.


Butano is licensed under the zlib license, see the LICENSE file for details.

Third party libraries are licensed under other licenses, please check the licenses folder for details.

Assets used in games, examples and other projects are licensed under other licenses, please check the credits folders for details.

Made with Butano: Butano Fighter

Stay alive while you shoot at everything that moves! What else do you need?

The full source code and the creative commons assets of this game are in its project folder.

Get the latest Butano Fighter ROM from

Made with Butano: Varooom 3D

Action-packed with revolutionary 60FPS 3D technology and 3D glasses (not included) that will have you believing you're in the middle of a circuit race at speeds of 200 KMH!

The full source code and the creative commons assets of this game are in its project folder.

Get the latest Varooom 3D ROMs from

Also made with Butano

  • Feline: explore the world as a cat, meet new people, learn new languages, face difficult foes and save your family!

  • Symbol★Merged: a puzzle platformer game where you can merge items (symbols) in hands, and use the superpower of the merged symbol.

  • Green Memories: the year is 300 a.f. and protagonist Cytra tries to survive the extreme climate of a post-apocalyptic desert while collecting data from her scientific research.

  • notenogram: chill analog-styled picross/nonogram/hanjie/griddler game, with story and create modes.

  • LRO - Luggage Retrieval Officer: you will work your way to being a highly ranked member off staff, retrieving important missing luggage for the likes of the Natural History Museum, NASA and even the FBI!

  • Bridge Quest: find the way to the desert, but beware, because enemies and an evil tree boss will try to stop you!

  • Knight Owls: build up a powerful spellbook and take on many enemies, gather owls and upgrades while managing your health and money and defeat the final boss to win!

  • Collie Defense: you're a Border Collie and you need to protect your flock of sheep!

  • Sips: enjoy watching people while you earn money to upgrade your cafe.

  • Nuclear Love: have fun getting to know other survivors in this dating-show, who knows, maybe you might find your future Mr. or Mrs Right?

  • Tremblay Island: take on the role of any island villager and interact with the others, taking part in the drama while eventually trying to keep a grouchy alligator from taking over the island.

  • Frost Princess: place tiles down on the board to create a path to your opponent's base, then place tiles on their base to damage them.

  • GBA-NICCC: Game Boy Advance port of the Atari ST demo STNICCC 2000.

More Butano related stuff

  • gba-free-fonts: free fonts for GBA development. It comes with tools and examples to import them into a Butano project.