The Control Panel

The control panel features 2 joysticks with 6 buttons each, a trackball with 2 buttons, a spinner, player1 start, player2 start, esc, pause, and 2 extra buttons on the control panel. The top is coated with green contact paper. The extra buttons are currently mapped to credit1 & credit 2, even though the coin door is fully functional.


I made templates in M$ Word for the control panel which I used to help determine the size of the control panel and placement of the controls.  One has the joystick & button holes, and the other has the Happ 3" trackball faceplate.  They were all done as Word drawing objects so you can move the buttons around and experiment with different layouts if you have word.  The templates are now on the downloads page, or you can click here.  They printed perfectly to scale, so I taped the player controls templates to the board and drilled my pilot holes right though it.    Then I drilled them out with the appropriate sized bits.

The buttons & joysticks are interfaced with an LP24, and both the spinner & trackball are interfaced through hacked mice. I used a variation of the standard 2x22 matrix.  It also has an Infra-red wireless keyboard that tucks away nicely on top of the cabinet. I had the keyboard already, or I would have bought an RF model.

Here is my button mapping in HTML, laid out to resemble the control panel.

1 Esc 3 M1 M2 4 P 2
Up Trackball (PS2) R
Left Right X V Y D G S W Ctrl
Down Z C N F A Q Entr
Spinner (Serial)

And here is the LP24 matrix:

Up Left Z X C V N Y R D A S Q W Entr Ctrl 1 2 3 4 Esc P
Down Right             F G                 3 4    

I wanted to be able to play just about anything on this control panel, but I didn't want a vast sea of buttons.  I tried to maximize compatibility while having some buttons do double duty.  The 4 primary  action buttons on each side are mapped to letters. Buttons 5 & 6 on player 1 can be used to answer Yes or No to dialogs boxes ("are you sure you want to exit ___ game?"). Ctrl (Player 2, button 6) is needed to launch a game from within arcade@home's screen saver and also comes in handy when you need to get back to the desktop (Ctrl-Esc).  Enter (Player 2, button 5) comes in very handy in windows games, since it's often the only way to select a menu option.  The second 3&4 mapping on row 2 of the matrix is for the coin door.  I may want to reassign the credit buttons on the control panel someday so I made sure I could have them function independently.