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Author Topic: Robotron build sticks?  (Read 1355 times)

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Donkey_Kong

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Robotron build sticks?
« on: November 24, 2017, 12:19:32 pm »
Robotron build sticks? I want to make a panel pretty much dedicated to Robotron.

There are a few threads out there for this subject, but there are new options out there these days.

Any opinions here I could work from? 
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chopperthedog

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Re: Robotron build sticks?
« Reply #1 on: November 24, 2017, 01:20:22 pm »
If you're serious about robotron the only way to go is 4" wicos in a wood panel with a 10" spacing.
All other options are like having sex with 6 condoms on. imho


good day.



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Re: Robotron build sticks?
« Reply #2 on: November 24, 2017, 01:26:22 pm »
All other options are like having sex with 6 condoms on. imho

I knew that girl in high school, too
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Re: Robotron build sticks?
« Reply #3 on: November 24, 2017, 01:50:17 pm »
All other options are like having sex with 6 condoms on. imho

I knew that girl in high school, too

The one that was like throwing a hotdog down a hallway, yep I remember that one also.
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Re: Robotron build sticks?
« Reply #4 on: November 24, 2017, 01:53:46 pm »
If you're serious about robotron the only way to go is 4" wicos in a wood panel with a 10" spacing.
All other options are like having sex with 6 condoms on. imho


good day.




https://www.ebay.com/itm/NEW-WICO-Original-Genuine-Blue-Leaf-Classic-8-Way-Joystick-set-of-2/222720253493?hash=item33db295e35:g:LEkAAOSwbw1aDAfy

How about these?
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Re: Robotron build sticks?
« Reply #5 on: November 24, 2017, 03:59:04 pm »





If you're serious about robotron the only way to go is 4" wicos in a wood panel with a 10" spacing.
All other options are like having sex with 6 condoms on. imho


good day.





https://www.ebay.com/itm/NEW-WICO-Original-Genuine-Blue-Leaf-Classic-8-Way-Joystick-set-of-2/222720253493?hash=item33db295e35:g:LEkAAOSwbw1aDAfy

How about these?


That is a great price for brand new wico's.  For Robo, it is hard to beat a wico with a nice fresh light action grommet.

3.5in wico's work just fine for Robo, and the base is the same as you'd use for a 4in wico.
If you have a router, simply route 3/8in into the wood panel so you have 1/4 in left for the wico to butt up against.
Route a 3in diameter circle on the top that is 1/8in deep for the dust washer
Then put plexi over the top with a 1-1/8in hole for the shaft to move around in.

If you ever get the itch to add 4inch shafts you can get repops here- https://paradisearcadeshop.com/shafts/1041-robotron-reproduction-hollow-shaft-with-wico-ball-top.html

The history on the longer shafts was simply to help people from knuckle scraping the control panel.
You'll find that to properly finesse Robotron if you want to get really good you'll likely not palm the head of the shaft (say what....) you'll use finger tips for better control (that's not right either...)
« Last Edit: November 24, 2017, 04:11:53 pm by 1500points »

paigeoliver

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Re: Robotron build sticks?
« Reply #6 on: November 25, 2017, 11:34:13 am »
The 10" spacing is only important if you wrecked it on Robotron back in the day. I never played the game (other than on Atari 7800) until 2000 and I could care less about the 10" spacing.

While the NOS stock of 4" red handles is gone, there are a lot of powder blue and purple ones in that size floating around. Bob Roberts used to sell them for $2 or $3. Then I would just paint them red with plastic paint (lasts a lot longer than you think it would).
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Donkey_Kong

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Re: Robotron build sticks?
« Reply #7 on: November 25, 2017, 04:49:33 pm »
Great info, thank you both!   :cheers:
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Re: Robotron build sticks?
« Reply #8 on: November 27, 2017, 10:24:48 am »
If you do route... you may consider making a metal mounting place... to give additional support and strength.

