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Author Topic: First Build - The Mystery Machine  (Read 5466 times)

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Zoomie

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First Build - The Mystery Machine
« on: February 03, 2018, 03:22:38 pm »
Hi everyone,
A good friend of mine is putting the finishing touches on his pre-built MAME cabinet and I've developed the bug. 
I've been lurking here for a few weeks but I decided to join so I can share my hopes for my own cabinet, and also to tap into the amazing support you guys seem to have on the forum.

My spouse and I are newbies with woodworking, but we're going to take on the project of making a cabinet with 5/8 or 3/4" MDF.  I'm open to opinions on which to use and I'd love to find plans for a 4p machine if anyone has a link.  My father-in-law is very good at woodworking so we have an excellent source of advice and help.  We also have access to a fully equipped wood shop.

I have an old 32" widescreen Toshiba LED TV that turns on with power and remembers the setup (bonus).
I'm comfortable with building my own computer but only have some basic experience wiring a project like this.

Right now I'm in love with the idea of doing a Scooby Doo themed cabinet.  Sides would be monsters from the original series and P1-P4 would be 'the gang".  The marquee would be "The Mystery Machine" painted like the Van.

I'm figuring out MAME and plan to use Hyperspin for my front-end.  I'm happy to go with that unless someone has a better suggestion (or any option for me to research).  The computer will be a new build capable of running STEAM for Dragon Ball Fighterz, Castle Crashers, and maybe some recent SHMUPS (although I don't enjoy bullet-hell games).

My plan at the moment:
4 Player CP
4 - 4/8 way Sanwa knock-off LED Joysticks
No spinner or trackball
P1 / P2 have 7 buttons, plus coin and start
P3 / P4 have 4 buttons, plus coin and start
2 MAME control buttons at the top of the CP (Exit and Pause)

All buttons are Ultralux style single colour LED's, with each player being a different colour set
Ultimarc IO Ultimate board

I bought all my buttons and sticks on sale so I won't be too heartbroken if I end up upgrading to better.  The sticks and buttons were a good deal so I'm going to try them first.

Thanks for reading and hopefully this is the first post in a full build thread. 

Z
« Last Edit: February 12, 2018, 01:36:50 am by Zoomie »

Zoomie

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Re: First Build - The Mystery Machine - (Ambitious)
« Reply #1 on: February 04, 2018, 12:58:38 am »
Lots of reading not much response so far. 

Big questions I was hoping to have answered:
1.  Can anyone recommend plans for a four-player cabinet?  I'd settle for modifying two-player plans if I have to. Thanks!
2.  Suggestions or opinion on my proposed button format?  Right now I'm favouring 7 for my main two players (Japanese style fighting game 6 plus thumb layout) and a four button setup for players three and four.

Reading through the board, I know several of my choices will be unpopular. 
I don't have easy access to a CRT whereas my LCD TV is sitting idle in the garage.  Just having this machine work is a bigger deal than having games look exactly as they did when I was young.
Likewise, I know LED buttons aren't 'retro' but they will make it much easier for my friends to figure out which buttons to use when we start a new game.  Convenience trumps authenticity at this point.  Solid buttons made sense on machines that had one configuration but I think LED makes a lot of sense for a multi game cabinet.
« Last Edit: February 12, 2018, 01:38:18 am by Zoomie »

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Re: First Build - The Mystery Machine - (Ambitious)
« Reply #2 on: February 04, 2018, 07:21:39 am »
What will you use the admin buttons for? Maybe reduce it to two, so you'll need 48 inputs?

No recommendation for plans as it depends on your taste. I would say: Google 4 player arcade cabinet (image search) and see what you like first.

Arroyo

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Re: First Build - The Mystery Machine - (Ambitious)
« Reply #3 on: February 04, 2018, 11:43:38 am »
If you look on the Main page there is a sticky topic: Build an OND designed cab Metropolis.

http://forum.arcadecontrols.com/index.php/topic,118612.0.html

While not 4 player, itís step by step instructions with design layout.

JDFan

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Re: First Build - The Mystery Machine - (Ambitious)
« Reply #4 on: February 04, 2018, 12:00:53 pm »
How do you get 50 inputs ? ( EDit : Forgot the COin and Start so that explains you being at 50 ! - See below for a way around that )

By my math

4x4 = 16 inputs for the 4 joysticks ( 4 way and 8 way sticks only use 4 inputs U,D,L,R )
2x7 = 14 inputs for the 1and2 player 7 buttons
2x4 =  8 inputs for the player 3+4 4 buttons
4x1 =  4 inputs for Mame

16 + 14+ 8 +4 = 42 total inputs

Though that does not include Start and Coin buttons for each player ( You could wire it up so that both Up and Down on a joystick = Start and Both Left and right on a joystick = Coin) then wire a coin and start button for each player by wiring them to both the joystick Up and Down or Left and Right INputs for that joystick ( since you can never hit both of those directions in game so they will not ever get hit at the same time unless pressing the buttons wired to both.) SO then you'd have enough inputs for everything including the 4 mame button inputs and still have 6 inputs left if needed later.

« Last Edit: February 04, 2018, 12:15:20 pm by JDFan »

Zoomie

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Re: First Build - The Mystery Machine - (Ambitious)
« Reply #5 on: February 04, 2018, 12:44:59 pm »
Logging in and seeing several replies made my morning.  Thanks for that.

@barrymossel I've seen many CP's with four but after reading this thread  I think I could reduce them to EXIT and SHIFT.  This would save me two buttons and I'd be within my 48 input limit.

@Arroyo Thanks much for the link.  Like I said I'm pretty inexperienced with woodworking so plans are a must at this early stage.

@JDFan I think I get what you're saying.  Essentially the buttons would be piggy-backed on the wiring for the joystick, but on opposing inputs that can't possibly be hit together by the joystick.  Are there any drawbacks in emulator hardware?  Will MAME / Hyperspin let you have multiple inputs for a button assignment?  If so, you just found me 16 new inputs if I decide to go button crazy!  I mean I won't, but still - awesome.

I played some Exed Exes last night with an XBox controller.  It was one of my nemesis games in the local arcade as a kid and the music alone was enough to take me back.  My quarter was gone within about 2 mins of starting the game.  Either an XBox controller sucks for a vertical scroll shooter or I've forgotten how hard some of those games were.  It can't possibly be because I got older.

vaportrail

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Re: First Build - The Mystery Machine - (Ambitious)
« Reply #6 on: February 04, 2018, 03:50:37 pm »
This sounds like a cool build, anxiously awaiting the start with pics! I watched a lot of Scooby Doo as a kid....this definitely brings back some memories!:applaud:

PL1

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Re: First Build - The Mystery Machine - (Ambitious)
« Reply #7 on: February 04, 2018, 05:07:02 pm »
There's some related artwork at http://vectorlib2.free.fr/ScoobyBorne/.   ;D


Scott

Zoomie

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Re: First Build - The Mystery Machine - (Ambitious)
« Reply #8 on: February 04, 2018, 05:35:35 pm »
Thanks Scott.  I'm so far from cabinet graphics right now it's not funny.  It's still inspiration.

My current bugbear is figuring out button layouts while I wait for parts. I'm leaning towards the standard P1/P2 Japanese layouts to match the convex buttons and Japanese style joysticks I purchased.  I'm a big fan of ergonomic layouts as opposed to rows of visually straight buttons.  Most of the templates at Slagcoin use eight buttons, and my first thought was to use the first six (counting from the left) with an additional pinky button on the bottom row.  However, many 7+ button layouts I've seen place a seventh thumb button down and left from the rows.  I think they're using the rightmost 6 buttons, plus the bottom button from the left-most row?

I won't be building the main cabinet for a few months (waiting for warmer weather) but I'm going to play around with a CP to figure out the wiring and layout in the short term. 

