(Topic ID: 279083)

Monty Python & The Holy Grail - Retheme of Demolition Man

By Tranquilize

1 year ago


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There are 76 posts in this topic. You are on page 1 of 2.
23
#1 1 year ago

I've decided to jump in and retheme my Demolition Man into a Monty Python and the Holy Grail. I thought I'd share my progress here. I've been at it about a month so far.

-------------------------
PHYSICAL PLANS
-------------------------

1. The biggest change is probably the car crash lane. I plan to add two controllable drop targets to this lane. I'll be using the drops as locks for MB, similar to TNA. There are already optos there, which will add even more data for the machine to locate balls.

Here are pics of the plan and the drops:

drops.jpg

Controllable drops from pinball life:

pf_coils.jpg

I also plan to turn the rear upkick into a scoop that feeds the primary lower upkick via a new sewer that I'll weld out of metal. I'm also going to add a magnet or up-post to redirect the ball to the pops when needed. This gets rid of the Demo Man reject issue and adds a ball-lock mech.

Here are some pics of the plan:

rear-scoop.jpg

Sewer plans:

sewer.jpg

And lastly, I'm going to do my best to turn the lower upick into a scoop. This one will be tough, but I think it will improve the claustrophobic feel of the center of the PF. If it won't work, I may just leave it as standups. The angle might be weird, but it might work.

Here's a pic of the plan:

scoop.jpg

It may bum some people out, but I'm removing the handles/triggers. I thought of many uses, but after playing the game with normal buttons, I've realized that they actually take away from gameplay. Use of the claw is covered below in rules.

Oh, and I've taken out the metal piece for the eyeball shot. It is now just a standup shot and works great.

-------------------------
HARDWARE
-------------------------

I'm using a P-ROC and remaining WPC boards. I'll be retrofitting custom speakers for good stereo sound out of the back box and a really nice sub. I may just go with a good set of stereo computer speakers that come with a good sub.

-------------------------
SOFTWARE
-------------------------

I'm coding it with MPF, which has been a blast so far. The framework is amazing and challenging at the same time.

Here are a few DMD pics from attract mode:

grail_dmd_1.gif

grail_dmd_2.gif

A placeholder image from Sir Lancelot mode. The timer for the mode is on the left, player score on right. I also have videos that play for the modes when shots are hit.

grail_lancelot.gif

-------------------------
RULES
-------------------------

- The game is presented as you being King Arthur, and you are gathering the Knights of the Round Table and to seek the grail.

- There are 8 modes in the game: Sir Bedevere, Sir Lancelot, Sir Galahad, Sir Robin, tim and the killer rabbit, the black knight, the knights who say ni!, and the black beast.

- The claw will become the hand of God (Deus ex machina). Modes of course have shots, and the claw has paths to almost every area of the playfield. So, the right ramp (God) will allow God to help you. For example, if you are in a mode that requires pops, send it up to god, and he'll automatically drop it into the pops and increase the scoring. Need to shoot the side ramp? God will drop it to the upper flipper to set you up for a big score if you nail it. I have this working well in code, and it is WAY better the controlling the claw.

- One example mode that I'm working on is the black night. For this mode, you must shoot the left ramp, followed by the right ramp (directed by God to your left flipper), followed by right ramp again (directed by God to side flipper), followed by either cave (computer scoop) or side ramp twice. Each shot is a limb hacked off of the black knight. If you finish any of the last two hits after God drops, double points for scoop and triple for side ramp. Regular points if you just shoot either during the mode (without God drop). Hope that makes sense-ish.

- There are 2 main multiballs in the game (and one two-ball in a mode). The drop targets will be the French castle. So in there you will lock balls and get insulted. The MB will involve the drops and trying to defeat the French. The Trojan bunny will be involved as well. The second multiball is Patsy MB and is related to the rear scoop and the pops. Standups will light lock. Two balls locked lights Patsy MB at the rear scoop. MB involves a pop countdown, with the magnet and God delivering shots to the pops. Once the countdown is reached, jackpot is lit at the scoop.