 Robotron is a very intense game... and the body mass + arms yanking on those sticks... often tended to move the entire cabinet.
It the wood is weak... the sticks could rip right out of the CP.

 If I were going to route wood... I would make metal plates similar to a trackball plate,  for each stick.

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Re: Robotron build sticks?
« Reply #9 on: November 27, 2017, 09:14:30 pm »
someone actually sells those on KLOV, the repro plates.

But I'm telling you from experience that 1/4 of pine will hold up to anything you put at the wico's, you'll want to use small carriage bolts to hold the joysticks in place obviously.

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Re: Robotron build sticks?
« Reply #10 on: November 28, 2017, 11:55:55 am »
Mental note taken, make sure control panel is a tough one, if not reinforced for joystick mount!    :cheers:
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Re: Robotron build sticks?
« Reply #11 on: November 28, 2017, 02:17:29 pm »
You could also go with the Dominux 8's from www.GroovyGameGear.com They have grommets built in very similar to Wicos.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=alfRinUyhxc

Just make sure you get the proper ones (wood or metal versions) and get the round restrictor plate as well.  I have 4 of them on my Smash TV and love 'em (wood versions).  As a matter of fact, I plan to buy 2 more today for my Multi-Williams cab (metal versions).

DeL
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Re: Robotron build sticks?
« Reply #12 on: November 29, 2017, 03:37:53 pm »
You could also go with the Dominux 8's from www.GroovyGameGear.com They have grommets built in very similar to Wicos.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=alfRinUyhxc

Just make sure you get the proper ones (wood or metal versions) and get the round restrictor plate as well.  I have 4 of them on my Smash TV and love 'em (wood versions).  As a matter of fact, I plan to buy 2 more today for my Multi-Williams cab (metal versions).

DeL

Thanks again Del.  Seems like a great alternative to the Wicos for sure!
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Re: Robotron build sticks?
« Reply #13 on: November 29, 2017, 05:05:43 pm »
Happ Perfect 360s destroy Robotron, unfortunately they are impossible to find.
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Re: Robotron build sticks?
« Reply #14 on: November 29, 2017, 05:32:50 pm »
You could also go with the Dominux 8's from www.GroovyGameGear.com They have grommets built in very similar to Wicos.

I'm not a fan of these compared to standard Wico's, they feel too mushy, the resistance is too light. Supposedly you can adjust them but I wasn't able get the one I bought to try in my Dig Dug cabaret to feel suitable and went back to a standard Wico.

If you don't have Wico's to compare them to or aren't overly particular you may be fine with them. Refurbed Wico's pop up on klov or ebay fairly often though, personally I'd go with that and the Paradise replacements before the Dominux, especially for a dedicated Robotron CP.
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Re: Robotron build sticks?
« Reply #15 on: November 29, 2017, 07:51:03 pm »
^ This.

There was also someone on KLOV that was selling newly milled 4" shafts w/ balltops. It was a little while ago, so I'm not sure if he still doing that anymore.
But you could see if there is anyone over there that is selling these, or have spares from the last run of them.

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Re: Robotron build sticks?
« Reply #16 on: November 30, 2017, 08:39:52 am »
Happ Perfect 360s destroy Robotron, unfortunately they are impossible to find.

I had a set of those but they had heavy springs rather than grommets.  Exhausting to play after 40 waves.

The master Robo players will tell you that once they get in the zone, you become hyper aware of the leaf actuation points and the subtle feedback.  Becomes a very intimate opinion which is why you are also seeing so many opinions above.

I have had many sets of Wico leafs including multiple NOS sets.  I sold them all to friends who were more passionate about their wico robo experience than I was.  I currently have modded x-arcades with a custom restrictor plate but they are showing wear and getting "loose" feeling.

If you play beyond 100 waves you'll discover the magic of a 2lb wico grommet saving the forearms and shoulders.  (and also gets into where Toby suggested the 10inch width which is kinda-average for the typical human male build.  Ergonomics are king if you are playing the long game.

