Tag Archives: Arduboy

Rewind: 30 projects from 2015 that gamers will love

A look at some gaming-inspired projects that caught our attention over the last 12 months. 


A credit card-sized device that allows you to play, program and share 8-bit games.


A shrunken-down cabinet that lets you relive the golden age of arcade games.

8-Person NES

A system that transforms 8-bit side-scrolling games into a totally immersive multi-player experience.

Tetris MicroCard


An ATmega32U4-powered gadget that puts Tetris right in your wallet.



A hardware anti-cheat solution for online gaming.

MAME Game Machine

A game machine driven by a Cosino Mega 2560 (running the AdvanceMAME) with a 7″ LCD display and an Xbox-compatible joystick.

Grand Theft Auto iPhone App

An Arduino Leonardo, an Ethernet shield and a PC enables your iPhone to be used as a GTA controller.

Auto-Leveling Destiny Robot

A robotic mechanism comprised of a servo motor, an Xbox controller and an Arduino Uno that allows you to level up in Destiny without even lifting a finger.


A creative way to play classic video games on your TV from an overclocked Arduino Pro Mini.


A glove that lets you sense and interact with virtual objects onscreen and in your VR headset.

KADE miniConsole+

An open source gadget that allows you to play all old-school games with their original controllers.


An Arduino-driven band designed to make it feel as though you’re hitting and being struck in VR games.

Bedroom Cockpit

A full-scale Cessna 172 cockpit simulator, complete with everything from pedals that control actual airplane rudders and brakes, to a steering yoke, to an Oculus Rift running Lockheed Martin’s Prepar3D software.

Scrapyard Simulator

An actual dashboard for a truck simulator.

Dashboard Simulator

A real dashboard for your car simulator.

Arduino Game Boy

A super-sized Arduboy.

Tetris on an ARM Cortex-M4 MCU


A game of Tetris on an Atmel | SMART SAM4S MCU.


An Arduino-programmable keychain game.

Super Hexagon

An Arduino Nano attached to a fan blade displays Super Hexagon in a more “circular” format.

Claw Machine

A DIY claw machine that’s faster, fairer and more controllable than anything found in yesterday’s arcades.

Storefront Pong

An interactive storefront game played on a giant 6 x 8 pixel grid display comprised of 18.5” bulbs illuminated by ultra-bright NeoPixel rings.


A fully-interactive bike trainer specifically designed to deliver engaging fitness sessions through VR headsets and external screens.

Doorstop Game

A one-dimensional dungeon crawler game that uses a doorstop spring as its controller and an LED strip as its display.


A motion control ring that enables you to play games and control apps with simple gestures.

Pico Cassettes

An old-school gaming cartridge for your smartphone.

TeleBall BreakOut

A retro-style handheld gaming device.

DIY Game Boy

A portable, 3D-printed console embedded with a Raspberry Pi and Teensy 2.0.

Barebones Console

An extremely low-cost, minimalist gaming console that will take you back to a much blockier 8-bit era.

Arcade-Style Puzzle Box

A vintage, arcade-style puzzle box that resembles the ubiquitous wooden audio equipment of the ‘70s.

UFO Escape Keychain Game

A game of UFO Escape on your keychain? Sure, why not?


An 8-bit instant photo camera masquerading as a toy gun, which consists of an old Game Boy, a camera, a thermal printer and an Arduino.

Play Tetris on this tiny, Arduboy-powered device

Thanks to this awesome little gadget, you can say goodbye to productivity! 

Tetris is arguably one of, if not, the most popular video games of all-time and has been played on pretty much every platform possible, from the NES to graphing calculators to mobile phones. Now there’s another, and much more productivity killing, way to play the iconic game. Introducing the Tetris MicroCard, a fingertip-friendly device that’s no larger than a business card.


If it looks vaguely familiar, that’s because the aptly name Tetris MicroCard is powered by and shares a resemblance to the wildly popular Arduboy — a wallet-sized 8-bit gaming system for Makers. Once again open source, the tweaked gadget is based on an ATmega32U4 and powered by an internal rechargeable battery that can last for roughly six hours. Like the Arduboy, the Tetris MicroCard features a microUSB port that can be used for refueling as well as for uploading your own open source apps.


