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Xlot's new digital track in progress....

114462 Views 458 Replies 71 Participants Last post by  h00ch
Our friend Beppe has been hard at work!

Here are a couple of pictures of the new track under construction. I'll leave it to Beppe to explain.....

With kind regards

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(lifted from the Scorpius thread - valuable insight, particularly since it agrees with my opinions

QUOTE (PhilR @ 12 Mar 2008, 08:31) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>Yep my reasons for not having an lcd display in the throttles are as follows

1. potential for getting damaged (my throttles hit the floor regularly,wireless throttles may recieve even rougher handling) On my track, wireless or not, controllers will be firmly tethered to stations - last thing I want is having 16 people running wildly around and crashing into each other. Tether to be shorter than station height, so that controllers cannot hit the ground
3. I feel that all updates to cars and throttles should be done through a hard wired medium..To prevent any possibilitly of resetting other cars by acccident.Want to avoid at any cost,having to ask everybody to remove thier cars from the track so i can Id some other car..
So yes...I feel that a simple docking station,that can be connected to a computer is the way to go..
The reprogrammed decoder we use has 4 contacts, very convenient for reassigning ID - not as easy as a reprogramming track, though

...And the vibrator pulse in the throttle is a good works ok with Ninco..when it works..which it does'nt always seem to do!!

From observing my customers in here..I am finding that their requirements are simple..
They like to see their best time whilst practising..
And in the race they want to see what position they are many laps left in the lace..and how many laps completed on a car by car basis..That's it!!
Above all else it has to be simple and highly visible..
In a full 8 car race you have very little opportunity to take your eyes off what you are doing to look at a lap scounting device.
In a 16 car race I would expect it to be twice as hard!!
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Decisions, decisions ..... (see the Scorpius thread)

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Beppe! VERY nice work! I love to see a vision come to fruition.

I wonder, does the touchscreen show the status/laps/timing at the same time it is doing the work of "checking in new Joes"? Or is there a separate interface for buying track time? I am wondering if the folks doing data entry would block or interfere with status display.

With regard to race versus practice mode I would consider these options:

1 - I would definitely want to make racing an option. Since it is a cost issue, I would make an official "race" cost the price of a set number of racers in order to hold the table for a race. That minimum can vary with busy days via a settable option. So a group would have to purchase, say, 6 seats in order to race even if its just the two of them. This way the owner gets cash for six racers no matter what. That number could be 4 on a non-busy night, etc. I would want to race my buddy and just for that 3 minutes keep the brat next to me from getting onto the track and blocking my darn race. I would pay extra for that session.

2 - In light of the above, I would allow a person to either book and buy a session when would commence when the last "qualifying" session ends. The screen would queue up sessions, assigning letters A-? to the sessions, calling racers of session (letter) to take the wheel, Display there chosen session name (if you trust the brutes), line up and given a countdown to start the race.

3 - For non-busy nights customers may also be allowed to purchase a "package" containing no more than a qualify session of 2 minutes and a race for a specified time.

Such a feature could be used to draw the die-hards in on the non-busy nights for an experience they would not normally have on a busy night as the table turn requirement is higher.

When there is more time a customer should be allowed an enhanced experience to the extent that they are willing to pay for it.

Congrats on your progress.

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QUOTE (Maltese @ 12 Jun 2008, 20:39) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>I love to see a vision come to fruition.

Thanks Maltese, but don't hold your breath - yet ...

The touch screen is dedicated to checking in (in the totem pictures, it's blanked off with a piece of cardboard). Status display is via the 32" LCD on top

MOF, its only added value is affixing the driver's name, so we'll probably skip it at least initially to keep costs down. The idea is that the LCD will be divided into 8 color coded columns indicating latest lap, best lap and elapsed times for "qualifying" - number of laps, latest lap time, separation from preceding /following cars on race mode. Columns will be ordered from left to right according to best lap time/race position. In qualifying, when a car is called back into the pits its column disappears - there's only a blank column for the car that's first in line, and when a coin is inserted the column flashes, then turns steady when the car exits the gate

Your suggestions appreciated - and noted
. Point is we have to get this damn thing rolling, and arcade operators are pretty umanimous in focusing on the rough-and-tumble, fun factor the track offers. Apart from less than maximum revenue, a race would require an operator to supervise it - that's a cost and they want to limit it to events. Right now, they aren't that interested in "serious" racing with people having their own car - I'm sure they'll change their mind fairly quicky ...

