Rhythm Game Controller Can’t Be Beat

There’s this whole class of vertically scrolling rhythm games that take both hands and look really fun to play, albeit hard on the joints. You can buy specialized controllers for them, but they’re ridiculously expensive for what they are — just a handful of switches and two knobs. It’s exactly the kind of thing you should build to your taste for far less money.

Inspired by a pocket version of the Voltex controller that is also pretty darned expensive, [OmniSaiRen] set out to make their own on the cheap by building an awesome little macro keyboard that’s smaller and easier to use than the specialized controller. Inside there’s an Arduino Pro Micro taking input from eight Cherry MX switches and two optical encoders. The game treats the encoders as vertical and horizontal mouse movements, so [OmniSaiRen]’s code scans the encoders for their positions.

[OmniSaiRen] wrote their own matrix code and says it’s ugly, but it works well enough to play the game. What more can you ask for? A cool sticker to go on the top? Done. It’s too cold outside to paint, anyway. If it’s a one-handed game pad you need, check out this sweet little thing.

Via r/duino

5 thoughts on “Rhythm Game Controller Can’t Be Beat

  1. As if vertical format video isn’t enough devo, this whole class of vertically scrolling rhythm games defies sheet music and text reading as we know it.

    The enclosure would look good on TV and movies but has little ergonomics with square edges and pointy angles. The pseudo circuit traces reinforce this on the cover. The opto-pots are the best thing here though. I am currently hacking a click-dial “pot” into a small Hammond box with the board from a mouse. Wheel, left click button, and a rocker switch to reverse direction for sensible scrolling in Rakarrack when the primary mouse is left parked on one slider and dialing with a knob on that slider is all I need.

    The main vertical sliders are same direction wheel sense, but the horizontal sliders are up=left in Rakarrack. Up is not down ever so the rocker switch quickly makes the right move instead of basackwards.

    There is a reason for the stick direction on classic aircraft, it is to prevent the plane form pushing on you and further pressing on the stick and crashing. In 1906 the digital music publishing industry got a boost when one company added lyrics to the piano roll thus creating karaoke when Japan was still a feudal state. It was a hit! Only one thing though, since the media scrolled down the lyric lines had to be read upside down from the way we read in the West and even in the rest of the world. Text we read on screens scrolls up not down. Every player scroll comes down except some old models in Germany.

  2. The font on the website for the controller is HORRIBLE! Do you have astigmatism? No? Want to know what it feels like? Try to read anything on that site. My god what a terrible design choice.

    1. Oh god it gets worse! Every photo “thumbnail” is a scaled full blown download of the 2.5mb(ish) image. My mobile data!! It’s as if this website took every worst practice and employed them all for some reason I can’t quite grasp. Well, I’m done with the internet for the day. I need to go calm down and scrub my browser history so I don’t ever go back.

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