Although it comes equipped with an officially licensed version of Tetris, the tiny console is also fully programmable with Arduino — meaning you can add other games if you’d like. The Tetris MicroCard boasts an OLED display with six control buttons positioned on both sides, as well as a speaker with a mute function, which will surely come in handy when playing in a meeting, in your cubicle or even in class.


It should be noted, however, that the vertically-oriented device and its screen were specifically designed for optimal Tetris playing, so some of the codes available may not be ideal for the unit’s unique layout. And unlike with its sibling Arduboy, creator Kevin Bates (who we’ve come to know so well) has decided to bypass Kickstarter altogether and make the Tetris MicroCard available for pre-order. With a price tag of $49, it’ll make for a perfect grab bag item, a stocking stuff, or a “just because” purchase! Delivery is expected to get underway sometime this spring.

A first look at Maker Faire Rome 2015

As the saying goes, “When in Rome, do as the Makers do!” 

It seems like yesterday that we were at the New York Hall of Science preparing for what was surely an incredible World Maker Faire 2015. And now just a few weeks later, the Atmel crew has arrived in Rome, all set to kick things off at the Sapienza University campus.


Once again a Silver Sponsor of this year’s show, you’ll find several startups and Makers who’ve successfully demonstrated what it takes to go from “the MakerSpace to the MarketPlace.” In addition to big names like Bosch, those inside the Atmel booth will include:

Acme Systems


Acme Systems designs and manufactures Linux-embedded boards, namely the Arietta G25 system-on-module with an Atmel AT91SAM9G25 at its core. One project in particular that you’ll want to check out is the team’s open source LED panel that interacts with a smartphone over Wi-Fi.



A crowd favorite back at World Maker Faire, Arduboy is an open source, credit card-sized console that lets people play, create and share their favorite 8-bit games.



As seen on Indiegogo, Intoino‘s KITS provide a simple way for young Makers to learn coding and electronics while bringing their connected projects to life.



In case you missed them at Maker Faire Bay Area 20151Sheeld magically transforms your smartphone into one of 40 different reconfigurable Arduino shields.



Cosino is an open source platform comprised of flexible, easy to-use hardware and software components. The team will be showing off their latest projects based on the Cosino (SAM9G35) and Cosino Enigma (SAMA5D3) CPU modules along with their carrier boards and other GNU/Linux embedded systems.



Everyone’s favorite teenage CEO and whiz kid, Quin Etynre will once again be on hand with Qtechknow’s Arduino-compatible board, the Qduino Mini. But that’s not all, you’ll even be able to snap a black and white selfie in his thermal printer photo booth!



Heck, even major brands are tapping into the powers of the Maker Movement! Escaping dangerous dark or smoke-filled structures quickly is crucial for the firefighters who save thousands of lives on a daily basis. Tailored for those situations, Bosch will be demonstrating a prototype of their indoor navigation device that’s built around the mighty Arduino and BNO055.

Rewind: Atmel @ World Maker Faire 2015

Maker Faire New York, Maker Faire New York — a show (and tell) so good we had to say it twice.

Ah, Maker Faire. The only place that can you find everything from a 30-foot-tall, flame-throwing robot and a life-sized game of Mousetrap to a pancake printing machine and a floating head choir that sings when you press their keys.

Over the weekend of September 26th and 27th, tinkerers, modders and hackers of all ages flocked a jam-packed Atmel booth housed inside the always popular Maker Pavilion. There, we showcased a number of gizmos and gadgets that have successfully made its way “From the MakerSpace to the MarketPlace.” Meaning, this particular batch of startups have demonstrated what it takes to bring an idea from mere prototype to full-blown product, many by way of crowdfunding. Among those on display included the Kickstarter sensation and wrist-friendly Keyboardio, the credit-card sized gaming system Arduboy, 14-year-old Quin Etnyre and his Qduino Mini, former Pixar engineer Erin Thompson’s Modulo boards, Microduino’s super LEGO-like modules, and Zippy Robotics’ soon-to-launch Prometheus PCB milling machine. Oh, and who could forget big names like Bosch, Arduino and the one-and-only Massimo Banzi, too?