- Other miscellaneous rules: Upper lanes light multiplier Xs in the inlanes. These will be 30 secs-ish pf multipliers. You can light both for up to 3x, and if you're quick enough while it's running, you can light more. The usual max will be 3x though.

- Currently, I have the basic logic for four modes done and most of the fifth. It's pretty scant right now, but it's still pretty fun to play so far.

- The eyeball shot will function as a place for extra ball and potentially add-a-ball during multiballs. I may also move the playfield X shot to the eyeball as it is decently tough. We'll see.

I have all the plans for converting the inserts to function with the game, but I won't bore you with that. I have the translite about half done and a bunch of other art that I'm working on.

I can post a video of some of the gameplay etc. if anyone is interested.

Oh, and I'm likely going to need a second playfield to prep for the final conversion, so if anyone has one that's in good shape, please let me know. I'm also on the lookout for the three python figures (toys) from series one to put in the game.

Cheers,

-Lance

#2 1 year ago

Fantastic wish i had your ability

#3 1 year ago

Looking forward to seeing this progress.

#4 1 year ago

Are you taking offers yet.... Great theme would buy this

#5 1 year ago

Watching with very much interest

#6 1 year ago
Quoted from Yelobird:

Are you taking offers yet.... Great theme would buy this

LOL, it's not even close to built yet. Never know, it might suck!

#7 1 year ago

I'd love to see the video you're referring to! Very cool project

#8 1 year ago

Monty Python is great. Looking forward to following your progress!

#9 1 year ago

One of my all time favorites! Tis but a scratch!

#10 1 year ago

Cool. Will definately follow the progress.

#11 1 year ago

Ohhh , I’m watching this one.

None shall pass !!

#12 1 year ago
Quoted from Tranquilize:

- The claw will become the hand of God (Deus ex machina). Modes of course have shots, and the claw has paths to almost every area of the playfield. So, the right ramp (God) will allow God to help you. For example, if you are in a mode that requires pops, send it up to god, and he'll automatically drop it into the pops and increase the scoring. Need to shoot the side ramp? God will drop it to the upper flipper to set you up for a big score if you nail it. I have this working well in code, and it is WAY better the controlling the claw.

This is just freakin' brilliant.

Following with interest - good luck!

#13 1 year ago

Wow, you have some great fucking ideas for this game! I look forward to watching your progress, best of luck!

#14 1 year ago

Make it a 5 ball game, but it’s really a 3 ball game, because the ball count goes 1, 2, 5.

#15 1 year ago

Thanks for all the encouragement guys!

I'll post a video when I get the logic done for the current mode I'm working on. The mode involves launching successive balls while the lower flippers are disabled. the player has a determined number of shots to hit the cave and side ramp with the upper flipper. It will probably be the black beast mode where you shoot the shots to run away. If you are successful, the artist (Terry Gilliam) dies and you get away.

I've finally finished the translite, aside from some colour adjustment. I created a bunch of different ones and found that the simplest of them turned out the best.

Cheers,

Lance

grail_translite (resized).jpg
#16 1 year ago

What a cool idea. I love that it’s more than just a repaint. Kudos to you and please post info on the programming environment. How hard is it to do this?

#17 1 year ago

Folllwing — Monty python was a theme I considered (as I’m sure a few others have) .. didn’t end up going with it but I am stoked to see someone doing it — great retheme idea!! Love the hand of god idea

2 weeks later
#18 12 months ago

Took a break from software and ripped apart the playfield to add the new sewer, drill the magnet hole and cut the drop target holes.

I built a prototype for the center scoop, and the angle is too far off. That seems to be the only modification that won't fly.

Translite should be available for pickup in the next few days.

Here's the current pf in prep for drilling. Notice Stallone has been blacked out with electrical tape. Nothing says Monty Python like Sylvester Stallone!

IMG_20201024_224532 (resized).jpg

Here is the pile of junk that used to be my office desk:

IMG_20201025_231734 (resized).jpg

Here is the scoop/sewer and guide rails being cut. I should have these fabricated/welded in the next couple days.

