NewRetroArcade: Neon

NewRetroArcade: Neon

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Official Arcade Builder Guide
By Vermillion and 4 collaborators
This guide instructs users on how to add their ROMs and custom artwork to New Retro Arcade: NEON
Please head over to for help with downloading customisable media

This guide will quickly walk you through the Arcade Builder application and how you can add your own ROMs. Please read everything carefully so you can avoid having issues getting your games to run. Be sure to check this guide every now and then because new features may be added or changed.
Adding your own games to New Retro Arcade Neon is a fairly simple process. You will need these things before we get started.
  • ROMs – You’ll have to find these on your own. The MAME 2014 core uses 0.159 ROMS. Those have the best compatibility. Please refer to the filetype chart below to ensure you have the correct file types for the emulation cores.

  • BIOS files – If the arcade game you're trying to emulate needs a specific BIOS file to operate, you need to make sure to place it in NRA:N's ROMs folder. This can also apply to some Super Nintendo ROMS as well that make use of special co-processors. You can find a list here. Just extract them to your ROMS folder.[]
    Otherwise your game won't boot at all!
    (ex. Neo-Geo, Atari System 1, CPSII)

  • Libretro Cores – The following cores are compatible with NRA:N.

  • BSNES[]

  • Stella - Atari 2600[]

  • BNES[]

  • MAME 2014[]

  • MAME Core for Lightgun games.[]

  • Gambatte[]

  • MGBA[]

  • VECX[]

  • PrBoom[]

  • Mednafen NGP[]

  • Mednafen PCE FAST[] and SuperGrafx[]
After you've downloaded the cores, you can extract them to
"New Retro Arcade Neon\NewRetroArcade\Content\Emulators"
(Optional) Artwork for the corresponding game you wish to add. You can get these from Reddit, the Artist’s Alley board here on Steam or make one on your own! If you don’t have a copy of Photoshop, GIMP[] or paint .net[] are both great free alternatives.

Community member Nabeday has created a awesome package of free games and cabinets. You can check it out here:
About Parent and Child ROMs
One important thing to understand when it comes to running ROMs using the MAME core is that there are often two types of ROM sets.

Parent ROMs are often the first or last version of a particular software. You won't need to do any extra configuring for these.

Child ROMs are typically updates or revisions to a particular game. With theses roms you'll need to have the Parent ROM in NRA:N's ROM directory. MAME will take care of the rest. This is needed if you wish to play a game that was converted from 4 players to 2, such as Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, X-Men, or The Simpsons. Child ROMs can also be known as Clone ROMs. Simply move the files to "New Retro Arcade Neon\NewRetroArcade\Content\Roms".

If you try to run a ROM without its required parent or without its required BIOS files, NRA:N will simply crash. Make sure you have all the files you need!
About NVRAM and Arcade specific settings.
Non-volatile random-access memory, or NVRAM for short, is memory that is saved when a machine powers off. In relation to MAME and New Retro Arcade: Neon, NVRAM is the saved data of the arcade machine that is being emulated. High Scores and System Configurations are examples of such data. NRA:N now saves and stores this data in "New Retro Arcade Neon\NewRetroArcade\Content\Roms\mame2014\nvram"
You can now change an Arcade games individual settings inside of NRA:N by pressing F2. Navigating these menus is different for each game, but most games will tell you what inputs are used to navigate these menus. Some games will allow you to save your changes and return to the game from their setup menu. Others may require you to turn off a DIP switch that is meant for the setup menus, which brings us to our next sub-section.

--About MAME's OSD.--

It is now possible to Access MAME's internal menu for configuring various aspects of your Arcade game as well as providing access to a games DIP switches. You can access this menu by pressing TAB. There are a number of other functions you can access, but some of them will have little to no effect on the emulation. If you ever manage to screw something up to where the game is rendered unplayable, simply navigate to "New Retro Arcade Neon\NewRetroArcade\Content\Roms\mame2014\cfg" and delete the related config file that shares the ROM's filename.
Adding your games.
Open the NewRetroArcade:Neon Arcade Builder. Just launch the configuration tool from Steam.
From the dropdowns, select what you wish to modify. Changing the entries is very simple. Click the browse button on what you wish to edit and fill in the respective fields for each file. For artwork, JPEG, PNG, BMP, and DDS files are supported. Make sure you select the proper core for the corresponding system!

PLEASE NOTE: For some of these cores, you'll need to manually type in the file name. If you don't know the exact name of the top of your head, you can click the browse button and begin typing the name and save it that way.