When it came to projects driven by our mighty AVR and Atmel | SMART MCUs, it didn’t stop at our booth either. In fact, countless others throughout the fairegrounds proudly showed off their embedded creations, with some of them even paying a special visit to our tent like PancakeBot, Zymbit, Dr.Duino and eight-year-old CEO Omkar Govil-Nair with his Arduino-based O Watch, to name just a few. On top of all that, several Atmel team members — Bob Martin, Henrik Flodell, Sander Arts and Artie Beavis — took the World Maker Faire stage to talk prototyping, Arduino, debugging, STEM and how to take your product mainstream.

So with another incredible event in the books, let’s take one last look back before flipping the page to Rome!































A first look at Maker Faire New York 2015

Heading to the New York Hall of Science this weekend? You’ll find some big names inside the Atmel booth.

Are you excited? We sure are! Atmel is getting ready to take center stage at the 6th Annual World Maker Faire in New York City this weekend, September 26th and 27th. And boy, are we in for a treat! This year will surely be yet another amazing event with more than 830 Makers and 85,000 attendees expected to flock the New York Hall of Science. Once again, as a Silversmith Sponsor of the show, we’ll be shining the spotlight on a wide range of AVR and Atmel | SMART powered projects inside our booth.


Our team is currently en route to Flushing Meadows, where you will soon find us setting up our space in Zone 3. (Program guide available here.) Over the two-day span, we will be showcasing a wide range of gizmos and gadgets from DIYers and startups who have successfully taken their idea from the ‘MakerSpace to MarketPlace.’ Among the names you will see:



Found at the heart of the Maker community, Arduino is an open-source electronics platform based on easy-to-use hardware and software.



Arduboy is an open source, credit card-sized device for people to play, create and share their favorite 8-bit games.



Keyboardio‘s Model 01 is an heirloom-grade keyboard for serious typists, which features a beautiful hardwood body, an advanced ergonomic design, and is fully programmable with the Arduino IDE.



Microduino are quarter-sized, stackable building blocks that allow Makers of all ages and skill levels to bring robots, music boxes and countless other projects to life.



Modulo is a set of tiny modular boards that takes the hassle out of building electronics, giving Makers the ability to develop custom electronics for their project without having to design and assemble circuits from scratch.



Quin Etnyre is a 14-year-old Maker, teacher and entrepreneur, who fell in love with Arduino after attending his first Maker Faire at the age of 10. The whiz kid recently successfully funded his Qduino Mini, an Arduino-compatible tiny board with a built-in battery charger and monitor.

Zippy Robotics


Prometheus from Zippy Robotics lets Makers create real circuit board right from their desktop in just minutes.


Bosch Sensotec has developed a prototype indoor navigation device based on Arduino and the BNO055 sensor, which will enable firefighters to quickly escape from dangerous dark or smoke-filled structures.

And that’s not all…

Look who’s talking now!

Don’t miss Atmel’s Henrik Flodell as he explores the ways to Take Your Arduino Prototype to the Next Level on Saturday from 11:00am-11:30am on the MAKE: Electronics stage. He will be immediately followed by the Wizard of Make Bob Martin who will demonstrate how to Stretch Your Arduino Environment to Get the Visibility You Need


On Sunday, Atmel VP of Marketing Sander Arts will hop on the MAKE: Electronics stage at 11:30am to reveal how Makers with an entrepreneurial spirit can Turn Their Prototype Into a Business. Several hours later at 4:00pm, Atmel Head of Social Media Artie Beavis will moderate a lively discussion between Bob Martin, 14-year-old CEO Quin Etnyre, Arduino’s Tom Igoe and Dr. Michael Wang on the ways Arduino Opens New Doors for Educators and Students.


Go behind the scenes!

You don’t have to be a reader of EDN.com to enjoy a unique meet-up hosted by the site’s LEDitor-in-Chief Lee Goldberg, which will taking place on Saturday 10:30am. The VIP walking tour will take you backstage several of the event’s most interesting exhibits, namely Atmel. You’ll also walk away with tons of t-shirts, evaluation kits and lots of other cool swag.

Those wishing to participate are encouraged to meet in front of the rocket-shaped “Forms in Transit” sculpture, located at the traffic circle that’s just beyond the main entrance. The actual tour of the Faire grounds will kick off at 11:00am sharp! With only 25 spots available, reservations are strongly recommended. To RSVP, write Lee at LEDitor@green-electronics.com.

Can’t ‘make’ it to the Faire? Don’t worry!

