Ultra Awesome: Ideas time!

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Ideas time!

Oh no! The evil Space Invaders have descended upon earth and they're demanding ideas for their....um....idea powered space ship!

Alright, so with the sudden overwhelming positive reception of my NES controller coffee table, I feel the need to outdo it (1UP it, even).
So I thought I'd ask the people of the internet for possible good ideas for future video game related furniture/artwork/creative things that I could try bring to life, and create more step-by-step/how-to style posts.

At the moment I'm thinking of making some sort of space invaders belt buckle using some of those wooden counting block things from primary school;
Perhaps paint them white or green and glue them together (using wire to connect the diagonal ones), and attach a belt clip to the back.

I've also been thinking that I need a better shelving solution for my video game consoles, I've now got 35 consoles at the moment, seriously, look;

bah ha! The Xbox takes up one whole shelf by itself!
And this photo was taken before I got my Famicom, Vectrex and ZX Spectrum.

I'm thinking I want some kind of modular shelving system where the shelves are made of individual boxes that stack on top of each other (like those Tetris shelves by Brave Space Design), and each shelf cavity has it's own power and AV plug, which all run back to a single output plug to the power point/TV.
That way, each console can have it's cords wrapped up next to it and still be plugged in, rather than having to run all the cords out to a power board where they're all tangled and shit.

So yeah, If anyone else has some nice ideas that they'd like to see possibly made, and explained how it was made, post it in the comments to here, and we'll all try to decide which one is the most ultra-awesome idea!


Anonymous said...

gosh!! you have a huge console collection! you are my idol...

I only have these:
- GAMEBOY (grey): 2
- ATARI 2600
- AMIGO (Atari 2600 clone console)

i'm over a sega mastersystem II, sega dreamcast and PS2 (my brother's one eheh) and I think i can get my old game&watch somewhere in my parent's house wardrobe.

i'll usually check out your blog for sure!!

Anonymous said...

You are like the king of pure awesomeness!

Florentin said...

Hi Ultra Awesome,
I was so impertinent to insert your NES cofee table on ki55.org, my e-commerce platform and "interesting project" directory. Now is in beta, but maybe you should not refuse another little pubblication.
This is also an invitation for you to subscribe to ki55, and start posting. I think you are focused like us on new idea scouting.

Florentin Hortopan

crescent fresh said...

I see we have the same problem. I, too am searching for a way to not only condense my systems but keep cords from being tangled, in an interesting and fun way. Because shelves are lame. (Although those tetris shelves are pretty sweet and I do need a new bookshelf) What I want to do is build cabinets for each line of consoles, in arcade game fashion. One for Sega, one for Nintendo, and a Sony and a Microsoft box. Four 27" tvs would be cheap used, garage sale, or donation stores. The cabinet below with two or maybe three shelves for systems, as you already have made a place for games. Good to keep an SNES and and SNES with Super Gameboy. Sega Genesis, And one with Sega CD and the 32X. If you're making the room you might as well avoid wear and tear, right?
I have a living room large enough to put them along the wall and run a couple of AV outs to my theatre system, and because because nothing beats sitting on my ass twenty feet from a nice big tv, I've got controller extensions or wireless for everything except NES (and btw I'm imagining they would be very easy to make)
I could go on but I think I've painted a pretty decent picture.
So what do you think, good or bad idea?
Oh you know but one thing I was thinking of as trouble would be mounting arcade sticks. The Saturn sticks wont plug into the Genesis. NES into the SNES. And I don't have arcade sticks for PS or Xbox. So, for Sega and Nintento I was thinking of a flip-top style but I'm not exactly sure how smooth that could end up being. Other controllers could just be run through a small hole above the cabinet door. Or use wireless.
Now that I think about it, I do have a couple wireless NES controllers. They're terrible. Ha.
Anyways, I need to get myself some wood and start building.

Unknown said...

Hey Crescent Fresh,

That sounds like a pretty sweet idea.
So you'd make 4 arcade cabinets, would they each be unique, or would you make them all the same, just with different marquees etc.?

It would be pretty cool is you made a Donkey Kong replica cab as the Nintendo one, a Virtual Fighter cab for the sega consoles etc. I'm supposing that's what you were thinking anyway though.

