Friday, December 30, 2011

Display issues - no more!

I found the solution for the ghost pixels!
It now looks as it suppose to and I'm a happy camper!

More about this later on...

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Visual Orgasm

Got the new display delivered by FedEX just now!

Plugged it in.
It works.
Looks a million times better than the last one!

There seems to have been some timing differences between the two so at the moment there's a lot of ghosting going on (this display is probably faster than the old) so I will need to tweak the code a little.

Starting of to be a great day!


Turns out it was the logic level converter that was the problem. The old display required +5V logic levels while the new one only require +3.3V, thus rendering the converter obsolete.
Even worse so - it kept a slight current residue on all pins and blurred the display.

I bypassed it and now it looks rather nice! :D


It seems I still got a bit of ghosting going on. Above each lit pixel is a dimly lit ghostpixel. I'm investigating this now and it is really bothering me. To be continued.

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

First decals!

Got the first test-prints of the playfield to decide what works and what doesn't, and I must say - it's looking GOOD!

There's a few minor tweaks that needs to be done. There's no white in the decal. At all. So I must either handpaint the inserts where white is needed or choose another textstyle that doesn't use white in it.
But I was prepared to that - the alternative was to have a solid decal and overlay the insert art. It could also work but doesn't give me the ultrasmooth playfield I'm aiming for.

I'm psyched - hopefully I'll have the game artwork during next week!

Monday, December 26, 2011

New Display

I just decided to give the LED displays another chance and ordered a Vishay-display with discrete LED's instead of LED-modules. Regarding to popular opinion these seem to work a lot better than PinLED's displays. All Vishay displays I found has been rather pricey, but the nice guys at PinballControllers suggested that I buy the display from Mouser instead, since their own stock ran out. Kudos!

Hopefully this display will meet my demands so that I can finally get the cabinet head together.
I can only hope, but one thing is certain - I will need a display!

Saturday, December 24, 2011

I heard you like pictures...

As the pinball design is becoming somewhat 100% (it will probably never be until it's printed) I thought you might like a little teaser image of the 2 GB large image file that is the playfield...

1) Lower left playfield.
This picture was taken at 7% zoom rate.
What we see here is a small piece of the left lower playfield with the in- and outlanes, slingshot, left ball lock etc. White areas will be cutout to create a little "boundary" of wood and allow for machinery and lights to protrude. It will also allow me to bolt down things without wrinkling the decal too much. The latter shouldn't be much of an issue as I intend to put a couple of layers lacquer on top of the playfield before assembling everything anyway.

The artwork's probably not as complete as I would like it to be, I'd like to have a little more small details that you see when your inspecting the playfield closely. I like that amount of detail in a game so presumably I'll try to get that into mine as well.

But I really think it's progressing nicely and feels kind of balanced. It might at the moment be a little un-orthodox compared to a classic pinball in terms of design, but it's my game. And my first at that - so I'll let it slide. ;)

But I'll probably at least try to color code the various parts that co-interact a bit more so it will be easier to distinguish various features from one another.

Next we have a picture of the main toy of the game - a big daddy, a.k.a Mr Bubbles!
He will if everything goes as planned have a rotating drill and a couple of Frankensteins monster-ish moves to go with that.

This piece was actually a lot large than I expected, so I had to do a little redesign in my design rather than chopping of his legs etc. But I like the size! It also allows me to insert machinery inside to make the drill rotate etc.

It has also got built in LED-lights which I intended to do, but this saves me the trouble. It will simply light green when he's active (i.e protecting a little sister), amber/yellow when searching (if a sister is targeted, or a shot is placed at big daddy directly) and finally red - hostile.

I hope to find more toys of equal quality - or maybe I'll attempt to do a couple of custom ones. I'd really like to have a splicer model as well - but they are almost just as large and I'm currently running out of room in the box!

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

How much wood would a woodchuck chuck...

Just sent blueprints to the factory to get a cost estimate and approval before it's going through the CNC machine. Turns out all carpenters/woodworker shops I've spoken to declined my design because it was to advanced for them. I guess the effects of a more computerized society is becoming increasingly evident among craftsmen as well...  I had to resort to having an expensive CNC cutout after all.

It turns out I need 148 holes drilled (not counting regular inserts) for lights and posts alone etc. Stuff really adds up after a while! On top of that all the inserts and special holes, ball-locks etc. 
Quite a beefy design in other words!

Anywho -
I'm a bit nervous that I've missed or entered a digit wrong somewhere, but it's been so long without any progress so I'm thinking I'll probably be able to fix/drill a single or some holes on my own in case of emergency.

Fingers crossed!

Saturday, December 10, 2011

The time of my life!

It has now been 8 days since my beautiful daughter was born!

Words can't describe my feelings. Incredible!