After you’ve selected your ROM, emulator and art assets, be sure to pick a button layout and the monitor type. Pixel will mimic a CRT monitor. Vector is ideal for games that use Vector Graphics, like Asteroids or BattleZone. HD doesn’t apply any filter and displays the game normally. Once you’ve added all your artwork, open NRA up and take a look at your cabinet!
Light Gun Setup
Setting up LightGun games for New Retro Arcade varies on a game-by-game basis. This section of the guide will instruct you on how to calibrate the cursor inside of MAME so that it is accurate to where you are pointing. I suggest you do this in Desktop mode.

You will need the MAME Lightgun Core that I've linked to above in order to play Lightgun games. Go ahead and download it if you haven't already.

There is a Google Doc available for people to edit freely so you can share calibrations with other users. All I ask that you keep it clean and follow the formatting that's been laid out.

Google Doc

The first step is to add -debugLightgun as a launch option through Steam. This will display an X on your screen when you use the Lightgun cabinet so you can find the center of the screen for calibration.

When calibrating a game for NRA:N, you'll have to open the console in-game and use the following commands:

Opening the console can be done by pressing the tilde key on your keyboard (`~) This may vary depending on your Keyboard layout.

Center the crosshair on the monitor and start entering X and Y values using the console commands. The range appears to be somewhere between 100 and 300 from my testing. It will take a bit of trial and error but once you've managed to get it accurate enough, take note of the X and Y coordinate that's been set. You can press Up and Down on your keyboard with the console open to scroll through your previous commands.

These values can then be added these values to the Arcade Builder in the ArcadeMachineLightgun listing. If the listing isn't present in your Arcade Builder, you can add the following to your ArcadeMachines.XML file.

<ArcadeMachineLightgun> <Game>ROM</Game> <Core>mame_libretro.dll</Core> <GameImage>GridFrame1</GameImage> <GameMusic>MP3FILE</GameMusic> <ScreenType>Pixel</ScreenType> <LightgunCalibration>250, 180</LightgunCalibration> <ArtFrontPanel Colour="#FFFFFF" /> <ArtSidePanel Colour="#FFFFFF" /> </ArcadeMachineLightgun>

One additional note is that some games may require further calibration in-game and often enough they will require the second gun to calibrated, such in the case of CarnEvil and Terminator 2. The best way to get around this is to open the games in a external version of MAME, calibrate the guns there, and copy the NVRAM data to NRA:N.
Cheats for MAME
The LibRetro forks of MAME support standard MAME Cheat files. You can download cheat files from Version 0.156 is for the mame2014 core.

For the 2014 core, open the archive and place cheat.7z in “\Content\Emulators\mame2014\cheat.7z”. Do not extract the 7z file. After you’ve placed the cheat file, simply press TAB when running MAME and cheat to your heart's content.
Emulator Core Options
With the release of Patch #6, you can now add a new XML file in your Content folder called “ArcadeEmulatorOptions.xml” This XML file will enable you to tweak some of the specific options inside of the emulation cores. Here is an example of the formatting.

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="utf-8"?>
<mame_boot_to_osd value="disabled" />
<mame_throttle value="enabled" />
<mame_cheats_enable value="enabled" />

When you launch New Retro Arcade: Neon and start up a game core, NRA:N will output the various options of the core to a file in "SteamApps\common\New Retro Arcade Neon\NewRetroArcade\Saved" called OutputEmulatorOptions.txt

From here you can see the variables that you can set in the ArcadeEmulatorOptions XML file. Bear in mind that not all options will have any visible effect so you will have to test these for yourself.
Supported Video Sites & Formats
The list of streaming sites that NRA:N supports is very extensive. You can find the list in the link below.

NRA:N also supports the following video and audio formats.

.3gp .a52 .aac .asf .au .avi .dts .dv .flac .flv .mkv .mka .mov .mp2 .mp3 .mp4 .mpg .nsc .nsv .nut .ogm .ogg .ra .ram .rm .rmvb .rv .ts .tac .tta .ty .vid .wav .wmv .xa

NOTE: If you are unable to load certain files correctly, this download from Videolan should replace any missing codecs VLC Codec Download[]

Simply extract the contents to "NewRetroArcade\Plugins\VlcMedia\ThirdParty\vlc\win64"
Art Templates
Standard Horizontal Cabinet - Arcade Model 1

Vertical Screen Cabinet (Special) - Arcade Model 2 - The Right artwork will be need to be a reverse of what's displayed.
LightGun Cabinet
Button Layout Ruler
Thanks to DayVeeMan - /u/simburger for providing these images.

