The world of video game controllers is constantly evolving, with new and innovative designs being introduced regularly. However, Dr. Tom Tilley has managed to create something truly unprecedented – a physical monkey in a ball controller for playing Super Monkey Ball. This DIY creation has taken the gaming community by storm, showcasing Tilley’s creativity and ingenuity.

In an interview, Dr. Tilley shared the inspiration behind his unique controller design. He explained that his time living in Thailand exposed him to an obscure Japanese arcade game called Armadillo Racing, which utilized a trackball for steering. This experience sparked the idea of recreating a similar control mechanism for modern games like Katamari Damacy and Super Monkey Ball. The intuitive nature of playing these games with a physical trackball inspired Tilley to experiment further.

Dr. Tilley provided insights into how the monkey in a ball controller functions. The controller has a sensor similar to an upside-down ball mouse, which detects movement when the ball is rolled. To ensure smooth tracking, a deodorant roller is attached to the sensor, allowing for consistent tracking as the ball rotates. This clever design enables players to maneuver the in-game simian with precision and accuracy.

Despite the success of his current controller design, Dr. Tilley is already planning upgrades for the monkey in a ball controller. He mentioned that he intends to add hinged legs with mount points to mimic AiAI’s movement within the ball. Additionally, Tilley plans to incorporate a trailing wheel with a crank mechanism to simulate AiAI running as the ball rolls. These enhancements promise to elevate the gaming experience and bring a new level of immersion to Super Monkey Ball gameplay.

The DIY monkey in a ball controller created by Dr. Tom Tilley is a testament to the boundless creativity of the gaming community. With its innovative design and unique functionality, this controller has captured the attention of gamers worldwide. As Dr. Tilley continues to refine and enhance his creation, the future looks promising for a new era of immersive and engaging gaming experiences. We eagerly await further developments and commend Dr. Tilley for his remarkable contribution to the world of gaming.


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