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Author Topic: Arcade Cabinet and Console Emulation  (Read 1831 times)

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DaddyJ

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Arcade Cabinet and Console Emulation
« on: March 07, 2019, 06:22:37 pm »
Hi guys - I'm looking at starting the journey towards making my own arcade cabinet. Obviously classic mame games will be important but I would also like to emulate other platforms like Playstation, NES, Gamecube etc.

Is there a definitive way to put together a control box for this type of system. A "standard" arcade control box would cover off a lot of games, but when trying to use systems like the Playstation things could get tricky without an xbox or ps controller.

I'm thinking that having a USB port of some description on the cabinet that you can plug those controllers into when needed would be the solution? Or can you put together a control box that would work for all instances?

Thanks in advance.
« Last Edit: March 07, 2019, 06:24:09 pm by DaddyJ »

javeryh

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Re: Arcade Cabinet and Console Emulation
« Reply #1 on: March 07, 2019, 07:05:39 pm »
Welcome to the forums.  I would advise you to read a ton of project threads and then when you are done read a ton more.  You can sort Project Announcements by number of posts to see some of the more discussed projects. 

To answer your specific question, there is no one-size-fits-all solution (IMO).  There are too many games with too many control styles.  Even just making a cabinet to play only arcade games is a serious challenge.  Playing Q*bert and Pac-Man using the same joystick is more difficult than it sounds.

You can emulate all the consoles on a powerful PC and tie it all into one front end but aside from maybe some fighting games, I'm not sure why you would want to play them standing up with arcade controls.  Are you planning to use a widescreen monitor? Hopefully not.  You can add gamepads via USB or bluetooth but then why not just put a computer next to your TV and play from the couch?   You should think about what you really want to accomplish other than just "play as many games as possible".  You will get a lot more constructive feedback.

DaddyJ

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Re: Arcade Cabinet and Console Emulation
« Reply #2 on: March 07, 2019, 08:33:30 pm »
Thank you Javeryh - This has given me a bit to think about. I guess I have always loved the look and idea of an arcade system in my home. But as of today I am using that setup you basically described - PC connected to TV with game controllers and I bounce around a few systems hence my thought to replicate that in an arcade setup. Will have to have a sit down and think about those requirements :-)


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Re: Arcade Cabinet and Console Emulation
« Reply #3 on: March 07, 2019, 11:18:07 pm »
Check out the FAQ, especially the "What type of build meets my needs? " entry.

(Backup copy since the wiki is still down. :( )
https://web.archive.org/web/20160809113045/http://newwiki.arcadecontrols.com/index.php?title=FAQ#What_type_of_build_meets_my_needs.3F


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DaddyJ

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Re: Arcade Cabinet and Console Emulation
« Reply #4 on: March 08, 2019, 03:47:36 am »
Thank you - That is a good resource. I lol at "Frankenconsole"

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Re: Arcade Cabinet and Console Emulation
« Reply #5 on: March 08, 2019, 05:57:03 am »
If you try to do everything, you will have cr@p. My suggestion is to focus on a small amount of arcade games since you are building an arcade machine. There is arcade counterparts of popular console games. If you must add console games, use a game pad controller. Console games are better experienced from a tv and couch.

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Re: Arcade Cabinet and Console Emulation
« Reply #6 on: March 08, 2019, 08:00:11 am »
^^This^^

IMO even using console controllers attached to a cab now almost turns an arcade machine into a kiosk.

Run the arcade versions instead of the console ports as most of them are sub par anyway (except for the Contra ports to NES, and a few others. In that case run Playchoice 10)
or, if your machine is too weak to run the actual MAME games.

Trust me, I doubt anyone wants to play Chrono Trigger for hours sitting in a bar seat at a cab.


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Re: Arcade Cabinet and Console Emulation
« Reply #7 on: March 08, 2019, 08:24:01 am »
I have emulators setup for a fairly large number of consoles.  The consoles that work best by far are the early ones that focused on short arcade style action and had simple joysticks with one or two buttons.  Systems like Atari 2600, Colecovision, and even NES generally work really, really well.  But once you move beyond this you start finding more and more games that feature long, continue style game play and complex game pad operation that can be frustrating to configure and far from optimal for a cab.  I do have newer consoles like playstation and gamecube setup, but only list a very small subset of titles for each with the requirement that they be in an arcade style with simple control setups, like Crash Bandicoot for PS, Radiant Silvergun for Saturn, Ikaruga or Zero Gunner 2 for Dreamcast, etc.
« Last Edit: March 08, 2019, 08:29:49 am by gildahl »

