Having my own arcade machine has been a dream of mine since I was a little kid. I remember going to the local arcade as a treat when I was good, and it was like winning the lottery for me. The lights and sounds, the smell, the choices, it was overwhelming in the best way possible.
I can remember playing time crisis, or DDR with friends. Sitting on a giant plastic motorcycle and really feeling like you are racing is a feeling that nothing has been able to replicate, unless you really want to go buy a motorcycle.
The coolest kids at school used to have birthday parties at the arcade. When you are a kid, and you get to go to a party with your friends, and are given free tokens to play games at an arcade, those were the days. Sadly the arcade seems to be a thing of the past. While there are still places like BarCade in new Haven, the arcade is becoming a thing of the past.
When the raspberry pi came out, there was someone who created RetroPie, an awesome distro that allowed you to put some roms into a folder, and it gave you a simple front end and a simple system to play old games on. I can remember getting it working on my old raspberry pi and dumping hours into it. I loved it.
Come to find you could build your own arcade machine if you wanted, which is what I did a few years ago. With the help of my cousin we built a simple 4 player arcade cabinet. It was a simple standup machine with a HDMI port on the back so you could plug it in anywhere you wanted to. We figured that made the most sense since it was mildly portable, and you could easily get to the parts you needed to work on, when you needed to work on them. Cut to 2019 and I want to build a new one for two players, and I want it to look nice. I pick up most everything I need and I have been testing it.
Button and Joystick Update
I picked up some awesome light up buttons on amazon, and figured I would share what they look like. I will link the amazon page below in case someone wants to pick them up. I tested and all the lights work, and they seem to connect fine to the raspberry pi via the USB cable. Now I just need to get the arcade itself built so I can start putting the buttons in to test them.