MAME Controls

These are the default key controls for MAME. They are probably the most useful ones but there are loads more available in the in-game menus. To see the rest, run a game, press the TAB button and select the Input (general) option.

You will find that certain games will use additional keys in order to make them run. You can find out these keys by pressing the "Tab" key during a game and selecting "Input (this game)". A good example of this is Hard Drivin' which uses the "Right Shift" for its clutch and "a" as its gear shift.

Changing The Default Keys

To change the game control keys simply run the game you want to play. Once the game has loaded press the "Tab" key to open the in-game menu and highlight "Input (this game)". Press enter and you will see this screen...


All you need to do now is to select the function you want to change, press enter and then press the key you want to use. It is possible to assign more than one key to a function by pressing enter again and pressing a different key.

You must be careful when selecting the keys you want to use as they may be in use by other functions.

If you want to assign joystick movements to a function then once you have selected the function you want to change move the joystick/pad or press the fire button you want to use. (N.B. You must have the -joystick option used for the command line version of MAME or Use Joystick selected in the MameUI configuration)

If Things Go Wrong!

If you muck up your game keys and want to reset them to default then open the C:\Mame\Cfg folder and delete the relevant .cfg file for the game. If for some insane reason you change the default MAME keys and can't get back into the in-game menu then you will need to delete the default.cfg file from the same folder as before.

Configuring Joysticks

MAME uses DirectX for input therefore if your controller has been set up properly in the Windows control panel, there shouldn't be an issue with MAME supporting it.

If you haven't configured your controller then open the Start->Control Panel window. You'll see one of two things in Windows 95 there'll be a joystick icon. Windows 98, 2000, XP and Vista will have a Game Controllers icon. You'll have to refer to the Windows help file to configure your controller (as I can't remember how to do it on 9x) but make sure that the main controller is Joystick 1.

Using Joysticks & Mice

MAME needs the -joystick option in it's command line and MameUI will need the "Use Joystick" option selected in its configuration window.

Mame also supports mouse input. This is normally used to simulate a trackball controller (such as Tempest and Marble Madness). MAME will need the -mouse option and MameUI will need the "Use Mouse" option selected in it's config window.


MAME supports lightguns. There are several around such as the ACTLabs Lightgun, EMS Topgun or GunCon2 which work fine in MAME. Use the -lightgun option in MAME or enable the "Use Lightgun" option in MameUI's config screen.