Katamari Seigyo is a console controller made to create a more interactive and immersive gaming experience for the game Katamari Damacy and its sequels. The Katamari Seigyo requires a player to physically roll a ball that is set in a cradle, monitored by motion sensors and an arduino to control the Katamari in the game.
Even with all of the innovation in the game industry there are only a few console controllers which are tailored to specific games. This limits the ways in which console owners can interact with their games. Imagine playing Guitar Hero with only a hand-held game controller. Customized controllers dramatically increase entertainment value by creating an experience which realistically imitates the actual game play. With embedded technology, the Katamari Seigyo will be able to create a more unique and engaging gamer experience for the Katamari Damacy game series.
There are no known commercial competitors for Katamari Seigyo and only one similar project is known to exist. The Katamari Damacy controller hack is a free and open source solution but lacks packaging and requires disassembling a PS2 controller to connect it to a console. It works solely for the PS2, requires holding an optical mouse up to the ball-controller, only measures motion on two axises and is not wireless. The Katamari Seigyo will be a stand alone controller able to navigate through the game and any menus and will not require any additional hardware to use. Wireless use with an Xbox may be pursued later in the life cycle of the project.
The ball-controller must roll 360 degrees rotation in any direction. Fidelity to the game actions The Katamari ball in the game must accurately reflect the ball-controller's movement. The controller must work for a wired PS2 controller connection. The game should have comprehensive game controls and include a menu. The ball-controller must have physical stability.
Hardware: 12" diameter hollow steel sphere Cradle Mechanism 4 Omnidirectional ball bearings Arduino Uno (16 MHz) AD5206BN10 Digital Potentiometer PS/2 Optical Mouse 1 PlayStation2 Controller Playstation 2
Protocols: PS/2 Mouse to Arduino
Software: Katamari Damacy PS2 game Arduino code for PS/2-PlayStation2 translation
Risks and Mitigations:
Risk: One optical mouse cannot detect full range of motion Mitigation: Change placement of mouse in relation to ball or use two mice Risk: 3D rotation implementation Mitigation: Simpler 2D rotation Risk: Ball falls out of cradle with use Mitigation: Increase the weight of ball or alter height of the cradle Risk: Large ball could be difficult to roll Mitigation: Use smaller ball Risk: Friction between ball and bearings makes use difficult Mitigation: Change type of ball used Risk: Difficulty emulating PS2 controller protocol Mitigation: Hack into a PS2 controller directly Risk: Cradle tipping over with use Mitigation: Increase weight of base Risk: Ball deforms against bearings and impedes motion Mitigation: Use a different ball