Tech Camp Blog

Create Retro Arcade Games at Home - Meet the Microsoft Kitronik ARCADE Gamepad!

We’re bringing you a whole new game design experience, with our Arcade Gamer course featuring the Microsoft Kitronix ARCADE Gamepad - a fully featured programmable gamepad for use with the MakeCode Arcade block editor.

Arcade gaming gave birth to the whole gaming industry. The first recognisable arcade games emerged in the 1930s with early pinball machines, which developed into the increasingly advanced electronic games of the 1960s. During the 70’s came some of the most famous arcade games, like Pacman and Space Invader. Games continued to advance, until the computer was invented and became commercially available, when arcades lost popularity and the modern gaming industry as we know it was born.

We are providing Tech Camp campers with a taste of this exciting early gaming world with our Arcade Gamer course. We will send you a Microsoft Kitronix ARCADE Gamepad,on which you can create retro arcade games to run in the browser. It consists of drag and drop blocks that snap together to form programs. You can also write code for ARCADE in Javascript (there is even a Python editor coming soon!). You’ll learn techniques of Sprite (graphics) and sound generation, level design, physics systems and more as you build multiple games over the week.

The Kitronix gamepad features:

  • Full-Colour LCD Screen - You’ll have a great gaming experience with a fantastic 1.77” LCD wide viewing angle screen.
  • Programmable Buttons - Have full control and ease-of-use with six gamer input buttons, a menu button, a reset button and an on/off switch.
  • Haptic Feedback - The gamepad has a powerful vibration motor for haptic feedback (meaning the use of touch to communicate with users).
  • Buzzer - Get the full experience with a loud piezo sounder for audio feedback (melodies, multi-tone and so on!).
  • Protective Case - For the clumsy among us, the Kitronix has a strong plastic case for durability.
  • Expandable I/O - An input/output which allows you to add other units for enhanced gaming.

We’ll send you your own Kitronix Gamepad, so you can create your own Pacman game, mazes, platformers and more. That way, you can make your perfect game, and build it even more as you desire!