@vaportrail I've always loved Scooby Doo.  I'm starting to move away from the idea of making each set of buttons specific to a member of the gang.  It sounded neat as a concept, but I'm probably better served by having colours specific to player, not character.  It would make more sense for a dedicated Scooby Doo game where each player was actually linked to the controls (ie something like the 6-player X-men)
« Last Edit: February 04, 2018, 05:46:30 pm by Zoomie »

PL1

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Re: First Build - The Mystery Machine - (Ambitious)
« Reply #9 on: February 04, 2018, 05:57:00 pm »
Most of the templates at Slagcoin use eight buttons, and my first thought was to use the first six (counting from the left) with an additional pinky button on the bottom row.  However, many 7+ button layouts I've seen place a seventh thumb button down and left from the rows.  I think they're using the rightmost 6 buttons, plus the bottom button from the left-most row?
Cardboard and/or hardboard (inexpensive, thin wood) mockups using printed Slagcoin layouts and actual buttons are your friend for deciding which layout works for you.   :cheers:


Scott

JDFan

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Re: First Build - The Mystery Machine - (Ambitious)
« Reply #10 on: February 05, 2018, 12:35:31 am »
Logging in and seeing several replies made my morning.  Thanks for that.

@JDFan I think I get what you're saying.  Essentially the buttons would be piggy-backed on the wiring for the joystick, but on opposing inputs that can't possibly be hit together by the joystick.  Are there any drawbacks in emulator hardware?  Will MAME / Hyperspin let you have multiple inputs for a button assignment?  If so, you just found me 16 new inputs if I decide to go button crazy!  I mean I won't, but still - awesome.

Actually 8 more - if using up and down for 1 and left and right for another x 4 joysticks would be 8 new inputs ( can't use up or down and left or right since those could be used in game for movement) and yes Mame will let you set 2 buttons for a single action.

Zoomie

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Re: First Build - The Mystery Machine - (Ambitious)
« Reply #11 on: February 05, 2018, 02:33:43 am »
Right, not sure where I was getting sixteen from.  Still, even 8 more would be more than I need.
I'm going to see whether I can make do with two admin buttons.

Zoomie

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Re: First Build - The Mystery Machine - (Ambitious)
« Reply #12 on: February 08, 2018, 09:12:22 pm »
Quick update on the planning / purchasing side for now.

Joysticks, buttons, an ultimarc I-PAC Ultimate I/O, wiring for 4 players, and wiring for my 32 planned LED buttons are on the way.
I won't know what wiring is included (or required) for the joysticks until they arrive.  Surprise!

The buttons are convex transparent with transparent surrounds.  I will probably buy inserts for coin and player selections and I plan to black out the tops of the buttons to give a look similar to Chance's machine or the Pathway Zelda 4p machine.  I like the look of coloured rings more than fully lit buttons.

I tested the latency on my 2006 LCD 32" using the HDMI output on my Alienware laptop.  I mirrored the same image to both screens and used online-stopwatch and my camera to capture a shot of the difference between them.  The TV had 33ms higher latency than the laptop's own screen. 
(I originally misinterpreted this as better, thinking lower number meant lower latency - the monitor was actually 33 ms ahead of the TV)
I've seen the TV's latency listed at 8ms, so I'm hoping this was an issue with dual outputs that will be faster with a dedicated computer.

I downloaded Chance's plans for a 4 player machine since it seems to have worked well for a 32" TV build here
I really love the look of Chance's "Flynn's Arcade" machine so I will probably shamelessly 'borrow' some of his design for use in my own.  Chance, you're a generous dude sharing plans for such a great cab.

Edit: I moved recently so I don't have an old PC to use in this machine; As a result, I'll probably have to buy new parts.  The plus side is that this machine should be able to run modern games.  I plan to host a weekly arcade night so being able to run modern titles is a bit of a no-brainer.

I'm looking at the following as a basis for the computer.
i5 (3.5ghz or higher)
8 gigs of RAM
nVidia 1050 (900's are power hungry for what they do and have coil whine)
Small SSD for the OS
2TB 7200 spin for the ROMS, videos, and CHD's
Power supply. 
I'm not sure whether to stick with an ATX motherboard or if there's an advantage to using a smaller mobo. 

If any of these components are over (or under) kill, please let me know!  I know this system would be overkill for MAME.
« Last Edit: February 12, 2018, 01:25:23 am by Zoomie »

bperkins01

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Re: First Build - The Mystery Machine - (Ambitious)
« Reply #13 on: February 10, 2018, 07:45:11 am »
Since you want to design your own panel - best bet is to make one..
I did mine out of particle board - I had some scrap leftovers..

I used 2 different layouts from Slagcoin as a test. 
The mockup was worth the effort:
I designed a 8 deg slope into the original plans - way to much it turned out..  I went with 5 deg.
My original CP was too large - I was able to shrink it down.
I moved the control clusters more toward the middle and still had plenty of trackball room..
Made sure the spinner was out of the way...
Moved the P1 / P2 start buttons.

I also set it up at the designed height on a bench with the monitor to test monitor height and angle (which I also adjusted)
Then played a lot of my favorite game (Centipede) to make sure it felt right..

I fiddled with it for about a week - monitor up - monitor down - monitor in - monitor out..  tilt the panel up .. tilt the panel down..

You get the point - It was not a waste of time.
Good luck!
My Arcade Build and other projects here:
https://bperkins.wordpress.com/

Zoomie

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Re: First Build - The Mystery Machine - (Ambitious)
« Reply #14 on: February 10, 2018, 12:44:51 pm »
I appreciate the input.  I have 7 scraps of MDF I will use to practice with my spade bit.  Hopefully I can drill button holes without blowing out the back side or getting too far off 90 degrees from flush.  The scraps are perfect for testing various layouts.  I played around with the mameroom CPD software yesterday but unfortunately it wasn't as useful (to me) as I'd hoped.  I already know what I want the CP to look like so now it's just a matter of mocking up a panel and seeing how things work.

I think I've settled on 7 buttons.  Fighting games mostly seem to use 6 buttons, whereas most platform or shmups use far fewer.  Even SNES only used 6 and NEO-GEO machines had 4 in one row IIRC, which is why I'm looking at a 7 button layout instead of only 6.  The SOLE reason I can find for having 8 buttons would be to mimic modern XBox or PS controllers that have four primary buttons and four triggers.  If I want to play those games I'll just use my PS4. 

bperkins01

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Re: First Build - The Mystery Machine - (Ambitious)
« Reply #15 on: February 10, 2018, 05:37:14 pm »
If you can avoid it - do not use a spade bit.
Use a Forstner bit



It will be a better guide to drilling a perpendicular hole because there will be a visual guide off the back of the bit in relation to the material.
If you use a backer block under the drill point of the hole - you will not get blowout..  you will just drill in to the backer.
Forstner bits make much nicer, cleaner holes and they are easy to control.

This is the best bit I've ever used - but very expensive..


Fantastic cut on the Bormax bits - just expensive.
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Zoomie

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Re: First Build - The Mystery Machine
« Reply #16 on: February 12, 2018, 01:30:10 am »
I bored out some holes on scrap MDF and quickly realised I was getting ahead of myself.  My sticks and buttons haven't even arrived yet and it's going to be a few months before I can start building my cab.  I'm excited about this project and it's going to happen, but for now I'm going to read a TON on the forum and keep playing around with designs for the CP and my cab artwork.  I'll let this thread fade and maybe start over again when I have some pictures of work begun in earnest.  Thanks to those who took the time to help guide me in the right direction.

