66% or better

Saturn controller for the Xbox 360

saturn xbox controller

With a slate of old-school 2D fighting games like Street Fighter 2 and Mortal Kombat 3 being released on the Xbox 360 [twistedsymphony] thought it would be nice to have a decent old-school gamepad to play them with. His final interface board lets you use an unmodified Saturn controller with the Xbox 360. He used a chopped up Saturn cable extender to attach the controller to a PIC16F690. The PIC decodes the Saturn pad’s button presses. It then triggers a corresponding analog switch that acts as a button press on the actual 360 controller. He did it this way instead of the much harder task of figuring out what the 360 controller protocol was actually doing. Future plans include support for other system’s controllers. Here’s a demo video.

Comments

  1. hemphacker says:

    Nice easy hack. Good job, but would have been something if he had actually figured out the XBOX 360 protocol. Now that would have been impressive!

  2. Crash says:

    I was thinking it would be more like the NES controller for PC only with the xbox connecter, since they are pretty much the same thing..

  3. Dave says:

    Why would he need to figure out the protocol? Isnt just a USB device?

  4. g0d says:

    this method isnt bad becuz he can easily modify it to work with other unmodified controllers.. and with a little more work and a clean case he can most likely sell this

    i like

  5. AndrewNeo says:

    #3: Yes, but USB is only the spec.. not all USB joysticks are going to operate the exact same way.

  6. @Dave Part of the reason for not figuring out the protocol has to do with the peripheral security on the Xbox 360. Each controller, memory unit, wi-fi adapter etc. has a little SMD security chip, 3rd party vendors need to purchase this chip directly from MS. And while the controllers can be recognized on a Windows machine, when connected to a 360 console it wont work without that security. And besides, as g0d pointed out, using a straight forward parallel interface the saturn controller can be used to control pretty much ANYTHING.

  7. DanAdamKOF says:

    Most people who build converters for a console usually rewire the old console’s controller to have a binary output (usually a variation of the Neo-Geo pinout), then wire that to the encoder chip in the new console’s controller. This method is much cleaner, I like it a lot.

  8. Pocketbrain says:

    I busted the guts out of a $4 Playstation controller and soldered in connections to an ATA cable, with an ATA socket soldered to the switches of a C&L Championship joystick that was made for SNES. Simple and reversible. I have yet to add the L2/R2 buttons.
    It’s a good method if your target controller has lots of room to work with.

  9. notfirstposter says:

    not first post!

  10. Ann Ring says:

    I’ve been pretty dormant in Xbox modding for a while now (well not really, I just don’t publicize my work).

    In any case I wanted to tackle an interesting project. Every 360 owner knows the D-Pad flat out sucks, and with fighting games like DOA out and SF2HF and UMK3 speculated to hit the XBLA soon a controller with a solid d-pad is important. While the Playstation pad is widely popular, most hardcore 2D fighter fans agree that the Japanese Saturn Pads are some of the best fighting games pads ever made. Not to mention picking up old Saturn pads and joysticks is relatively cheap. If you really want a PSX pad there is bound to be a converter eventually, whereas it’s highly doubtful you’ll ever see one for the Saturn.

    This of course involves gutting a perfectly good 360 controller… luckily I just picked up 2 wireless controllers for $20 a pop, both have analog stick problems, which make them perfect for this mod (considering we wont be needing analog sticks).

  11. ann ring says:

    I’ve been pretty dormant in Xbox modding for a while now (well not really, I just don’t publicize my work).In any case I wanted to tackle an interesting project. Every 360 owner knows the D-Pad flat out sucks, and with fighting games like DOA out and SF2HF and UMK3 speculated to hit the XBLA soon a controller with a solid d-pad is important. While the Playstation pad is widely popular, most hardcore 2D fighter fans agree that the Japanese Saturn Pads are some of the best fighting games pads ever made. Not to mention picking up old Saturn pads and joysticks is relatively cheap. If you really want a PSX pad there is bound to be a converter eventually, whereas it’s highly doubtful you’ll ever see one for the Saturn.This of course involves gutting a perfectly good 360 controller… luckily I just picked up 2 wireless controllers for $20 a pop, both have analog stick problems, which make them perfect for this mod (considering we wont be needing analog sticks).

  12. idiot says:

    ann ring, i’d be very interested in seeing youe project work, maybe well see it on hackaday soon, too ;)

  13. Ben Hennessy says:

    Or you could buy one from me.

  14. Ben Hennessy says:
  15. By what from you exactly?

  16. sluice says:

    Has anyone out there connected multiple wired controllers to a USB hub into one Xbox 360 slot? We want to have 4 wired controllers connected to each Xbox 360.

  17. Derek G says:

    I am looking for a way to hook up A cd changer to my 360 for installation in my car I think this would be an awesome hack mabye use my 360′s dvd drive componants installed in place of the cd changer’s, is this possible?
    dirtyderek3@hotmail.com

  18. Bob says:

    I am addicted to an old Microsoft USB controller called a Sidewinder Dual Strike. I would buy a 360 if I could use my Dual Strike on it. Any ideas?

  19. Jeff says:

    Hi,

    Cool! The company I work for is looking to get their controller to work for the 360. I know there are some ps2->360 converters but they are not working for us. Would you be interested in offering your services?

    Thanks,
    Jeff

  20. chris avina says:

    Hey twistedsymphony, I would like to know if you could help us interface a PS2 control board (controller) to an XBOX 360. so similar to Jeffs request but much better, lol.

    chris

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