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Re: Arcade Cabinet and Console Emulation
« Reply #8 on: March 08, 2019, 11:00:37 am »
So I am in the process of doing something quite similar to what the OP is asking. While I suppose a powerful enough PC might be able to get the job done, I have the original hardware for the newer systems I wanted to incorporate, so I decided to go that route instead of emulation. So basically the PC runs the following systems (MAME, CPS 1 2, NEO GEO, Sega Model 2, Atari 2600, 7800, NES, GB, SNES, N64, Sega Master, Genesis/Megadrive, Sega CD, Turbo graphx16, Playstation 1, Mugen, Terrordrome, and a bunch of OpenBor games.) I run OG Xbox, Gamecube, 360 and Nintendo Switch off of the actual hardware. Yes you wont have the pretty frontend this way, but running off of actual hardware DOES have advantages (like custom soundtracks for OG Xbox games, and games ALWAYS performing like they should.) Yes I have to put the game/disks physically in the machines, but that doesnt bother me tbh.

Despite what people on here will tell you, I actually like and PREFER using arcade controls for newer games, it makes them feel like a total arcade games. It just gives them an authenticity that playing with a controller lacks imo. To put it bluntly, playing with controllers makes it feel like a toy, while arcade controls makes it feel more "adult" imo. Now YES games like Halo and other first person shooters are NOT ideal for arcade controls, but they can still be done (as long as you can go into dual joystick mode). But those games are more of the minority for me anyways, I was playing Gauntlet Dark Legacy (OG Xbox), Diablo 3 (Switch) and NBA 2k18 (Switch) and LOVING every minute of it. I cant wait to get the new Mortal Kombat game!!! I'm not going to blow smoke up your butt, some games like NBA 2K are HARDER with arcade controls (I mean actual game difficulty), but that doesnt bother me, I actually am enjoying the new challenge. Plus the controls make it feel like I'm playing a new NBA Jam.

So how am I doing all of this??? Xarcade adapters and a switch box (it's actually really easy.) Now you WILL have to buy quite a few of the xarcade adapters (and they are not cheap), but having EVERYTHING hooked up and ready to go is pretty awesome. As for now, I AM just using a tankstick (I replaced the joysticks with IL Eurostick and cherry microswitches), and am satisfied for now. However I plan on gutting the tankstick and buying 2 more wiring kits from Xarcade because I want to have 4 player options for ALL of these games. I also plan on building a cab to hold everything as well (right now I have a nice setup, dedicated gaming station in our living room), but I want it all in an actual cab. I also have a 360 racing wheel for arcade games and for the actual 360. I'm just waiting on the more money, lol, then I will start phase 2.

I am saying all of this because if you want to run newer systems, and if you HAVE the actual hardware, I feel this is a better route than emulation. I have EVERY game that I have EVER liked at my finger tips, old and NEW. All being played ARCADE style.
ARCADE GAMES RULE!!!

KenToad

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Re: Arcade Cabinet and Console Emulation
« Reply #9 on: March 08, 2019, 11:20:21 am »
I have a pedestal arcade with a couch not far away for console gaming. If I had to pick one set of controls to use, it would be Street fighter 6 button layout for 2 players and a Mayflash USB dongle for connecting up to 4 PS3 controllers via Directinput or 1 controller via Xinput.

I have a ton of USB adapters for original controls, but I don't use them because, if I leave them plugged in, they get randomly reordered every time I reboot the computer. Now, I know that there are ways around this problem, but they take a bunch of setup and configuration.

The Mayflash dongle, on the other hand, allows you to have four PS3 controllers paired up and whichever controller you activate becomes 1st controller, which means that you will never have controller order issues and can have a single configuration for all your emulators. I love the PS3 controllers because they are wireless with excellent battery life and both the D-pad and analog controls work well. They pair quickly and easily, too.

For arcade controls, I would use a keyboard encoder, either an iPac or a keywiz, so that you won't have USB controller order issues.

Osirus23

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Re: Arcade Cabinet and Console Emulation
« Reply #10 on: March 08, 2019, 12:40:22 pm »
If you try to do everything, you will have cr@p. My suggestion is to focus on a small amount of arcade games since you are building an arcade machine. There is arcade counterparts of popular console games. If you must add console games, use a game pad controller. Console games are better experienced from a tv and couch.


This. It's fruitless enough trying to do a "jack of all trades" CP just for a variety of arcade games. Throwing consoles into the mix just creates more of a mess. Those games were designed to use Gamepads and essentially just need Gamepads to play. Save yourself the headache.

