Search My Blog

Friday, August 5, 2011

The Pragmatic Bookshelf | PragPub 2011-08 | Make Your Own Video Game System using the Arduino

Make Your Own Video Game System

Rediscover the Early Days of Video Gaming using the Arduino Single-Board Computer

by Maik Schmidt

Return with us now to those innocent days of yesteryear, when you could identify with the fate of a single pixel in a field of asteroids or up against a wall of bricks.

People use the Arduino microcontroller board for countless different projects. Some use it to create interactive art, some use it automate their home, and some even use it to create games. Often these games are self-contained toys such as remakes of the famous Simon game. For this kind of games you often need only a few LEDs, a piezo buzzer, and sometimes an LC display.

But wouldn’t it be more interesting to create a real video game system—that is, a device that allows you to play different video games like Breakout or Asteroids on your TV? The Arduino makes it surprisingly easy to build such a system and in this article I’ll show you how.

You’ll learn how to generate a monochrome video signal, so you can connect your Arduino directly to your TV set. Also you’ll learn how to hijack a Wii Nunchuk controller, so you can control your games with state-of-the-art gaming hardware. (For the sake of brevity we do not add any sound effects.)

Finally, you’ll learn how to implement a small game. It will be a simulation of the light cycle races from the movie Tron. (We all agree there will always be only one Tron movie and only one Matrix movie, right?)

What You Need

To build this article’s product you only need a few cheap parts. Probably you have most of them at home already:

  • An Arduino board such as the Uno, Duemilanove, or Diecimila

  • A USB cable to connect the Arduino to your computer

  • A Nintendo Nunchuk controller

  • An RCA cable

  • Five wires

  • A 1k-ohm resistor

  • A 470-ohm resistor

  • A pair of wire cutters


Now this looks like a great first Adruino Project for me!:)


Make Your Own Video Game System
Would you like to play a game? - Hack a Day
Gameduino - Hack a Day
The Pragmatic Bookshelf | PragPub 2011-08 | Make Your Own Video Game System
arduino-tvout - A composite video output library for AVR/Arduino - Google Project Hosting

No comments: