Video Game Day

September 12, 2008 at 3:47 pm Leave a comment

I found out that today is Video Game Day in the USA. So to celebrate this glorious day I am going to talk a bit about my joysticks show a few that I have done and talk a bit about my favorite style of game, the fighting games.

My Joysticks

The joysticks that I create are either my own designs or those of my customers. The first thing that gets done is building the case with either MDF (Medium Density Fiberboard) or natural hardwood. After the paint or finish is dry and cured I then proceed to install the arcade authentic joystick and buttons in the top and sides along with any artwork that may be desired. Finally I purchase a console game controller and crack it open. I take the printed circuit board and solder wires in the right places and connect the wires to the controls. The consoles that I work with are XBox 360, Playstation series and the personal computer.

One thing that needs to be kept in mind is that the thumb sticks on these controllers are analog and don’t translate to the digital format of the arcade controls very easily. I connect the arcade joystick to the D-Pad instead. See the image on the left. Most games will allow you to remap the controls so you can change the movement controls to the D-Pad. For fighting games which my joystick controls are used for the four action buttons and the two shoulder buttons are used. Some games need two additional buttons so the triggers are connected to buttons 7 and 8. The triggers are also analog but can be altered so they can be connected to the digital buttons. The back, start and guide buttons are connected to the buttons mounted on the side of the case. This allows you to fully control the console in and out of the game of your choice.

Some Examples of my work

This joystick was made to work solely with a personal computer. The controls that I use in all my sticks are Japanese arcade controls made by Sanwa and Seimitsu.

Here is my personal stick that I use on my computer.

Here is one made completely with curly maple hardwood. I inserted a veneer into the buttons and turned the joystick top and dust cover. The beauty of this wood has to be seen in person because the wood shines back differently depending on the viewing angle and lighting. This joystick was made to work with the Playstation series of consoles. It will work as is on a Playstation 1 or Playstation 2 and with an adapter on the Playstation 3.

Here is a final example created for the XBox 360 using purpleheart for the case. You can see the artwork is continued into the buttons.

Fighting Games

Most of my customers use these joystick controllers for fighting games as I stated above. Some Games of this type are the Street Fighter series, Tekken, King of Fighters and others. They pit one player against another player or a computer controlled character. The fighting styles vary with the character chosen and usually consist of punches, kicks, throws and special moves. The goal is to knock out the opposing character with yours before they do the same to you. The winner is usually determined using a best 2 out of 3 format. My personal favorite is the Street Fighter series.

I want to thank everyone for reading my blog as I get started into this new (for me) form of communication.

Game On!

Entry filed under: Games, Joystick, Street Fighter.

Getting back into the swing of things. First Hand tools

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He who works with his hands is a laborer.
He who works with his hands and his head is a craftsman.
He who works with his hands and his head and his heart is an artist.
– St. Francis of Assisi
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