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Re: Arcade Cabinet and Console Emulation
« Reply #11 on: March 08, 2019, 12:53:13 pm »
I'm sorry, but I couldn't disagree more. Why do we make these machines? Because WE (the person that wants one, likes them). As such, you should do the machine that makes YOU happy. Who cares what someone else thinks, if YOU like it, that's all that matters. Now if you plan on doing 2, 3, 5 of these cabs, then ok, do a MAME one, racing cab, etc. But most people dont have that luxury, we have to do the most we can with 1 cab, and if that's the case do what YOU want. It wont be easy, you might have to figure things out along the way, but that's fine. Where does it say that everybody needs to have the same machine/cab? I didnt get that memo. If thats the case, then why dont we all just buy the same kit then, with the only difference being artwork and roms?

I'm saying it CAN be done, and it's not as difficult as some folks believe. Yes ok, maybe EVERY game isnt going to play perfectly, but who cares? I'm about to go play some NBA 2K18 on my machine, which is a game that most would say isnt meant to be played like this. But I like, thats all that matters to me.
ARCADE GAMES RULE!!!

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Re: Arcade Cabinet and Console Emulation
« Reply #12 on: March 08, 2019, 02:55:32 pm »
I'm sorry, but I couldn't disagree more. Why do we make these machines? Because WE (the person that wants one, likes them). As such, you should do the machine that makes YOU happy. Who cares what someone else thinks, if YOU like it, that's all that matters. Now if you plan on doing 2, 3, 5 of these cabs, then ok, do a MAME one, racing cab, etc. But most people dont have that luxury, we have to do the most we can with 1 cab, and if that's the case do what YOU want. It wont be easy, you might have to figure things out along the way, but that's fine. Where does it say that everybody needs to have the same machine/cab? I didnt get that memo. If thats the case, then why dont we all just buy the same kit then, with the only difference being artwork and roms?

I'm saying it CAN be done, and it's not as difficult as some folks believe. Yes ok, maybe EVERY game isnt going to play perfectly, but who cares? I'm about to go play some NBA 2K18 on my machine, which is a game that most would say isnt meant to be played like this. But I like, thats all that matters to me.

The problem with this statement is that you believe people without a lot of experience in the hobby actually know what they want.  They certainly think they do, but the lack of experience means that they haven't lived with things long-term to know what is going to get played and what isn't.... what controls work, and which ones don't ect.  In general console games don't get played on an arcade machine for the myriad of reasons people can give you on this forum any day of the week.  It's just like in general at least, everybody starting out thinks they want a cabinet with every control known to man on it, 4 players, ect.  then they live with it for a few years and realize most of that added junk they put on there doesn't get used and it actually hinders the design, ect. 

*edit*
Something I should also point out is that all the new games you are giving as examples of games you want to play are arcade games.  While they technically don't have arcade releases anymore, they have arcade roots and thus have arcade style gameplay.  Those are the exceptions, not the rules.  Hell they sell arcade sticks for most of those games. 
*edit*

This is not a case of people telling anyone what to do, rather it's a case of people who've been there before giving good advice often based on their past mistakes.  You mention people "all buying the same kit"  well we mostly build here, but that aside, if you look at all the good cab designs, aesthetics aside they are going to all be remarkably similar.  Two players with each having a stick and 6-8 buttons, minimal admin buttons on the cp, ect.  That's just because at the end of the day it works.  Hey if you are the exception to the norm that's great, you do you, but please don't jump on people for giving sound advice. 
« Last Edit: March 08, 2019, 03:02:58 pm by Howard_Casto »

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Re: Arcade Cabinet and Console Emulation
« Reply #13 on: March 08, 2019, 05:07:29 pm »
Iím not a fan of console games on an arcade. You will never play all the all killer (see sticky) arcade games. Nintendo has vs and sega has mega play or whatever.

If you want to add controllers, I still have two new usb panel mount and an rj45 will sell. Ended up buying a cab years ago instead of building. Pm me if interested.

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Re: Arcade Cabinet and Console Emulation
« Reply #14 on: March 08, 2019, 05:39:15 pm »
I'm sorry, but I couldn't disagree more. Why do we make these machines? Because WE (the person that wants one, likes them). As such, you should do the machine that makes YOU happy. Who cares what someone else thinks, if YOU like it, that's all that matters. Now if you plan on doing 2, 3, 5 of these cabs, then ok, do a MAME one, racing cab, etc. But most people dont have that luxury, we have to do the most we can with 1 cab, and if that's the case do what YOU want. It wont be easy, you might have to figure things out along the way, but that's fine. Where does it say that everybody needs to have the same machine/cab? I didnt get that memo. If thats the case, then why dont we all just buy the same kit then, with the only difference being artwork and roms?

I'm saying it CAN be done, and it's not as difficult as some folks believe. Yes ok, maybe EVERY game isnt going to play perfectly, but who cares? I'm about to go play some NBA 2K18 on my machine, which is a game that most would say isnt meant to be played like this. But I like, thats all that matters to me.