You can always follow @Atmel live on Twitter for the latest updates, trends and happenings. What’s more, we’ll even be bringing the show to you live via Periscope. Stay tuned!


Playing 8-bit video games on an Arduino-powered Game Boy

One Maker combined the case, buttons and LCD screen from his classic Game Boy with a pair of Arduino.

Earlier this summer, Kevin Bates launched a Kickstarter campaign for his credit card-sized, 8-bit gaming system. For most of us, just one glance at the Arduboy conjured up childhood memories of playing our Game Boys in the backseat of our parents’ car or on the bus en route to school. But what if you could combine the two?


That’s exactly what Daniel O’Shea has attempted to do by converging the case, buttons, LED indicator and screen of his classic Game Boy with a pair of Arduino boards to create an Arduboy-like device on a larger scale. The Maker embedded the same brains as the Arduboy, the ATmega32U4, along with an ATmega328 as a coprocessor to handle the LCD controller.

Aside from that, he used a 2K dual-port RAM chip and an 8-bit flip-flop which together serve as a memory buffer between the Arduino Leonardo and Nano, and the Game Boy’s power PCB to get the negative 20V required by the LCD. At the moment, the entire setup is attached to a breadboard while he sorts out the interface.


“I had a breakout board made for the 21-pin connector which allows the ribbon cable from the Game Boy’s front daughterboard to connect straight into a breadboard for prototyping. And then started out with just the Nano and the daughterboard, working on hooking up all of the LCD’s control signals and getting something (anything!) to show up on the LCD – the awesome research into this by mARC at robotdialogs.com was a great foundation to be able to start from,” O’Shea adds.

Looking ahead, the Maker hopes to drop in a motherboard replacement for the retro-themed gaming system. This next step would include transitioning to a bigger FIFO and an MCU with more RAM, like the ATmega1284P or Teensy. He has already sourced the parts for the power switch, power jack and volume dial, and says that there is ample room for the new electronics on the original footprint.

Interested? Check out the Maker’s entire breakdown of the project on its original page here, and be sure to see it in action below.

Arduboy is a video game-playing business card

Arduboy is a credit card-sized system that lets you play, make and share 8-bit games.

That age-old printed business card sitting in your wallet is so passé. Imagine if instead of simply handing them out, you could play retro games on them as well. Well, that may all soon be a reality thanks to Kevin Bates, who has designed an interactive, credit card-sized device that comes with an OLED display and an array of playable games built right into it.


Arduboy is an open source platform that allows people to play, create and share their favorite games, ranging from attacking aliens to breaking bricks to racing UFOs. Even better, the Arduboy Arcade is entirely free and designed to spark up nostalgia of a more simpler time through its true 8-bit, black-and-white graphics.

If this sounds familiar, that’s because the Maker originally debuted the Arduboy last year as the ultimate business card to show off his electronics skills to potential employers. However, given its incredible response online and throughout the media, Bates decided to quit his job, move to China and is now bringing the mini handheld gaming system to the masses through Kickstarter.


Based on an ATmega32U4, the Arduboy packs a two-channel piezo speaker, six soft-touch tactile buttons, along with an eight-hour rechargeable battery life — which is plenty of juice for daylong gaming on the tradeshow floor. Aside from its circuit board, the uber thin (only 5mm) device boasts a polycarbonate front and a stamped metal back, as well as micro-USB connectivity with a built-in HID profile. While it may be a bit thicker and larger than the original, this makes it much more durable and incredibly pocket-friendly for some discreet use within the classroom or workplace.


What’s more, since it was devised on Arduino software, it’s also an excellent way to learn how to code. Bates points out that Arduboy can be programmed in Arduino IDE, Codebender, GCC and AVRDude. The Maker adds, “Anyone can make games for the Arduboy. Free online tutorials guide you through a step by step process on how to develop your own software! There are already plenty of examples to learn from. Ever wanted to create a level or map for your favorite game, or make your favorite character jump higher? Now is your chance!”

To no surprise (because, well, it’s just that awesome), Arduboy has garnered over $400,000 from nearly 7,000 backers. Subsequently, a majority of its stretch goals have been unlocked including vibrantly colored PCBs and a special edition gold-backed gadget.


Want one of your own? Hurry over to Arduboy’s official Kickstarter page, where time is running out. Delivery is slated for October 2015.