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Original Author: David Valdeita (Seleuco)

This is a port of MAME for iOS, iPadOS, tvOS and macOS. MAME4iOS is designed to run for modern iOS and macOS platforms, including support for the latest Apple technology platform enhancments such as Metal graphics and the M1 processor.

Download IPAs for iOS and tvOS here

Chat on Discord!

See what's new


iPhone Screenshot AppleTV Screenshot macOS Screenshot


MAME stands for Multi Arcade Machine Emulator, and lets you play arcade games from the past 30+ years on a device that fits in your pocket! My teenage self from decades ago would be replaying that "mind blown GIF" over and over again, but that GIF did not exist back then.

More than 2000 games are supported, and the currently supported romsets are 0.238 (November 2021) and 0.139u1 (September 2010). Note that there are separate apps for the latest MAME and the classic 0.139u1 versions. This is done because the supported romsets differ greatly between the the MAME versions.

It has been updated to compile and runs on the latest Xcode by Les Bird, and he has graciously added support for MFI Controllers.

Since then, a large number of features have been added:

  • 64-bit binary to run on modern and future iOS and macOS devices, including Macs using the M1 series of processors
  • Supports modern device screen sizes for iPhone and iPad
  • tvOS support (new in 2019!)
  • Multiple MFI controllers (up to 4 with dual analog support - @DarrenBranford)
  • Supports using the touch screen as a lightgun
  • Turbo mode toggle for buttons
  • Touch analog for games like Arkanoid
  • An in-app web server to transfer files from your computer (new in 2019!)
  • A native iOS/iPadOS/tvOS frontend (by @ToddLa, new in 2020!)
  • A native Metal rendering engine (by @ToddLa, new in 2020!)
  • Transfer ROMs, Artwork, and ROMSETs via AirDrop or iOS File Sharing (new in 2020!)
  • Builds in the latest Xcode

Building / Installation / Sideloading


Requirements: iOS 13.4 or higher, tvOS 13.4 or higher, or Mac 10.15.5 (Catalina) or higher to run.

Requirements: Mac 10.13.6 with Xcode 11.4 or above to bulid.

Even if you are not in the paid Apple Developer Program, you can sideload the app using a Mac with Xcode.

  1. Open the Xcode project in MAME4iOS.xcodeproj

  2. Set the Organization and Team Identifer in MAME4iOS.xcconfig

    ORG_IDENTIFIER   = com.example    // CHANGE this to your Organization Identifier.
    DEVELOPMENT_TEAM = ABC8675309     // CHANGE this to your Team ID. (or select in Xcode project editor)
    • The ORG_IDENTIFIER is a reverse DNS string that uniquely identifies your organization.
    • You can also set the Development Team via the drop down in the Xcode project editor, for each Target.
    • You can find your TeamID here.
  3. Enable entitlements in MAME4iOS.xcconfig (optional, only if you have a developer account)

    • entitlements are required for tvOS TopShelf and iCloud Import/Export/Sync.
  4. Select the MAME binary to link to, in MAME4iOS.xcconfig

    • 139u1 or latest MAME 2xx version.
  5. Choose the appropriate build target in Xcode:

    • MAME4iOS Release (iPhone/iPad/macOS)
    • MAME tvOS Release (AppleTV)
  6. Build:

    1. If you are a developer: Build and ▶︎ Run on your device. Done.
      • NOTE first time build may take a long time.
    2. If you are not a developer…
      1. XcodePreferences add your Apple ID, select your Personal Team, and create an iOS Development Profile.
      2. Select the project name on the left pane and make sure your personal team is selected
      3. Hit the ▶︎ Run button to install on your device. Done.

How to build latest version of MAME (optional)

By default MAME4iOS will use pre-combiled libraries for the latest MAME, if you need a Simulator build, or just want to build MAME, you need to...

  • clone this fork of MAME
  • run ./ [ios | tvos | ios-simulator | tvos-simulator | macOS] in the forked MAME
  • go watch this then this while you wait for MAME to build.
  • now switch directories to your MAME4iOS project
  • run ./ ios <path to your MAME clone>
  • edit xcode/MAME4iOS/MAME4iOS.xcconfig to select the libmame library.
  • build and run in Xcode.

Issues running latest MAME

  • most MAME 139 ROMs dont work on 2xx, but that is just normal life in MAME world, see this.
  • if you run a Computer machine, and you use a USB keyboard, ⌘+DELETE is is the ui_mode_key.
  • MAME Configure menu has a Add To Favorites and Select New Machine that dont interact with the MAME4iOS Ux.
  • Games that use DRC (like NFL Blitz....) will not work correctly and may crash hang, if Use DRC is enabled, This is an issue with the arm64 support in MAME.

