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Author Topic: AEW control panel for new project  (Read 3158 times)

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retrojvc

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AEW control panel for new project
« on: October 12, 2021, 11:11:49 pm »
Hi all, I'm new to the forum (though have been stalking forever). I've built three cabs previously and for all of those I did a mixture of paint and generic vinyl artwork in order to finish the projects. For my next project, I'm going all out, trying to make my ultimate arcade. The theme for the arcade is going to be AEW, All Elite Wrestling, which I am a fan of. I'm in the process of collecting parts right now, so I have time to work on the artwork. By no means am I an expert at Photoshop, but I have some experience with it and so I have been working on the control panel. Things that I plan to incorporate in this panel:

2 Servostiks from Ultimarc.
2 J-stiks for players 3 & 4.
1 RGB trackball from Ultimarc.
1 flight stick.
2 Spinners (yes, 2 spinners... I might be overdoing it as I know there aren't many multiple player games that use this peripheral, but I'm thinking maybe for paddle games for Atari 2600? Honestly, I ordered the spinners before I started researching how many 2-player spinner games out there actually exist)
4 Cup holders
1 7-way HDMI switcher (I'm planning on adding multiple modern-retro consoles that I'll be able to play on the arcade cabinet)
I'm also intending to have a separate steering wheel that I'll move into place when I want to play racing games, similar to what Daniel Spies did on his Tron build on Youtube, if anyone has seen that. So, that's why there's kind of a gap inbetween players 1 and 2.

I know that's a lot, but it's a large control panel. 48" x 23". Part of what I'm going for with this is something that stands out. I tend to like the bigger arcades, and only intend to have one inside of my house.

For the artwork, I'm wanting opinions from others whether it is "too much" or "too busy" in terms of the graphics. I've also included the AEW logo so you can see where I'm getting all of these colors from. I went with a splatter effect for the colors, because I wasn't sure how to duplicate that powder/smoke look that AEW often uses. Anyway, just looking to see what others think and hopefully I don't get flamed and told what a butthead I am for making such an oversized cabinet!
« Last Edit: October 13, 2021, 09:16:23 am by retrojvc »

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Re: AEW control panel for new project
« Reply #1 on: October 13, 2021, 12:59:48 am »
1. The game list should be one of the first things in your design process.
- For an example of the design process, see the "What type of build meets my needs?" entry in the FAQ.
http://wiki.arcadecontrols.com/index.php/FAQ#What_type_of_build_meets_my_needs.3F

2. Your buttons are curved the wrong direction and the joysticks are way off center vertically relative to the buttons.   :banghead:
- Smiley button arrangements tend to give players frowny faces, but frowny button arrangements tend to give players smiley faces.   :lol



3. Is that a tight cluster of 5 admin buttons top/center?
- You might want more space so you don't accidently hit the wrong button.  i.e. Exit instead of Pause.

4. Positioning of the spinners and trackball . . . might not be ideal.
- Consider moving them closer to the front of the panel.

5. You might want to make a hardboard mockup or two to check ergonomics of the entire layout before you commit to the final design.   ;)
- First make your game list, then confirm that your controls support those games, then arrange the controls until the layout is good, then worry about the artwork last.


Scott
« Last Edit: October 13, 2021, 01:11:45 am by PL1 »

retrojvc

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Re: AEW control panel for new project
« Reply #2 on: October 13, 2021, 01:35:14 am »
1. The game list should be one of the first things in your design process.
- For an example of the design process, see the "What type of build meets my needs?" entry in the FAQ.
http://wiki.arcadecontrols.com/index.php/FAQ#What_type_of_build_meets_my_needs.3F

2. Your buttons are curved the wrong direction and the joysticks are way off center vertically relative to the buttons.   :banghead:
- Smiley button arrangements tend to give players frowny faces, but frowny button arrangements tend to give players smiley faces.   :lol



3. Is that a tight cluster of 5 admin buttons top/center?
- You might want more space so you don't accidently hit the wrong button.  i.e. Exit instead of Pause.

4. Positioning of the spinners . . . might not be ideal.

5. You might want to make a hardboard mockup or two to check ergonomics of the entire layout before you commit to the final design.   😉
- First make your game list, then confirm that your controls support those games, then arrange the controls until the layout is good, then worry about the artwork last.