Zoomie

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Re: First Build - The Mystery Machine
« Reply #17 on: February 17, 2018, 10:38:26 am »
If anyone has time to offer their opinion, I'd appreciate it.

a) Six buttons looks like it's enough for the vast majority of one or two player games.  I've also seen many setups with seven buttons, which seem to be mostly for NEO-GEO setups with four buttons across a row.  It also seems like many people who use seven buttons have a duplicated button function, rather than 7 unique inputs.  Is 6 really enough or have you guys found applications that absolutely need 7 or 8 buttons?

b) Is a 4 player CP worth the hassle?  I won't be including a spinner or trackball because I won't play games that justify their inclusion.  I do feel like 4 players is something I'd use often enough to justify it, but I'd be interested to hear how often you guys actually use players 3 and 4.

c) Are attractive first-time builds a rarity or can most people come up with a decent looking build their first time?  I have a decent eye for design but I'm not terribly experienced with woodworking so there will be a lot of learning involved.  I understand I'm making my life (and chances of a good cab) difficult by choosing 4p instead of just 2p.

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Re: First Build - The Mystery Machine
« Reply #18 on: February 17, 2018, 11:45:53 am »
A) 6.
B) No.
C) Plan accordingly.
%Bartop

JDFan

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Re: First Build - The Mystery Machine - (Ambitious)
« Reply #19 on: February 17, 2018, 11:50:33 am »
I'm looking at the following as a basis for the computer.
i5 (3.5ghz or higher)
8 gigs of RAM
nVidia 1050 (900's are power hungry for what they do and have coil whine)
Small SSD for the OS
2TB 7200 spin for the ROMS, videos, and CHD's
Power supply. 
I'm not sure whether to stick with an ATX motherboard or if there's an advantage to using a smaller mobo. 

If any of these components are over (or under) kill, please let me know!  I know this system would be overkill for MAME.

 I know it's been a few days but just read this and if you haven't purchased or ordered the parts yet - you might look at this site ( https://arrowdirect.com ) - they are a refurbisher that resells off lease systems from businesses and have some pretty decent prices on complete systems that are good for use as a base for builds ( can always add a GPU, PSU if you need better performance but they are a bit cheaper way of getting the basics ( MOBO, Licensed Copy of WIndows, RAM, CPU, etc. ) and are already looked over, cleaned up etc. and are usually cheaper than building from scratch.

For Example the last system I recently bought from them was a 3.3GHz. I5 Gen2 Tower with 4GB. of RAM a 500GB HDD, Tower case with 280W PSU, Win 10 Home ( also had the Cert for the old WIn7 pro OS IF I wanted to revert to it) and after tax and free shipping was only $132.49 ( they had a 20% code that is still working - just enter  " extra20 " without quotes in the discount codes line ) - So you might look around their site to see if anything they have is a good deal before buying. Figure I swapped out the PSU with a 600W and added an older Powercolor ATI 6950 GPU and a 250GB. SSD I had laying around and it made a very decent setup for the price. (Bought the Tower since it was replacing a desktop unit with an older AMD phenom II 720 I was using and wanted to use the case (otherwise some of the SFF and USFF units only accept half height GPUs unless you remove them from the case - but they can make some good mame build bases if you are removing and mounting the MOBO inside your build.)

Zoomie

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Re: First Build - The Mystery Machine
« Reply #20 on: March 12, 2018, 11:43:11 pm »
Sticks and buttons have arrived.
ipac Ultimate I/O has arrived.
Most of my wiring has arrived. 
There was a bit of a mixup with my order and a huge thanks to Andy @ Ultimarc who quickly replied and sorted out the issue within 24 hours.

So I'm playing around with button layouts.
I've settled on a Japanese 6 button layout with one extra button for the thumb to give a Neo-Geo style bottom row.
Here are pictures of my P1 and P2 Layouts



I positioned the fourth button to carry on the arc of the Japanese layout, essentially creating a symmetrical four button layout for the bottom row.  A few of my friends have tested it out and we all really like the ergonomics.  My intent is to have the six button layout for fighting games and the four button bottom row for everything else.


I also have two test layouts for the P3 and P4 four-button setups. 



At this point I'm definitely leaning towards the green layout.  It matches the four-button config from P1 and P2 and just 'feels' better.  I will tilt the button layout to conform to players standing towards the edges of the machine.  Yes, I know sticks should be oriented relative to the screen and not the player.

One of my biggest issues right now is trying to figure out how much space to allocate for each player.  I like the notched 4p CP like Chance's machine.  I definitely see how those notches let all four players get in close without bumping shoulders.

Thoughts?
« Last Edit: March 13, 2018, 12:18:41 am by Zoomie »

Zoomie

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Re: First Build - The Mystery Machine
« Reply #21 on: March 12, 2018, 11:55:58 pm »
Next question:
This is the 32" TV I'm planning to use.
Is it worth taking the plastic frame apart and losing the speakers, or should I just mount it as-is?
I had it mounted to a wall in our old house so I already have a bracket for the back.


« Last Edit: March 12, 2018, 11:58:47 pm by Zoomie »

Zoomie

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Re: First Build - The Mystery Machine
« Reply #22 on: March 13, 2018, 12:06:38 am »
@JDFan - Thanks for the link.  I'm Canadian and I think the site you linked is US based.  Still made me consider a refurbished machine.
I think I'm going to build a new computer so I can run steam titles like SF5 and DBFighterz as well as older stuff.  That being the case, I feel better choosing my own components rather than upgrading a refurbished machine.  I have some money coming from back-pay so I'm going to splurge a little.

@Nephasth - I have decided to go 4p, but thank you for taking the time to reply; It's appreciated. 
I want this cabinet for when I'm having a party at my place.  A four player machine fits that need better than a two player does.
Time will tell whether I can actually pull of a 4p design.

@bperkins01 - My spade bit did the job but the cuts did have some blow out.  You can see it in a few of my pictures.  Is it a big deal when the buttons cover the hole edges?  I guess it could be a big deal for the joystick hole at least.

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Re: First Build - The Mystery Machine
« Reply #23 on: March 13, 2018, 03:44:46 pm »
When using a spade drill, try drilling halve way down so you get a center hole on the otherside, then turn the cp over and drill from the other side letting the drill do the work, so donít push to hard on it.
Did it woth my cp panel and i didnít have any blow outs doing it that way.

You could also use a piece of cut off wood and put it under the sheet you are going to drill. That way you reduce the risk of a blow out, since they appear when drilling trough unsupported wood.

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Re: First Build - The Mystery Machine
« Reply #24 on: March 14, 2018, 12:06:42 pm »
If anyone has time to offer their opinion, I'd appreciate it.

a) Six buttons looks like it's enough for the vast majority of one or two player games.  I've also seen many setups with seven buttons, which seem to be mostly for NEO-GEO setups with four buttons across a row.  It also seems like many people who use seven buttons have a duplicated button function, rather than 7 unique inputs.  Is 6 really enough or have you guys found applications that absolutely need 7 or 8 buttons?

b) Is a 4 player CP worth the hassle?  I won't be including a spinner or trackball because I won't play games that justify their inclusion.  I do feel like 4 players is something I'd use often enough to justify it, but I'd be interested to hear how often you guys actually use players 3 and 4.

c) Are attractive first-time builds a rarity or can most people come up with a decent looking build their first time?  I have a decent eye for design but I'm not terribly experienced with woodworking so there will be a lot of learning involved.  I understand I'm making my life (and chances of a good cab) difficult by choosing 4p instead of just 2p.


I love my neogeo layout, but the majority of guys go with the 6-button layout. Either way you can't go wrong.

I saw your going 4-player... Just som tips. Don't angle your joysticks, up should always face up, not towards the screen. Second there are no 4-player games that I have every played that require more than 3 buttons.  Just lookin out for ya.

