03 October 2017

MAME 190, 21.000 views on my site and the state of MAME on Macs

With MAME 190 having been released, just a brief note on where MAME currently stands as it comes to the Mac environument.
  1. First and foremost, I see 21000 views on this site. Considering the narrow topic covered here, this is encouraging. So there are Mac users out there who are interested in MAME emulation. Thank you! And please do not hesitate to post if there is something to mention.
  2. As you probably read in this blog, MAME works quite nice on modern Macs. As regards the Mac build, the METAL backend does not build properly in recent macOS systems. However, the official build from http://sdlmame.lngn.net/ is built on an older MacOSX system and has a working METAL backend. The build from http://choccyhobnob.com/mame/mame/ does not a working METAL backend, and same goes with my own build attempts.
  3. I would really like to write a bit about the Retroarch MAME core with its entirely different approach to game emulation. However, the MAME (current) core for macOS is also outdated since nearly a year and does not build. On modern Macs, I would not mess around with the (running) cores for MAME 2003 or 2014, unless you have a really old Mac machine. I sincerely hope that this will change because Retroarch would be another great option for Mac users.
  4. When it comes to frontends, QMC2 and Attract Mode are out there and in decent shape. This blog contains a lot of information on how to set them up on Macs. As for Attract Mode, I am a bit worried about the lack of updates for quite some time. But addmitedly it works nicely.
The next big thing to come would probably be the High Sierra update, on which I will still be waiting a bit. With an 8bitdo Arcade Stick at home, playing could excel to new levels. And yes, still waiting for the Retroarch MAME core to come back to life. Cheers and happy gaming!


  1. your posts have been extremely helpful as I built a full size home arcade using a mac mini and attractmode. thanks for taking the time do share all your insights.
    I noticed that only some games support the highscores.dat plugin. Was wondering if there is a good resource to ensure we have the latest highscores.dat supported games enabled.

    1. Hi, I much appreciate any feedback - so many thanks! Just out of curiosity: Did you activate the new LUA-plugin for hiscore support besides hiscore.dat? As far as my games are concerned, nearly all games have hiscore support with that combination. If yes, do you have some examples of games without hiscore support, so that I can double check? Cheers!

  2. Stalking you from the Libretro forums. I installed High Sierra on my MacBook Pro, and am doing some MAME testing. So far it all seems to work alright, and im going to play around with some of the BG effects you mentioned. I'll share any High Sierra findings with you when i finish.

    Still plugging away trying to make the macOS libretro core work.

    1. Hi and thanks for stalking :). Further comments most welcome!

  3. Hi Estefan!

    Thanks for your tutorials I managed to configure QMC2 to work fine on my Hackintosh.

    But I still have a question, I have downloaded all MAME Extras and one of the files is manuals.zip with ALOT of manuals pdfs, I saw that QMC2 have a option to show Manuals in pdf but I can't find where I can configure the path to the manuals.zip file.

    Do you know how to do that?

    Thanks in advance!

    []s from Brazil!

    1. Hello, yes I think I figured it out:
      Step 1: define an additional Artwork Class under Tools/Options/Files-Directories (I am a bit unsure about whether this should be System-related or Software-related), the other options are quite self-explanatory
      Step 2: In the QMC2 main window on the right side, where the different Artwork Classes are displayed, hover over them, Secondary Mouse Button -> Component Setup -> activate your newly defined Artwork Class
      If you are lucky, you should be done, I actually have never tested it with real data. Happy to receive your feedback on that!
      Estefan a.k.a. Stefan :-)


Any comments are welcome!