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Re: Robotron build sticks?
« Reply #17 on: November 30, 2017, 08:41:55 am »
^ This.

There was also someone on KLOV that was selling newly milled 4" shafts w/ balltops. It was a little while ago, so I'm not sure if he still doing that anymore.
But you could see if there is anyone over there that is selling these, or have spares from the last run of them.

That was AndrewB who also bought out the 2lb grommet stock from fleetwood and only sells the grommets with his refurbs.

I am told the new run of grommets from arcadeshop are very light, maybe even 1lb.

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Re: Robotron build sticks?
« Reply #18 on: November 30, 2017, 12:20:52 pm »
And, now we see just how subjective such things can be.

Hardcore Robotron players seem to love our Dominux8 sticks.  The grommet feel I aimed for is that of a broken-in Wico, as that's what I feel is the "sweet spot" to cover the majority of users.  Based on the comments above, I think it's the best we could have done :).

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Re: Robotron build sticks?
« Reply #19 on: November 30, 2017, 12:28:39 pm »
Hardcore Robotron players seem to love our Dominux8 sticks.

Love it vs. other new joysticks perhaps but any truly 'hardcore' (what's considered hardcore btw?) Robotron player is going to prefer original 8-way Wico's over anything else.
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Re: Robotron build sticks?
« Reply #20 on: November 30, 2017, 01:02:28 pm »
Love it vs. other new joysticks perhaps but any truly 'hardcore' (what's considered hardcore btw?) Robotron player is going to prefer original 8-way Wico's over anything else.

I won't presume to speak for all of them.  But I will suffice it to say that I have had a few players contact me, who might be at odds with that generalization.

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Re: Robotron build sticks?
« Reply #21 on: November 30, 2017, 01:44:18 pm »
Many of the top Robotron players frequent the FB page called "Williams Defender Players Unite"

There is an emotional bias if the player was also a player in 1982 and has sentimental feelings.
It will and does make them irrationally attached to Wico, but that's just people stuff.

There has been plenty of mention of the Dominux as a solution on the page and I have never heard anything negative.
The price point keeps me from buying a set to toy with purely out of curiosity.

I'll point out that I helped Beta test the 2lb fleetwood grommets when he was working out the specs to request for the final run, and compared them to NOS wico grommets, in case you were curious of whether I know of what I speak.  :)
--------

Now as far as being a hardcore player that might mean you play hours a day like a crack fiend.

Or you can shoot for advancing your skills which is a lot based on your Robotron Quotient (RQ) of score divided by wave.
If you are a learning robo marathoner you'll be in the 27k-29k range, advanced 29k-31k, and masters play in the 32k-34k range per wave which means they die less and are able to bend risk vs reward to getting more humans while staying alive to get the progressive 5k bonuses.

If you think you are a master player, you'll at least need to be able to reach 1million/wave40 on difficulty 10.

If you think you are an extreme master, that's quite a mouthful to state and you'll have to match up to the very few people that have proven it. See here- http://www.robotron2084guidebook.com/gameplay/walkthroughs/extreme/
« Last Edit: November 30, 2017, 01:47:01 pm by 1500points »

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Re: Robotron build sticks?
« Reply #22 on: November 30, 2017, 03:41:31 pm »
I won't presume to speak for all of them.  But I will suffice it to say that I have had a few players contact me, who might be at odds with that generalization.

My generalization was based on the assumption that most serious players are looking for authenticity over feel, a true hardcore player is likely going to want to play the game as close to the way it was originally as possible. I understand it's highly subjective though and I'm sure there are plenty of people in both camps like any other debate here.

Or you can shoot for advancing your skills which is a lot based on your Robotron Quotient (RQ) of score divided by wave.
If you are a learning robo marathoner you'll be in the 27k-29k range, advanced 29k-31k, and masters play in the 32k-34k range per wave which means they die less and are able to bend risk vs reward to getting more humans while staying alive to get the progressive 5k bonuses.