The problem with this statement is that you believe people without a lot of experience in the hobby actually know what they want.  They certainly think they do, but the lack of experience means that they haven't lived with things long-term to know what is going to get played and what isn't.... what controls work, and which ones don't ect.  In general console games don't get played on an arcade machine for the myriad of reasons people can give you on this forum any day of the week.  It's just like in general at least, everybody starting out thinks they want a cabinet with every control known to man on it, 4 players, ect.  then they live with it for a few years and realize most of that added junk they put on there doesn't get used and it actually hinders the design, ect. 

*edit*
Something I should also point out is that all the new games you are giving as examples of games you want to play are arcade games.  While they technically don't have arcade releases anymore, they have arcade roots and thus have arcade style gameplay.  Those are the exceptions, not the rules.  Hell they sell arcade sticks for most of those games. 
*edit*

This is not a case of people telling anyone what to do, rather it's a case of people who've been there before giving good advice often based on their past mistakes.  You mention people "all buying the same kit"  well we mostly build here, but that aside, if you look at all the good cab designs, aesthetics aside they are going to all be remarkably similar.  Two players with each having a stick and 6-8 buttons, minimal admin buttons on the cp, ect.  That's just because at the end of the day it works.  Hey if you are the exception to the norm that's great, you do you, but please don't jump on people for giving sound advice.

I'm all for everyone giving advice, and I realize many of you have been at this a lot longer than me. My point was to say "there is more than one way to skin a cat". The problem (that I see) within the community is YES many of you HAVE built 20 cabs, and you know what to do and not to do. But sometimes a fresh set of eyes is what leads to new ideas, that's all I'm saying. Having said that, I also FULLY admit most of you would hate my setup, because it does have SO MUCH going on. I just didnt want to be stuck inside a "box" (literally and figuratively) on what my machine is capable of. I also didn't want to spend $5000 to make my dreams come true, so I just had to really think and plan it out (which I haven't even done the big next phase yet, but I'm fully confident it will work, because it works now). Which if I hadn't spent SO MUCH time planning and figuring things out, I could have very easily put myself in that "box." I haven't rushed into anything, which is a mistake im sure many people make, to be honest I've been downloading roms for probably 15 years, so its nothing "new" to me.

Having said all of that, everybody is different, that was my main point. What works for you, might not make me 100% happy tou know, and vice versa. That's why this forum IS great, and finding info IS important. I personally have asked many questions here or had many questions answered by reading threads. That's what helped me decide what I wanted and disnt want. Yes I know this is the build your own arcade controls forum, and as such most here have built instead of buying a kit. I said that because If everyone is going to be suggested to do the same things over and over again, then everyone might as well all buy the same kit. No difference really. That's why different points of view actually help people find what they want. Like me for example, I wanted newer games as well as old. If my machine only had games from 1998 and older on it, my family (and myself) would eventually get a bit bored with it. So I wanted something that can keep us all entertained the most and be able to expand with the times. So I took a serious look at all the options that are out there, and I honestly feel that xarcade PCB and adapters have a HUGE advantage in that department. Now they also have some negatives (that's why I'm gonna end up putting 3 of them in my control panel, in order to have all the buttons I want/need). So Ipacs DO have advantages as well. Which again leads me back to my previous statement, you have to figure out what YOU want, do a TON of research, ask questions, and try to figure out how to accomplish that.
ARCADE GAMES RULE!!!

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Re: Arcade Cabinet and Console Emulation
« Reply #15 on: March 09, 2019, 01:05:23 pm »
Here is the real deal on consoles on arcade cabinets.

Atari 2600 through Genesis works just fine. However all the Atari Consoles and the Nes/Genesis to a lesser extent suffer from a huge portion of their library being arcade ports which you will never play because you have the originals.

Once you get to Super Nes it stops working. The Super Nes adds shoulder buttons, and many games use them directionally. Despite the fact that it is just 6 buttons it never properly translates to a Street Fighter or any other 6 button arcade layout. This is the reason why the Super System (arcade SNES) had gamepads on the actual control panel. Sure, some Snes games are playable, but most of those tend to be RPGS, simulation games and other games you are going to sit down and play for 3 hours on the couch.

After the SNES it gets worse. Playstation adds a second set of shoulder buttons. Nintendo 64 adds analog controls, and has a 10 button layout that might feel great on the controller but is impossible to map to an arcade panel in any way that makes sense. And it all stays equally bad or gets worse from there, depending on which console you are emulating.

So while almost every system still includes games that are playable on arcade controls, you are stuck in the situation where you have the system, but almost every game anyone would ask about doesn't work right. I actually beat Mario64 on an 8-way Streetfighter layout and I wouldn't wish it on my worst enemy.

