Emulators often don’t last long in Apple’s App Store, but it seems one has managed to slip through the cracks. iMAME’s emulation app will allow you to run thousands of classic arcade titles, provided you have access to original ROMs.
If you’re unfamiliar with Multiple Arcade Machine Emulator or (MAME) it is an emulator that is designed to recreate the hardware of arcade game systems with the software of modern personal computers. It exists to preserve gaming history and to prevent vintage games from becoming lost and forgotten. And of course, as an added bonus, the emulator allows you to play those old games.
iMAME, which is universal and available on the iPad, iPhone, and iPod Touch, comes equipped with nine less than memorable classic games: Circus, Crash, Fire One, Hard Hat, Robot Bowl, Side Track, Spectar, Star Fire, and Targ.
The appeal of the app isn’t the games that it comes with, but what can potentially be added. There are a few methods that will allow iMAME users to load ROMs of thousands of older games, a feature that is sure to get it pulled from the App Store in a short amount of time. Some sites are reporting that the app may be compatible with the iCade, which would make that peripheral a whole lot more useful.
If you are a gamer, this is one app that you will want to download as soon as possible, just in case it gets yanked from the App Store when Apple realizes what it is. You may have some time, since many App Store employees are off for the week. iMAME is free, so you’ve got nothing to lose.
Super Street Fighter II, one of the many retro games MAME supports