Are you still in love with Angry Birds, but sick of that repetitive finger sliding motion necessary to launch the little guys? In what appears to be the most intriguing game-appropriate controller since the big orange gun in Duck Hunt, “rapid prototyping for microcontroller” company mbed has developed a big wooden slingshot with which to destroy those smug pigs.
Here’s what they had to consider when constructing the super-awesome slingshot:
With a real slingshot, you tilt the slingshot and stretch sling. The idea to measure these was using:
An accelerometer – this can measure the tilt by tracking the gravity vector (which way is down!)
A rubber stretch sensor – this can be used as the sling, and measure how much it is stretched
That is the input, but to play Angry Birds, you actually click on the bird, then drag to the launch angle and strength you want, then release. This means we have to translate the real slingshot movements in to a series of different mouse movements.
For example, this means translating starting to stretch the slingshot to a mouse to click and hold, whilst the vector of the stretch determined by the angle of sling and how far it is stretched translates to mouse movements relative to where we started.
The resulting controller acts like a USB mouse. Check it out below:
You can build one for yourself, if you are so inclined. They’ve posted detailed instructions to their blog.
All I know is that I’ve got to
build have someone build me one fo these before Gene Simmons drops a KISS-themed Angry Birds game on us.