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DUPLICATE BUTTONS - Symmetric control panel



  • I'm new to RetroPie and have been having a lot of fun piecing all of the knowledge and hard work into a fun new cabinet for friends and family. Given all of the cool mods, customization and knowledge, surprised I haven't been able to find an answer to this.

    I'm planning out some swappable control panels (I'm mostly focused on arcade emulation) and wanting to do a layout that works for left- or right-handed players. For example:

    B A (Stick) A B

    While the arcade industry gave up on symmetric control panel layouts, I've watched several kids playing my system (and enjoying Donkey Kong, Pac Man, Frogger, etc for the first time) and have seen frustration / confusion with my layout for folks that are right dominant (A game like Pac Mania - which adds a jump button - even frustrates me).

    I've looked high and low for an answer as to the option for approaching this. Should I be trying to solve this at the wiring level? The encoder? The emulator(s)?

    I'm certain that there's more than one way to do this, but would love some council from folks with more experience than I.

    Thanks in advance.

    PS: I'm on Pi3 with a Zero Delay encoder, Sanwa sticks and Happ buttons but willing to swap things out if there's a better solution to address this from a HW POV.



  • @hiroprotagonist Quick answer: you can wire multiple pushbutton switches to the same input. Since the inputs are just shorting a wire to ground, that wire can run to one or more switches such that pressing either will trigger the same input. Make sense? In that regard, you could have a Button 1 on the right side of your joystick, and a duplicate button 1 on the left side--both of them wired to the same input on your Zero Delay.



  • @hiroprotagonist You can also use the MAME gui to map multiple buttons to the same input, assuming each control is wired to a separate input on the controller. For example, it can be handy to map every single action button on your panel to JUMP in Donkey Kong. That way, players can use whatever button they want to make Mario Jump.

    This approach is different than the wiring approach above, but relies on the mapping within the emulator to handle multiples. Not all emulators will let you do that, so hardwiring duplicate buttons is the better way to go overall, but you obviously lose flexibility.



  • @caver01 Thanks very much. This is exactly what I was looking for. The DK scenario is one I hadn't contemplated (map all buttons) and a good idea.



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