Interesting, based on my RQ and a high score of ~3 million I'm in the advanced range but I'd say I get honorary 'hardcore' status for restoring my own original machine.  ;D 
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Re: Robotron build sticks?
« Reply #23 on: November 30, 2017, 04:06:37 pm »

Interesting, based on my RQ and a high score of ~3 million I'm in the advanced range but I'd say I get honorary 'hardcore' status for restoring my own original machine.  ;D

He!! yah man!  Join the FB page and show us.  Many of the original WMS devs are there, too.

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Re: Robotron build sticks?
« Reply #24 on: November 30, 2017, 05:09:03 pm »
My kid and I are in newbie land, but it's certainly the go to game for mame cab.  My kid quickly became better than me and scores in the 500k + neighborhood.  This was back in the day on our u360's ..we want the real deal or close to it. I'm sure the dominix 8 would be fine for us.
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Re: Robotron build sticks?
« Reply #25 on: November 30, 2017, 05:17:46 pm »
Lol @ the FB page questionnaire. :D

I signed up and am waiting approval. Would be nice to chat with some fellow Robotron masters. ;)

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Re: Robotron build sticks?
« Reply #26 on: November 30, 2017, 09:02:01 pm »
And, now we see just how subjective such things can be.

Hardcore Robotron players seem to love our Dominux8 sticks.  The grommet feel I aimed for is that of a broken-in Wico, as that's what I feel is the "sweet spot" to cover the majority of users.  Based on the comments above, I think it's the best we could have done :).

i'm a 10 million player from back in the day. so i wouldn't call myself hard core.  i can't run forever.  i'm just trying to get 10 million again. lol  even had a robotron for a few years.  like a dummy, i sold it.  i remember crying because i paid $495 for it.  when tron, and tempest cost me $250 each and cocktail asteroids $60.  lol  anyway, after playing mame for years and years with cheap clickers.  i recently made a jrok machine with dedicated control panels.  i have dominux8's in there and am very happy.  i need to play on some wicos now to see what difference it would make to me.  i can't get to 10 million currently.  usually i get my way to 5-6 million.  the reasons just seem stupid unforced errors and crappy reaction time these days.  could it be the sticks?  need to find checkout the good arcades in my area.  last one closed and i only got to go once. :(

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Re: Robotron build sticks?
« Reply #27 on: December 01, 2017, 10:10:47 am »
Bitd you likely played an arcade machine set at the blue rom default of 3.  Modern times people seem to like the recommended setting of 5 which was also the default on the red/orange/yellow first issue romset (color depends on fading of sticker).

The sticks arenít your problem.  Just figure out which wave type is causing most life bleeding.  Then clean up your strategy on it. 
The masters tend to average about one life lost per wave over a long game, or slightly less.

For example, you probably lose 3-4 men per brain wave?  Try getting that down to 1-2 by being more efficient with straight line firing technique....donít touch the side walls when lightning bolts are around...and in middle of wave when it is chaos run mostly in diagonals because you can outrun the lightning bolts at an angle.


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Re: Robotron build sticks?
« Reply #28 on: December 01, 2017, 11:20:52 am »
PS- for emulation players of Robo.

--console is hardest emulation (Digital Eclipse's first work which doesn't address some of the CPU/blitter stuff at all)
--also very hard/impossible is the ArcadeSD and chinese 19-1 pcb.
--old MAME is poorly emulated so it is tough.
--new MAME is better but still hard.
--you'll have to use a "hedged" version of newer mame to get as close as a PC experience can get which is still a bit off but quite enjoyable.
--JROK FPGA pcb is the way to go if you are a serious player.
--If you are a restorationist the original pcbs are fairly cheap nowadays since everyone has embraced the FPGA technology.
« Last Edit: December 01, 2017, 11:48:05 am by PL1 »

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Re: Robotron build sticks?
« Reply #29 on: December 01, 2017, 12:03:26 pm »
--If you are a restorationist the original pcbs are fairly cheap nowadays since everyone has embraced the FPGA technology.