IMG_20201025_174647 (resized).jpg

Software is going really well. I'll do my best to post a video when I get everything back together. I have the logic done for 7/8 modes, so one mode, both multiballs and some other random stuff like multipliers to go. Then it will be a ton of sound and DMD work, but that's the most fun!

#19 12 months ago

You are gonna need a Holy Hand Grenade

#20 12 months ago

This pinball machine will be a blessing! A blessing from the Lord! to help make up for 2020 being rather sh*t so far.
Great job so far Tranquilize !

a blessing.gif

#21 12 months ago

Can’t wait to see a video!

1 week later
11
#22 11 months ago

Hey guys,

After many, many minor setbacks (fitting devices under the PF is not as easy as it looks!) my physical modifications are now done! I can finally put this thing back together.

What I have completed:

1. Rear scoop is now a sewer to the primary kickout to the right flipper.
2. There is now a magnet in front of the scoop to divert the ball to the pops or hold there for whatever reason.
3. There are metal rails for the car crash lane and two controllable drop targets.
4. Oh, and the translite is done. Looks great!

I'll post pics for the scoop today and put up the ones for the magnet and drops tomorrow or when I can get a chance to go through them.

Here is my prototype for the scoop/sewer:

scoop1 (resized).jpg

Here is some shaping of the corner on the sewer

scoop3 (resized).jpg

Here is the scoop/sewer pieces balanced and held together before welding

scoop4 (resized).jpg

Welding!

scoop5 (resized).jpg

Welding complete. Later on, I did grind the welds down a little, but it's under the PF, so who cares....

scoop6 (resized).jpg

Original sewer with new hole mated to new sewer.

scoop7 (resized).jpg

Notice the slits beside the scoop. I ended up having to cut the scoop off and add metal to create the right angle. Was a pain in the ass!

That's it for now. I'll post those other pics and will get that video I keep promising up when I get the game back together and wired up. I still need to install the up-post in the sewer. I'm going to use the optos from the car crash lane to detect locked balls there as well. I'll probably wait a while for that as I need a break from fabrication.

#23 11 months ago

Very cool. Will be following.

#24 11 months ago

Good job. Can't wait to see your progress. Insane amount of work!

#25 11 months ago

Very cool. Looking like this could be the best retheme of all time!

#26 11 months ago

Great stuff.
Following this wizadry for sure.

#27 11 months ago

Okay, had a chance to go through the pics for the magnet. I'll post the drops when I get the chance. The machine is almost completely back together. I just need to wire up the magnet and drops. I'm going to experiment with using flasher voltage to control the release coils on the drops, seeing that they are so small. We'll see what happens.

I had a spare AE-23-800 coil, which I tested on the 50V line as a magnet. It worked very well with a plunger installed. I fluked and had some 1/2" rod in the garage, which fits better than a plunger. So I cut a little extra length so the magnet core can be adjusted in the future if need be. Then I welded a washer on the end to keep it in place when the coil is powered.

Here is the 1/2" rod with washer:

magcore (resized).jpg

For fun: I hit the lights and snapped this after welding:

glow (resized).jpg

I had to pick up a 1/2" drill bit, which was cheap at Princess Auto (Canadian Harbor Freight). Aside from being a little scary in the "can't undo this" way, the drilling of the magnet hole was super easy. The hole is measured for the new pathway to the scoop, not the graphics on the pf.

maghole (resized).jpg

Then I needed a mounting bracket. I did some measuring and made a paper one then cut it out of metal. It's a two part bracket. Notice the slots so that it can be adjusted as needed.

magbracket1 (resized).jpg

Coil with mounting bracket. I added gorilla tape on the inside of the bracket and the back of the magnet core so there is no metal-on metal. I'm unsure if the magnatism crossing over the the bracket will cause any issues. Doubt it as all coils are technically magnets.

coil (resized).jpg

Here is the magnet mounted with the bracket. The mounting screws are not even because (long story short) of a change in plans.

magmounted (resized).jpg

Topside view of the magnet. I'll put some milar around it when I get the chance. Should have done this when I had it apart, but what is pinball without squeezing your hands into tight places while conducting sensitive placement of materials?

