Looking at the schematic and the firmware this is probably the most compact pong game project, the PIC12F675 has only 6 pins which can be used, an very small flash and ram resources, only 64 byte of RAM!
The TV output is PAL, no other format is supported, the game is controlled with two consoles made of potentiometer and push button, both dual and single player mode is available with two speed option, the small hardware has even an audio output which sends outs the beeps.
The source code is written in assembler language and highly optimized yet reasonable commented, but I don’t recommend reverse engineering it, it is easier to read the authors documentation.
This project shows the real power of assembler language if used properly, this doesn’t mean that every project should be implemented in assembler language, but if space and speed requirements are scarce, then it’s the only solution.
This is a simple robotics project, but with great potential and lot of fun, the only drawback is that you need a Wii fit or Xbox360 game controller, the rest is affordable. The Wii fit stepper plate position is interpreted by the Arduino board and sent to the servos, basically you control the labyrinth game with your foot.
I think that the project can be easily developed further, you can make a replacement hardware for the Wii fit, and the wooden game can also be customized, there are many possibilities to expand, maybe you will attach a webcamera and make an intelligent robot which solves the puzzle by itself.
At first glance it looks really silly, but after further investigation it reveals itself as a really complex and carefully designed stand alone game console. The wood box contains accelerometers, color LCD display, the ATmega32 based electronics, buzzer, and to keep things simple two user buttons.
The game is controlled via the two buttons and the tilt of the box, very similar to the well known Wii made by Sony, the major differences are that this is a stand alone unit and its price, the author kept the costs under 60$, he used sample parts for the accelerometers but anyway it is cheap.
The power is taken from a 9V battery, but as you may think the LCD and the sensors drain the battery really fast, so maybe a larger rechargeable battery pack should be used of at least 1500mAH capacity.
The entire project documentation is made public, well documented software written in C. It is a great project which handles graphic LCD display and real-time execution, the fact that he uses the ATmega32 which has free C compiler puts the cherry on the cake. The software could be optimized in some parts, like the SPI handling which is made in software, the schematic is only block level, so if you want to replicate this project you must have some experience in the field.
DIY game console ? there are not many projects out there on this subject, mainly because of the ammount of work and time you have to put into something like this.
Matt, the author of the DIY Game Boy, got over this issues and manged to get it done. The core of the project is an Arduino that controls all the other modules.
There is very little soldering requiered on this project as it’s mainly constructed using modules and shields. The source code is posted on the project page so you should have no problem on making something similar.