So yeah, you'd have a powerboard mounted in each cabinet, so the only cord coming out is the power plug (and the AV cords for the theatre system)?

For the arcade sticks, I think you should mabye just make one arcade stick, that you can swap between each of the cabinets.
And just do what I did with my stick; wire the buttons out to a male 9-pin plug, then just hack one of each the consoles controllers to have a female 9-pin plug.

I'm thinking for my shelving solution i want to try a bit of wood carving. So I'm thinking of making a really intricate old style floral-carved wooden shelf, with all these video game references carved in among the intricate designs.

Anonymous said...

just thought i would let you know that you nes table is today's day of fame! check it out http://www.dayoffame.com

Anonymous said...

I mean to include a link Day of Fame


Anonymous said...

I have been toying with this same dilema for quite some time now. I have decided to remove the back wall of one of my closets, and building some type of shelving system that would also house my tv (basically an in wall media center). This way all the cords are hidden away inside the closet and it is all accessible from the backside (no more contorting your arms impossibly to mess with the wires). I would recommend slat doors to allow for ventillation. Just an idea.

You should do something with one of the greatest NES games ever made: "Bubble Bobble". That would be SUPER AWESOME.

Anonymous said...

you could always make a MAME arcade cab if you have some old PC parts lying around. seems like you are pretty good at carpentry so wouldnt be a problem for you!

Anonymous said...

Please do something Atari!!!

Anonymous said...

Hi There!

I also live in Melbourne and was wondering how much you would charge to make one including cost of material and of course your time.

If your interested my email is w.angelo@pauze.com.au



Anonymous said...

Hi Kyle,

For your shelving type arrangement have you thouhgt about lighting to?
Since reading this i have been thinking, it would be possible to wire a relay into every console that in turn turns on a light in the relevant "box" in the cabinet where the console is. Thouhg it depends as that would be a pretty hefty task stripping all your units and fitting a relay to all the power switch terminals! But it is givin me this imagein of a wall of say 8x8 boxes, all wiht a console sitting in the middle on a glass plateur, and when you turn it on the box lights up - cathodes would be good. You could also then control all these lights via a pc if you can get hold of a nice interface (phidgets probably do somethign that will control this) and have any esperience programming - and then - you might already see where this is going - you could have a "tetris shelf" but it is only defined as that when the lighting show is enabled and all the boxes illuminate their colour (grouped as the tetris blocks).

I dont know if you will be able to understand what im getting at!

The power distribution is quite easy i think, if you have a fake wall at the back, with a cavity a few inches deep behind it, you could fit sockets behing the wall for each console - then just have the power coming is as a standard kettle lead - you could also build some surge protection into the unit as a whole (not many people can brag about a shelf unit with surge protection :P).

The lights could all be run off a pc power supply - which could also be used to power some kind of active cooling. i was thinking a 120mm fan next to the power sockets behind the fake wall that blows through some holes to the console being played - this could also be turned on and off with a relay.

I dunno, just thouhgt it up on the spot!

Anonymous said...

I am a web of ideas!.. web.. ideas? Why am I thinking spiderman?

OK. idea brainstorm time.
At first I thought of Mario Mushrooms that could be used like pink flamingo on lawns.. or footstools.

But that's easy and less awesome than your NES coffee table.

Gameboy tv entertainment unit? Just to match your coffee table.

I'd love to see someone make a jewellery box out of the old sega master system consoles. Mmm possibly something I'll try out

Dude, if you could make a lifesize remote control Mario Kart. That would be sweet. Or better than the Tetris shelving unit.. a pacman themed unit. With the basic maze.. maybe a few white dots and ghosts here & there. Don't forget the ever important cherry.

It's 11pm so mind my "dude" "awesome" and "sweet!"

Really love your work and can't believe that arcade machine was made by you.

- Tamz

Anonymous said...

you should make "piggy banks" out of what looks like an Xbox 360 standing up. Or buy a PS3, take the crap thats inside it out, use the shell as a piggy bank, since thats all it would be good for. Or get like 1000 AOL trail CD's and put them on your walls... that would look sweet. And this I have been thinking of for a while, i dont have any ideas for what to do, but im sure this will give you lots... Get regular wooden shelves and use paper mache (if thats how you spell it) and im sure theres tons of stuff you can do.. Like, I was thinking icicles hangng of the shelf, or slime. (out of paper mache of course) Like, there is tones of ideas!

