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Topic: Portable console (Read 14 times) previous topic - next topic


Hi R0d0t,

Are you still developing this console ?

I was planning to build an LED Game over the christmas holidays, something like the old grandstand games I used to play as a kid based on LED Matix, but for the cost of a few to colour matrix I can get 1.8 or 2.2 inch TFT Displays.

What was your experience with these, could you for example run something with a large number of separately animated sprites like a galaxians clone running with reasonable refresh ?


Duane B



I take it you've seen the Uzebox, right?

Nop, but I was aware of Gameduino : http://excamera.com/sphinx/gameduino/ (amost the same thing)

I should think with a Due you could way more than that!

I prefer to do something really small (40*75*15mm), cheap (<25$ batteries included), and Do It Yourselfable (Nothing below 0805 for the smd). The arduino due ALONE costs about 50$ and is huge (even without stacking a shield)... what do you thing about that ? If I want more power, I'll go develop games on android :P

Are you still developing this console ?

I've been working on other projects these times (3D printer, 64*64 led matrix...) but I'm back. I started drawing schematics this morning (and learn how to use the software yesterday night hehe). The inactivity is although because I trusted a guy who said he was interested in drawing electronics... two months later, he has done nothing, so I'm back as a lone wolf, as ever ;)

What was your experience with these, could you for example run something with a large number of separately animated sprites like a galaxians clone running with reasonable refresh ?

No, you can't. The screen's communication is based on SPI, so it's veeery slow (but convenient). On my snake game for exemple, I don't refresh the whole screen at each frame : I only rease few pixels of the tail and draw few new pixels on the head. Don't even think about scrolling, animated sprite (or just a few) or overlay text. Moreover sprites uses a lot of RAM. I think you should try a 3.2" screen (240*320px) on 8 or 16 bits parallel bus. But be carefull, they run @3.3V. You can although overclock you arduino to 20mhz instead of 16mhz ;) I hope this helps :)


Dec 08, 2012, 02:28 pm Last Edit: Dec 08, 2012, 02:30 pm by DuaneB Reason: 1
Hi R0d0t,

Thanks for the update - too bad I clicked buy already, will still find a use for the screen though.

I will take a look at the gameduino and also, if your back at this, do you have an alternative screen in mind ? can't guarantee that I will contribute anything, but happy to plod along in parallel, after all, the idea of these projects is that people will build them.

EDIT: Looked at the gameduino - too expensive.

Duane B


Rodot, I know from your blog that you believe the Esplora may have stole your thunder.  I'm not affiliated with them so I don't know their thoughts but I bought an Esplora to play with and hack.

I was looking at the pins used and documented the "display header".  I used it for an XBee then realized it was a near fit for the Adafruit 1.8" TFT display.

So today I put the display on then looked for cool games for such hardware.  I found your platform jumping game which I thought was way cool.

I ported the code to work on Esplora.  The pins must be mapped for the Esplora hardware and a couple of Esplora specific function calls but otherwise it was pretty compatible.

The code is at https://github.com/TheKitty/EsploraApps

I hope to post a blog post on this (fully crediting your work as I did in the code), is that ok??


I was designing the second version of my "gameboy", exactly like the esplora (but thinner, with screen and LiPo included). So I really feel they stole me the idea, and I canceled this project as explained here http://r0d0t.tumblr.com/post/38157892418.

@TheKitty : I'm glad you used my code, you can put it on your blog if you put a link to the original project http://r0d0t.tumblr.com/post/29641975900 thank you :)
But I don't think I'll post the code of the snake game, because it's very, very messy. What do you want to know about it ?

@DuaneB : 3.2" screens with 8 or 16 bit parallel communication should be fine for gaming. But check that there is an arduino lib before.

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