In Which Robots Fight The Console Wars

Though the names have changed over the years, the console wars wage on. [moop] must have been feeling nostalgic for the NES vs. SEGA days when he started his current project, Foobot, which is a tabletop football (soccer) game played by robots that are controlled with classic NES and SEGA controllers.

Each team has two robots that tool around on laser-cut perspex wheels attached directly to 16,000RPM motors. An SN754410 controls the motors, and each robot has an ATtiny2313 brain. They all communicate with a single transmitter over their 433MHz 1402 radio receiver modules. To avoid collisions, [moop] used a packet system, wherein each robot has an ID. The messages all contain a robot ID, message payload, and checksum. The robots ignore messages addressed to others, and any message with an invalid checksum.

[moop] has made everything available on his github, including the PCB layouts and CAD files for the robot chassis and transmitter case. Watch them battle it out after the break. If the Foobots have riled you up about vintage gaming, check out these sweet arcade hacks.

[via Dangerous Prototypes]

6 thoughts on “In Which Robots Fight The Console Wars

  1. [moop] must have been feeling nostalgic for the NES vs. SEGA days when he started his current project…
    I’m not. I’m currently attempting to play the NES version of Shadowgate, and because I keep being told “You can’t do that” when I try to drop (Leave) excess items, I’m thinking David Griffith did a far better job of porting it than Nintendo did. Official ROM that I ripped from my purchased cart too (thank God for eBay)!

  2. Lots of wheel spin on those. I wonder how fast one could go if a groove was turned in the wheel edges and an o-ring put on, with some super glue to keep it on? Would need a large and smooth surface like a gym floor to run on.

    1. They get pretty fast very quickly if you let them accelerate. They also tend to spin out of control though!
      I’ve added a noob mode which tames them down via PWM. It mostly eliminates the wheel spin and makes them a lot more controllable for playing games. It’s far more amusing to watch people try to handle them at full power though!

    1. And now there’s new battles raging that Nintendo are losing. Seriously, how many people do you know have a Wii-U compared to people who have seventh and eighth generation PlayStations and XBoxes? Even the PS2 and the XBox were better than the GameCube because all of their games made soundtrack replacement possible with a little bit of non-invasive fiddling, whereas few GameCube games ever did.

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