Anonymous said...

thats a killer collection..all i have is an xbox 360 and a nintendo 64.

my dad once, for their pc, put 2 switches (one for the pc and one for the speakers) on the inside of the computer desk out of site..i don't know how though. but i think that would work..it'd keep each consoles cables in their own area. you could also make shelves/boxes in shit out of some variety of wood....and as you mentioned about the tetris boxes...make them tetris shape shapes so they fit together nicely...

this comment probably comes a little too late though.
props on the NES controller coffee table too..
you clever mother fucker

Anonymous said...

also, you should make a space invaders belt buckle with little moving bits..so it looks like the game.
with the ship and what nots..
but thats going a little far.

Unknown said...

Hi margo baggins,

I understand what you're saying there, that does sound like a pretty sweet idea with the lights.
You wouldn't need to fit a relay to each console, you could just have the lights connected to the power sockets. That would also act as a good reminder to turn off all the consoles at the wall when I'm not playing them.
I definitely would build a surge protector into the unit, I'd hate to destroy all my consoles in one swift flick of a switch.

To anonymous:

Holy crap! That sounds like a fookin' brilliant idea! Pac Man shelving! And like some wooden Pac Man and ghosts figurines that can be placed randomly around the shelf!
If I don't end up making that, I REALLY hope someone else reads your comment and does!!!

Anonymous said...

lol, the tetris shelves look awesome, just be careful not to stack the too space efficient or... well you know. boom there goes half your collection.

Anonymous said...

dude, i watched your video on youtube featured...it is pretty sweet. you just inspired me. im gonna have to live up to that. i got another table/controller idea for ya. you should try making the optional sega saturn controller into a kitchen table. that would be pretty cool.

Anonymous said...

ERrrr... you can try and have a big PS2 or PSX Controller aswell!

Seriously, you are awesome man.

ELrC said...

You should make a couch that is a playstation remote or a psp table that would be cool

Anonymous said...

First off, that coffee table is "teh schmexehest schwank" pieces of furniture ever. I want one. I love you for posting pics of how you made it and I am totally going to make one! (If anything it'll be smaller scale)

I'm not sure just by looking, but I think that arcarde type console in the corner is actually a TV stand right? If it is, I think my idea is pointless because you have one, but I was thinking of something similar only shaped like the original grey Game Boy. The buttons would be wired to work:
D-pad up/down: channel up/down
D-pad right/left: volume up/down
Start: power on/off
Select: menu/system if the TV had such a function...or TV/Video
I don't know what's left for A and B buttons...oh well that's my two cents!

PS: your collection puts me to shame u_u

Anonymous said...

It's most likely nothing new, but I was thinking it would always be cool to mod an arcade machine to store a console and be able to play the games for it through the arcade's controls. Give it a paint job to reflect the look of the system it's using and I'm sure it would be awesome.

Anonymous said...

so how do you use all those consoles on one tv?? are you using like a switcher box... cuz i dont think a switcher can switch between like 22 consoles cuz thats how many i have and i hate disconnecting and reconnecting another console....

Anonymous said...


i had an awesome idea:

why don't you make a lampshade and attach hmm... space invaders to it and when you turn on the lights at night you get... SPACE INVADERS IN YOUR ROOM!!

eh ? it isn't as awesome as a super NES controller but it's still cool ;p

Ryan von Schwedler said...

hey bud,you are doing pretty cool stuff

Anonymous said...

just brainstorming here and i thought of a few game based shelf ideas.
1. a donkey kong shelf system, you know the origanel game, but straten out the girders, like a shelf, and then paint or make a donkey kong, mario, oil rig, or possibly a barrel or two
2. A triforce based shelf system, kinda like this
a square shelf with a triforse in the middle, so you would have like 10 different spots

Anonymous said...

Make a SNES controller, and play Super Metroid. :3 I would worship you forever.

Anonymous said...

Get a PS3 or 360, or something cool....

