Designed by Grant Goddard and Samuel Cooper Davis for Abrams/Gentile Entertainment and made by Mattel in the United States, the Power Glove was originally released in 1989. The next-gen wearable was equipped with traditional NES controller buttons on the forearm as well as a program button and buttons labeled 0-9. Unfortunately, the gaming device failed to catch on in popularity and was criticized for its imprecise and difficult-to-use controls.
However, a Maker by the name of Greg Sowell decided to transform the obsolete NES Power Glove into a psychedelic light suit using addressable LED strips and an Arduino Pro Mini (ATmega168).
The Maker was inspired by a video from one of his favorite bands Hypercrush, which featured a member wearing a Power Glove-like device with lasers coming out of the ends. With a light suit already in his possession, Sowell thought, “Why not control the suit with the Power Glove?” And thus, the project was born.
Additional materials used in his build included:
- 12 – 10k resistors: Pull down for buttons and voltage divider for bend sensors
- WS2812 RGB LED strip from Adafruit or Sparkfun: Used 5-meter strips
- 300 ohm resistor: To protect data pin
- 1000 uF cap: Just before the light strip to protect the lights
- 2-USB cables: To power the system
- 5V 2A USB battery pack
- 2 – 10mm LEDs
- 10-foot stranded Cat 5 cable
- Adafruit’s NeoPixel Library
Interested in learning more? You can find a full breakdown of Sowell’s build on his website here.