Picture of FPS arcade style gun

this is my instructable of how to make an arcade style gun for FPS pc games.

I often play computer games through the home theater setup (it just seems more fun louder and bigger). and i thought it would be pretty cool if i could play games like HL2 and Deus Ex through an arcade style gun.

The outlines for the gun are:
+ it must be able to control both the walking and looking of the game (keyboard & mouse)
+ must have many other functional keys (space enter pause ect..)
+ relatively accurate
+ decent range from computer
+ cheap and simple

Stuff you will need:
+ an old (working) usb keyboard & mouse
+ various buttons, toggle switches and LED's (infrared) of your choice
+ an old web cam (working)
+ long cable containing 8 or more wires (sata will do)
+ various materials (wood, plastic,metal ect)

Step 1: Planning.

Picture of planning.
to have various keys on the gun i plan to take apart a keyboard and map out the connections for later use. the walking function will be controlled by the thumb using a small mounded joystick controlling the W,S,A and D keys. other keys will be accessible through button panels and toggle switches mounted around the gun.

as far as clicking scrolling and more clicking I will once again be taking apart an old usb computer mouse and wiring it to various switches around the gun. most of the mouse functions will be situated around the trigger finger and the trigger will of-course be a left click.

but the mouse has another function in FPS games, and that is to look around. and since the gun will be moving through the air there isn't many physical ways to interface the movement of the "gun" with the computer. I considered using an accelerometer mouse but that all gets a little complicated and expensive. so instead I chose to use my old web cam and some software (robo realm) to create a mouse like function by tracking an LED.

here are some photos of sketches and ideas i had before building the gun.
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comsa425 years ago
PLEASE!!!!!! I cant solder to the keyboard chip. I think its made from graphite.

It's funny looking at this four years from then. The pins weren't dirty or made from graphite. All you need is a little bit of flux and you are good to go :)

rustlabs (author)  comsa425 years ago
hey dude, have you tried scratching the pins on the "chip" to get a better connection? otherwise maby try an alternative keyboard.
yea ive tried, the pins are just too close to solder to
Newer keyboards have the chip wired directly to the board and covered in epoxy. Older ones have old fashioned DIP chips or surface mounted chips, so try this:
1. Go to eBay/yard sales/anywhere else that has old PC stuff
2. Find some REALLY old USB keyboards (like ones with plastic that USED to be white, with Win keys that have the old Windows logo on them).
3. Buy the oldest one you can find. (Many keyboards have a manufacture date stamped on them)
4. Try using the one you just bought.
Good Idear. I use the Wii Controllor as guided Directioanl mouse. and i Wired part of the keyboard into the handle of the pound store Wii lightgun holder.
Same as what you have here. except you only need a few things and its easyer than what you have done for people less able to use there hands for soldering :)
congratz :)
To add.
link this one.. except no LCD Display.. :P
can you post a video using that?

if you know how to build a computer u can build it half price :)
mikuru6 years ago
thats all good but what do i do after i get the program how do i set it up?
mikuru6 years ago
where abouts do i put the LED on the gun?
mikuru6 years ago
where the hec do i put the LED on the gun or where?
Metallica7 years ago
This is pretty cool. But why, at the end, do you say "stupid expensive console?" An Xbox 360 costs much less than a decent computer that will run modern games...
gee...i wonder why.. maybe it is because a pc is superior to consoles?
Well sure, you may be able to run higher-end games on a high-end PC, but it will cost 2x what a next-gen console costs. Consoles are cheap is what I was saying.
take away someones console, and they can't play games. take away their pc, they can't play games, view pics, go on the internet, view files and dcuments, get their e-mail, pay bills, file tax stuff, etc.
you can do that all on a ps3 lol
Since when can you pay bills on a PS3?
Nearly every bank provides a web-based interface for account access, bill paying, etc... all you need is a web browser, and IIRC, the PS3 has one.
after you stuff Linux on it...
Very true, Q.
novint has the orange box bundle on sale-preorder only!!! is the novint falcon vr controller, three games from novint, the pistol grip for the falcon, and the orange box bundle!!! for $189. yet another reason why a pc is superior- virtual reality interfaces!!!!!!!
kagenin Nyanman6 years ago
The Novint Falcon is a Haptic device, not a VR device. But it is still pretty damn cool, and there really isn't anything like it for consoles.
rustlabs (author)  Metallica7 years ago
fixed :P
Madrias3576 years ago
Half tempted to make my own as well. I've got an old wireless mouse and play a few games I'd like to use a gun for.
antivenom6 years ago
This is a excellent instructable and I'm really considering making my own, and possibly making more of a casing for it, to give it a more realisic feel, or I might see if I can fit the electronics into an arcade gun casing. Depends if I can get my hands on a large enough gun casing.
jackm71277 years ago
very cool, i only have a few questions #1 could this thing work for an xbox 360? #2 where is the keyboard? #3 are there more detailed instructions? ...yeah thats it
You couldn't do this with an Xbox 360, unfortunately.
Very impressive.
tudgeanator6 years ago
I dont understand the keyboard bit.How do i connect outboard switches to the keybaord plastic layers?
rustlabs (author)  tudgeanator6 years ago
the plastic layers connect to a circuit like this, usually in the right hand corner of the keyboard, then you simply solder directly to it.
Directly to the PCB? Or to the plastic bits? Cos it doesn't look like there are enough connections on the PCB... Thnx for the quick reply
rustlabs (author)  tudgeanator6 years ago
you need to keep the plastic connected to the PCB there should be two layers of plastic, sometimes 3. and the overlap connecting bits of the circuit. you need to map what keys you want (wasd, ect) and trace their connections back to the PCB using a marker so you don't get lost, it sounds complicated but its pretty simple.
K cheers,i sortof understand. I'm sure it will all become clear when i hack open an old keyboard. Thanks
hock3ydud37 years ago
thats cool, im thinking about trying something like this, only a two handed design (think something like a wii/nunchuck controller) so that i can skip the whole webcam thing
wiimotes have bluetooth. you can control an NXT with them.
they do? *evil laugh*
not that the NXT could cause damage, and if it really did go crazy and try to take over the world, wait. the batteries will die eventually.
no they wouldnt, it would repeat the matrix and have unlimited battery power
Nyanman Nyanman7 years ago
thats why there are rechargeables. *BWA HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAH*
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