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Re: Arcade Cabinet and Console Emulation
« Reply #16 on: March 09, 2019, 01:44:36 pm »
I actually beat Mario64 on an 8-way Streetfighter layout and I wouldn't wish it on my worst enemy.

LOL.  Why?  That sounds soooooo painful...

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Re: Arcade Cabinet and Console Emulation
« Reply #17 on: March 09, 2019, 02:16:07 pm »
I'm sorry, but I couldn't disagree more. Why do we make these machines? Because WE (the person that wants one, likes them). As such, you should do the machine that makes YOU happy. Who cares what someone else thinks, if YOU like it, that's all that matters. Now if you plan on doing 2, 3, 5 of these cabs, then ok, do a MAME one, racing cab, etc. But most people dont have that luxury, we have to do the most we can with 1 cab, and if that's the case do what YOU want. It wont be easy, you might have to figure things out along the way, but that's fine. Where does it say that everybody needs to have the same machine/cab? I didnt get that memo. If thats the case, then why dont we all just buy the same kit then, with the only difference being artwork and roms?

I'm saying it CAN be done, and it's not as difficult as some folks believe. Yes ok, maybe EVERY game isnt going to play perfectly, but who cares? I'm about to go play some NBA 2K18 on my machine, which is a game that most would say isnt meant to be played like this. But I like, thats all that matters to me.

The problem with this statement is that you believe people without a lot of experience in the hobby actually know what they want.  They certainly think they do, but the lack of experience means that they haven't lived with things long-term to know what is going to get played and what isn't.... what controls work, and which ones don't ect.  In general console games don't get played on an arcade machine for the myriad of reasons people can give you on this forum any day of the week.  It's just like in general at least, everybody starting out thinks they want a cabinet with every control known to man on it, 4 players, ect.  then they live with it for a few years and realize most of that added junk they put on there doesn't get used and it actually hinders the design, ect. 

*edit*
Something I should also point out is that all the new games you are giving as examples of games you want to play are arcade games.  While they technically don't have arcade releases anymore, they have arcade roots and thus have arcade style gameplay.  Those are the exceptions, not the rules.  Hell they sell arcade sticks for most of those games. 
*edit*

This is not a case of people telling anyone what to do, rather it's a case of people who've been there before giving good advice often based on their past mistakes.  You mention people "all buying the same kit"  well we mostly build here, but that aside, if you look at all the good cab designs, aesthetics aside they are going to all be remarkably similar.  Two players with each having a stick and 6-8 buttons, minimal admin buttons on the cp, ect.  That's just because at the end of the day it works.  Hey if you are the exception to the norm that's great, you do you, but please don't jump on people for giving sound advice.

I'm all for everyone giving advice, and I realize many of you have been at this a lot longer than me. My point was to say "there is more than one way to skin a cat". The problem (that I see) within the community is YES many of you HAVE built 20 cabs, and you know what to do and not to do. But sometimes a fresh set of eyes is what leads to new ideas, that's all I'm saying. Having said that, I also FULLY admit most of you would hate my setup, because it does have SO MUCH going on. I just didnt want to be stuck inside a "box" (literally and figuratively) on what my machine is capable of. I also didn't want to spend $5000 to make my dreams come true, so I just had to really think and plan it out (which I haven't even done the big next phase yet, but I'm fully confident it will work, because it works now). Which if I hadn't spent SO MUCH time planning and figuring things out, I could have very easily put myself in that "box." I haven't rushed into anything, which is a mistake im sure many people make, to be honest I've been downloading roms for probably 15 years, so its nothing "new" to me.

Having said all of that, everybody is different, that was my main point. What works for you, might not make me 100% happy tou know, and vice versa. That's why this forum IS great, and finding info IS important. I personally have asked many questions here or had many questions answered by reading threads. That's what helped me decide what I wanted and disnt want. Yes I know this is the build your own arcade controls forum, and as such most here have built instead of buying a kit. I said that because If everyone is going to be suggested to do the same things over and over again, then everyone might as well all buy the same kit. No difference really. That's why different points of view actually help people find what they want. Like me for example, I wanted newer games as well as old. If my machine only had games from 1998 and older on it, my family (and myself) would eventually get a bit bored with it. So I wanted something that can keep us all entertained the most and be able to expand with the times. So I took a serious look at all the options that are out there, and I honestly feel that xarcade PCB and adapters have a HUGE advantage in that department. Now they also have some negatives (that's why I'm gonna end up putting 3 of them in my control panel, in order to have all the buttons I want/need). So Ipacs DO have advantages as well. Which again leads me back to my previous statement, you have to figure out what YOU want, do a TON of research, ask questions, and try to figure out how to accomplish that.

Great post MJ.

