ia-rcade allows you to use the emulator MAME with roms hosted at archive.org.

Machines ROMs/CHDs and software lists ROMs/CHDs are supported.

Before using ia-rcade please read the legal notes below.




Despite ia-rcade can be considered safe, it is for now a beta software. It should not affect the roms into your rompath. But if you take care of your collection, it would be safer to try ia-rcade with another rompath. See below

If you change your version of Mame, i recommend you to use another empty rompath to prevent a mixed versions romset. Some roms could have been changed from a romset version to another so it is safer to download them again.


Linux / OS X


You can alternatively place it somewhere else and use the \$MAME_EXEC env variable:

C:\> SET MAME_EXEC=C:\Users\tiben\mame\mame.exe

Compilation from the sources

The compilation requires Maven.

The binary files ia-rcade (Linux/OS X) and ia-rcade.exe (Windows) and the executable jar are available on the target directory.


ia-rcade acts like a command wrapper of the original Mame executable. Use it exactly like the original Mame command line. When you launch a game or a system, ia-rcade looks at your rompath to determine what ROM/CHD files are missing and fetch them from archive.org into your rompath. Once the files are downloaded, it returns control to original Mame executable which launches the game/system.

Linux, Os X

Let's try Galaxian. Simply type what you would have typed with the original Mame to launch the game:

$ ia-rcade galaxian


Let's try Pacman. Open a console cmd then type:

C:\> cd \path\to\mame
C:\> ia-rcade.exe pacman

Executable JAR

Alternatively, the provided executable jar can be used directly:

$ java -jar ia-rcade.jar sf2

Use a different rompath

If you want to try ia-rcade using a different rompath than your Mame's default, you can use the original Mame option -rompath on the command-line.

$ ia-rcade -rompath /tmp sms sonic

Disable Mame execution

It is possible to run ia-rcade without running Mame afterward using the -noexecmame option. This can be useful if you only want to download a rom file without execute the game. If the rom is already available, ia-rcade simply does nothing.

$ ia-rcade -noexecmame sms sonic

Known limitations

No GUI support

ia-rcade does not work when used with the included Mame GUI. However it should work with frontends using some tweaks. Reddit user jstefa managed to make ia-rcade work in his cab with the frontend attract-mode.

Some ROMs/CHDs are missing

ia-rcade relies on romsets available at archive.org. Not all romsets for all Mame versions are hosted and some versions miss parts like softwarelist or chd sets. ia-rcade tries to find missing roms in previous collections but olders roms may not work with a more recent version of Mame.


ia-rcade is an independant project and is in any way associated with the official Mamedev team.

ia-rcade uses archive.org as a service and does not host nor provide directly any rom file.

Some rom files are the proprietary of copyright holders.

Contact and contributions

If you want to contribute or simply share your thoughs about ia-rcade feel free to send your pull requests here at github or join me at reddit.

One really simple contribution is keep me informed when new romsets are hosted at archive.org.


Releases announces on reddit triggered some good discussions: