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Tempest MAME 2012 pt2



My Tempest MAME cabinet is coming along well. After some initial learning curve frustration, I now have 3D Arcade configured as a front end. It displays the games as 3D cabinets in a spinable cylinder. It still needs some tweaks and some additional setup, but it's now close enough to be usable. The main task is now going through all of the games and making sure they work and making any necessary configuration tweaks. In doing so, I've run into a problem...


MAME is, first and foremost, an emulator. The idea is the software should reproduce the hardware as closely as possible - using the original software (ROMs). In slavish dedication to this ideal, the MAME devs flag any games which don't meet those standards with a warning screen, e.g.: "There are known problems with this game. The sound emulation isn't 100% accurate. Type OK or move the joystick left then right to continue." In current releases of MAME this warning message cannot be bypassed, and unlike the "ROMs are copyrighted, so you're almost certainly violating the law" warning, it appears every time you run the game. Which presents a problem for me since my Tempest cabinet doesn't have a joystick or a keyboard.


One solution is to recompile MAME after modifying the code the eliminate those warnings. But that's a chunk of error-prone effort which I have no desire to perform. I'm sure if I search I can find someone who's done that for me, but I'm thinking a better alternative is to modify my keyboard encoder wiring to map the buttons to left & right arrows (typical for joysticks) which will allow me to bypass the warning manually. Unfortunately, this has two annoying facets. First I'll have to go back through the reconfiguration process to remap the buttons used by MAME and 3D Arcade to be compatible with the new keys. Second I'll have to physically change the wiring, which will probably involve some soldering.


Right now I'm using a keyboard encoder scavenged from an actual keyboard, but I'm thinking I might want to look and see if there's a cheap alternative.


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Couldn't you just run an earlier version of MAME that allows you to bypass the message?

True, that's an option. But then I'd have to also backlevel my ROM set, which may not be possible. Though maybe I should check and see how 0.97 (which I have) does. Hmmm... let me dig at the changelist and see if there's any must haves between 0.97 and current.

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