Recently I had fun hacking the SparkFun Simon Says game I got when I took a soldering class at SparkFun HQ.  The board uses a programmable ATmega chip so with the addition of a simple USB header you can upload Arduino “sketches” into the game and modify its behavior.

I added an easter egg.  It’s activated in a similar fashion to the easter egg that comes pre-loaded with the game (hold down a button as you turn on the device.)  However doing so bypasses the game and puts you in “synth” mode.

The buttons are configured to represent bits in a 4 bit “nibble” (thus the name “NibbleSynth”.)  This allows you to play 15 chromatic notes depending on the configuration of the buttons you press.  This leads to some pretty interesting progressions and forces the player to think in binary a bit if they are hunting for one note in relation to another.

Here is a video of me feebly going up and down the chromatic scale:

Here are some links to the Simon kit itself and a tutorial on how to hack the controller:

http://www.sparkfun.com/products/7947

http://www.sparkfun.com/tutorials/203

And finally, below the fold you will find the hacked sketch to make the “NibbleSynth” easter egg.  All credit to the original authors – I just hacked the crap out of it 🙂  Just copy/paste into your Arduino IDE, follow the instructions in the above tutorial and enjoy!

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