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Announcing new 2600 controller USB adaptor

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New to the forum, but grew up around all manner of Atari magic and later was a fan of the Lynx. I recently went a bit crazy with RetroPie to recreate my arcade-spent youth, and it's been quite fun. As part of my new RetroPie habit, in a fit of nostalgia bought a couple of 2600-dapter D9s and original CX40 joysticks to recreate the experience of my first VCS experience.

 

The 2600-dapter D9 is an amazing little device, hats off to the engineering! EmulationStation picked it up as a controller instantly.

 

But, as some here are likely aware, that's not quite enough to start playing with my setup. Because the original CX40 joystick has only one button, there are no buttons available to map the needed SELECT, RESET (START) or DIFFICULTY A/B switches on the 2600. And it's not obvious to me how to map those to a keyboard, as RetroArch wants to feed l-stella just the controller configuration from EmulationStation.

 

I think the answer is some manual controller mapping in l-stella where some things are joystick and some things are keyboard, but I figured perhaps I'm not the first person down this road. I've searched around, and there are some posts of people remapping similar settings with regular Stella, which I may try, but I haven't squarely found this RetroPie-centric answer.

 

Is there a simple configuration or setting somewhere I may be overlooking? Otherwise, back to digging around how RetroArch configuration files work and regular Stella...

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This should go in a separate thread.  My recommendation is to use the non retroarch stella.  It should be more straightforward.

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On 9/12/2020 at 6:38 AM, MrZarniwoop said:

New to the forum, but grew up around all manner of Atari magic and later was a fan of the Lynx. I recently went a bit crazy with RetroPie to recreate my arcade-spent youth, and it's been quite fun. As part of my new RetroPie habit, in a fit of nostalgia bought a couple of 2600-dapter D9s and original CX40 joysticks to recreate the experience of my first VCS experience.

 

The 2600-dapter D9 is an amazing little device, hats off to the engineering! EmulationStation picked it up as a controller instantly.

 

But, as some here are likely aware, that's not quite enough to start playing with my setup. Because the original CX40 joystick has only one button, there are no buttons available to map the needed SELECT, RESET (START) or DIFFICULTY A/B switches on the 2600. And it's not obvious to me how to map those to a keyboard, as RetroArch wants to feed l-stella just the controller configuration from EmulationStation.

 

I think the answer is some manual controller mapping in l-stella where some things are joystick and some things are keyboard, but I figured perhaps I'm not the first person down this road. I've searched around, and there are some posts of people remapping similar settings with regular Stella, which I may try, but I haven't squarely found this RetroPie-centric answer.

 

Is there a simple configuration or setting somewhere I may be overlooking? Otherwise, back to digging around how RetroArch configuration files work and regular Stella...

 

I haven't played much with the default RetorArch l-stella.  RetroPie gives this mapping -

https://retropie.org.uk/docs/Atari-2600/

I would assume map those functions (left trigger, left shoulder, etc) in Emulation Station.

 

Personally, I would switch to regular Stella.

 

Tom

http://2600-daptor.com/

 

 

 

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On 9/14/2020 at 9:48 AM, dualcam said:

I haven't played much with the default RetorArch l-stella.  RetroPie gives this mapping -

https://retropie.org.uk/docs/Atari-2600/

I would assume map those functions (left trigger, left shoulder, etc) in Emulation Station.

 

Personally, I would switch to regular Stella.

Thanks! I'll make three helpful hints from all this in case others want to use RetroPie with original Atari controllers using your awesome 2600-daptor D9:

 

1. The default configuration in RetroPie when using maps the Select to the right Shift key, and Start to the Enter/Return key, although both can be remapped. For example, in recent Virtualman images, Select is remapped to the F5 key, and Start to the F6 key.

 

Many older arcade no-button games, like Ms. Pac-Man, or one-button games, like Donkey Kong, Galaga or Joust, are highly playable with the original Atari controller using your 2600-daptor D9 if you use the keyboard for Select (Coin/Credit) and Start.

 

2. For Atari 2600 games, if you also want to map the difficulty and color/BW switches for l-stella to keys, you'll have to map them in either the default configuration or add them to the l-stella-specific /opt/retropie/configs/atari2600/retroarch.cfg:

input_player1_l2_btn = "nul" # Left Difficulty A
input_player1_l_btn = "nul" # Left Difficulty B
input_player1_l3_btn = "nul" # Color TV
input_player1_r3_btn = "nul" # Black/White TV
input_player1_r2_btn = "nul" # Right Difficulty A
input_player1_r_btn = "nul" # Right Difficulty B

You can map them by changing "nul" to any key supported by RetroArch. In the default retroarch.cfg, search for "Keyboard Input" for a complete list of supported keys.

 

3. It's generally more convenient to use l-stella instead of official Stella in RetroPie, but there is one downside: hotswapping between joystick and paddle games on the same 2600-dapter D9 isn't easily possible with l-stella. While it's easiest to play most joystick-oriented games using l-stella, for Atari 2600 paddle games using real Atari paddle controllers, it's just simpler to change the emulator used to Stella, as you suggest. With Stella from RetroPie for just paddle games, you launch the game, swap to the paddle controllers on the same 2600-daptor D9, and it just works. This is because l-stella wants to use the pre-configured RetroArch controllers, and it's a pain to make a special controller configuration for swapped-in/out real paddle controllers.

 

The downside of this is you'll have different keyboard controls in Stella vs. l-stella, although if you wanted, you could map RetroArch to keyboard controls that mimic Stella (F1 for select, F2 for reset/start, etc.). If you were to do this, note that there are conflicting hotkeys in retroarch.cfg that are disabled by default (F2 to save state, F4 to load state, F8 for screenshot, etc.) that you should probably remap as well in case you enable them later.

Edited by MrZarniwoop
Clarifying paddle swap issue

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