[games_access] Harmonix needs our help!

d. michelle hinn hinn at uiuc.edu
Mon Dec 17 14:25:43 EST 2007

Yeah, a software solution would be nice and I think that's what's we
have time to get into the next version if I'm reading Alex correctly
and they can pull it off in time.

For right now, though, the way the drum kit is set up it's just a
matter of stepping on it and not how hard/soft you step on it. I'm
looking at the wired connection -- it really looks like one of your
controllers, Barrie, where you've drilled in holes to connect
switches to.

If I can get my hands on a pre-release (or release date) UK/Europe
version of "rock band" for you to mod, which console would work best?
I'm assuming PS2 because I know you work on controls for that but I'm
not sure if you work with Xbox 360 or PS3 as well. Given that a large
(most?) alt controllers have been modded for the PS2, I'm thinking
that would be the console to start with anyway.

Also -- reduced controls mode -- sometimes you have to hit two drum
pads AND the pedal at the same time so there's one issue (three
arms?). But certainly if there were modes that could take away the
need to use the pedal and/or just, say, be about the rhythm and not
about the exact buttons/drum pads hit, that would probably help a LOT
of people. I mean, seriously, it took THREE people who did not have
any mobility limitations to make sure it wasn't the drumming that
knocked the band out of the game (if an instrument gets too low on
the "good" scale it gets knocked out and/or can knock you out of the
game entirely if the singer and the guitar player(s) are also
struggling) -- this was largely due to their not having any musical
training whatsoever so just hitting something/anything correctly was
a "win."

Anyway...so that software solution idea may just help a whole lot of
people -- especially in a party situation where drinking is
involved... Some other things that they will be concerned with is
online play but it already tells others that you are playing
easy/medium/hard/expert mode so it could also say "modified." Not
sure if that an acceptable solution...just brainstorming.


>My thoughts for Rock Band...


>Software solution would be very nice.


>Auto-Kick Drum would be pretty simple to implement (please don't shoot me,

>Reid!) to my mind. As soon as a drum kick is called for - the software could

>automatically trigger one in perfect timing.


>Reduced controls mode. Taking this further would be lovely too. Why not

>allow the kick-drum to be triggered by any of the other controls? So if you

>hit a snare (or any other drum control), if this is in time for the

>drum-kick - that will be accepted.


>Super Reduced controls mode. I really liked Um Jammer Lammy for the PSone.

>This was the follow up to Parappa the Rapper (the original inspiration for

>all of these music based Simon Says games). This required about six or so

>buttons to play the guitar. The simple mode allowed you to hit any button at

>all - which if in time - would be accepted.



>Hardware solutions.


>What is the software looking for? An analogue pedal or a digital pedal.

>I.e. - does it matter how hard you step on it - or is it a simple on/off

>switch? If it's okay to be treated as an on/off switch this is pretty

>simple. If they've not developed the hardware completely yet - why not make

>it connect to the main drum kit via a 3.5mm mono socket and plug (the

>accessibility switch standard) with the kick drum acting as a press to make

>switch. From there, users could plug in one of hundreds of different

>accessibility controls (blink switches, extra head switches and so on).


>If it's analogue - you may still find that adding a 3.5mm stereo socket and

>plug might offer a solution - if you can provide some compatibility with

>standard accessibility switches.



>Finally - I'd be happy to look at the set-up - and even offer to adapt

>existing set-ups. I'm sure there'll be others on this list and elsewhere

>that would do the same too - perhaps following an easy D.I.Y. guide










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