Mixing 139 and 2xx ROMs

Some romsets are not compatible between MAME 139 and newer versions, the best way to use both romsets at the same time is to make sure the newer ones are stored in the 7z format and the 139 ones in the zip format. This way both files can co-exist.


MAME for tvOS support was added in early 2019, and it currently can run games has full native UI support and MFI controller support with most notably:

  • MFI controllers, Xbox One, PS4 DualShock, and Siri Remote support.

Using MAME

When you start MAME4iOS, you are now presented with an updated and native iOS/tvOS MAME UI

MAME UI Controls

  • Onscreen D-Pad or MFI Controller D-Pad: Move through the menu
  • A Button: Start Game


  • Coin: SELECT/COIN for Player 1
  • Start: START for Player 1
  • Menu: Open the MAME4iOS menu
  • Exit: Exit the game

Adding ROMs to MAME4iOS


For iOS users, you can download ROMs using Safari and save them to the roms directory by choosing the "Save to Files" (go to "On My iPhone" -> MAME4iOS) option after downloading a ROM.

You can also use the "Start Server" option in the menu to start the webserver, and enter the address shown on the web browser on your computer.

You can also use the "Import ROMs" option to open up the native iOS file browser and load files that are saved locally or that exist on iCloud.

You can use "Import from iCloud" to download ROMs previously uploaded to iCloud.


on tvOS the only options are to copy ROMs via "Start Server" or downloading via "Import from iCloud".

Adding Softare to MAME4iOS

MAME4iOS supports two types of Software

  1. Software List (aka MESS) based software, installed via ZIP files into roms

  2. Single file based image (cart, flop, dsk, ...), installed into software

ROMless Machines

MAME4iOS includes a set of Machines/Systems that dont need any ROMs installed to run, and can be used "out of the box".

ROMless Arcade Machines

Name Description
pongf Pong (Rev E) [TTL]
pongd Pong Doubles [TTL]
rebound Rebound (Rev B) [TTL]
breakout Breakout [TTL]

ROMless Console Machines

The following is a list of some of the Consoles and file types supported by MAME4iOS "out of the box"

Name Description Media File Types
a2600 Atari 2600 (NTSC) a26, bin
a2600p Atari 2600 (PAL) a26, bin
gen_nomd Genesis Nomad (USA Genesis handheld) md, smd, bin, gen
genesis Genesis (USA, NTSC) cmd, smd, bin, gen
megadrij Mega Drive (Japan, NTSC) md, smd, bin, gen
megadriv Mega Drive (Europe, PAL) md, smd, bin, gen
megajet Mega Jet (Japan Mega Drive handheld) md, smd, bin, gen
nes Nintendo Entertainment System / Famicom (NTSC) unif, nes, unf
nespal Nintendo Entertainment System (PAL) unif, nes, unf
1292apvs 1292 Advanced Programmable Video System rom, tvc, bin, pgm
1392apvs 1392 Advanced Programmable Video System rom, tvc, bin, pgm
pico Pico (Europe, PAL) md, bin
picoj Pico (Japan, NTSC) md, bin
picou Pico (USA, NTSC) md, bin
vboy Virtual Boy vb, bin
sgx SuperGrafx cue, gdi, toc, chd, bin, cdr, nrg, pce, iso
pce PC Engine cue, gdi, toc, chd, bin, cdr, nrg, pce, iso
tg16 TurboGrafx 16 cue, gdi, toc, chd, bin, cdr, nrg, pce, iso

Console Machines and Computers (that require BIOS)

The following is a list of some of the Consoles, Computers, and file types supported by MAME4iOS, but BIOS files must be installed first.

