Introduction

Playing retro games is easy on a Raspberry Pi - and the pocket computer is pretty good at it too! All you need is a little help to connect buttons and a joystick up and you can custom design your own arcade console, desktop or stand-up machine, even just a simple controller box. It makes for a fun weekend project that will last all year.

This Adafruit Arcade Bonnet is designed to make small emulator projects a little easier to build. Here's what you can look forward to!

  • It is the same size as a Pi Zero, so for really compact builds, this is super small. You can use it with a Pi 2, 3, B+ or any 2x20 connector Pi.
  • It has JST sockets so you can plug in six arcade buttons easily using our quick connects
  • Header breakouts for use with both clicky-type switched joysticks and...
  • Header breakout and converter for using analog-type joysticks or thumbsticks with potentiometers inside
  • A 3W speaker output that can drive 4-8 ohm speakers for when using with a TV output, HDMI display or PiTFT
  • Switches are all managed with an I2C-GPIO converter with interrupt out. The converter is very fast and frees up all the pins so you can use this Bonnet with a PiTFT or any other accessory/device that uses a lot of pins!

If you don't need an amplified speaker output, analog-joystick input or minimal pin usage, check out our plain-jane Retrogame tutorial which just plugs all the buttons and joysticks right into the Pi directly.

This item as sold as a mini-kit, with a Bonnet and headers that need to be soldered in to attach it to a Raspberry Pi! It only takes a few minutes but soldering iron and solder are required.

It also doesn't come with any of the extras, so you can choose which buttons/joysticks/speaker you want! Here is a list of the items you can use:

Arcade Buttons

The JST connectors on the Bonnet mate perfectly with these quick-connects, which we really like.

Any of our Arcade buttons will work. You can use any switch you like, really - doesn't even need to be a button!

The translucent 30mm ones work nicely with the quick-connects and are recommended!

Last updated on 2017-02-22 at 06.11.18 PM Published on 2017-02-22 at 06.09.22 PM