Lastly my first time build looked like crap, but it played very well. And everytime I had a party everyone loved it. Over time everyone still loved it but you see all of the flaws, all of the time. It will drive you crazy and you will build a second one to improve on your design. I think everyone here has done that at one time or another. However Nephasth is 100% right. More planning equals less mistakes/flaws.
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wp34

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Re: First Build - The Mystery Machine
« Reply #25 on: March 14, 2018, 12:46:50 pm »
If anyone has time to offer their opinion, I'd appreciate it.

a) Six buttons looks like it's enough for the vast majority of one or two player games.  I've also seen many setups with seven buttons, which seem to be mostly for NEO-GEO setups with four buttons across a row.  It also seems like many people who use seven buttons have a duplicated button function, rather than 7 unique inputs.  Is 6 really enough or have you guys found applications that absolutely need 7 or 8 buttons?

b) Is a 4 player CP worth the hassle?  I won't be including a spinner or trackball because I won't play games that justify their inclusion.  I do feel like 4 players is something I'd use often enough to justify it, but I'd be interested to hear how often you guys actually use players 3 and 4.

c) Are attractive first-time builds a rarity or can most people come up with a decent looking build their first time?  I have a decent eye for design but I'm not terribly experienced with woodworking so there will be a lot of learning involved.  I understand I'm making my life (and chances of a good cab) difficult by choosing 4p instead of just 2p.


I love my neogeo layout, but the majority of guys go with the 6-button layout. Either way you can't go wrong.

I saw your going 4-player... Just som tips. Don't angle your joysticks, up should always face up, not towards the screen. Second there are no 4-player games that I have every played that require more than 3 buttons.  Just lookin out for ya.

Lastly my first time build looked like crap, but it played very well. And everytime I had a party everyone loved it. Over time everyone still loved it but you see all of the flaws, all of the time. It will drive you crazy and you will build a second one to improve on your design. I think everyone here has done that at one time or another. However Nephasth is 100% right. More planning equals less mistakes/flaws.

 :cheers:

Zoomie

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Re: First Build - The Mystery Machine
« Reply #26 on: March 14, 2018, 07:23:08 pm »
Yes, I know sticks should be oriented relative to the screen and not the player.

The first time I saw the diagram of stick layout in someone's sig block here on the site I didn't understand it.  Browsing through the forum, I stumbled upon a discussion of why this is the best way to do it.
I admit I would have made this mistake had it not been for the members who post about it here.  Keep up the good work - lurkers are getting the message.  My sticks will be aligned with the screen and not the player.
My buttons however will be aligned with the player position for the edge peasants.   :lol

I understand your point about 4 buttons for 3 or 4-player games, but one of my intended games is Castle Crashers and it requires 6.  I'm already planning to use the coin and start buttons for players 3 and 4 to bring them up to 6 buttons.
Likewise, playing Secret of Mana with 3 players means emulating a SNES controller - which had 6 buttons plus start and select.  I still haven't quite figured that one out.  I don't want to start adding 6 or 8 buttons for those players but I do have a logic behind 4.

Cheers and thanks for the replies so far.

paigeoliver

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Re: First Build - The Mystery Machine
« Reply #27 on: March 16, 2018, 02:55:37 pm »
One tiny suggestion. Put your game exit button underneath the panel, hidden out of sight. That will save you countless ruined multiplayer games.
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Re: First Build - The Mystery Machine
« Reply #28 on: March 17, 2018, 11:31:32 am »
I did some thinking about the <EXIT> button.
Hiding it is one option, but then it's not obvious to players how to exit the current game. 
I also considered requiring it to be held for 2 seconds before it exits (if that's possible).
A third option is requiring the <SHIFT> button to also be held.  If I place them in two different spots then it's unlikely someone will press both by accident.

paigeoliver

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Re: First Build - The Mystery Machine
« Reply #29 on: March 17, 2018, 09:37:18 pm »
I did some thinking about the <EXIT> button.
Hiding it is one option, but then it's not obvious to players how to exit the current game. 
I also considered requiring it to be held for 2 seconds before it exits (if that's possible).
A third option is requiring the <SHIFT> button to also be held.  If I place them in two different spots then it's unlikely someone will press both by accident.

I once had a 3 button combo to open the tab menu. The average group of 8 year old kids would find it and ruin the control mappings trying to get out of it in less than 15 minutes of playing.
Acceptance of Zen philosophy is marred slightly by the nagging thought that if all things are interconnected, then all things must be in some way involved with Pauly Shore.

Zoomie

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Re: First Build - The Mystery Machine
« Reply #30 on: March 17, 2018, 10:05:43 pm »
My friends aren't nearly that savvy. 
This is also a machine that will be played by me, or by me with friends. 
If it was a public machine it would be hidden on top or behind a locked door.


Zoomie

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Re: First Build - The Mystery Machine
« Reply #31 on: March 23, 2018, 02:04:59 pm »
Here's the hardware I ordered for the machine.  https://ca.pcpartpicker.com/list/bgLQV6
I will be running Hyperspin/MAME but also want my machine to run modern titles well.

I'd be interested to hear opinions on whether Dungeons & Dragons: Chronicles of Mystara and/or Double Dragon: Neon are enough of an upgrade over the arcade originals to justify a purchase through Steam.  Maybe I'll wait for the summer sale?

Zoomie

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Re: First Build - The Mystery Machine
« Reply #32 on: June 09, 2018, 08:49:39 pm »
It has been quite a while since I made any progress.  Parts have arrived and I've sourced some nice dense plywood rather than MDF for the project.  The picture below is cheap plywood, not the high density stuff I plan to use for the final machine.

I'm making a basic mock-up of the machine to test CP height, panel design, and TV placement (angle, height, and distance from the player).  I want it to play well before I worry about aesthetics.

Here's a shot of my proposed CP layout.  It's version 1.0 so I appreciate any input. 
I'm using a 32" TV for the machine.  For scale that's approx. the width of the straight lines at the top and bottom of the panel.  They're actually 34" to account for the side panels.
Player 3 / Player 4 will be placed on extensions to either side, shown by the tape and the placement of the layouts.

Right now it feels a little too deep, but I also want players to be far enough away from the TV.  Any guidelines on how far the players should be from a 32" TV for comfort?

As a secondary question, how far do most of you extend the CP below the layout for each player?  At the moment I have about 5-6" below player 1 and 2, and about 4-5" below the side players. 

« Last Edit: June 09, 2018, 08:59:54 pm by Zoomie »

paigeoliver

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Re: First Build - The Mystery Machine
« Reply #33 on: June 11, 2018, 06:15:15 pm »
I am sitting here in a room full of real arcade cabinets and none of them have more than 3" of extra panel in any direction on a multiplayer cabinet. BYOAC members are famous for making the panels way too large. If the controls fit on the panel then the panel is probably large enough.
Acceptance of Zen philosophy is marred slightly by the nagging thought that if all things are interconnected, then all things must be in some way involved with Pauly Shore.

Zoomie

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Re: First Build - The Mystery Machine
« Reply #34 on: June 12, 2018, 11:16:36 am »
I appreciate the reply paigeoliver.  The panel looks really large to me but it felt right having a larger surface for my hands and forearms to rest on.  I'll keep playing around with the design and I can probably lose quite a bit of space around the edges.  Most of the surface area is actually above the buttons because I don't want players too close to the 32" screen.  Once I have it mocked up I'll have a better idea of how close is too close.

I appreciate the purist approach to arcade machines but I'm more interested in the function and comfort than I am in doggedly following how machines "used to be".  I know many (most) here on the board love classic machines and dislike designs that stray from that form.  I completely get it.  My current panel should have CVN emblazoned on it.  However, I only have room for one machine and I'm trying to create something that will play both the classics and modern arcade-friendly games.  My design choices reflect that compromise.

There aren't a lot of classic 4 player games and the ones that exist are all pretty similar.  From this perspective a 4 player machine doesn't make a lot of sense.  However, my modern "want" list includes Castle Crashers, the D&D arcade revamps (steam), and games like Dungeonland that pop up on steam once in a while.  I see this machine getting more use at parties than solo, so a 4 player machine makes more sense in that respect.  I want a 32" widescreen not because I want to play Galaga, but because I want to play DB Fighterz and it will look amazing on a larger format screen.  Hopefully I'm making sense.