People are sharing their journeys, just have you have shared yours. Many of us started with the same desire to do as much as possible with a single machine, and many of us settle somewhere between a machine that can do everything and the real deal dedicated machines. Since we have seen a majority of folks land on mame machines with authentic controls, that's the advice that is generally given. The intent is to save new members time and money. By all means, you build what works for you. You could definitely end up on a setup that looks like yours, and you aren't wrong, you are just an outlier.

By the way, I love this conversation. It comes up from time to time. Some people are very passionate about their opinion.

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Re: Arcade Cabinet and Console Emulation
« Reply #18 on: March 09, 2019, 03:30:14 pm »
The N64 is just a pain NO MATTER if you go with arcade controls or a controller. The ONLY way to simulate those games properly is with an actual N64 controller. Anything else requires a compromise. The same is true for most systems from SNES to present day, but some translate better than others. From my experience N64 is the worse, anyway you go.

As for me, I actually started out with PC USB playstation clone controller, then moved to 360 controllers with the wireless connection. That's why I'm kinda the opposite of many, I had NOTHING but controllers for 10 plus years, so I'm well aware of the advantages and disadvantages they have. While I've only had arcade controls for a few months, so I'm enjoying that "new hotness" of them.

Having said all of that, I feel compromises have to be made anyway you go. If you go the controller route (or mix them in with arcade controls), it's going to take away from the experience imo. Why? Like I said earlier, the games WILL play different on a different controller. NES games play TERRIBLY on a 360 controller, they lag like crazy. You WILL get more responsive movements with arcade controls as opposed to controllers. SNES, Genesis and Playstation all play fine with a 360 controller, but it "feels" somewhat wrong imo. Even more so than playing with arcade controls, but that might just be me. As a general rule though, I would argue the controls are a HUGE part of the actual play experience, more so than most people realize. So would you rather play SNES games on a 360 or PS3 controller or with arcade controls? It's going to be different either way, I suppose that's a personal choice. As I said earlier, N64 will be garbage either way (the layout of that controller was just so different), you cant really remedy it.

Having said all of this, my wireless 360 adapter is still hooked up to my PC, so I COULD bring back controllers if I chose to, but to be honest I probably wont (I also use it to connect my 360 racing wheel to my PC). All of the systems that run off of my PC N64, PSX and older I'm ok using arcade controls exclusively for. Yes, PSX does play worse with arcade controls as opposed to controllers (and perhaps I'll reconsider this going foreward). But beyond those two, the rest play MUCH better with arcade controls imo. As for my newer systems like OG Xbox, 360, switch, and Gamecube? I will give my players the choice. My wife, daughter, and myself were playing Diablo 3 on the switch the other day and my wife and I were using arcade controls and my daughter was using a controller. I dont see the harm in being flexible there (it's as simple change).
« Last Edit: March 09, 2019, 03:32:15 pm by MikeyJ122 »
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Re: Arcade Cabinet and Console Emulation
« Reply #19 on: March 10, 2019, 03:57:00 pm »
Wow thanks guys great advice! I can really see how a control panel can get totally out of hand. After digesting the info I think I can narrow it down to 3 "nostalgia" based systems that I would be playing on my arcade cabinet. That would be Arcade/Mame, Commodore 64 and Amiga (ignoring those longer term rpg adventure games that come with those later systems, which would be a waste of time on a cabinet)

Would I be correct in assuming that a 4way/8way stick and buttons would have me covered? Pretty sure it will, but wondering if anyone might have had a similar setup? Also are there 4 player control panel designs on this site that you can download and use to build your own? I can't find them for some reason.

Thank you to everyone that has helped with this!

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Re: Arcade Cabinet and Console Emulation
« Reply #20 on: March 10, 2019, 08:04:27 pm »
Only build 4 player if you have 3 or more kids.

Although even with that said. A moderately sized 2 player horizontal cabinet next to a moderately sized 2 player vertical cabinet is better than a big old 4-player cabinet in almost every way.
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Re: Arcade Cabinet and Console Emulation
« Reply #21 on: March 10, 2019, 08:48:54 pm »
Only build 4 player if you have 3 or more kids.

Although even with that said. A moderately sized 2 player horizontal cabinet next to a moderately sized 2 player vertical cabinet is better than a big old 4-player cabinet in almost every way.

May I ask why you feel 2 player is better than 4?
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Re: Arcade Cabinet and Console Emulation
« Reply #22 on: March 10, 2019, 10:14:09 pm »
Only build 4 player if you have 3 or more kids.

Although even with that said. A moderately sized 2 player horizontal cabinet next to a moderately sized 2 player vertical cabinet is better than a big old 4-player cabinet in almost every way.

May I ask why you feel 2 player is better than 4?

