Setting up MAME can be hell if you are a newbie. You can get the basics going but after that it’s onto multiple sites and multiple forums and so on. So I wrote down what I did to make it a little easier. To start off there are a few questions you have to ask yourself. Are you doing this for fun or are you going for a record and want it verified by Twin Galaxies? Do you want to have high scores saved? How authentic of an experience do you want?


MAME does not record high scores. They say it does for about 2500 games but apparently I don’t have any of those games which are mostly classic games like Tempest, Donkey Kong, etc. So to get high scores you can need a file called highscore.dat and you need to compile it OR you can go get one already compiled for version 143 which plays pretty much all my games.
  1. Go to the MAME site and look under previous releases. Download release 143 and unzip it wherever you like. Currently the highest release is 146 but you won’t notice the difference.Official MAME 143b
  2. Now we need a high score dat file and a version of the MAME executable that has been compiled for this. So go here and in the downloads section you want to download the highscore dat and the version 143 mame executable. Yes I know we already downloaded MAME but hang on I will explain.High Score DAT and High Score MAME Executable
  3. Ok here are the steps
  • Create a folder where ever you like. Mame runs from that. There is no installer.
  • Unzip the official Mame143b into that folder.
  • Bring up the command prompt and go to that folder.
  • Type “mame -cc” without quotations. This will make the MAME config file.
  • If there is no folder call “hi” then create it.
  • Unzip the highscore.dat zip file into your MAME folder
  • Unzip into your MAME folder and it will overwrite the one in there.
  • Go get some ROMS and put them in the “roms” folder
  • Go into the command prompt and to the folder you put mame in
  • type “mame -createconfig” so it will make an ini file
  • Once you have ROMS (see below) you go to the mame directory and type “mame”
  • Now you have Mame with highscore. Open up Ms Pacman and when you close and re-open the score is still there.


The 64,000 dollar question. Search for the site RetroRoms (I’m not linking to it). You have to register to make a username. Then for some reason you have to log in on the left and click downloads and login again. After that drill down to /downloads/mame/currentroms.  See that was pretty easy eh? This is better than downloading a huge torrent file with thousands of roms when you will probably just play a few. Put these in your ROMS folder and double-click MAME. It has a built in front end. Clunky but works.If you see multiple version of a rom like tempest1 tempest2 and so on just grab them all. Sometimes you need all of them to make a game work. I am not an expert on this but that usually works for me.

Bezels, Marquees, Etc.

Mr Do’s Arcade– Go here to get your files. Put the files in the artwork folder. Each zip file needs a folder. For example. The contents of go in a folder called mspacman and that goes in the artwork folder. Should work automatically. To turn it off start the game and hit Tab for the video options for that particular game and turn off the bezel option.

Effects For Authenticity?

Overlays Here – If you have an LCD you probably realize something doesn’t look right. Of course some people will say that you must have a real arcade monitor but that is not always feasible. I have heard a lot of bad stuff about LCDs. The game doesn’t look right, the game colors, the game resolution. Blah blah blah. I have even heard that if you use an LCD it’s because you don’t have the money for the real thing. Hahhahah. So retarded. A real arcade monitor is the shit but they are heavy and will need work sooner or later. If you got the skillz then good for you but if you want a pain free experience then go with an LCD. Personally I can just go get a new LCD for much less and it’s not because I am poor. The exception to this line of thinking is that I would not advocate an LCD for a real arcade machine. My Donkey Kong and Donkey Kong Junior both have a Sanyo EZ -20 but for a MAME machine it’s a bit overkill if you ask. MAME has a way to help you get a more authentic look. You can simply overlay the lines and create a very nice look.I have attached a file and I got it from here. You can get different effects and even use different ones on different games. So take the attached file and put it in the artwork directory. Go into your MAME folder and open mame.ini with a notepad editor. If you don’t have a mame.ini file then you skipped the part above that says to go to a command prompt and find your way to the mame directory then type “mame -cc. Now you have been told twice. Find the “effect” line and change it so that it matches the name of the overlay file you want to use. In this case the file named scanrez2.
## CORE SCREEN OPTIONS#brightness 1.0contrast 1.0gamma 1.0pause_brightness 0.65 effect scanrez2
Now you have a cool looking screen but your vector games look like shit. So using Tempest as an example you just make a file called tempest.ini and put “effect none” inside and put it in the main MAME folder. It will override the mame ini settings.


To compete for world records you need wolfmame106. It is also called wolfmamepro106 but they are the same. Search for it via Google. This is currently the version that Twin Galaxies requires but you should always keep up with their rule changes. Yes, the ones not posted on their site that you have to go into a forum to ask about and get ten different answers. The ones that half the time make no sense. Yeah those rules.

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