I feel like this board needs a classics build sub-forum and a modern builds sub-forum.  I love the nostalgia of the older machines but I've seen some (undeserved?) hate at some amazing modern designs.

markc74

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Re: First Build - The Mystery Machine
« Reply #35 on: June 22, 2018, 12:37:15 pm »
The panel looks really large to me but it felt right having a larger surface for my hands and forearms to rest on

I think that's a fair point but unless everyone is the same height as you they're not going to get that benefit. I've  built a few cabs now and 4" is as much wrist space as any player needs. Go bigger and anyone shorter is going to feel uncomfortable, and anyone taller won't even notice (apart from being further away from the screen than necessary).

If you're using a 32" screen you could probably fit the controls within that width and it still be plenty comfortable. Remember that classic games aren't going to fill that screen size though so that might not be that big an issue.

I gotta add a caveat though - I don't know why but I had CPO's that go beyond the width of the cab. No idea why  :-\

TheGreatRedDragon

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Re: First Build - The Mystery Machine
« Reply #36 on: June 22, 2018, 11:32:31 pm »
I don't believe this issue is one of "classics" versus "modern."

That might be the case with a widescreen LED monitor, or a curved layout, or an eight-button layout, or even a PC or console versus real hardware, but here? I don't see what's especially modern about a bigger control panel. Saying that the classic cabinets never had more than 3" of space around a player isn't saying it's better because it's old, it's saying it's better because it's been long proven that you only need 3" of space as determined by both the people who were paid to design the things and the people who paid to play them. And I don't know why modern games specifically would necessitate having a half foot of material under your forearms.

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Re: First Build - The Mystery Machine
« Reply #37 on: June 23, 2018, 12:07:04 am »
Quote
I appreciate the purist approach to arcade machines but I'm more interested in the function and comfort than I am in doggedly following how machines "used to be".

Iím sorry, but donít get it twisted. The purist approach is based on function and comfort!  :dizzy:

I donít think you know what ďthe purist approachĒ entails. If you mean building a cabinet correctly, then yes, that could be one purist approach.
If you think that means discomfort and disfunction, then you clearly donít know much about Arcade cabinet design. Therefore Iíd say you came to the right place and lucky to have guys like Paige steer you in the right direction.

Also, hereís a cabinet made by shrunkenmaster that is also Scooby themed. Gaze upon the glory of ďthe purist approachĒ.
 ::)

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Re: First Build - The Mystery Machine
« Reply #38 on: June 29, 2018, 10:23:20 am »
Depending on how complicated you make your control panel artwork, you might want to not drill your holes until you get that printed.

If you draw your control panel art with a tiny plus in the dead center of where you want your buttons and joystick. Prior to applying it, you can transfer that center to your panel easily by poking something sharp through the center of the art. Then you know exactly where to position your drill bit.

Has the added benefit of making it so you can't play it while you build it. (so you can finish it earlier)

Here you can see I started by trying to shoehorn in the mechanicals, then created the artwork layers on top of the to-scale schematic drawings, you can also see the pluses in the center I used to drill the holes later.
« Last Edit: June 29, 2018, 12:03:25 pm by MacGyver »

Zoomie

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Re: First Build - The Mystery Machine
« Reply #39 on: September 12, 2018, 06:29:11 pm »
I'm just coming back to the forum after some time away.  Life got in the way (work related trips) but I managed to complete a first round test-bed of a CP and monitor using MDF and some 2x4"'s.  It's not glamorous but it works.  The computer is up and running with MAME and Steam and I think I'm happy with the CP design.  Now I'm trying to source art and finalize the measurements so I can put the router and jig saw to work!  I'd love input on whether learning something like sketchup is worth the effort for the finished product.

My current CP still looks large but I think I've found a balance between form and function.  I'm using 7(+2) buttons for p1/p2, and 4(+2) for p3/p4.  Older 4p games only needed 2 or 3 buttons, but modern titles like Castle Crashers require more, so I settled on 4 plus coin and start which can double as play buttons if required.

I ended up cutting away any CP outside 3" from controls.  The board is obviously now smaller than the plywood layout I posted earlier in the thread.  I admit I made a mistake referring to the forearms; I tend to have my button-hand forearm sideways across the edge of the CP (elbow out!) which is why I mentioned forearms.  I don't require a foot of space below the controls and my photo did make it look like I was keeping everything to the bottom of the plywood.  The finished panel ends right about where the white paper templates ended.  I'll see if I can post a more current photo for critique.  Some people here seem to really enjoy playing Simon Cowell.

Speaking of which...
@opt2not and @TheGreatRedDragon I seem to have inadvertently made some enemies with my 'purist' comments so please allow me to clarify: My modern vs purist comment was referring to the number of buttons on the machine.  I wasn't implying that older machines were somehow badly made or designed.  Maybe I have my terminology wrong, but my idea of a purist build would be a restoration or retro build intended to look just like an original machine.  That's incompatible with what I want from my machine.  I wasn't saying a modern design required a massive CP, but my modern list of must-have games DO require more buttons than older classic games.  Hopefully that clears things up and absolves me of some of your hate.

Thank you for the link to the Mystery Machine - His CP is actually quite large - especially the depth!  I used to think I would be upset that other people had designed a similar Scooby theme, but I actually love them and it just makes me more excited to work on my own plan.

My "finished" CP is about as wide as it shows in my earlier photo, but this was to accommodate four players at shoulder width rather than to provide space around the controls themselves.  I ended up cutting the board about 3 inches below the lowest button for each player.  The top of the board looks massive but most of that surface (up to the buttons) ended up beneath the TV based on how I wanted to mock up the placement.  Now that I have a solid design, the whole thing will be more like an LPD than a CVN.

@MacGyver thanks for the input on control panel art.  I'm soliciting for artists to help with my design and I'm not settled on how I'll put art on the CP.  The sides will hopefully be full laminate.  At the moment my CP was hand designed but I think I should transfer the plans to a CAD program to facilitate adding artwork.  The key for me was that everything felt good.  I started with controls and placement that felt good, then moved to a 'design' phase where I measured everything out.  I'm still torn between CP art that closely interacts with the control placement, or generic art that is controls agnostic (ie it's just background).

Zoomie

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Re: First Build - The Mystery Machine
« Reply #40 on: September 14, 2018, 12:33:10 pm »
I wired up my test-platform last night.  I wired only players 1 and 2 and it already looks like a dreamcatcher lost a fight with a pitbull.

The Good
- It's alive!  Everything worked so apparently I'm not a complete imbecile.  I'm very happy with the layout of the panel and even after playing for an hour and a half I didn't feel hunched or like I was reaching.  The distance and viewing angle from the screen was good and the latency was barely noticeable.

The Bad
- The CP is a flat board with no back so every click of every switch is insanely loud.  Is this something that gets significantly better when you enclose the CP or am I going to have to buy leaf switches to solve the issue?  I'm definitely not happy with the "feel" of the cheap 4-switch joysticks I bought, but they were a smoking deal at the time.  I always knew I might end up upgrading and now that it looks like I may actually finish the project I can justify buying good sticks.  I'm open to suggestions and I'll troll the board here to see what people recommend.

- I ran into the issue where fighting games only let you configure player one with keyboard.  No one wants to play DBZ fighterz with player 2 using an XBox controller and I don't understand why game developers don't let you configure layout (keyboard or joystick) for both players.  This seems like a MASSIVE oversight so my immediate suspicion is that they have an ulterior motive for leaving this out.  Are they specifically trying to make home-build setups difficult?  I hear there's an XBox 360 Xinput program, or something called VJoy that might solve the issue?

- The default ipac layout makes no sense to me.  Why would you have primary joystick inputs as L-Alt or Enter?  This can't help but cause issues when you're messing around with menus.  Why not make them something simple like WASD and Z X C V for buttons 1-4.  I'm sure they have their reasons but it made life complicated last night trying to set it up.

