I wanted to build a retropie for some time to play old SNES games with my brother and some friends when we gather. Having a new bought raspberry pi 3 I also wanted to learn a bit about electronics. So this projects uses as inspiration the tutorial series of the Zumo robot from the explainingcomputers youtube channel(link).
- So the guide starts with the zumo robot chassis which costs about 60€. When I saw that I started wondering around Ebay in search of a cheaper chassis, I found one for 13€ that already included motors and bought that one.
- I also bought a motor controller so I could make the tank wells move to front and back.
- The main processor and controller was my raspberry 3 model B.
- To control the tank movement I bought a mini wireless keyboard.
- And I got a power bank from a local store to allow the tank to move freely without being attached to a wall socket.
Controlling the Tank
To control the tank the following tasks were done:
- Connecting the chassis motors to the motor controller.
- Connecting the motor controller to the raspberry pi.
- Implement the activation of each motor individually using the raspberry GPIO.
- Added handling of the keyboard presses using ncurses.
- When the keys were pressed made the motors activate and move the tank.
With all the parts connected we can now control the tank!
The next step is to transform the now moving tank into a console.
Since we had the raspberry pi with debian already running we could use directly their simple install guide – link. With this steps done now the raspberry will autostart to the emulationstation.
To be able to play like a console I bought two SNES controllers with usb from ebay for like 2.5€ each and plugged the tank to my monitor. Since the Linux kernel has drivers to control the controllers they just worked out of the box.
Here is my final setup!