A pair of 2 player cabinets, one horizontal and one vertical is vastly superior to a 4 player cabinet, I guess I have to explain.

#1. You can run two different games at once.
#2. You can easily get monitors in the actual correct aspect ratio for 2 player cabinets. 4 player cabs are generally stuck with widescreen monitors playing games that are not widescreen. And really, I don't know how much I can stress this, it doesn't matter what your build quality is, how much you spent, or how many games it can play, if your monitor isn't 4:3 ratio the 90 percent of the arcade collecting community, and a huge chunk of the Mame building community is laughing at it.

#3. Players on the twin 2-player cabs are not limited to a library of 60 games, 50 of which are bad, like the players on the 4 player cabinet.
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Re: Arcade Cabinet and Console Emulation
« Reply #23 on: March 11, 2019, 01:33:54 pm »
#4 - you will actually have 4 people playing at the same time 1 or 2 times per year MAX. 

#5 - Most of the 4P games are all the same game (TMNT, X-Men, Simpsons, etc.) and they all have 2P variants and more importantly, they are mostly terrible.  Nostalgia is a powerful drug.  Sunset Riders, Gauntlet and...?  I'm sure there are others but I can't think of them off the top of my head.

#6 - 4P cabinets are gigantic monstrosities with ridiculous looking CPs bolted on the front (IMO, of course)

I've seen a few nice looking 4P cabinets around here but they are few and far between and this goes straight into the category of "I want to play the most games whether my cabinet is actually functional or not".

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Re: Arcade Cabinet and Console Emulation
« Reply #24 on: March 11, 2019, 01:41:12 pm »
After digesting the info I think I can narrow it down to 3 "nostalgia" based systems that I would be playing on my arcade cabinet. That would be Arcade/Mame, Commodore 64 and Amiga (ignoring those longer term rpg adventure games that come with those later systems, which would be a waste of time on a cabinet)

Would I be correct in assuming that a 4way/8way stick and buttons would have me covered?

Since the C64 and the Amiga both are computers, you will need a wireless keyboard for using all the keys that those games require as most of the games are started with a keypress (F1, for example).
                  

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Re: Arcade Cabinet and Console Emulation
« Reply #25 on: March 11, 2019, 05:30:20 pm »
Yeah konami made 5-10 good 4 player games as did Capcom and that's about it.  You might be able to find a handful of console games to go with that as well as a handful of pc homebrew running on the beats of rage engine.  Also they are almost all beat-em-ups.... pretty much every one.  So if you don't like that genre....

Just my opinion, but if you like those games then make a dedicated cabinet for them in addition to your main cab.  If you try to tack on player 3 and 4 to a standard 2 player, 6-8 buttons per player cab you'll end up with an aircraft carrier for a control panel.  Most of the 4p games don't require a particularly powerful pc either, so you can build a dedicated machine fairly cheap if later on you decide you really like those games.

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Re: Arcade Cabinet and Console Emulation
« Reply #26 on: March 11, 2019, 08:41:54 pm »
After digesting the info I think I can narrow it down to 3 "nostalgia" based systems that I would be playing on my arcade cabinet. That would be Arcade/Mame, Commodore 64 and Amiga (ignoring those longer term rpg adventure games that come with those later systems, which would be a waste of time on a cabinet)

Would I be correct in assuming that a 4way/8way stick and buttons would have me covered?

Since the C64 and the Amiga both are computers, you will need a wireless keyboard for using all the keys that those games require as most of the games are started with a keypress (F1, for example).
Autohotkey might be able to take care of that, or a front-end's per-game/per-emulator key remapping, or maybe even emulator key mapping. I wouldn't go straight to "wireless keyboard". That said, I run an Amiga emulator, FS-UAE, and while it's one of those emulators that I didn't get to work with AHK and I couldn't remap the joystick fire button (I'm pretty sure there is no such option), if you are going to use game controllers, or use an encoder that shows up as a gamepad, then you wouldn't need anything more for this particular emulator. I believe my PC-9800 emulator works fine with a standard keyboard-encoder control panel.

As far as console games keeping you from playing the top arcade games, that's only true if you let it be true, and it's no more true than the reverse: Don't let arcade snobbishness keep away from quality console games. I believe everybody's goal is to get the most enjoyment out of their cabinet. If knowing that a game is a console game lessens your enjoyment, then by all means, stay away from console games. But if you don't have such a mental block, then don't limit your options for absolutely no good reason. There's some console games on my cabinet which are more enjoyable for me than some games on the All-Killer/No-Filler lists. Even if you use a guide like the AK/NF lists, you're not going to agree with everything on it. Experiment and see what works for you.