Ah well, at least it's up and running.  I'm going to wire up P3/P4 and have some friends over to give the mock-up a good thrashing.  Once that's done I'll unplug everything, change my design based on their inputs, probably order some better sticks, and start working on my final design.  Thanks again for all the comments on this thread everyone.

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Re: First Build - The Mystery Machine
« Reply #41 on: September 14, 2018, 04:31:09 pm »
- The default ipac layout makes no sense to me.  Why would you have primary joystick inputs as L-Alt or Enter?  This can't help but cause issues when you're messing around with menus.  Why not make them something simple like WASD and Z X C V for buttons 1-4.  I'm sure they have their reasons but it made life complicated last night trying to set it up.
It's the result of layers upon layers of retro-compatibility.

The IPac defaults are based on the MAME defaults and some other emulator, possibly Callus.

The MAME defaults, chosen back when keyboard hacks were the common interface choice, include "modifier" keys (Ctrl, Alt, Shift) since those don't count toward the keyboard "boot protocol" 6-button limit.

Reprogram your IPac to change "modifier" keys and the conflicting/overlapping defaults mentioned here.

It's usually a good idea to remove TAB (menu) so guests can't accidently mess up your setup.   :banghead:
- Use a keyboard if you need to get into the menu system.

Remember to change the shifted functions too.  i.e. I-Pac P1Start + P1Right = TAB.

This table shows the P2/P3 overlaps and includes a list of unused keys.   ;D




Scott

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Re: First Build - The Mystery Machine
« Reply #42 on: September 14, 2018, 05:43:05 pm »
Thanks Scott, I appreciate it. 

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Re: First Build - The Mystery Machine
« Reply #43 on: September 16, 2018, 12:52:29 pm »
Last night I had some friends over and for the first time I had four people banging away on the controls.  Within a few minutes I noticed that HyperSpin started in the background and the primary controls in MAME stopped.  Doing some reading it appeared to be related to shift keys, or macros.  I mapped out the special keys - Ctrl, Alt, Shift, etc. and it seems to have solved the issue.

I have toyed with the idea of using a coin box rather than a coin button,  but the advantage of a coin button is that it can be a play button for four player games that require more than four buttons.  I know those games are the exception but it still gives me options.
I am fully aware the surface looks massive, but the distance from the TV is what's important and I don't think I'd want players any closer to the screen.  I'm scratching my head trying to reduce the size of the CP.

Here's the current look:


I threw on some copper coloured laminate just so it doesn't look like raw MDF.  Please don't mistake this setup for anything approaching a final form; this is purely a test-bed and I threw laminate on it just for fun.
The finished control panel will be poly or acrylic over graphics, but I decided to try my hand at laminate since I intend to wrap the final sides with graphics and this was a consequence-free test run.

The wiring of four players is enough to send my mild perfectionist tendencies into a fit, so with the additional wiring required by LEDs in all the buttons I'm strongly considering doing custom wiring rather than using pre-made wiring bundles.

I do have a few issues I'm looking for advice on:

Issue 1 -- My P3/P4 controls each have 4 buttons plus start and coin.  I have numbered them 1 2 3 4 since that made the most sense.  Coin and Start can be used as play buttons for modern games like Castle Crashers, but most 4p games only really use 2 or 3 at most. I chose a 7 button layout for P1/P2 to accommodate 6 button fighter layouts and to match the 1 2 3 4 layout of the 3rd and 4th player setups (Neo-Geo style).  The layout ends up looking like:

    5  6  7
1  2  3  4      and    1  2  3  4

It's great, except when I play a fighting game it ends up being a 2 on 4 layout rather than a 3 over 3 like it's supposed to be.  I want the four player layouts to match the first four buttons of the two player layouts, but I also don't want to screw up the two-player fighting games.  Is there a clever numbering system or will I have to remap all my fighting games to skip button 1?

Issue 2 -- Dragon Ball Fighterz and other fighting games won't let you map keyboard to player 2.  I have read about people using vJoy and UCR but I haven't had any luck using them so far.  If anyone has a link to a detailed guide I'd appreciate it.

Issue 3 -- Last night I fought the urge to streamline the machine to two players, using joypads for players three and four rather than dedicated sticks and buttons.  I'm already considering replacing the sticks for players one and two with better quality (quiet) sticks.
I know the machine looks massive but my favourite childhood memories in arcades were the 4 player machines.  This machine will see most use during parties so four players feels like a must-have, despite the massive pain it causes.

I'm definitely happy I did a mock up because it has exposed all sorts of issues that probably would have ruined a full build.

Nephasth

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Re: First Build - The Mystery Machine
« Reply #44 on: September 16, 2018, 01:02:53 pm »
I don't mind the copper laminate. But those types of controls make me cringe every time I see them.

Give into the urge. ---fudgesicle--- P3 and P4.

Most NeoGeo games don't use 4 buttons... I've done the "neo arch" on the Beast, and well... A standard 6 button layout is all anyone really needs.
%Bartop

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Re: First Build - The Mystery Machine
« Reply #45 on: September 16, 2018, 01:52:57 pm »
Yeah, definitely weighing the pro's and con's of a four player layout. 
My best times in arcades were on four player machines - hence the drive to do a four player machine.
Since I'm going four player, there are some games like Castle Crashers and the D&D remakes that will require more than 2 buttons for players three and four - so now I need more buttons for those players.

In the military it's called mission creep and I'm very aware it has happened on this machine.  One feature opens the possibility to do more, and that feature gives even more options.  At least I don't have light guns or a Tron stick yet.

I don't really want to reduce the wing player buttons below 4.  Castle Crashers, D&D, and a few other games require 4 buttons (or 4+2)
Reducing p1/p2 to six buttons each would fix my fighting game / 4-player-game dilemma but the layouts would be different.

The other option is to double up the function of a button - but that's losing a functional button and my OCD still won't like:

    4  5  6
4  1  2  3          1  2  3  4

I don't like it because the p1/p2 layouts are ordered differently than p3/p4 even if the layout looks similar.  I also don't like changing p3/p4 to read  4  1  2  3  to match p1/p2. 
Last night it drove me insane playing Simpsons because the machine orders players 1 2 3 4 and my layout is 3 1 2 4.  At some point I will have to accept a certain level of mismatch unless I build a cabinet for each and every game.  Still,  :banghead:

Reducing to six buttons doesn't shrink the CP but to be honest that's as much a function of how much space four adults physically require.  I also don't want players to be too close to the screen.  The panel size is as much a function of keeping players back as it is to accommodate buttons and sticks.

If I go 2 player like so many people here suggest - and trust me I hear you - it solves most of my problems.  I'm just fighting against the strong desire to rekindle those four player memories that made me start the project in the first place.

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Re: First Build - The Mystery Machine
« Reply #46 on: September 16, 2018, 05:27:06 pm »
Go with Neph's advice, you might have got into the build on the fumes of nostalgia but you'll want to finish up with a well designed cabinet.
You might think that you're scared, but you're not.  That isn't fear.  That's your sharpness.  That's your power.

Zoomie

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Re: First Build - The Mystery Machine
« Reply #47 on: September 17, 2018, 12:19:28 pm »
I've received a lot of feedback here recommending I change the layout to a two-player machine.  I've also seen quite a lot of 'hate' for Chance's design because the wing players get in the way of the main players.  I played my version of the inset design this past weekend and there were no issues with shoulders or elbows.  Marge's vacuum-swing noise in The Simpsons is really annoying by the way.

Honest question: Do people generally not like four-player MAME cabinets or is this specific to my design?
(Edit: Again, this is by no means a final product.  This is purely a test-bed for screen height/angle and to physically try out the CP)

If I'm going four-player then the size of the CP will need to be large to accommodate four adults standing side by side.
Likewise, THX recommends dividing the diagonal screen measurement by .84 to calculate the optimum viewing distance, for a 1080p resolution.
Players should ideally be 38" back from my screen.  My design makes a lot of sense based on these two factors.  I think the control panel looks large right now because it's all one solid colour (copper).  I'm hoping this will be solved with some catchy graphics to break up the space.