Notice that there are glued chips from the playfield next to the scoop. Some asshole cut the PF so that the top layer had an overhang. When I pushed the scoop through, up came the chips. I think they had already been this way because of dirt on the edges. When I pressed them down, they came right off. I glued them down with a c-clamp and cleaned it up with some novus 2 - looks better now than the pic. Luckily, you can't even see this zone when playing. Same with the scoop. I might paint it black, but you can't see it with all the ramps etc. back on. *shrug*

mag1 (resized).jpg

Another view of the magnet on the surface of the pf:

mag2 (resized).jpg

A view of some of the underside mods: The scoop and the magnet.

underPF (resized).jpg

I'm hoping to get things wired up tomorrow. I'm super excited to get the drops, magnet and scoop working. I also bought some more lexan to cover the drops lane as I see the first drop will likely cause some air-balls.

#28 11 months ago

Finally got a chance to go through the drop target pictures.

First, here's a pic of the magnet zone with the rail re-installed and the PF cleaned up with some Novus:

magnetcleanedup (resized).jpg

#29 11 months ago

So, I ran into a pretty big problem with the drops. I wanted to mount them on the left side of the playfield, pretty close to the edge. Thing is, the drops come with the release coil mounted on the left if they are mounted the way I wanted. I didn't notice this!

wpc a14615 (resized).JPG

So this meant that I either gave up my dreams of drop targets or go back into the garage to do some serious modifications on both drops. Well, I had the targets already. My plan was to cut the support for the release coil, place it on the other side and weld it back together.

Here's what I ended up with. Not bad...

dropwelds (resized).jpg

Then I knew the actuator arm was going to mirror opposite to what I needed. *Sigh* I thought I might have to fabricate one myself for each drop, which would ahve been a huge pain. Instead, I bent them to be opposite.

The one on the right is bent. Notice the bend has more degredation in the metal. I've had one of these fail in my STTNG, so I don't know how long these will last. Mind you, STTNG was routed in the 90s, so who knows.

bentactivator (resized).jpg

#30 11 months ago

Here is what the drops look like mounted under the PF with the reversed release coils. Under testing, they work great!

I only had a little trouble with the lower one in the pic on account of the old opto holes. I'll eventually be filling all these holes, so the mounting is temporary.

dropsinstalledlower (resized).jpg

#31 11 months ago

Now for the top of the playfield, the scary jobs!

I marked the drop rectangles and drilled holes inside the perimeter.

dropdrill1 (resized).jpg

#32 11 months ago

Then I used a dremel tool to buzz out a few of the holes until I could get my mini hacksaw blade into the hole.

Bit:

dremel (resized).jpg

Saw:

dropdrill3 (resized).jpg

#33 11 months ago

Hole with the plug out. I then used the same dremel bit to slowly smooth out the edges to the lines. Then I used the saw to square up the corners.

dropdrill4 (resized).jpg
#34 11 months ago

Now I have drops that look pretty good up close and really good from a player's perspective. If I were to do it again, I'd do the back one first! I did the front and it's not as nice as the back. Still turned out great though.

dropsinstalledupper (resized).jpg

#35 11 months ago

Now I had the issue of wiring up the drops. Demo Man has four unused 50v lines, and I need 5 --> 2 per drop and 1 for the magnet. I did some consulting and experimentation and was able to turn one of the 20v flasher lines into a 20v solenoid line that is currently hooked up to one of the release coils. They are so small that the 20v is enough to work, and I have it working well in testing. This means that I do not have to lose my knocker, which would have bummed me out as I want to find a creative way to use it like TAF does. As for the flasher line I used, it is on the backboard and I'm going to splice it in with the flasher next to it so both will flash on command. Barely a difference.

I'm hopeing to get the drops and magnet wired and coded tonight. Doubt I'll get it all done, but they should be at least wired.

Then it's back to coding for a while.

Cheers,

- Lance

#36 11 months ago
Quoted from mark532011:

What a cool idea. I love that it’s more than just a repaint. Kudos to you and please post info on the programming environment. How hard is it to do this?

