Lose Yourself in the LED Timer Game with FPGA


Hey FPGA lovers! If you have ever been a fan of arcade games, here is a chance for you to re live the glory days! The LED timer game with FPGA consists of an LED-button interfacing with FPGA. The project is really simple to implement and it is a great first project for FPGA aspirants. The game is similar to the moving light arcade game, where you press a button when a particular color LED glows. As you progress the game gets faster and harder!

The hardware requirements for the project are a FPGA board, Male to Male jumpers, 10 LEDs (9 of which are the same color) and breadboards. The project has been coded by the author for a 10 LED version. The wiring details are given in step 7. However you can extend this to any number of LEDs once you go through the code.

Though any board can be used for this project, the author has shared VHDL codes for Nexys 3. So here you have a good challenge adapting the given code to your FPGA. Another interesting aspect is that you may need to adapt the implementation of the button that is required for the game. So the hardware interfacing not only involves connecting LEDs to FPGA, but thinking a bit outside of the box to get around this minor drawback.

The pieces of software required for this project are Xilinx and Adept. The code has been broken into modules and explained well in step 5. The code consists of a number of modules in VHDL (.vhd) that consists of using the primary button for playing, Display for keeping score and LEDs for driving the game.

The author has done a great job in providing clear instructions and the codes have been written following simple logic. Another major factor is the flexibility in scale of the project where you can implement this game to cover 10 LEDs or even 100s of them. Game on!


By ekchen35649

Old School Graphics: How did they work? (Part II)


More content on graphics for old school gamers in this great video, especially for Apple II and Atari 2600 aficionados. It details how graphics worked on monochrome screens and color screens using 8 bits of memory. Apple II graphics used only 16 colors in low resolution mode and 6 colors in high resolution mode, not bad for a machine that came out in 1977.

Via digg.com

Old School Graphics: How did they work?

Many of us spent hours, if not days in front of Ataris, Commodores, Nintendos and other old school gaming systems. Playing colorful games was then  possible on 8 kB, 16kB and 32 kB video RAM. An excellent video from digg.com shows how colors were coded on those early gaming consoles and also details how pixels sprites were used to deliver descent graphics.

Via digg.com

New Arcade Blaster App 1.2 Release!

Here at Gadget Factory we’re happy to announce that a 1.2 version of the Arcade Blaster application is now officially released and available for download from the new download center!

The Arcade Blaster is a multi-platform application that simplifies using Papilio Arcade kit and eliminates the need to directly work on HDL sources and it makes it easier then ever to load games to the Papilio Arcade hardware and we’ve added some new games to this release such as:


  • Mr Do’s
  • Hangly Man 1-3
  • PuckMan
  • PacMan Fast
  • Caterpillar
  • Galaxian
  • Space Invaders


There’s also a fix for the audio in The End game, click here to download the Arcade Blaster app and enjoy playing some cool arcade games 🙂

And you can visit the Arcade Blaster App wiki page here to learn more about this application including the installation, requirements etc.