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Re: Arcade Cabinet and Console Emulation
« Reply #27 on: March 11, 2019, 11:40:36 pm »
Iím not a fan of console games on an arcade. You will never play all the all killer (see sticky) arcade games. Nintendo has vs and sega has mega play or whatever.

If you want to add controllers, I still have two new usb panel mount and an rj45 will sell. Ended up buying a cab years ago instead of building. Pm me if interested.

me personally I feel any system with two buttons will work in a cabinet like the two you mentioned.
However most of those games on those systems were arcade ports so why not just play the originals under mame?
castlevania on NES works pretty good with a joystick.
Legend of Zelda doesn't.

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Re: Arcade Cabinet and Console Emulation
« Reply #28 on: March 11, 2019, 11:51:36 pm »

castlevania on NES works pretty good with a joystick.
Legend of Zelda doesn't.

I play Zelda often and heavily with Nintendo's terrible little 8-way gearshift Playchoice joystick. It took a while, but eventually it was actually easier than the gamepad.  I have done no swords, no rings to Ganon on Playchoice.
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Re: Arcade Cabinet and Console Emulation
« Reply #29 on: March 12, 2019, 05:43:44 am »
Since the C64 and the Amiga both are computers, you will need a wireless keyboard for using all the keys that those games require as most of the games are started with a keypress (F1, for example).

I have made a keyboard settings file for games that map my control panel to the right key. The example 'F1' to start, is remapped to '1' on my arcade cabinet for the games that require it.
If you're using VICE for the C64; this page is an invaluable resource: C64 matrix keyboard layout - you'll need this to find the right keyboard code.
Similar for (Win)UAE you can make settings files per game. For example in "Turrican II" I have mapped the spacebar ('smartbomb' function) to the 2nd action button on the control panel.

In general, if the game you plan to emulate uses limited number of buttons; it is playable. On my cabinet I have 6 buttons per player, plus 'start'- this makes "NBA Street 2" and "Mario Charged Soccer" on the gamecube perfectly playable.

For other games with complex controls ("SSX Tricky" on PS2) I have a wireless 360 controller stored near the cabinet. My frontend 'hides' games that require a controller unless the controlled is connected.
I would recommend the X360 wireless controllers as addition so the cabinet keeps the 'clean' look and feel, while still alows for some games you like to be played.

Another thing I learned: just configure the games you actually like to play. A frontend with gazillion games is simply not worth it. Pick the games you like and configure these to maximum comfort.
« Last Edit: March 12, 2019, 05:45:22 am by Felsir »

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Re: Arcade Cabinet and Console Emulation
« Reply #30 on: March 12, 2019, 01:57:50 pm »
Can I ask what type of joysticks you are using for that cabinet Felsir? (For nba jam/charge soccer) - an 8 way or do you have an analogue stick for those?
« Last Edit: March 12, 2019, 02:45:49 pm by DaddyJ »

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Re: Arcade Cabinet and Console Emulation
« Reply #31 on: March 12, 2019, 04:39:01 pm »
Can I ask what type of joysticks you are using for that cabinet Felsir? (For nba jam/charge soccer) - an 8 way or do you have an analogue stick for those?
I use 8-way joysticks in my cabinet.  The main reason to use the 8-way joysticks, is because I had two servosticks from my previous cabinet. The ultrastick looked nice, but without the option to try this first I decided to keep my current joysticks. I'm quite happy with how my cabinet plays.

I tend to test the games for a few sessions straight from the emulator before I decide to add them to my frontend or not. I rather have games that feel comfortable to play with my setup than to try to shoehorn games in.  Some games didn't work with the digital joystick, some simply required more buttons.

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Re: Arcade Cabinet and Console Emulation
« Reply #32 on: March 22, 2019, 07:35:04 am »
There are some console games I prefer over arcade.
Bump and jump
Paper boy
Klax
Marble madness
I am on my android TV box at the moment in my kitchen . pain to cut and past links.
Wife time right now. When I get to my PC I will have more to say on this topic.

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Re: Arcade Cabinet and Console Emulation
« Reply #33 on: March 22, 2019, 09:21:12 am »
top 50 nes for arcade
top 50 dreamcast for arcade   
top 50 genesis for arcade   
top 30 wii for arcade   
top 30 saturn for arcade   
top 50 PS2 for arcade 
top 50 SNES for arcade 
top 50 PS1 for arcade 


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Re: Arcade Cabinet and Console Emulation
« Reply #34 on: March 25, 2019, 07:32:12 pm »
Some pretty great ports started with ColecoVision's and the Coco's Donkey Kong. Especially the latter is close to the original. Despite the novelty, I play the originals.


me personally I feel any system with two buttons will work in a cabinet like the two you mentioned.

Games with three buttons were emerging by the mid/-late 80s.