This is not my first console mod, but I think it’s the neatest. As far as I know it hasn’t been done before. I wanted to be able play Atari 2600 games like you play Guitar Hero… With a guitar. With this mod, you just pop in your favorite 2600 cartridge, and play the game on your guitar. The screen is right in front facing you as you hold it. Instead of strumming, just use the small joystick on the upper right, or for games like Breakout use the paddle controller below the screen. The fire button is the top button on the neck of the guitar, so yes, you really hold it in guitar fashion as you play.
I had originally intended to make an NES-Hero, taking advantage of all the guitar buttons, but didn’t have a spare laying around. Which was just fine with me because this Atari-Hero turned out just awesome. It took me about 2 months more or less, simply because it was hard to find the time with my duties here at the ‘Brick, but it’s finally finished. I incorporated actual pieces of the Atari console itself, like the faux woodgrain front panel with logo and the grill from the top of the console, even the cartridge slot itself. The circuit boards all had to be fabricated and custom shaped, then put in place. The Atari console combined with the circuit boards makes for a stunning look in person. (Sorry about the crappy pics. It’s so shiny it’s hard to get a good shot) More pics below.
Currently I have it running on 8 AA batteries, which is probably overkill. I have to say, playing the old Atari 2600 classics on a guitar feels a tad strange, but at the same time the games are a breeze to play and it feels natural in your hands. I’d still like to make a Nintendo version one day, but I may just let someone else tackle that one until I can get around to it. So, now I’ve unleashed it onto the world. I can’t wait to see how this inspires other modders. I’m gonna go rock out while playing some Frogger.
TAGS: Atari, Atari 2600, ben heck, DIY, Games, guitar hero, hack, mod, portable, portable atari, retro, rock