A few years ago, Andrew Reitano and Todd Bailey started tinkering with an old Asteroids vector monitor. One thing led to the next, and along with Michael Dooley and an absurd level of know-how, they built a new vector arcade game: VEC 9.
This is quite likely the first new vector arcade game created in 30 years… and it looks magnificent.
Check out our old post about their early work on the project.
VEC9 will be at IndieCadeEast in New York City this weekend (April 29-31, 2016).
The company Made In Space, Inc. has received money from NASA to research their Project RAMA: Reconstituting Asteroids into Mechanical Automata.
They write, “The objective of this study is… to establish the concept feasibility of using the age-old technique of analog computers and mechanisms to convert entire asteroids into enormous autonomous mechanical spacecraft.”
In other words, they’ll use robot 3D printers to re-shape asteroids into mechanical spaceships, moving them into strategic orbits around the planet, or crashing them into bigger, Earth-threatening asteroids.
For a more thorough description of this, and other 2016 NASA Innovative Advanced Concepts (NIAC) program fund recipients, read “NASA’s Project RAMA Would Use Asteroids to Play Asteroids” at TheDrive.com.
And, here’s the Project RAMA description at nasa.gov.
Along with the release of Respawn Entertainment and Electronic Arts’s first-person shooter game Titanfall in April, the Titanfall Arcade put their giant fighting battle robot vehicles into three classic Atari games: Asteroids, Centipede, and Missile Command. These Titans are better armed than our trusty triangle spaceship, so the result is pretty funny.
It seems that the online arcade was a short-lived promotion, but it lives on in YouTube screen captures.
Extremely Decent beats Hollywood to the punch.
Some engineering wizards in Brookyln have been working on a wonderful thing. They’ve written a vector generator in VHDL, designed a DAC/amplifier to run an old Asteroids G05 vector monitor, and hashed out the basics for a game in C.
The whole thing is run off a Linux box, with a second VGA screen acting as an HUD. The full game has yet to be written, but what they’ve got running now looks great.
Just when we thought there couldn’t be anything cooler in the world of Asteroids, there’s this:
It’s Human Asteroids, a project by Two Bit Circus for their proposed STEAM Carnival, designed to turn kids on to Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Math.
Human Asteroids uses a Microsoft Kinect to track the player in a rolling chair, who becomes the spaceship. Asteroids are projected on the ground with lasers, and the player fires with a smartphone.
The player in the video is Nolan Bushnell, founder of Atari.
The STEAM Carnival has a Kickstarter campaign going until midnight on June 2, 2013. If successful (and at the time of writing, they’re close), they plan to take the Carnival on the road at several major west coast American cities.
[UPDATE] This story has been making the rounds today, and Two Bit Circus has just passed its fundraising goal of $100,000, with two days still to go.
Makers, behold: the Asteroid Belt.
An Australian known as cunning_fellow has made an LCD belt buckle that plays “Rock Blaster” (wink, wink). The whole project is extremely well-documented on instructables.com.
In the FAQs, he writes:
Q: It costs more to build than a RasPi and only runs at 16Mhz. Why did you bother?
A: If you don’t understand already there is little I can do to help you.
Read all about it at http://www.instructables.com/id/The-Asteroid-Belt/
Thanks to our friends at Adafruit for tipping us off.
See more Asteroids fashion in the archives.
Here’s the goal: having an Asteroids arcade machine at home, with authentic electronics and true vector display, but which isn’t the size of a refrigerator. Jürgen Müller in Hamburg, Germany, has built just that.
His half-scale Asteroids cabinet uses an original Asteroids game PCB and 9″ vector monitor from a broken Vectrex, housed in a custom-built cabinet. He also built a custom XY driver circuit to bring the Vectrex display up to the drawing speed required by Asteroids.
The project is well-documented on Müller’s website: http://www.e-basteln.de/asteroids/asteroids_intro.html