Sep 15 2008LED Coffee Table With 4-Person Pong

pong-4-4.jpg

This homebrew LED coffee table is packing 65 microcontrollers and 4,092 LEDs. Why? So you can play 4-person co-op Pong of course. Note: That's a mirror under the table and not a secret passage to Wiretown.

We'd seen designs with interactive LEDs that responded to objects on the table, and they usually had around 400 LEDs...so we decided to up the ante with 10 times as many. We built the table and then decided that simple interactions were not enough, and went to work on a full-fledged game. 4-way multiplayer pong, in fact. Being geeks, we were obligated to have the game controlled using 4 Atari 2600 controllers (circa 1977). Four players sit around the table and cooperatively try to get the highest score. Score increases with each paddle hit and a new ball is introduced on hits 5, 10, 20, 30, etc.

Speaking from experience, it's never a good idea to introduce new balls into a 4-way. I've been there before, and let me tell you: when the # poles > # holes, things get awkward. Read: The new guy accused me of staring.

Hit the jump for two really awful videos of the table in action.

:laying:

Screensaver:

Play four-way Pong on the sweetest coffee table ever [dvice]

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Reader Comments

First

Didn't they have one of these in Never Back Down?

Doesn't the Pong make PEWPEWPEW?

th1rd

What no video?

Shouldn''t this have the 2600 paddles not the joysticks?

Still, cool idea.

Amanda you are sick. Why do you want to see video of the geekologie writers imaginary 4-way?

Video is here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Zb9P3Hmfp7w

You're welcome.

Keeping up to 5 people occupied should be easy. Didn't she have hands?

INTENSE

'secret passage to wiretown' is probably the funniest thing i've read...ever. hahah. bravo.

Fake! That's a complete photoshop job. The shadows are completely screwed up.

In fact the Pong table is from an idea Baja had in the Movie Never Back Down.

CHRIST IMAGINE MODDING IT TO PLAY TRON (BIKE), or worms mutliple user,
asteroid 4 user at once.... aaaaaaaaaahhh the boner

dasy, you look like the one who would say rectable is fake until you actually see
one, ccd camera in the dark and led placement under glass in socket tend to playback oddly, NO YOUR RITE ITS A UFO AND THE HAMSTER IN MY COMPUTER IS CALLING THE SHOTS, NO SUCH THING AS A PARSER AND ASSEMBLER BE MADE IN THIS DIMENTIONS.

i want 4 of these, 12 got a good point too

Who is dasy?

@13

She's trying to make a joke that gets played around these comments. You're just making yourself sound like an idiot by making fun of her. While the "ZOMG it's photoshopped, the shadows are all wrong" or "I saw that on Never Back Down" are well played out, that's the purpose of her comment, not to say it's really fake.

Once they get to 4-player Warlords or 4-player Asteroids, I'm so there!

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