Xbox Controller Conversion Project Part 1
About 6 months ago at goodwill, I bought a junky xbox original driving wheel. It's a Madcatz MC2. Nothing really special, doesn't even have *real* force feedback.
That's all fine and dandy, and it was a bit of an improvement for playing racing games on the xbox... but I don't only play xbox games, occasionally I like to jump into PC gaming, and I *may* one day decide to play some 360 games.
I didn't think this was that big of a deal... I mean... xbcd, right?
The problem with xbcd is that while it does make it so some older games can use the xbox original controllers, it can't be used with a growing amount of newer games.
This is due the the protocol it uses to report button presses to the computer. After playing around with emulators and converters for about 8 hours to try and get this working with a modern (toy) game, I decided that it was silly.
So, I grabbed a busted up wired 360 controller with well worn in analogs that I pulled out of the trash one day.
And I held it next to the crappy wheel, and said "From these two pieces of crap, I will create something that is both slightly more, and slightly less crap."
I then proceeded to tear apart the controllers and an old serial port switch I had.
I was thinking that this wouldn't be too bad of a project... I mean... wire one set of buttons to another set of buttons, and put a switch between them... No big deal, right?
Well, I was wrong.
As it turns out, the wheel was designed with a common ground layout, while the 360 controller uses a matrixed layout... So I did some more research, and came across a guide by RDC that tells me where to wire everything. Why make my life harder when a trusted source has already done the work for me on that?
Usually, this still wouldn't be too big a deal... but I *really* want to still be able to use this with the original xbox... So I have to have both button systems programmed in, and there's only so much room in the steering column to put wires.
So, for a long time, I just stared at things and said "I know I can do this, but I'm too lazy to think right now." I also re-wired some things in preparation.
Pro Tip: When splitting ribbon cable, put some tape where you don't want it to split past. Keep it there at least until you've soldered it in place. That way, it stays pretty and tidy!
Cool, now that that's done, let's get to thinking.
So, naturally, I've set it in a corner and left it alone for 2 weeks.