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Territory Control Poles / Domination Poles project build log

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Old July 22nd, 2013, 18:56   #1
DonP
 
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Lightbulb Territory Control Poles / Domination Poles project build log

'Sup, been forever since I've been around ASC but old accounts never die!



I am working on a project named "Territory Control Poles" as a working name (it used to be "Domination Poles" but it seemed a good idea to steer clear of actual game names) and realized others might be interested, so I'm going to post some build log details in this thread. Been working on it off and on since early or mid 2012 at least.

The idea is that these panels are self-contained and wireless (and BB proof!) and have a small LCD and 3 buttons: Red, Green, and Blue. You can play as up to 3 teams together - teams being "Red", "Green", and "Blue" (shocker!)

The basic game is one of territory control - a lot like Domination in videogame land. Push and hold your color to 'capture' a pole. Once captured, the pole starts racking up points for you. Someone else can push THEIR color button to first uncapture, then capture the pole for themselves.

Team that ends the game with the most points, wins! Supports (in this version) from 1-3 poles at a time, with 1-3 teams. Will work indoors or outdoors.

Airsoft games in the past that I have played use this basic concept of territory control well but the "keeping track of shit" part always kind of sucks. Even the little things like coordinating over the radio for start / stop times and stuff can be a drag. This thing was made to take care of all that busywork and just let people play.



When it's done, it'll get installed at Capital Airsoft's indoor location for testing and indoor play. I've known Jeff at Capital Airsoft for a while and they helped make this happen. :salute:

I recently got the circuitboards I designed and ordered, so things can move up a notch in the "getting done" list.



I don't have much for photos of the system (it is working as a test/development setup) but one of the reasons for this thread is to change that and help document it.

Last edited by DonP; July 23rd, 2013 at 18:18..
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Old July 22nd, 2013, 19:22   #2
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I want some!
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Old July 22nd, 2013, 21:15   #3
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This is one of the times that I wish I am a real engineer.
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Old July 22nd, 2013, 21:27   #4
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Awesome !! Looks like the boxes that were made for Battlefield themed games here in Quebec, nice work !!
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Old July 22nd, 2013, 22:06   #5
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What did the Battlefield ones use as a case? (I'm not familiar with them, been out of the loop with regards to organized airsoft for a while.) Wood and a lexan cover is probably what will happen with these first ones. Pelicans would be my first choice but that's expensive.

Anything about the Battlefield ones that worked or didn't work particularly well? I haven't field tested these yet (that's coming) so any opportunity to learn from someone else's work helps save time in the end.
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Old July 22nd, 2013, 22:13   #6
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Will you be selling these for other fields Don?
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Old July 22nd, 2013, 22:14   #7
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They are the electrical control type sealed box
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Old July 22nd, 2013, 23:04   #8
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Very nice and welcome back.

1) Can you run a visible indicator to show who's got control? We used flags and pulleys for a low tech approach and a marker that was visible at a distance to see who was holding a base. Maybe for outdoor extra lights on a long lead?

2)can you make the boxes talk to each other? Time the game, lock down when all the boxes on the net are blue etc.?
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Old July 23rd, 2013, 00:04   #9
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a 12v or even relay output for the 3 color's would allow a person to inpunt 12 or 120vac and plug in strobe light or such to show who is in control?
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Old July 23rd, 2013, 00:10   #10
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I'm assuming Domination is the CoD term for Conquest?
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Old July 23rd, 2013, 10:42   #11
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Thanks, it's cool to be back here. ASC's always been a central happenin' place and that doesn't seem to have changed.

Quote:
Originally Posted by xav1982 View Post
They are the electrical control type sealed box
Brilliant! I know those things - great choice!

Quote:
Originally Posted by PrIeSt View Post
Will you be selling these for other fields Don?
Sure! I do electronic work as a job, so I would be A-OK with doing a small production run. But no counting chickens before they hatch - there will be a bit more work to be done once this first unit is up and running before that can happen; there are always changes needed that get discovered in the first unit / prototype.

And of course, when it's done the code and diagrams will be available so anyone with the skill and time and desire could make their own (as well as improve it). I'll say right now - a lot of the programming in there right now is pretty ugly and purely of the "make it work" variety. I can think of like a billion improvements it could use right off the bat and people better at it than I could probably see two billion without even trying.

Here is what one of the dev units looks like right now.
(The RED board sticking out the top is a test for audio playback)



The units are wirelessly connected to each other and scores are synchronized across all of them during a game. The LCD shows not only the status of the current box, but also the statuses of all the others. The pile on the right side of the photo is an LED string. It fills up and down to visually indicate status and ownership. Of course, the LCD also prominently displays current status and ownership at all times.

The LEDs are mainly for indoor use or lower light outdoor use because LEDs aren't all that visible outdoors in bright sunlight. When it comes to daylight-readable indicators I'm a little torn between very high-brightness lights, and motorized brightly-colored signs/flags - and the fewer moving parts the better and the more BB-proof the better. There are surely options I haven't thought of, though. If anyone has any bright ideas on that, I'm all ears!

That all being said, the LED strings are going to be enough for the scope of this first version, which will live mainly indoors for testing.




I was going to address some of the other questions quoted here too but I realized I could answer these and other questions much more efficiently with some "screenshots". I'll do that and post it.

Last edited by DonP; July 23rd, 2013 at 10:46..
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Old July 23rd, 2013, 11:47   #12
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Welcome Back Don, You and your cats are missed.

WOuld it be possible to connect or program the boxes to a radio? The purpose would be to communicate to the players that an objective is under "tan" control or green
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Old July 23rd, 2013, 18:20   #13
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Hey, howdy!

A PA system that pipes audio over FRS radios (for example) would be bad ass. A long time ago I tested doing that and it worked, I have my notes somewhere.

But not for this version - the audio output is strictly an amp with some speakers. I love the radio transmission idea though, maybe I should follow that up once this is up and running.
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Old July 24th, 2013, 08:11   #14
Kokanee
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Wow cool project Don, looking forward to seeing it in action!
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Old July 24th, 2013, 20:26   #15
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Hey Kokanee, how you doin?

Here are screenshots I mentioned. These aren't ALL of them, but gives you a pretty good idea of the features and flow of the thing.

RED, GREEN, and BLUE buttons are used for game play, and as input for menus.



Only 2 units in play in this test (up to 3 work at the moment)


These are the two built-in simple games at the moment:



By the way, any of the units can be used to select a game and teams.




Then there is a countdown once READY is confirmed.

Sample start of game screen where nothing has happened except 15 seconds have gone by.


Pole #1 has been captured by BLUE (we are Pole #2)


Scores explained (these numbers are all changed in real time as the game goes on)




Here is one of the pages of scores. Didn't get a pic of the others since my RED button is currently disconnected (heh) waiting for a firmware upgrade to be done to recognize the new one.


And here is a picture of my disapproving cat for no reason.
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