Angry Birds just got better!
Angry Birds is played 300 million minutes per day according to the Telegraph. When that’s the case, why not make this game real.
To make Angry Birds a real sport, we need real equipment. So the idea for this hack was to build a real slingshot as a USB peripheral to play Angry Birds.
The slingshot emulates a USB mouse, so it really is a plug ‘n’ play. It translates the physical use of the slingshot in to appropriate mouse controls.
Here’s a demo of the slingshot:
mbed, the company selling usb microcontrollers decided to improve its sales by making its product compelling to buy. That’s why they came up with a hack to improve the Angry Birds experience.
The finished slingshot is recognized by a PC as a mouse. In reality, it takes the input of pulling back the real slingshot using a rubber stretch sensor and translates it into the expected mouse input. The angle of the shot is controlled by an accelerometer and all depends on the angle the slingshot is held at by the player.
The accelerometer and stretch sensors are hooked up to an mbed NXP LPC11U24 board that uses a 32-bit ARM Cortex-M0 Core. A USB connector is then attached to allow connection with a PC. All supporting code for the project was written in C++.
Of course, it wouldn’t be a proper slingshot without being handcrafted from a piece of wood. mbed selected an appropriate branch and bored out the insides so as to fit the electronics and USB connector.
All that’s missing now are the grumpy birds and the levels to be built up in real life. While the controller may not convice officials to brand it a sport just yet, it could certainly become a fun multiplayer game to play with friends and family the next time they visit. As Mbed’s video below suggests, just use a projector for full-size fun.
The good news is, there’s nothing to stop you making this slingshot for yourself. All the components are widely available and relatively cheap to buy, and mbed have released instructions and code for creating their prototype as described here.Tweet