Welcome to the total setup tutorial for MAME, the Multiple Arcade Machine Emulator. Since HyperSpin is primarily tailored to serve as the ultimate frontend for the MAME arcade emulator, it makes plenty of sense that we show you not only how to configure HyperSpin for MAME but also to show you how to get your MAME setup going.
First things first; you’ve got to grab MAME to use it. While there are several builds of MAME out there that offer alternative features, we’ll stick with the stock full build released from the MAME development team. You can grab this at: mamedev.org.
The DOWNLOAD NOW button on the right (highlighted with the blue and yellow)? As you can see, this link is for downloading the 0.136 build of MAME. Just click on it. Next, you’ll see the selection page. You’ll want to download one of the three builds highlighted below, (unless you want to compile a NO-NAG, HiScore version of MAME-then you’ll need the source files; see the No-Nag Compile tutorial for this). Make sure you select the 64-bit build if you have a 64-bit OS as it provides a speed boost on some games.
NOTE: The 0.136u1 release of MAME incorporated C++ changes to the program core and results in performance gains.
Now that you’ve downloaded the MAME binary (or compiled your own version, likely optimized for your computer) it’s time to set things up. Locate the binary installer you downloaded:
When you run the program, you may be asked if you want to allow the program to run. If you grabbed it from mamedev.org, it’s safe; go ahead and click RUN. You’ll be asked where you want to install the MAME emulator files and folders. If you click on the folder browse button (highlighted yellow below) you will be able to select an existing folder or create a new one for your MAME folder.
While we’re setting up MAME for use with HyperSpin, why not just place the file in the default position HyperSpin expects to see it (you can always set up HyperSpin wherever you want, just see the MAME Wheel Settings Tutorial on the Docs page).
When you pull up the Browse For Folder dialog as pictured above, just click on the ‘Make New Folder’ button. Locate your HyperSpin install and Create a subfolder called ‘Emulators.’ Now, BEFORE you hit the ‘Enter’ key or click OK, select another folder, then select the Emulators folder you created, and create another folder, within the Emulators folder named ‘MAME.’ Now, click select OK.
Now you’ll see the final ‘installation’ prompt. Select ‘Extract’(highlighted in yellow) to finish installing the MAME files and folders.
NOTE: If you installed the 64-bit version of MAME, you can change the emulator path in HyperHQ to match the MAME executable name which will be called ‘vmame64.exe,’ or you can change the name of the MAME executable to mame.exe (see highlighted items below).
Now that you’ve got the MAME folder installed, you’ll need to install some game files (roms). Just place the roms in the folder titled roms (highlighted in blue above). Now that you’ve got the MAME folder installed, you’ll need to install some game files (roms). Just place the roms in the folder titled roms (highlighted in blue above).
If your roms are not located in the 'roms' folder located in the MAME install folder, games won't launch. Open a command line (DOS Prompt) in the MAME directory and run the command: mame -cc. This will create a file called mame.ini. Open this file and under CORE SEARCH PATH OPTIONS>rompath, change 'roms' to the full pathname where you have placed your roms. See the image below.
NOTE: If you don’t have roms or bios files, don’t ask here where to find them (in the forums OR through PM).
You’re almost ready to play MAME games in HyperSpin; just a few more steps. First, you need to install some MAME themes in the Media\MAME\Themes folder (highlighted in yellow below). You can download these themes from the HyperSpin MAME themes pages where we have over 800 user created themes just for MAME!
Gold membership (available for just $25) will get you no-download wait times and ftp access where you can quickly download the entire set of available MAME themes in just minutes (see the Donate page and the Using the FTP tutorial for more information).
HyperSpin comes with the full MAME XML database file installed in the Databases\MAME folder. You may or may not have or want to play all of the games listed in the xml folder, so you could limit the games available in HyperSpin by creating an XML from your roms folder using the HyperList service. Additionally, you could limit the games HyperSpin shows with the Themes, Wheels, or Parents filters in HyperHQ (highlighted in yellow below).
One of the main advantages of using the Themes, Wheels, or Parents only filters is that it allows you to keep the full MAME XML database on hand in case you expand you game selection while affording you an easy way to select what games show up. You can place only the wheel art or themes for games you want to play in their respective folders and that is all that HyperSpin will show.
The last thing you’ll want to do is customize the rest of the settings for your MAME wheel in HyperHQ. This is completely covered in the MAME Settings tutorial. Once you’ve made any adjustments (and you really don’t have to once you’ve installed the themes and wheel images) you’re ready to enjoy the best arcade experience you’ve ever imagined.