Most people play games for entertainment. Hackers build robots to play games for entertainment. That’s what [piandchips] did. He used a Raspberry Pi and a MeArm kit to build a Connect 4-playing robot. The robot–named 4-Bot–has to do two things: the first is it has to be able to manipulate the pieces. Secondly, it has to be able to see the board. The MeArm imbues 4-Bot with the manipulation ability, and a clever scanning system does the trick.
There is one other component to building a game-playing robot: the brains that tells it how to play a winning game. The 4-Bot uses Python to implement the well-known minimax strategy. Even with a 6×7 board, there are over 4 trillion possible game positions, so you need a smart algorithm to play well in a reasonable amount of time. You can watch the robot compete in the video below.
We’ve seen game-playing robots many times before. Some even play computer games. If you need a MeArm, you can buy one in the Hackaday store, or make your own — it’s all open-source and designed to be easy to lasercut.