If you have an original PCB pick up the rainbow TieDie rom set, gets rid of that pesky corner fire bug and you can see all your men too.
« Last Edit: December 01, 2017, 12:22:47 pm by 8BitMonk »
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Re: Robotron build sticks?
« Reply #30 on: December 01, 2017, 12:19:25 pm »
--If you are a restorationist the original pcbs are fairly cheap nowadays since everyone has embraced the FPGA technology.

If you have an original PCB pick up the rainbow rom set, gets rid of that pesky corner fire bug and you can see all your men too.

TieDie.  Yah I did beta testing for that.  It came about from larry watching the wdpu robo players back when we were still doing the 100million gauntlet.

If you browse the guidebook there is a page with the history of that project.


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Re: Robotron build sticks?
« Reply #31 on: December 01, 2017, 04:45:23 pm »
Well, if you were really a hardcore player from BITD, playing with the corner bug was part of the master skill status. ;)

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Re: Robotron build sticks?
« Reply #32 on: December 01, 2017, 05:52:23 pm »
Bitd you likely played an arcade machine set at the blue rom default of 3.  Modern times people seem to like the recommended setting of 5 which was also the default on the red/orange/yellow first issue romset (color depends on fading of sticker).

The sticks arenít your problem.  Just figure out which wave type is causing most life bleeding.  Then clean up your strategy on it. 
The masters tend to average about one life lost per wave over a long game, or slightly less.

For example, you probably lose 3-4 men per brain wave?  Try getting that down to 1-2 by being more efficient with straight line firing technique....donít touch the side walls when lightning bolts are around...and in middle of wave when it is chaos run mostly in diagonals because you can outrun the lightning bolts at an angle.


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thanks, i didn't think sticks were ever my problem. :)  well, except when i played with happ clickers.   i don't think i lose 3-4 per brain, but it's definitely is where i make or break games.  i think it's more like 1-2, never seems like 3-4, or 10. haha

thanks for the help.

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Re: Robotron build sticks?
« Reply #33 on: December 01, 2017, 10:56:31 pm »
Well, if you were really a hardcore player from BITD, playing with the corner bug was part of the master skill status. ;)

David Gomez explored that this year. He had tried many times to reach 100m using the old romset.
He finally did it this summer for the 35th birthday of Robo on June 1st.

I'm a wimp, patched roms all the way....it shocks my brain when that carpet pattern pops up out of nowhere when you are in full bore chaos.  :)

Donkey_Kong

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Re: Robotron build sticks?
« Reply #34 on: December 05, 2017, 12:24:16 pm »
You could also go with the Dominux 8's from www.GroovyGameGear.com They have grommets built in very similar to Wicos.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=alfRinUyhxc

Just make sure you get the proper ones (wood or metal versions) and get the round restrictor plate as well.  I have 4 of them on my Smash TV and love 'em (wood versions).  As a matter of fact, I plan to buy 2 more today for my Multi-Williams cab (metal versions).

DeL

Do you have a write up going for your current multi williams project?
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DeLuSioNal29

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Re: Robotron build sticks?
« Reply #35 on: December 05, 2017, 12:37:46 pm »
I don't, I tend to have stuff on my Youtube channel instead.  I just got the Multi Williams machine, so haven't released it yet.  Once I get the Dominux 8 sticks I will shoot the installation of them.

DeL
Stop by my Youtube channel and leave a comment:

Cynicaster

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Re: Robotron build sticks?
« Reply #36 on: December 11, 2017, 01:48:55 pm »
+1 for Dominux8.

I built a 10"-spaced dual stick panel with Dominux8s that I can swap onto my cabinet.  It took some trial and error to adjust the leafs just so, but now that I've got it dialed in, the sticks are wonderful for Robotron.  Actually, all twin stick games are a treat now. 


pixel

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Re: Robotron build sticks?
« Reply #37 on: December 12, 2017, 08:42:48 am »
I won't presume to speak for all of them.  But I will suffice it to say that I have had a few players contact me, who might be at odds with that generalization.