Anonymous said...

I think that you.... are the MOST AWESOME VIDEO GAME PLAYER EVER!

I think I have a very interesting project you could try out.

Its a mirror only in the shape of the Nintendo DS!

You could have it enlarged (like you NES controller table) so that there are like two seperat standing mirrors. Like, one side has the top screen with the speaker holes and then the other side has all the buttons, the on off button and the sound switch. And you could detach them from each other so you can have them in two seperate places.

Just a thought. Hope you like it ^_^.

~Your number one fan Tsuki-chan

Anonymous said...

I think you should paint your wall as a giant Super Mario 3 game play screenshot

Anonymous said...

i don't think i completely understood, this may have been what you were saying but i would make the shelving system (in my mind the tetris shelves or some kind of modular shelving) have the power plugs in the wall and the system itself be a large....switch type thing. Where each system in its square plugged directly into the shelf system and the system had a switch that told it which box to come from and have one cord from the shelves to the T.V.
hope that wasn't too confusing.

Profoundlybound said...

where did you get that mini-link sitting in front of the n64? I want one too!

Unknown said...

Hmm...I kind of like the light up idea, but instead of the console lighting up, maybe just the tetris box it's sitting in? It will probably be a more cautious way of wiring than putting your systems in danger.

Also, if you hate plugging and unplugging consoles to TVs, there is a box now where you can plug in multiple video/audio wires to it, so with just a simple flip of a switch it switches between one console to the other to avoid having to plug and unplug all the time.

And maybe the Pacman shelving could be applied to another location of the house instead of taking up an entire wall in your room? Like at the university art gallery I visited about a year ago, someone made little Pacman ghost cups which looked like a ghost when it was sitting upside down, but you could flip it over to use as a cup (only the top was rounded, so I guess you would have to make a stand for it to sit on). It would be a cute addition to a kitchen, but unfortunately I know nothing about ceramics or glassblowing to make one (as I am a 3D modeler as well XD). Perhaps I could attempt to get into a glassblowing class ^^;

You should also post more of your university work. It's always great to see other people's progress (and qualms about their program they use, mine being 3Ds Max and hopefully Maya next semester) to learn from :D

Unknown said...

I'm thinking an xBox armchair...L and R could be pedals, fingerpad would be left armrest, size of a hand maybe, then a left thumbstick could be there as well, right armrest has theabxy buttons and the right thumbstick, thumbsticks could be like the size of tennis balls or whatever. I think that would be the sickest chair ever.

meira said...


i just wanted to let you know that fang (me) created this account on blogger ;p

and don't forget my space invader lampshade idea, please x)

Anonymous said...

dude.... i love yur coffe table...it rocks..but anyways, I ha2 suggestions

1)you should make more tables lie that, maybe 10 or so, and sell them on ebay...

2)you should also make an SNES controller coffee table...that would be SSOOOOO sick!!!

but anyways, this pure genius or however u spell that, but u roc dude

Zacko said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Zacko said...

Bomberman shelf? i mean think about it, the original bomberman was for nes, so it wouldnt be too elaborate or hard to make.Not to mention the classic bomberman level layout is completly shape customizable, becuase you blow them up anyways right? i hope your getting the picture of what im trying to say. the beauty of it is you can shape the shelves however you want to.

Unknown said...

where's the dreamcast?

underroutine said...

why buy those shelves when you can make them check out instructables


Anonymous said...

Awesome work. I wish I had the time, tools OR supplies to do something like that. I've got a space problem in my room that's got my TV stuck in a closet, and my computer sitting next to a flimsy CD/DVD/VHS cabinet with the monitor sitting on top. Dangerous stuff, and I can hardly see my TV sometimes. I really need to come up with a solution for that.

For your shelving concerns, however, how about one of the big castles from the first Super Mario Brothers? You could use the space on top of the towers to display select consoles, and create doors where the windows would be to hide away others. Put the whole shebang on rollers, and it makes getting to the back a whole lot easier. Hard-wire plugs into the sides, rather than the back, so you can either leave the back open or put doors in the back, and put the AV inputs on the opposite sides as the power, with an AV switch perhaps built into the front of the caslte. As a bit of a crossover, if you wanted, you could add a Legend of Zelda pyramid onto the castle.\

I don't know why, but Zelda has always been one of my favorite NES games. That and Dragon Warrior, but what can I say, right?