Name Description Media File Types
a5200 Atari 5200 rom, a52, bin, car
a800 Atari 800 (NTSC) rom, xfd, atr, dsk, bin, car
a7800 Atari 7800 (NTSC) a78
famicom Famicom unif, nes, unf
fds Famicom (w/ Disk System add-on) fds
snes Super Nintendo Entertainment System / Super Famicom (NTSC) sfc
snespal Super Nintendo Entertainment System (PAL) sfc
32x Genesis with 32X (USA, NTSC) 32x, bin
32xe Mega Drive with 32X (Europe, PAL) 32x, bin
32xj Mega Drive with 32X (Japan, NTSC) 32x, bin
neogeo Neo-Geo MV-6F neo, bin
n64 Nintendo 64 rom, v64, n64, z64, bin
n64dd Nintendo 64DD bin, 2mg, rom, n64, z64, hdv, hd, v64, chd, hdi
c64gs Commodore 64 Games System (PAL) a0, 80, prg, t64, e0, p00, crt
c64 Commodore 64 (NTSC) d64, tap, prg, a0, g64, 80, g41, g71, wav, p00, mfi, dfi, t64, e0, crt
apple1 Apple I wav, snp
apple2 Apple ][ do, mfi, dsk, rti, edd, wav, woz, nib, dfi, po
apple2gs Apple IIgs (ROM03) mfi, edd, mfm, td0, 360, img, do, nib, imd, dc42, hfe, rti, ima, po, d77, ufi, woz, dsk, 2mg, cqi, dfi, cqm, d88, 1dd
mac128k Macintosh 128k d88, dsk, cqm, d77, img, dc42, mfm, 2mg, 1dd, cqi, imd, dfi, mfi, woz, td0, ufi, 360, ima, hfe
ibm5150 IBM PC 5150 mfi, td0, mfm, wav, hdv, 360, img, hd, xdf, imd, hfe, 2mg, ima, hdi, d77, ufi, dsk, chd, cqi, dfi, cqm, d88, 1dd
bbca BBC Micro Model A wav, uef, rom, bin, csw
bbcb BBC Micro Model B adf, mfi, fsd, td0, mfm, wav, 360, ads, csw, img, rom, prn, adl, imd, bin, bbc, hfe, adm, ima, d77, dsk, ufi, uef, ssd, cqi, dfi, dsd, cqm, d88, 1dd


You can upload ROMs to MAME on your AppleTV using a computer. After MAME starts, you'll be shown a welcome screen with the address of the AppleTV that you can enter in your web browser. Add MAME ROMs to the roms directory using the provided web uploader.

Game Controller Support

Pair your MFi, Xbox, or Dual Shock controller with your iOS device, and it should 'just work'. Up to 4 controllers are supported.

Hotkey combinations (while in-game)

MENU+L1 Player Coin
MENU+R1 Player Start
MENU+L2 Player 2 Coin
MENU+R2 Player 2 Start
MENU+A Speed 2x
MENU+X Exit Game
MENU+Y Open MAME menu
MENU+DOWN Save State ①
MENU+UP Load State ①
MENU+LEFT Save State ②
MENU+RIGHT Load State ②

Hotkey combinations (while in choose game UX)

MENU Game Context Menu
A Play

Dual analog support

The right stick on the extended controller profile is fully supported, with support for 4 players (thank you @DarrenBranford!)

Trigger buttons

The trigger buttons are mapped to analog controls and should be useful in assigning for pedal controls, for example.

Siri Remote

MAME4iOS is now usable on a AppleTV using only the stock Siri Remote. You can only play games that use only the A and B buttons.

to start playing a game, hit MENU and select "Coin + Start" from the list.

TRACKPAD MOVE   - emulate a dpad or joystick
TRAKPAD CLICK   - A button
PLAY            - B button
MENU            - bring up the MAME4iOS menu

Touch Screen Lightgun Support (new in 2018, iOS only)

You can now use the touch screen for lightgun games like Operation Wolf and Lethal Enforcers. Holding down your finger simulates holding down the trigger, which is mapped to the "X" button. Tap with 2 fingers for the secondary fire, or the "B" button.

In full screen landscape mode, you can hide the onscreen controls using the "D-Pad" button at the top of the screen. When using a game controller, the top button of the screen opens the menu to load/save state or access settings.

Touch Lightgun setup is in Settings -> Input -> Touch Lightgun, where you can disable it altogether, or use tapping the bottom of the screen to simulate shooting offscreen (for game that make you reload like Lethal Enforcers).

Shortcuts while in Touch Screen Lightgun mode

  • Touch with 2 fingers: secondary fire ("B" button)
  • Touch with 3 fingers: press start button
  • Touch with 4 fingers: insert coin

Turbo Mode Toggle for Buttons (new in 2018)

Under Settings -> Game Input, there's a section called "Turbo Mode Toggle", that lets you turn on turbo firing for individual buttons. Holding down the button causes the button to fire in turbo mode.

Touch Analog Mode (new in 2019, iOS only)

Also in Settings -> Game Input, you'll find a section called "Touch Analog" and "Touch Directional Input". "Touch Analog" lets you use your touchscreen as an analog device for games using input controls such as trackballs and knobs. These include games like Arkanoid or Crystal Castles. You can adjust the sensitivity of the analog controls, and also choose to hide the d-pad/analog stick in this mode.

"Touch Directional Input" is rather experimental and is for vertical shooters so you can move around using your finger. It still needs some work so just a word of caution :)


MAME4iOS is distributed under the terms of the GNU General Public License, 2 (GPL-2.0).