My generalization was based on the assumption that most serious players are looking for authenticity over feel, a true hardcore player is likely going to want to play the game as close to the way it was originally as possible. I understand it's highly subjective though and I'm sure there are plenty of people in both camps like any other debate here.

Or you can shoot for advancing your skills which is a lot based on your Robotron Quotient (RQ) of score divided by wave.
If you are a learning robo marathoner you'll be in the 27k-29k range, advanced 29k-31k, and masters play in the 32k-34k range per wave which means they die less and are able to bend risk vs reward to getting more humans while staying alive to get the progressive 5k bonuses.

Interesting, based on my RQ and a high score of ~3 million I'm in the advanced range but I'd say I get honorary 'hardcore' status for restoring my own original machine.  ;D

 Feel and Authenticity are one in the same.  Meaning... you can not have one without the other.

 Robotrons heavy resistance need the ends of stroke,  helps absorb and cushion the player from excess impact shock... as well as aid in
recycling energy (rebound).

 Much like wearing dress shoes at work on concrete floors, without any shock absorbing inserts... would really start to fatigue ones
feet / legs  quickly.   Slamming the sticks full bore into the end of stroke... results in the same effect.   Its not as bad in other
games... because most games are nowhere near as Intense as Robotron... thus one may be less likely to use as much power and
momentum... during play.

 The problem is and always will be...  that there is no such thing as a   One-Size-Fits-All  solution,  that actually works great
for all applications.   Despite what the Business Marketers will  Push and Claim.

 Sure,  you can,  for example... make your footfalls lighter in dress shoes.  But the problem is... under intense pressure... you will
forget,  and easily slam ones full mass into the heels,  regardlessly.   Same for Robotron.  Few players are going to play the game
like Data from Star Trek.   Watch some footage of people playing it... and you will see full body movements... and the Cabinet often
Rocking around as a result.

 Pick the right Shoe for the Right Job type.   Dont expect long boots to work well on the Football field,  as well as they work in deep
snow.   Same for choosing the right kind of car,  or even Tool.   Yeah,  you could use a butter-knife to turn a screw... but you will
surely regret it... after the 10th screw... let alone 100th.

1500points

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Re: Robotron build sticks?
« Reply #38 on: December 12, 2017, 09:10:23 am »
Good analogies.

Learning players will slam about.
Once you start sorting the chaos on the screen into the chess-like enemy dynamics
you'll figure out that Robotron has subtle ebbs and flows of offense and defense.
Slamming about on the sticks shows the player is being reactive and on the defense.

the master players use player position on the screen as a way to setup offense.
Positioning of straight line shots that are pre-emptive is another form of offense.

The slamming about becomes little part of the success once the finesse and efficiency is found.
Most of the firing success will be found in rolling the joystick from position to position.

Playing a long game with even the best sticks and poor slamming form is going to lead to failure for anyone, which is why folks tend to tired out between 20 and 50m in the 100m gauntlet.
but for the learners slamming about haphazardly is quite an adrenaline rush, and you'll hear stories about the Williams test cabaret machine getting picked up by the joysticks and bashed into the wall.  #legend

8BitMonk

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Re: Robotron build sticks?
« Reply #39 on: December 12, 2017, 03:49:38 pm »
Feel and Authenticity are one in the same.  Meaning... you can not have one without the other.

No, actually they are totally different. The authentic original joysticks can only feel one way, whereas 10 different joysticks can feel 10 different ways based on whether they are leaf or microswitch, restrictors etc. Some may 'feel' better or worse to one person vs. the next but only one will be authentic to what was used originally, an 8-way Wico. That is unless you're varying for wear and tear... but I digress.  ;D
Games: Asteroids Deluxe | Atomiswave | Centipede | Championship Sprint | Defender | Donkey Kong | Dig Dug | Frogger | Ikari Warriors | Missile Command | Pac-Man | Pole Position | Robotron | Spy Hunter | Tempest | Super Mario Strikers

  
 

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