DayVeeMan has created a rather excellent tool for creating button layouts that you can find here:

The images below are for another method that involves overlaying these images with your artwork and using the rulers to manually edit the XML files. The tool makes this process far easier and I recommend using it instead.

Default Button Layouts
Attract Screens
WARNING: Unless you're comfortable with a bit of Video Editing, you may wish to skip to the tool that is at the end of this section. This is advanced stuff. You'll be needing a video editor that can save in .mp4 format and one that can position individual video files in the workspace. (you can change the format by editing the GameUserSettings.ini and finding the line 'AttractMovie=AttractScreens.mp4').

Inside of "New Retro Arcade Neon\NewRetroArcade\Content\Movies" you'll find a video file titled AttractScreens.MP4. This will be your template for adding video clips to create your Attract Screens. NOTE: With games that run at a Vertical resolution, you'll need to stretch them to a 4:3 aspect ratio. It will look fine afterwards.[]

Recording your own Gameplay video to use in the final MP4 file can be accomplished using a seperate MAME install and a recording software of your choice. Open Broadcaster Software, FRAPS, NVIDIA's ShadowPlay or Windows 10's DVR feature are some suggestions.

Each of the numbered squares are where you'll edit in your Attract Videos. You can use this file as a template to overlay your own Attract Videos. Be sure the keep the video resolution the same. Keep in mind the number of where you placed your video file so you know which number to add.

Once you've overlaid your video of choice, save it as AttractScreens.mp4. You may wish to create a backup file of the original before hand. You'll need to open up your desired games Arcade Builder entry and in the "Game Image" field, insert GridFrame#, with # being the respective location of your video.

Special Thanks to DayVeeMan and AHAS Savage Core for making this excellent tool that makes the process a LOT easier. Send them some love yeah?

Attract Screen Tool
Originally posted by AHAS SavageCore:
Hey all

With thanks to DayVeeMan[XBD] for some beta testing and the FFmpeg scripts I present Attract Screen Tool!


First load it should ask you to set Attract Screen Video which is usually found at

SteamApps\common\New Retro Arcade Neon\NewRetroArcade\Content\Movies\

This can be any file.

Set any other options you may like then click the top right menu icon and select Main

Click the thumbnail image to assign video to grid or select multiple. It will set the next grid recursively from the grid you began and *overwriting* if they were previously set. For example setting grid 3 to 4 files will result in grids 3, 4, 5 and 6 being set.

Note In my test windows 7 virtual machine setting more than 10-15 at once caused errors whereas the actual PC running 10 sets 35 no problems. Let me know in an issue[] if you get this and I will try and fix.

Now hit the play button to render

You can download here[]

View the source here[]

This section is for other bits that don't exactly fit anywhere in the guide, but are just as useful.

  • You can enter a seated VR mode by adding -vrseated as a launch option.
  • You can enable the backlight on the GameBro's by adding bHandHeldScreenLight=True to GameUserSettings.ini
  • -ArcadeMachines – Example: (-ArcadeMachines=ArcadeMachinesNew.xml) This allows users to have multiple xml files for different Arcade set-ups.
If you have any questions or comments, please leave them. I'll be certain to update this guide with anything that needs answering.

Special Thanks to Sharktopus for providing the Arcade Maps in previous versions of the guide.
Special Thanks to Aabra for helping fix the Marquee region.
And a EXTRA Special Thanks to all the others who have contributed and helped this guide flourish!

Be sure to leave a thumbs up to increase visibility!
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tomahawk🌀 🏎 Jun 28 @ 7:49pm 
I do, but dont works...
Vermillion  [author] Jun 28 @ 7:34pm 
Try the VLC download in the "Supported Video Sites & Formats" section of this guide.
tomahawk🌀 🏎 Jun 28 @ 7:27pm 
I can play the videos, but the sound no works... :-(
Vermillion  [author] Jun 27 @ 11:41am 
I don't see any reason why you wouldn't be able to.
-NeK- Jun 27 @ 1:24am 
Can you use this with a steam link?
Vermillion  [author] Jun 25 @ 10:34am 
The Arcade Builder is accessed by clicking the configuration tool option when starting the game in Steam.
Pacer Dawn Jun 25 @ 10:28am 
There is no Arcade Builder in Steam that I can see, and I do not see anything in this gude about how to get to it. Help! :)
khoshek the floating cat Jun 16 @ 5:03pm 
any way to put multiple dowloaded songs on a cassette tape?
Vermillion  [author] Jun 16 @ 5:00pm 
Playlists are not supported.
khoshek the floating cat Jun 16 @ 4:45pm 
can youtube playlists work on the vhs tapes?