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they are too close to the screen !

also, yes, thumbs. Also useful for playing human designed videogames, it seems.

Are there controller / any other tools designed for another specie usage instead ?
The fact that in skindeep universe most sentient (especially when including humans, who are by themselves the stark majority) have an human form make making ‘standardized’ equipment more efficient, but i would expect some other group to have some more personalized sets, from pride comfort or practicality.

Who would make the personalized controllers? Especially back when then? Not any official companies, that’s for sure. Having your own controller-line manufactured for non-human hands would be a bit too much of a tip-off. Especially consider how many kids like these would even need it.

It would be possible however. Maybe an electric engineer or clever tinkerer with plenty of resources and time could modify existing controllers (or modify the delivery mechanism) or make their own (although that’s a pretty involved project). Nowadays there are sets for disabled people (Microsoft makes them, I think?) that is centered around a “make your own controller” that could be fitted to someone with non-human hands.

Back then, the circuitry in the controllers was big enough that someone really clever might be able to engineer a mechanical solution. Heck, if they needed a muggle to design a specialized controller, their excuse could be thalimide defects and they want to play with their feet.

That appears to be contemporary with “controllers” that were really just a couple of buttons and a couple of switches. The knob on early controllers was just a regular 12v rheostat like the volume control in the cars, and the switches just shorted together two of the eight wires. The joysticks were only 8-directional, because only 3 of the 8 wires could be spared for them.

Making custom controllers in the Atari/Konami era was dead flat easy. After that we started having controllers that actually sent patterns of bits down the wires to the machine, and you had to either do something actually hard, or reuse one of the manufacturer’s logic boards.

Awesome rendition of my uncle’s Man Cave, there. :D
As someone who has saved up and fixes up their Atari, C-64, and Amiga systems, I can reassure you, even tech-electro-idiots like me can learn enough to fix up the joysticks. Certain games were joystick killers (ex: having to go left-right-left-right crazy fast to get anywhere on the skates in Winter Games) and they did get busted. Didn’t help that big brother and his friends had a habit of smashing controllers when they fudged up, either. Going to dodge off stage again here…*shy*

Actually, in the Atari controllers, 4 of the 8 wires (you said 3 wires) were reserved for up, down, left, and right. Pushing the joystick diagonally would close two switches at once, so you could have up/left, up/right, down/left, and down/right. One wire was reserved for the fire button, one was 5V, one was ground, and the last one was only used if you had paddles plugged in.

I recall long ago I think they developed an NES controller for quadriplegics, but for starters, it wouldn’t work for an SNES (they appear to be playing Mario Kart), but also I don’t think it would work for Jimmy (required pursing your lips and blow into the device, which Jimmy has no lips either).

Super fun fact: Nintendo developed a SNES game with their light scope rifle for military training. You can look that up, it’s a mad expensive collectors item because national security and all that.

I’ve played it. Military took the sensors out of the lightgun and installed them into a non-working A1 rifle and added a semi-realistic back-kick when ‘fired’. It was used for target practice while still at the barracks prior to marksman qualification in Boot. Very boring but I can understand the collector’s value of it.

Who said “controller for non-humans”? Look, this is a controller for handicapped person. It’s all about accessibility. There are plenty of people who, for a reason or another, cannot fully use their hands. Maybe they’re partially paralyzed. Maybe lost part of their hands, or even the entire hand. Maybe they were born like this because of thalidomide. Whatever the reason, why couldn’t these people get to enjoy video games?

The issue with developing controllers for disabled people is that not everyone is disabled the same way. A controller that works with someone who lost a few fingers (or never had them or has fused fingers) or have some sort of neurological diseases will not work for someone who only has one hand. That said, I would be surprised if there were no third-party controllers made even back in the NES/SNES era that was made for disabled people in mind. Probably needed to be mail-ordered and available at high prices with limited quantity in few countries, but a few would at least try.

Again, not impossible to make for a non-human who has enough tinkering skills, a basic idea of how the controllers work and a good workshop. I can imagine someone making a mechanical adapter that doesn’t modify the controller itself but just transfer the mechanical movements through an “add-on” that is fit for non-human hands. But such controllers would have to be at least partly custom-made to accommodate with how each hand for different hybrids are different. Consider how many different angles wrists and fingers and thumbs would be.

I mean, Blanche and Alec said the guy in the music store makes custom instruments for creatures without humanoid hands or even amulets. The 90’s weren’t THAT long ago, I’m sure there would have been someone out there who could mock up a controller, it’s just about knowing circuity and plastics. Back then we had controllers for people with one hand or no hands even.

