Have you ever wanted to throw fireball punches, just like Ryu from the Street Fighter games?
If you’re in Toronto this Saturday evening, you just might get your chance to do just that at Super Street Fire.
Imagine playing Street Fighter II, except instead of a joystick and buttons, you actually throw punches. Two fighters enter the ring, take their places on platforms at the opposite ends of this combat ring:
They don motion-sensing gloves, and when the Master of Games yells “Fight!”, they start throwing punches and combos, and this is what it looks like:
Super Street Fire is a project created by the people at the Site3 coLaboratory, one of Toronto’s hackerspaces. It’s a community project led by Seth Hardy, made up of volunteers from different backgrounds and with different skills: art, engineering, game design, software programming and stagecraft. It’s explained in their video:
Here’s how the Super Street Fire rig works:
The flame effect heads are propane-fed devices that emit a column of fire, or fireball, high into the air. They also dynamically change the colour of the flame so it’s obvious who dealt the blow and who stood there and took it. Flame effects are expressed as two rails, each comprised of eight computer controlled flame effect heads—one rail for the right hand gestures and one for the left. As well as the two rails between the players, there is an outer ring of sixteen flame effects that are triggered by special player move combinations and also controlled by the Master of Games for crowd engagement. The game system is computer hardware and software with an Arduino microcontroller that interfaces with the flame effect head solenoids to regulate both the intensity and duration of the flame.
The custom designed motion-sensing gloves that the players wear are modeled after traditional MMA grappling gloves. Similar to a Nintendo Wii-mote, the gloves contain inertial measurement units that capture a player’s actions. It then wirelessly sends this data to a game server that detects if those actions match one of the pre-trained game gestures. If the gesture is recognized, the game system gives feedback to the player by activating the flame effects.
The Super Street Fire crew is bound for Black Rock Desert in Nevada to take part in Burning Man, but before that happens, they’re showing off their stuff at the Amsterdam Brewing Company (21 Bathurst Street, at Fort York Boulevard) this Saturday night at 9:00 p.m.. Tickets are $10 + $1.24 processing fee — to attend, purchase your tickets online.