Biggest problem I could see you needing to overcome with the Camelot de Gameage is consoles that use top-loading cartridges, such as the SNES and the Sega Genesis. Perhaps those can sit atop the towers? I dunno.

On a completely different note, I would love to see a computer desk made in the style of that arcade console thing you've got. If I could, however, I think I would build it as the case for the computer, that way the CD drives and etc would still be accessible, with the computer built into the back, with storage for disks, drives and whatnot in the swinging door, and the monitor built into it, again, much akin to your arcade console box.

Just a few ideas.

Anonymous said...

This is definately an amazing blog by the way. I am both an avid video game lover, and craftsman/ woodworker as well.

just a quick note, one of the posts mentioned extensions for the controller cables. I have previously done an incredibly simply mod in order to extend the cable to my super scope sensor. All of my consoles or on a shelf along the back wall of my living room, and the tv is on the front wall. I bought an old snes controller extension and cut the whire. I then bought a good amount of speaker wire and just spliced the cords with the speaker wire, bound it all up, and it works great. It extends it by 25-30 feet.

saza said...

I like ur NES Coffee table. It's really awsome! Unfortunately, I can't thing of a better idea at the moment :P , so the only thing I can do is post your idea request at my blog :D

saza said...

Hey, I like you NES coffe table, it really awsome! Unfortunately, I can't thing of any new ideas at the moment :( , so the only thing I can help you is post your idea request at my blog :D

Robbie said...

Very cool.

How have you managed to get so much traffic to your blog?


Anonymous said...

Congrats on the Day of Fame!

Check it out!


scamp said...

heya lol looked at ur space invader and took it a bit bigger to a 8-bit mario lol also made the space invader but not as clean howd u mkae it like stragt and all that lol when heres how i made my mario hope you all like it http://www.instructables.com/id/8-bit-mario-cube/

scamp said...

heya i made my own version of ur space invader also i made a 8-bit mario liek it color tho lol http://www.instructables.com/id/8-bit-mario-cube/

jessica.celion said...

awesome post i like it

jasmine celion

Anonymous said...

I really think your next idea should be the Gameboy Color.

It would be really awesome, but it might take a while.
I guess the longer it takes to make it the better it will be.
We can wait.
Here is a good size picture of the Gameboy color.

Anonymous said...

Mate that rocks
So many hours spent playing super mario in my youth
1 question whats with all the random yarrrring ?
Also your asteroids cab rocks. You did an excellent job on the side art there are a few comments from the guys on www.aussiearcade.com
Have you thought about a dropdown spaceinvader bookshelf from the roof there is so much wasted space in roofs would be cool haveing the invader drop from the ceiling

Anonymous said...

Hi Ultra Awesome

Nice effort.

If you need inspiration feel free to have a look at an Aussie Based Arcade Forum, where members also discuss projects.


Search for Asteroid for a members unique MAME cabinet..


Anonymous said...

you the man.

Evan Minsker said...

Have you considered making your shelves in the style of the original Donkey Kong game? Like, with Donkey Kong at the top, random barrels and obstacles in the way, the princess, mario, the random things moving up and down - it would be a cool piece of sculpture and a cool way to store your games.

Unknown said...

What might be really simple to do is a black carpet with three green aligators (like in pitfall). GREAT job with the table

Unknown said...

Oh, a desk top lamp with Ryu doing a radouken would be awesome too

Anonymous said...

okay. i love you. lol. beautiful awsome table. you want ideas.... its 5 am and im delerious thinking how awsome would it be if you create like giant well not giant replica of sockem bopem the whole shabang with like built in chairs in the robots used to controll them. comfy robot fight/living furniture. that would be the coolest. it would take forever. but you would be legendary. if not thats cool too. either way chat at me i found you through google but my myspace is www.myspace/the_wannabe_actress (i know gay url i was like 13 lol)

Anonymous said...

Perhaps you should consider boxing up some of the extras and building an emulation box.

