MEAM.Design - MEAM 247 - P1P3: Game Time

Project 1, Part 3: Game Time

3.1 - Going back in time

We're back in the early 80s, in the corner of a cluttered two-car garage in the suburbs of Philadelphia. With the advent of the minicomputer, you’ve stumbled upon the brilliant idea of creating an interactive game using custom-built controllers that would give the players a unique arcade-like experience from the comfort of their home. But unlike the trend in the industry, you've decided that you will forgo the monitor in favor of tangible, physical outputs to navigate the player through the game (in other words, you will not be using the computer screen as part of your user experience). Believing that you’ll take your idea commercial and become a millionaire in months, you've decided to prototype your system and display it at the Fourth Annual MEAM247 Grand Gaming Festival.

3.2 - Readily available hardware

While digging around in your basement, you found this amazing Phidget InterfaceKit 8/8/8 as well as a Phidget Servo board that you think you could use to interface between your game and the computer. You've also already convinced your friends that you should use this great new program called Matlab to run your game. In addition, you are fortunate to be located very close to a popular reseller of electronic user-interface elements known as the GM ministore, and they have agreed to sponsor your project, provided you make an effort to keep costs down. Below is a listing of some parts that they stock which you may find useful in your design:

3.3 - Game proposal
(DUE BY 11:59 p.m. on 9/30)

To determine the feasibility of your idea, one of your friends has recommended that you work together to write up a design plan. The plan should include details on the game (number of players, interaction style, etc.) as well as details about the hardware you will use (what components you plan to incorporate, what signals you’ll need to send to/from the computer, how the user will interact with the device, etc.).

Luckily, you've found a professor at a local university who has volunteered to read through your design proposal and provide some advice. To do this, save your proposal as a PDF file, name it 247P1-Txx-Proposal, where xx is your team number, and submit it by email to with the title 247P1-Txx-Proposal before 11:59 on Friday, September 30.

3.4 - Controller Contest

The highly anticipated Controller Preview Show (CPS) is coming to Philadelphia on October 7th, and you've decided to enter your design into the my-controller-is-better-than-your-controller (MCBTYC) contest.

This contest will consist of a brief interview with each team, where you will present at least one fully working controller (hardware only, no software) to a panel of judges. To sign your team up for an interview slot, place your team number and individual names on the INTERVIEW SIGNUP SHEET.

3.5 - Festival Registration
(DUE BY 11:59 p.m. on 10/23)

To guarantee yourself a booth at the Third-Annual MEAM Grand Gaming Festival, you must compile the following items into a zip file:

  • A PDF file containing a synopsis of the overall design, an itemized breakdown of your hardware, a high-level explanation of your software, and an estimate of the time and contributions of each team member.
  • A copy of all of your Matlab code

The zip file should be named 247P1-Txx-Registration and attached to an email to with the title 247P1-Txx-Registration, and sent in before the deadline.

3.6 - Fourth Annual MEAM247 Grand Gaming Festival
(Monday, October 24th from 5:00 to 6:00 p.m.