Scott
1. I have a BigBox set up that Iíve been working on the past couple of years. Have a solid gaming PC that I recently upgraded from, so that will be running it. The BigBox build has a lot of everything, but honestly, what will I be playing the most? Beat-em-ups, probably! A lot of the extra stuff tends to be lagniappe and for visitors. I keep going back and forth about deleting the second spinner for this reason, because I know it probably wonít be used.
2. Holy ---steaming pile of meadow muffin---, youíre right. You know, I never did the frowny face on any of my other machines, I donít know why I moved those pixels down instead of up. In the past Iíve done the control sticks slightly above the buttons. I donít know where I got it from but I guess I pictured that as being right. Iíll adjust it to be even vertically. Anything to make this feel the most comfortable that it can be.
3. It is a tight cluster of admin buttons. That idea has never crossed my mind that someone might hit exit accidentally. Iíve had similar issues in the past on a raspberry pi systen where coin + start exited the game and people would accidentally exit games all the time. Iíll correct this as well.
4. Might not be ideal? Do you think people might run their hand into it while reaching for the menu button maybe?
5. Thatís a good idea, about getting a feel for the ergonomics. Iíll have to find one big piece of cardboard!

Thankfully, I have lots of time ahead of me on this project. Iíll be collecting parts for the next 3 months anyway. Sure, artwork is the least of things, in some regards, but it helps me visualize things as I go. Especially for the control panel. Using rulers and notes in photoshop I can line things up knowing their measurements and can see what Iíll actually be able to get away with.
« Last Edit: October 13, 2021, 01:37:17 am by retrojvc »

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Re: AEW control panel for new project
« Reply #3 on: October 13, 2021, 06:14:21 am »
In the past Iíve done the control sticks slightly above the buttons. I donít know where I got it from but I guess I pictured that as being right. Iíll adjust it to be even vertically. Anything to make this feel the most comfortable that it can be.
Slagcoin printable layout templates FTW.
- Curved and "straight six" are popular choices so you'll probably want to try mockups of both.
- The most important question is:  In a side-by-side, hands-on comparison which layout do you prefer?
http://slagcoin.com/joystick/layout.html

4. Might not be ideal? Do you think people might run their hand into it while reaching for the menu button maybe?
The spinners are so close to the Coin and Start buttons, that you could easily press the buttons by accident or jam your fingers during a vigorous game of Tempest.

Also, you're having to reach a long distance so you arm will get tired and your back will get sore.

5. Thatís a good idea, about getting a feel for the ergonomics. Iíll have to find one big piece of cardboard!
Given the size of your control panel, some 1/8" or 3/16" hardboard is probably a better choice than cardboard that bends easily on the corrugation lines.

Hardboard won't stand up to gameplay, but is good enough (and cheap) for ergonomic layout tests.

https://www.menards.com/main/building-materials/panel-products/handi-panels/2-x-4-hardboard-handi-panel/1291119/p-1444431322592.htm

https://www.homedepot.com/p/1-8-in-x-2-ft-x-4-ft-Tempered-Hardboard-Actual-0-115-in-x-23-75-in-x-47-75-in-109112/202585358


Scott

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Re: AEW control panel for new project
« Reply #4 on: October 13, 2021, 06:36:33 am »
No matter how much good information is posted, people keep coming up with a dumb panel that is way to big and is still somehow too crowded.

What the ---fudgesicle--- is wrong with people?

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Re: AEW control panel for new project
« Reply #5 on: October 13, 2021, 09:29:37 am »
CP cocks alert :laugh2:  Please rethink your joystick placement.

Check out my Donkey Kong Arcade Frontend at https://github.com/10yard/dkafe#readme

retrojvc

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Re: AEW control panel for new project
« Reply #6 on: October 13, 2021, 10:30:16 am »
The spinners are so close to the Coin and Start buttons, that you could easily press the buttons by accident or jam your fingers during a vigorous game of Tempest.

Also, you're having to reach a long distance so you arm will get tired and your back will get sore.
Thatís what I thought you were getting at. As I rethink the admin buttons Iíll keep that in mind. Iíll also think of a way to tighten things up a bit so youíre not leaning over to reach anything for an extended period of time.

Given the size of your control panel, some 1/8" or 3/16" hardboard is probably a better choice than cardboard that bends easily on the corrugation lines.

Hardboard won't stand up to gameplay, but is good enough (and cheap) for ergonomic layout tests.

https://www.menards.com/main/building-materials/panel-products/handi-panels/2-x-4-hardboard-handi-panel/1291119/p-1444431322592.htm

https://www.homedepot.com/p/1-8-in-x-2-ft-x-4-ft-Tempered-Hardboard-Actual-0-115-in-x-23-75-in-x-47-75-in-109112/202585358


Scott
Will add it to my Home Depot shopping list! Thanks again for all of your help, and I shot you a PM as well.