While custom controllers are nothing new, this cute project named JOY, from Adafruit, is a really interesting little project.
Most of the physical parts of the controller, including the button faces, were 3D printed.
A generic joystick was added to this and an Arduino-compatible board handles input with pre-existing code. Finally, a 500mAh battery provides power.
JOY’s real party trick is a 1.44″ TFT Display in the centre. Thanks to the way the case is printed, two eyes and a mouth stick out from beneath the plastic and they’re animated. The eyes blink at certain intervals and they follow the rotation of the joystick.
JOY is another one of Adafruit’s projects that they create as a showcase of the products they sell, which means you can rack up everything you need to build one in one shop. Not including the wiring or 3D printed parts, the electronics will cost $51.70 (~R707).
You can, of course, shop around for cheaper parts or those you’re more familiar with, as it will wind up being a pricey project. That being said, we’re sure a lot of kids (and adults) will get a kick out of using one.
There’s a full guide to make your own JOY over on Adafruit’s site, and embedded below is a brief overview and time lapse of the example build