I'm fine with people saying they prefer the look of a one or two-player cab over a four-player monstrosity.  Even the original four-player cabinets looked a bit like Frankenstein's monster. 
However, at the moment I'm pressing ahead with a four-player and need to sort functional advice from people who just don't like four-player layouts in general.

I'd love suggestions on how to reduce the size of the CP without removing function.
I will go back and re-assess how many buttons I really need, but modern games seem to want to make use of a full XBox controller (buttons + triggers + bumpers).  I'm already running short unless I use coin and start as player controls.
« Last Edit: September 17, 2018, 12:37:45 pm by Zoomie »

yotsuya

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Re: First Build - The Mystery Machine
« Reply #48 on: September 17, 2018, 12:35:22 pm »
What if the functional advice you give is sound and you just donít like 4 player cabs?

Go with the Konami design. Thats the most functional, sound advice youíve been given, and nothing will change that.
***Build what you dig, bro. Build what you dig.***

opt2not

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Re: First Build - The Mystery Machine
« Reply #49 on: September 17, 2018, 12:46:55 pm »
4-player cabs are fine if done properly. The problem is a lot of people donít do them properly.

you seem to have made up your mind on the design and definition of what you think a modern or purist cab is, so Iím just going to just sit back and watch on this one. This is going into Ask-hole territory (where people feign like they want feedback and suggestions but only really want an opportunity to justify their choices or are fishing for compliments). We see it time and time again and it really is a waste of time to try to suggest anything due to ego, stubbornness or just straight laziness to make any changes.

Just build what you dig. Cry about the problems and wasted time/money later.

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Re: First Build - The Mystery Machine
« Reply #50 on: September 17, 2018, 12:47:59 pm »
As someone who has built a 4-player cab... Don't.

It will be played by 1 player probably 90% of the time, 2 players 9.5%...

Parties? Nobody has them enough to justify the 4-player argument.

Modern games... All console games should be played from a couch.

The whole point of building a MAME machine is to emulate arcade games. Oh, but you really need to play the latest console fighter? What the hell is wrong with the umpteen classic fighters in MAME?

I'm not even that big of a fan of MAME, especially at parties. People spend more ---danged--- time scrolling through the game list being indecisive rather than actually playing games.
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Zoomie

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Re: First Build - The Mystery Machine
« Reply #51 on: September 17, 2018, 01:13:38 pm »
Perfect reply, thanks yotsuya. 

The funny thing about choosing the inset "Chance's Arcade" design is that I thought it was a novel way to angle the wing players so they could see the screen while still keeping the control panel from looking like a massive board.  If I go with the standard Konami four-player it will end up just as large and the wings will likely have a worse viewing angle.

I fully appreciate that the classic designs were refined over time.  However, I also feel that some design decisions were made so the machines would be inexpensive and simple to build, move, and repair.  Just cutting and building the control panel for my design will take two or three times the work of a standard (classic) box.  I'm willing to put in the work if it results in a more ergonomic machine.  I know people catch a lot of flak for diverging from the standard designs, but I'm trying to design based on solid logical reasons - tempered with hands-on testing and refinement.  That's why I'm here taking advantage of the massive knowledge base here - learning from past mistakes where I can.

opt2not - I'm sorry you feel that way.  I tried to define my terms so you could at least get mad at me for what I was saying, not what you think I meant.  I don't think I've done anything praise-worthy on my build (it's a piece of crap) so I'm hardly here for compliments.  I absolutely want to justify my design choices - who builds something they don't think make sense?  I'm here precisely so people WILL critique the choices I make.  You seem to feel I'm therefore obliged to follow all of it. 

I came here not knowing very much about cabinets in general and I've learned a TON so far.  Thank you.  PL1's post about MAME conflicts saved me a ton of time on Saturday when button conflicts and alt keys broke my machine.  Since I'm already an ask-hole: what's your definition of a 'proper' four player console?  I'm honestly curious what you see as a flaw in my design.  I'm not here to pick fights and that's kinda the point of my posts today.  I'm sorry my posts come off as ungrateful or as if I'm not listening to advice.  I tried to explain my limitations and reasons for my design, but that doesn't mean I'm immune to criticism.

Nephasth - I'm a solo PC gamer and online PS4 gamer.  I have a VR setup but I find it's VERY anti-social since the person playing is essentially removed from the room while everyone else just spectates.  I'm building this machine precisely for parties, which is why I'm finding it so hard to let go of the four player aspect.  Your point about the scroll wheel is well taken - maybe I can alleviate issues by creating a favourite list and limiting choice?  As far as console fighters go - DBZ Fighters is highly rated and I'd love to play it on stick and buttons rather than with an XBox controller.  I'd get destroyed online but at least locally against friends I stand a chance.  I have a group of friends who come over weekly and that's enough for me to justify building a machine.  I definitely appreciate the issues you raise.

yotsuya

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Re: First Build - The Mystery Machine
« Reply #52 on: September 17, 2018, 01:21:13 pm »
You seem determined to go with the aircraft carrier, so do it. There you go, problem solved. :cheers:
***Build what you dig, bro. Build what you dig.***

JDFan

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Re: First Build - The Mystery Machine
« Reply #53 on: September 17, 2018, 01:36:06 pm »
You seem determined to go with the aircraft carrier, so do it. There you go, problem solved. :cheers:

^ Agreed

also since you mention --

Quote
I'd love suggestions on how to reduce the size of the CP without removing function.
I will go back and re-assess how many buttons I really need, but modern games seem to want to make use of a full XBox controller (buttons + triggers + bumpers).  I'm already running short unless I use coin and start as player controls.

That is part of the problem -- Arcade machines were not made to play Modern games and Modern games were not designed to be played standing up at an arcade machine -- they are designed for consoles where you hold the controller in your hand while sitting on a couch playing on a TV across the room mounted to a wall or sitting on a stand.

If you really want a 4 player setup go with a pedestal base with a wall mounted TV  - that way you can make the pedestal any size you feel you need with as many buttons as you want- and when it winds up just sitting there until you can get 4 people together to play you can at least use the TV.
« Last Edit: September 17, 2018, 01:49:35 pm by JDFan »

opt2not

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Re: First Build - The Mystery Machine
« Reply #54 on: September 17, 2018, 01:42:06 pm »
Well, the number of buttons doesn't define the difference between a "modern" design vs. a purist approach.

There are plenty of arcade games that have 6 or more buttons from BITD that aren't modern cabinets. If you want the real definition of what purist is, I can spend the time to write it up, but it'd probably be a waste of time here. But if enough people are telling you the same thing, and you choose not to follow it, or never was going to follow it, that's your prerogative.

If your design makes sense to you, then by all means, keep going. I'm just going to not give my feedback in this thread, and just sit-back and watch.



Zoomie

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Re: First Build - The Mystery Machine
« Reply #55 on: September 17, 2018, 02:08:11 pm »
Well, that's settled.  :laugh:

Any advice on the TV?  Right now I've left it in the original casing and I was considering just hiding it behind panels or a bezel.
I'm a little leery of opening the case and accidentally touching a capacitor, but I'll do the research and strip it down to bare bones if it's worth it.

My (lazy) thinking right now is that I can pop off the "Toshiba" logo and mount it so everything above the speaker grilles is visible.  The lower part would be hidden behind the CP.

I would also appreciate some input about the click of the switches on the joysticks.  I picked up cheap sticks and buttons before I knew better (and when I wasn't sure I'd even get off my butt and build something).  Do they get significantly quieter once you seal up a CP box or does the sound carry through the top regardless?
I'm considering upgraded joysticks to begin with, and I'm taking a good look at the magnetic field ones if the noise isn't significantly reduced by sealing up the CP.