Sorry, missed your question. Better late than never!

How involved is the coding? Well, that depends on your experience with programming. I've heard guys say MPF is easy, but I'm finding it enjoyably challenging, and I've done some minor coding in Java, C++ and python. I'd say it took me about 20 hours to become comfortable with the framework (a simplified version of coding, where most of the heavy lifting is done for you), but I'm still learning. These guys have done a HUGE amount of work on MPF. Some of it is still in development. I've added a few things so far, but I plan to spend a few days adding pages and pages of code to help the framework grow and to simplify it for absolute newbs. Programming involves a lot of logic problems, so if you like those, which I do, it's pretty fun, not to mention good exercise for the ol' noggin.

#37 11 months ago

The PBL single drops come in a left or right mounted version with the mini coil... I think you just needed the right mounted version?

But nice work switching it none the less! Looks great!

#39 11 months ago

You could probably run those release coils off 50V with the drivers from the extra mini driver board fine, even though it's just being used for flashers right now...

#40 11 months ago
Quoted from Mbecker:

The PBL single drops come in a left or right mounted version with the mini coil... I think you just needed the right mounted version?
But nice work switching it none the less! Looks great!

LOL, man I feel like a dork. I didn't even notice when ordering. The weld project was fun anyway, and exchanging from Canada would be a bitch. I probably would have done this anyway. Good to know for ordering replacement actuators when the break!

#41 11 months ago
Quoted from zacaj:

You could probably run those release coils off 50V with the drivers from the extra mini driver board fine, even though it's just being used for flashers right now...

I just ran the one off the 20v, and it's working fine. If I run into issues, I'll switch it up.

#42 11 months ago
Quoted from Tranquilize:

Now I have drops that look pretty good up close and really good from a player's perspective. If I were to do it again, I'd do the back one first! I did the front and it's not as nice as the back. Still turned out great though.
[quoted image]

This kind of project always amaze me. Looking forward to the continued progress pics, and hopefully Knights Who Say Ni callout!

#43 11 months ago
Quoted from Tranquilize:

LOL, man I feel like a dork. I didn't even notice when ordering. The weld project was fun anyway, and exchanging from Canada would be a bitch. I probably would have done this anyway. Good to know for ordering replacement actuators when the break!

Ha! I’ve done similar things so many times now .. I feel ya! I wouldn’t be surprised if Marco only offers the 1 -style vs PBLwhere you get the choice when you add one to cart. Really appreciate the PBL homebrew section.

#44 11 months ago

You definitely need a shrubbery also... one that looks nice, and not too expensive.

#45 11 months ago

Sooo... drops are working perfectly and are all wired up. The magnet, not so much. Silly me didn't understand that a moving, heavy metal (insert Slayer) ball has quite a bit of momentum, especially with my snappy flipper settings. My little magnet coil can't stop a clean shot. I cranked it up until it became hotter than Hades and blew the fuse, and it still wasn't enough.

I dug around in my junk box and salvaged an old Stern coil. I unwound it quite a bit to give it some more power.

Here is what I call my j-pop testing suite.

Coil, meet pizza box:

pizza1 (resized).jpg

The cardboard, magnet-testing, pinball roll hill!

pizza2 (resized).jpg

#46 11 months ago

The new (old) coil will stop the ball well at pretty high hold power (for this coil, anyway). But it also means that my pulse times need to stay pretty low, like 1-1.5 seconds. Beyond that, it's getting into heat hazard territory. Hopefully I can get the timings down in the code; otherwise, I'll have to either try other coils or build a custom coil or stubbornly settle for an up-post.

#47 11 months ago

Do you have anything triggering it besides the left orbit entry switch?

#48 11 months ago
Quoted from zacaj:

Do you have anything triggering it besides the left orbit entry switch?

I'm probably going to have the center ramp switch trigger it at a lower hold power to stop the ball from trickling into the scoop. I thought this wouldn't happen with the new design, but it seems to happen more.

#49 11 months ago

#50 11 months ago
tumblr_meja0imV0O1qg39ewo1_500 (resized).png
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