Or, at least box up the extra systems. You don't need two friggin' PS1s or Super Famicoms hooked up (not that I'm one to talk, but I only have my PS1 hooked up for import games and my PS2 hooked up because I have a 40 gig PS3). =|

My setup is actually pretty big, but I've managed to downsize on the number of systems I have hooked up because of a little miracle I like to call "reverse compatibility". =]


Unknown said...

you're Really. ultra awesome...
man i wish i could people like u personally! keep iit up - awesome -
about the shelf. i think is pretty awesome in that way... you're so clean and clear for a human being.. oh god

Miguelito said...

hi Kyle:
First of all, congratulations on your blogs. It is, in deed, awesome.
I'm a chilean architect and I write a monthly column of design in a technology magazine called "Cerouno", nd I would love to publish your NES Cofee table.
If you could send me high res images to bgoni@uc.cl woud be great. i promise I'll send you later a copy of the article.
Benjamín Goñi

Nightmare said...

I would like you to contact me so we can discuss your future in the world of manufacturing and design. Check out some of the stuff that My company does; www.winntech.com. and I look forward to hearing from you.


Nightmare said...

Kyle, Please contact me concerning your awesome abilities! My CEO want me to talk to you about employment stateside.

M. Walker

Sie Whange said...

Awesome post i like.You should make a couch that is a playstation remote or a psp table that would be cool.

Viva La Rocket said...

Well Hello Ultra Awesome
youre like the future me haha, i also got big collections of video game stuff haha but mostlu nintendo cause im a HUGE nintendo fanboy.

Well lets cut to the chase.
I was thinking of making a shelving system like this:
make boxes of lets say 40x40x40cm (yes im european haha) or however you want them just keep them squared, and make them out of small "floating bricks" or "floating ? blocks" from the mario game:
all glued together like lego bricks
########### each # presents a
#+++++++++# floating brick.
#+++++++++# each + presents space

then doing this you got one module
of wood (carve the patterns out). and then spray paint it brown for the floating bricks and yellow for the ? bricks and make decals for the rest you get the idea hopefully
then you can stable the moduls on each other (all totally squared) and form the retro sprite of mario:


so each modul presents a pixel so you got yellow and brown and red for instance then you got you whole mario shelving system in a fancy way, then make it a semi idea (combine it) with some of the other guys ideas fx the idea about light in each box and so on

well i well be doing this anyhow so i may post it when i finish hehe XD

Viva La Rocket

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Michal said...

Hi There... saw your article in Otaku magazine and thought I'd check out the site. Nice work ^_^.

I think the shelving system idea is great. I have a number of older gaming systems and they are unfortunately all sitting in boxes. I don't have much time to play these days, but I've always wanted to set up a display case for them.

I think my ideal setup would be in part similar to how you described yours, but including a way to connect each system individually. I think it would be great to have a big "selector" type unit, or maybe a couple, that would allow any of those systems to be actually used. So yeah, I think you were planning that too...

Additionally, my idea was to keep this entire setup under glass and closed off so that the systems don't collect dust, plus add filtered ventilation so that they don't overheat (which wouldn't be necessary for all of the systems probably.

A combination of utility such as you described, and aesthetics to make it almost like a museum display case (with lighting) would be perfect I think.

Take care,


Jesslyn said...


I wouldn't make it a fully functioning controller, no; but have where your back leans against, the controller. Where you grip your hands on the controller, have those be arm rests!

Anyways. A less poofy sort of cushion would be ideal, to attempt to give it a sleek, plastic look. You should try it! Make a black or blue one for yourself, and then make a pink one for your lovely girlfriend! Good luck, mate.

Also, typo on your website: "To photographed my motorbike" (take off the 'ed').... from the ideolab page.

Jesslyn said...

Also... My boyfriend only has... 3 consoles. But what he did was plug all of them into this box that, when he switches 'AV' on that box, it'll go to all the consoles, plus his stereo and dvd player.

You'd need a few of those... but that eliminates any plugging, and unplugging. One time hook up. Something like that! Maybe keep similar things with others. Small idea, small solution, or temporary solution.

PC PowerSupply Job Tickets said...

Dude! You got it bad!! I thought I liked video games. I'm but an amateur at best. One word "WOW"!!!