Again, I appreciate the comments guys.  I know it might seem odd, but a MAME-only machine would see far less use in my house.  If I was just building this for MAME titles it would be 2 player and I'd probably have a finished product by now.  Maybe I AM trying to shoe-horn too much into this one box - which seems to be the consensus here. 

opt2not - Do you mind if I PM you?  I'd like to avoid unintentionally stepping on a forum land-mine in the future.  I guess the word 'purist' comes pre-loaded on this board so I'd love to chat about what words I could use instead.  No need to continue giving feedback in this thread.

opt2not

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Re: First Build - The Mystery Machine
« Reply #56 on: September 17, 2018, 02:58:09 pm »
Sure, if you'd like.

Zoomie

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Re: First Build - The Mystery Machine
« Reply #57 on: September 17, 2018, 03:42:18 pm »
I don't know if this was the intent or not, but you guys now have me seriously considering using the gaming computer hooked up to my 54" TV with four XBox controllers setup in MAME.
I'd still have to get a giant poster of Scooby Doo and the gang.
 :dizzy:

yotsuya

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Re: First Build - The Mystery Machine
« Reply #58 on: September 17, 2018, 04:15:57 pm »
Have you thought about pedestals? There are some really nice examples here that would let you still use arcade controls but fit the form factors in a much better way.
***Build what you dig, bro. Build what you dig.***

AkAdam44

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Re: First Build - The Mystery Machine
« Reply #59 on: September 19, 2018, 07:20:25 pm »
Dude, go with the 4 player Flynn's Arcade design! I feel exactly like you do...I want that old school feeling of me and 3 buddies playing NBA Jam at the old pizzeria! Or maybe some Saturday Night Slammasters...loved that game. If that's the main reason you want an arcade at home then who cares how HUGE the thing is. As long as you're happy with it once you're beating up on Baxter Stockman with your friends playing TMNT then it will all be worth it.

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Re: First Build - The Mystery Machine
« Reply #60 on: September 22, 2018, 09:43:02 pm »
The whole point of building a MAME machine is to emulate arcade games. Oh, but you really need to play the latest console fighter? What the hell is wrong with the umpteen classic fighters in MAME?

Sorry to jump in with my own two cents, but what is wrong with wanting to play modern fighters on an arcade cabinet? Playing fighters on a cabinet is fun. Modern fighters on a cabinet is fun and neat. Isn't having something fun and neat the whole point of building an arcade cabinet?

Nephasth

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Re: First Build - The Mystery Machine
« Reply #61 on: September 22, 2018, 10:03:59 pm »
Thousands of games... Still not satisfied... :laugh2:
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Zoomie

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Re: First Build - The Mystery Machine
« Reply #62 on: September 23, 2018, 02:00:11 am »
Yeah, odd that companies keep putting out new games since we already have so many.

TheGreatRedDragon

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Re: First Build - The Mystery Machine
« Reply #63 on: September 23, 2018, 12:04:25 pm »
Thousands of games... Still not satisfied... :laugh2:

Well yeah, that's why they keep making new ones.  :laugh2:

Nephasth

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Re: First Build - The Mystery Machine
« Reply #64 on: September 23, 2018, 12:07:09 pm »
Yet you want to emulate old ones... :dizzy:
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Zoomie

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Re: First Build - The Mystery Machine
« Reply #65 on: September 23, 2018, 12:10:53 pm »
Keep digging. 

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Re: First Build - The Mystery Machine
« Reply #66 on: September 23, 2018, 12:43:31 pm »
Let me know how much you enjoy N64 games with arcade controls...
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Re: First Build - The Mystery Machine
« Reply #67 on: September 23, 2018, 03:01:48 pm »
Yet you want to emulate old ones... :dizzy:

Well yeah. Just because new games have come out doesn't mean the old ones aren't still good.

I don't get why you're having so much trouble wrapping your head around wanting to playing fighting games on an arcade cabinet.  ???

Nephasth

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Re: First Build - The Mystery Machine
« Reply #68 on: September 23, 2018, 03:07:20 pm »
I don't get why you have so much trouble understanding that a Jack of all trades is seldom the master of any. I prefer to play games on the platforms they were designed for.

Vert > Horizontal
Metal CPs for life
CRT or GTFO
4-player builds are a waste of money
Don't angle your sticks
6 buttons is enough
 :cheers:
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Zoomie

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Re: First Build - The Mystery Machine
« Reply #69 on: September 23, 2018, 04:05:49 pm »
I guess the difference here is that I was asking for advice on how to make the machine I want. 
You have responded with what you think I should want it to do.

Nephasth

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Re: First Build - The Mystery Machine
« Reply #70 on: September 23, 2018, 04:10:10 pm »
I guess you missed the post where RedDragon asked me some questions...
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Re: First Build - The Mystery Machine
« Reply #71 on: September 23, 2018, 04:46:40 pm »
I don't get why you have so much trouble understanding that a Jack of all trades is seldom the master of any. I prefer to play games on the platforms they were designed for.

Vert > Horizontal
Metal CPs for life
CRT or GTFO
4-player builds are a waste of money
Don't angle your sticks
6 buttons is enough
 :cheers:

I mean I get that, and I'm not advocating putting Donkey Kong 64 in a cabinet or something stupid like that, but I'm talking specifically about fighting games. So in that regard, what's the dilemna?

Modern fighting games are released on PC and designed to be played with arcade controls. Homemade arcade emulation cabinets are just PCs with arcade controls. So isn't playing SFIV, MKX or FighterZ on a homemade arcade cabinet playing the game on the platform it's designed for? The only difference is the screen, computer and controller are attached to the same wooden box, a difference that is purely aesthetic.

Nephasth

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Re: First Build - The Mystery Machine
« Reply #72 on: September 23, 2018, 04:53:23 pm »
Modern games on a CRT is no bueno. Classic games (even early fighters) on and LCD is also no bueno.

And the whole "I need 8 buttons on my cab for modern games" argument is non-sense. Build a fight stick and play modern games on a higher end PC with a nice LCD. No point in throwing a high end PC in a MAME rig.

Purpose built... I suppose is my whole point.
« Last Edit: September 23, 2018, 04:58:29 pm by Nephasth »
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Zoomie

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Re: First Build - The Mystery Machine
« Reply #73 on: September 23, 2018, 05:22:06 pm »
Nevermind.  We're obviously talking past each other. 

I absolutely get your preference for purpose built.  It was difficult in this thread to determine whether you were stating your preference, or telling me (and Dragon) we're wrong unless we do it your way.
« Last Edit: September 23, 2018, 05:28:32 pm by Zoomie »

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Re: First Build - The Mystery Machine
« Reply #74 on: September 23, 2018, 06:08:11 pm »
I know, all my posts are read in the ---uvula--- tone. But even this ---uvula--- wants people to save money and prevent mistakes.
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Zoomie

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Re: First Build - The Mystery Machine
« Reply #75 on: September 23, 2018, 06:28:22 pm »
As always, appreciate the input but I'm happy with my goal and I guess it's different from how you'd use the cab.

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Re: First Build - The Mystery Machine
« Reply #76 on: September 23, 2018, 07:26:42 pm »
Modern games on a CRT is no bueno. Classic games (even early fighters) on and LCD is also no bueno.

And the whole "I need 8 buttons on my cab for modern games" argument is non-sense. Build a fight stick and play modern games on a higher end PC with a nice LCD. No point in throwing a high end PC in a MAME rig.

Purpose built... I suppose is my whole point.

CRT isn't always viable though. It's the ideal, in which case you're correct that modern games are no bueno, but sometimes you've gotta compromise. If you can't have a CRT then I see no reason not to use modern games. If you're going to blaspheme you might as well make the most of it.

But you're talking to a guy who is planning a Pokemon cabinet so I don't know if we'll ever see eye-to-eye.  :lol :cheers:

  
 

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