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How do I use BlueStacks emulator? (Starter’s guide)

BlueStacks makes playing mobile games on PC a breeze, but how does it work?
bluestacks logo with bluestacks app running in background
Credit: MobileBytesGG

If you love gacha games, adding an Android emulator like BlueStacks to your PC is a great start. But how do you get it, and how do you use BlueStacks 5?

These are all valid questions. Downloading an unknown program and running it on your computer can feel a bit worrisome.

First, it’s important to understand that the BlueStacks 5 emulator is not a virus and is safe to download. Now, with that out of the way, let’s dive in.

Is BlueStacks good for gaming?

bluestacks loading screen
Credit: MobileBytesGG

First, to get it out of the way, BlueStacks is a great Android emulator for gamers.

It lets you download a ton of games through the Play Store, it has APK options for downloading things not found on app stores, and it has a ton of customization options.

You can set up controls that match the game you are playing. And, using Multi-Instance Manager, you can quickly reroll on the latest gacha games.

Check out our favorite games to play on BlueStacks here.

How to download BlueStacks 5 (emulator)

If you are ready to start your Android emulation journey and have settled on BlueStacks as your emulator of choice, you’ll first need to download it.

To do so, head to the official site for BlueStacks 5 and hit the big download button in the middle of the screen shown below.

bluestacks 5 download screen with buttons
Credit: MobileBytesGG

Next, you’re going to want to make sure you download the emulator on the drive you would like it to stay on.

Continued reading: BlueStacks 5 vs BlueStacks 10

Migrating locations on emulators can be a pain, so it is better to set it up appropriately right from the start.

Time needed: 5 minutes.

Once BlueStacks downloads and you open up the .exe file, continue below:

  1. Click the new download file

    Once the .exe downloads, find it and open it

  2. If prompted, allow the app to make changes to your PC

  3. You’ve now opened the BlueStacks installer

    The installer will now open, but don’t press install yet

  4. Instead, look for the Customize installation option (this changes based on version)install location option for app

  5. Click browse and decide on the Drive and Folder for the installation

  6. Once you select the install location, click Install to finish the installation process

You’ve now successfully installed BlueStacks. Additionally, you have made sure to install it in a good, future-proof location.

Now, it’s time to learn about what you can actually do with BlueStacks. We’ll go into detail below.

How to use the BlueStacks emulator

Once you have successfully downloaded the popular Android emulator, it’s time to learn about using it.

This can seem overwhelming at first. But, don’t stress, it’s actually pretty intuitive once you know what’s up.

Download Android games through the Google Play store

google play store icon on android emulator
Credit: MobileBytesGG

One of the easiest — and quickest! — ways to get up and running with mobile games on BlueStacks is through the Google Play store.

Typically, your installation will come with the Play Store installed. It will either be an icon on your main emulator screen, or you can find it under Game Center.

Next, simply click on the icon and when it opens, you’ll be prompted to log in.

We recommend using your main (or main gaming) Gmail address to log in. This will be the easiest way to make in-game purchases on your Android emulator.

If you want a more in-depth guide, click here to learn everything about downloading games on BlueStacks.

Download Android games through TapTap

taptap app store on android phone
Credit: MobileBytesGG

If you prefer to use something other than Google Play for your games, we highly recommend TapTap.

TapTap is a safe, third-party option that gives you access to games not always readily available in your region. It’s a great way to play SEA and Korean games ahead of their US or Global launches.

To download TapTap, you will need to snag the APK by going to this link. Then, you can follow this guide for downloading TapTap on BlueStacks.

What is Multi-Drive (multi-instance) Manager and how do you use it?

bluestacks multi-instance-manager
Credit: MobileBytesGG

Now that we’ve gone over the basics of the BlueStacks emulator, it’s time to make you a power user. The best place to start with this is the Multi-Instance manager.

This feature allows you to clone your Android emulator and create new instances. But why would you want to do this?

For one, if you are starting a new mobile game and want to get the best start possible, you might want to reroll multiple times. Cloning your instance allows you to do that quickly over multiple copies of BlueStacks.

Secondly, creating a new instance allows you to utilize a different version of Android — 64-bit vs 32-bit. Some games have different requirements.

Because of this, you might need a 64-bit and 32-bit instance on BlueStacks.

So now that we know why we use multiple instances on BlueStacks 5, let’s dive into the how of it all.

How to create multiple instances on BlueStacks 5

If you are ready to try this out for yourself, you can get started in just a couple of steps.

We’ll walk you through the BlueStacks 5 multi-instance process below.

  1. Open BlueStacks 5 and click the Multi-Instance Manager icon (shown below)
bluestacks multi-instance icon
Credit: MobileBytesGG
  1. Click the Add Instance button at the bottom of the window
multi-instance manager screen
Credit: MobileBytesGG

From here, you’ll choose to create a Fresh Instance, and then you’ll select your Android version.

multi-instance manager new instance decision
Credit: MobileBytesGG

Once you select an Android version, the Android emulator will install it as a new instance.

Then, it is as simple as choosing your version from the same Multi-Instance Manager icon highlighted above.

How is BlueStacks free?

Now that you’ve seen how powerful the Android emulator is, you’re probably wondering about costs. Well, first of all, BlueStacks is free. But how does the company that makes it pay the bills?

BlueStacks (the company) earns money through ads, sponsorship deals, and other affiliate-type programs. This keeps servers running and updates coming.

Using the BlueStacks emulator doesn’t have to be overwhelming

And there you have it, a quick guide to understanding how to use the BlueStacks 5 Android emulator.

Whether you need to know how to install it or where to download mobile games, we’ve covered that in this article.

If you want to try other Android emulators, make sure to check out our Nox Player Starters Guide.


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