Ciao / Beppe
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Is there an update?

Curious to see how this is going. Did you manage to get any of these into Arcades?
Hi Steve,
and thanks for asking. But sadly no, after having the second electronics guy quit for no reason just as his stuff was working perfectly and only needed being readied for production, we've decided to put the project on hold. If and when a commercial system comes up that fulfils our requirements, we'll think about resuming it. Very tough after all the effort we've put into this, but there's no alternative
Ciao / Beppe

Still no updates on this?

Have you any thoughts on selling the mechanics of it to homeracers?

I really don't want to chase my cars from their de-slots anymore.
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I think you would find you would need all new track (since the two pickups are the table top and the bottom of the guide).
It took me a while to figure out how this thing worked with no braids/tape on the surface.

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Thanks sealevel. When I said home racers I did mean home racers who want to build their own track. So the top surface of the table is powered?
That appears to be so since the other "wire" is at the bottom of the slot channel from what I see.
Maybe PM Xlot to find out for sure.

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There are two levels. Top level is eye candy with a slot. Lower level has the braid, electrical goodies. An inverted "T" guide keeps the car from coming off the track except at key locations on the track where the slot on the upper surface is wide enough to allow the "T" guide to lift out/off of the track.

Thanks for the explanation, Maltese.

Now to figure out how the mechanical switches work...

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FYI, in case I mislead anyone....

I am into Scaley plastic and working with the constraints it presents (and others I set for myself). I find the constraints a challenge.

However, it is interesting to see or try to understand totally new systems that members dream up.

Keep up the creative juices!

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QUOTE (distantkiwi @ 14 Jan 2010, 14:38) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>Still no updates on this?

Have you any thoughts on selling the mechanics of it to homeracers?

Well, the update is we've decided to use oXigen , so we'll resume work on the track as soon as the two Maurizios give us pre-production components (nagging them twice a week is supposed to help).
The only custom electronic part is the LC driver (with anti-collision, of course) - and Arturo's already done it.

But this will be a commercial/arcade track first and foremost, with traditional slot racers joining in if they're interested. It's really too different/complex to envision it for home use.
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Things that make you go, "Hmmmm..."
Interesting, thanks. How recent is the videoclip?

Seems they manage to keep cars in the slot - OTOH, not much trigger action ...

Looks pretty recent beppe.

Taken from youtube:

NamcoAmerica February 01, 2010

Namco America and Gamewax's new "Digital Toy Hybrid Racer", Go Go Grand Prix, is a slot car racer coming to an arcade near you. Unlike traditional slot cars, the cars in this game do not come off t...
Namco America and Gamewax's new "Digital Toy Hybrid Racer", Go Go Grand Prix, is a slot car racer coming to an arcade near you. Unlike traditional slot cars, the cars in this game do not come off the tracks making it simple to play and highly competitive for all. The amount of pressure applied to the trigger in the hand controller determines the speed of the slot car. However, if a player approaches a turn too quickly, the car will slide out slightly and brake while giving the hand controller a vibrating buzz from the "G-Force" motor. This alerts the player that the speed should be decreased when approaching this turn the next time around. This video was taken at the London 2010 European Amusement and Gaming Expo.

Like you noticed already, there seems to be minimal user input??
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My guess would be enough power to the lanes to allow for sliding, but not enough to allow for deslot. When a slide does happen the guide blade triggers a switch inside the car which sets off an RC circuit to stop power for a moment.

In my opinion minimal user input is the key. If someone comes to slotcars for the first time they can hold the trigger down and run the car around the track. They won't win any races that way, so they will have to learn to control the speed better.
I was thinking that perhaps the cars have pins/guides on both the front and back and the rear one is on a spring. The pins/guides would be "locked" in the slot like Xlot's design.
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