Current MAME core not running games

Hey, having a weird issue here. I recently updated Retroarch in a (failed) attempt to solve another issue, and I have a whole new issue that’s popped up. Games that worked before on the current MAME core no longer function - the games will load, but give me a “files not present” error and not run. Going back to MAME 2010 most of the games run fine(save for a handful that had previously refused to cooperate with the 2010 core).

Why not juse use MAME 2010? Well, in addition to aforementioned handful of uncooperative games, I’m having some other issues with MAME 2010, one of which is of no concern here as it’s clearly an issue with Launchbox. But what is of note here is that the 2010 core is also giving me a weird issue, as when I go into the Retroarch menu and then return to the game, it opens the MAME settings menu, the one opened/closed by pressing Tab on the keyboard, even though NOTHING in my setup is mapped to the Tab key. I can’t figure out why this occurs. On the few games that actually load with the current MAME core, this does not happen.

Assistance would be appreciated on both issues if at all possible. I thank you in advance for any help you can provide.

Have you removed launchbox from the equation to verify that the issue is actually on RetroArch’s end? That is, this sounds a lot like it’s trying to launch the wrong core.

Yes. The problem I have outlined regarding the current MAME core persists whether I am launching through Launchbox or directly from Retroarch.

I have been having an issue with Launchbox not launching the right core(it refuses to launch MAME 2010), but I have a thread open for that issue on the Launchbox forum.

Ok, can you post a log of it failing to load?

What log file should I be seeking?

EDIT: The logs folder in the Retroarch install folder is completely empty. No logs have been generated at all. Log to file is on, logging verbosity is off.

set the logging verbosity to 0/debug.

Turning on logging verbosity crashed Retroarch. However, after reloading I turned OFF log to file, restarted Retroarch again, then was able to turn both on without issue. I know this could be a random crash, but I felt I should mention this in case it might tip you off as to the potential problem.

I have attached two log files - 1 is the attempt to launch the game with the current MAME core, 2 is launched with MAME 2010, both direct from Retroarch, no involvement from Launchbox. 1 gave me a black screen with the “files not present” error(and a scrolling list of my input devices making it almost impossible to see), 2 loaded the game fine and I did a brief bit of gameplay just to round things out. Both logs use the same game.


Hmm, well, I unfortunately can’t really tell anything from the short log, but I do see that it’s vampire savior, which is CPS2, IIRC, which started requiring additional ROMs not too long ago. Is it possible you’re missing the newly required qsound BIOS?

First thing I found in researching was advice to doublecheck the BIOS files. I keep them in a specific BIOS folder in the same folder as my ROM directory, which I have pointed RA towards. The qsound BIOS is among them, in a zipped folder. Should I be extracting it or is there a new subfolder I should put it in? (it’s in the open in the BIOS folder)

Potentially related: A non-CPS game I’ve had this same issue with is GORF, which I also know has some unique audio properties - the synthesized speech. The MAME 2010 core loads this game as well, but the speech is missing(all other sound is present).

Current Mame core is 0.244. Mame 2010 is 0.139. What version is the romset you are using?

Since you are using windows, i assume you have a PC that isn’t more than 15 years old. Therefore there is no reason to use an ancient version like the 2010, which you can tell by the name, is too old. Its used mainly for weak phones and old Pi devices.

So the first thing to do is get rid of the mame 2010 core and make sure you are using a recent romset no older than a few months. So now you will only have to troubleshoot one thing and not waste your time with another that isn’t needed.

Also, do not mess with the romset if you don’t know what you are doing. Keep everything in a single folder, don’t unzip and don’t mix old roms with newer ones. Just get a fresh one and don’t touch any file, ever.

Also, the speech in Gorf, as well as many other older games, is a sampled sound file that needs to be in the correct mame folder (samples). These are not roms but they also get updated along with the romsets.

I cannot remember the exact version, but it was a MAME 2016 set. However, when this issue began the very first thing I did was to grab a handful of ROMS that were having the issue from the 244 set in order to see if that was the problem. I intend to update the entire set once we’ve figured this out. (and I backed up the ROMs I was replacing so I can just copy them back over and overwrite the new ones if I just have to settle for dealing with MAME 2010)

Given the last comment by hunterk, I think there may be an issue with either the placement of the BIOS, or the copies of the BIOS themselves.

And yeah, the PC isn’t very old at all. Assembled specifically for this arcade cab I’m using, it runs an AMD R3 3200G(was supposed to be an R5 1600 - weird story why it isn’t), 16GB of DDR4-3000 RAM, Nvidia 1050 Ti GPU(was just a 1030 until I was finally able to upgrade my main PC last month). At the time I set this up, the ROMset I grabbed was the newest I could find from a site I could trust.

No, bon’t backup anything. By your posts i can tell your roms are messed up. A mix and match of older and newer files as well as having the bios in a different folder. This is not how Mame works.

As i said, delete your old roms and bioses and get a fresh 0.244 romset to run with the current mame core. Keep everything as is, in the same roms folder.

Just to be clear, you mean to keep the two BIOS zips zipped, and put them in the same folder as the actual ROMs themselves, not just the same folder as ROM folder?

Don’t think of the bios files as a different thing than roms. Both are just roms, all in the same folder and each one individually zipped.

I don’t know how you tampered your files so far so i can’t tell what files to zip, roms/bioses may have multiple files in a single zip or just one.

What im trying to say is that its too late, your current files are a complete mess and its not worth fixing them. Its FAR better to get a fresh romset where you know the files are all correct and compatible with curent mame. If any issue occurs after that, you will at least know its not the files or bioses.

I’ve never actually swapped out any files before this bit of troubleshooting - aside from the handful of new stuff I threw in here just now, everything was a file from the aforementioned 2016 ROMset(which was the primary core I used before my recent update of Retroarch). I kept the same files as the ROMset I downloaded in the same folders at all times. The only thing I did was remove ROMs for games I don’t know, which did probably remove something that’s causing the issue here, which is why I started thinking that maybe hunterk had hit on the right idea when he mentioned the BIOS. It’s something I’d never thought of with MAME content before now - so much of what I do is with simpler games that rarely require it(he says as his arcade cabinet runs a PC that is there so he can run Guilty Gear Xrd and BlazBlue on Steam).

I have initiated the process of acquiring the FULL 244 ROMset. I will not remove anything, and I will put it in the MAME folder(instead of the Arcade folder I’ve been using) so any other settings relating to the previous folder arrangement will not interfere.

Mame 2016 is also an old romset, which is why many games may not work with current mame. As mame gets updated so do the romsets. Every new version there is a handful of roms that won’t work with the previous version. So the bigger the version difference, the bigger the number of roms that won’t work.

You could also try finding a “non merged” romset. I think this romset has every file a game needs, along with the bios, in a single zip. That means you dont have to worry about missing/incompatible bioses. But its also bigger in size since every rom has a copy of the bios in it.

The only copy of 244 that I can find on sites I trust are all Merged. Anything I should be aware of with those?

Its ok, i also always use the merged set.

This one has a game and its clones in a single zip. Its smaller in size this way and you have less files in the folder. However, the bioses are seperated roms but they are still there, in the same folder.

The issue with this set is that its harder to play with clones if you use any frontend other than MAME UI which shows the clones under the parent roms. Also, there is no easy way to tell which file is a rom and which is a device/bios since they are all in the same folder. There are solutions for that too though but its not needed for this topic.

Well, I’ll just have to deal with scrolling through the entire MAME set to find the game I want to play until I can find a non-merged set from a trustworthy source, then! I’m certainly not worried about playing clones.