Kiddie Ride Flight Stick

To fully experience Microsoft Flight Simulator 2020, you need a serious flight stick. Behold, a design based on those kiddie rides of yesteryear! If you are not aware, a “kiddie ride” is a coin-operated machine, usually located in a mall or department store, that allows a toddler to ride a small vehicle or animal. These rides aren’t as fun as they look.

This is merely a joystick with a toy plane attached. Holding the tail will allow you to tilt the plane in all directions, so the plane in-game will mimic the behavior of this flight stick plane.

Turning the rudder will… turn the rudder in-game. That takes care of all 3 axis of movement! Many joysticks can be rotated as well, so the plane could be turned in this fashion too, if the rudder is a pain to use.

The coin box can operate as the acceleration thingy planes use…looks like a big lever? It’s a bit gimmicky but that is what this controller is about. There are a few buttons on the stand as well.

This was a fun design, I enjoyed making it. When I first started my goal was to make an accessible flight stick (like this accessible steering controller) and it was pretty basic: a small plane balanced/perched on a raised stand, which can be pivoted and turned with a single finger. It couldn’t work, the user would be constantly adjusting the plane and it would be tedious and slow.

Bomberman Controller

Remember those Jakks Pacific plug-and-play consoles? Same deal here with the Bomberman character. Thought it would be fun if there was a button on top of the joystick, ideal for placing bombs . The side ear button serves as the secondary button used by the thumb, and is on both sides for righties and lefties.

It would be neat to have 4 or 5 of these controllers, in different colors to match each player. Such a set would be a fun game for parties. Bomberman used to be THE party game before Smash Bros. came along and stole its thunder.

Last Starfighter Mini Cabinet

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Mini arcade cabinets are all the rage these days, even SEGA is getting in on the act! My hope is that a company like Basic Fun or My Arcade will issue a Last Starfighter-themed mini cabinet. Or even better, Arcade 1UP releases a bartop cabinet.

While there are fan-made video games of what was featured in the film, I think the twin flight sticks may make things difficult to execute. I would settle for a Galaga or Missile Command re-skin, or a generic shmup will do. As long as the iconic attract mode from the film is present in some form.

Even a Hallmark keepsake ornament (like this) would be neat. One can dream.

I’ve looked into building a bartop cabinet of this recently (I made the above mockup for that purpose), but I’ve hit a wall: all my email inquiries for custom side panels and vinyl prints have gone unanswered! Probably due to the recent worldwide hullabaloo.

Star Wars VR Helmet

star wars rebel helmet blast shield vr virtual reality helmet 2020 dave delisle dave's geeky ideas

When EA announced Star Wars Squadrons earlier this week, a game that includes VR support, my first thought was this contraption: a VR headset combined with a Rebel pilot helmet. With built-in headphones and microphone it appears to be an ideal gaming rig.

With everything packed into a helmet, it might be more comfortable to wear than a regular VR headset. A counterweight in the back would help distribute the weight, and the lenses would be suspended from the helmet visor instead of being strapped onto your face.

Then again, there’s probably a good reason VR hasn’t been packaged in helmet form yet: it might get too hot under there? Some motorcycle helmets have cooling fans, so that could be a solution.

BMO Gaming Handheld

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I’ve owned an LDK Game Console for several months now, and every time I use the thing I’m reminded of BMO from Adventure Time.  Just swap a few colors around and you are done. I’m hoping LDK considers issuing this color variant in the future, I would certainly grab one.