In Retropie hell with the Pimoroni Pihat control configuration for games

Hi all,

I built a Picade a few weeks ago and have been in control hell ever since.

It would really be helpful for me to understand how others are handling control mapping of the joystick and buttons on their Picade builds.

Most of the gaming that I do is retro MAME games using the MAME2003 emulator that is included in the latest RetroPie image.

I have RetroPie and the requisite Pimoroni drivers installed and have the principal buttons mapped in Emulation Station as seen in the attached pic.

However, I want to remap buttons in some games. Obviously different control setups are going to work better in something like Street Fighter 2 vs a basic game like Galaga or Shinobi that just has one or two principal controls.

From everything I can find, the preferred way of doing this is to use the MAME menu that is available inside of a MAME game to remap.

Unfortunately this does not work. When I get the MAME menu up and “remap input for this game” some of the buttons on the Picade are not available to be remapped (I can’t re-map the B or A buttons for example). Additionally after I remap other buttons then things like the Select/Start (i and o keys) stop working properly.

Another option seems to be to remap buttons inside of the Retroarch menu but this has its own problems. If you remap inside of Retroarch then those button pushes now affect everything, even navigation and selection within Retroarch itself!

How are people doing this?

It’s really frustrating and I’m ready to light the Picade on fire and do something else as there appear to be other options to handle things without the Picade hat where these annoyances don’t exist.



It’s also probably worth pointing out that when I use a game control like a Logitech or 8bitDO gamepad everything works absolutely fine. The issues all surround using the joystick and buttons that ship with the picade and are connected to the Pi via the Pimoroni hat.

Okay, I’ve made a bit of headway by basically ignoring the MAME menu completely and just focusing on doing things with Retroarch.

I made a chart that shows what each button “number” the different buttons on the Picade map out to and then doing the following;

  1. Get the Retroarch up and going within a game (Hotkey + X) You need to have a Hotkey mapped in Emulation station first.
  2. Go to Quick Menu
  3. Go to Controls
  4. Put in your new map controls… you might need to make a chart so that you know which key needs to correspond to what. Also, very important, you need to set any duplicate controls to “—” in the Retroarch menu or else the remaps won’t work.
  5. From the Quick Menu → Controls you need to go into Manage Remap Files and create a new Remap file for your control Remap for the game. I had previously been under the impression that if you did “overrides” for your core it would save the control mappings but it does not.

All in all, way more confusing than it should be but seems that I can deal with it (I have a degree in CIS for crying out loud).

Ironically I now can’t even get into the MAME menu, not sure what happens when you get that completely unmapped and need to map it to something again, not sure if I care.

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to get the MAME menu in mamem2003, get to the retroarch quick menu (Hotkey+x?), then “show mame menu” should be in options…

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