Look at all the electronics in the room and count the antenna on the roof. I’m betting Uncle Roald is a very crafty guy. This was an era when magazines like Popular Mechanics and Popular Electronics published plans in every issue and you could buy the supplies needed to etch your own circuit boards at any Radio Shack. One of the plans I remember was an electric toy train large enough for kids to ride in powered with hand-wound solenoids and rheostats.

If Uncle Roald is anything like my uncle he could probably carve a working controller out of a bar of soap. And kids will figure out a way to make a controller work for them if it is in any way possible. With a simple joystick it could be as simple as screwing it to a board.

Love your comment! Kinda sad that the best days of those magazines and Radio Shack are gone. It was fun to make things on your own and not have to rely on newest highly complicated electronic that cost an arm and leg …and probably your first-born son too.

They’ll have wait almost 30 years for a commercialy available and widespread controller that’d fit the bill to come out. And when it does, I expect Microsoft’s accessibility controller would be a pretty big hit in the larger Avalon communities that have plenty of kids. It was made to be highly customizable and is compatible with all major game systems; including the Switch. So Mario Kart for all! :)

Mary: Are we…okay with this?

Roald: I mean…no? The kids brought home a bandersnatch.

Mary: It’s only a little one.

Roald: An entire bandersnatch, Mary. One whole bandersnatch.

I think it’s more “Rupert is finally telling Jimmy off!?”

Nope, I think that MattedFont is right. It’s the look of people trying to process something with the thought going in a loop.
“We’ve got a bandersnatch in the house. We’ve got a bandersnatch in the house! What do we do?”

I always looove how you render environments like this. Looking at this livingroom was like getting hit by a semi truck and then launched back to my brother’s house in the early 90s. It was a very good feeling. Thank you for making this story and sharing it with us.

Wood Panel Walls… It could be worst. It could have been Shag Carpet Walls. Those are walls cats can climb… and probably maned griffons.

Our cats were more than usually enthusiastic about climbing, but I assure you wood panel walls are not beyond feline capabilities when there is a rafter-level window to the OUTSIDE involved. Nor are brick walls, wooden bookcases, curtains next to glass they can’t get claws into, or the undersides of stairways when there’s a pet gate across the stairs on top. We had one guy who would cross the ceiling hanging upside down under a beam to get at moths flapping around the light, but eventually gave up when he discovered he had to start all over again from the floor after every pounce.

This prompted us to start trimming their toenails, which they passionately hated. It was hilarious to see them leap onto their accustomed path to the top window and just slide down the wall or worse bounce off, but we didn’t do it just to laugh at them.

How the hell did Jimmy have any friends growing up?

Technically, he didn’t in that, he was friends with family only, at first. This was probably the first time some one pushed back. His attitude was probably because people saw him as a Finn, this generation’s “cursed” one, no less.

The adults look like they’re trying *so* hard not to freak out over the kids’ new friend. Yes, please don’t be racist towards Eleanor. (Or anybody. My parents were _never_ comfortable with me hanging out with children who were Black. It really pissed me off, esp since we were Jewish. You’d think they’d know better.)

And I know this is supposed to be the 90s, but honest to frog aside from the gaming device not being Atari that room looks *so* 70s/early 80s! (Oh wait, there _is_ an Atari system on the side shelf! Guess it was Roald’s. *smiles*)

Having had broken digits, I know for a fact you can put the controller on the floor or table, fix it down with some gaff tape or blutack, and then press the buttons with your fingers, without needing thumbs. I don’t know why the griffin boys all can’t cope with that.

You do NOT give children that age access to duct-tape (gaffer’s tape) or sticky stuff.

Same with hammers and tacks, superglue, or anything that can quickly put holes in things.

My parents did. They were building a house around me at the time. Rules were put down on what I could gaff, and I got into trouble if I gaffed something I wasn’t meant to, but it really wasn’t dangerous. These kids are what, ten? I agree I wouldn’t give it to a 4-yr-old, but a 10-yr-old walks to school without adults and competes in spelling competitions. He can be trusted with tape and blu-tack. Blutack is a grey plasticine used for sticking paper to walls without the use of nails or glue, by the way, you seem to think it’s something else. The whole point of Blutack is that it doesn’t put holes in stuff, and is appropriate for children. Alternatively, you could just stick the controller in a lump of plasticine (which is made for children UNDER the age of 10) and stick it to the floor or table.

Yeah, but then you still got fat ol toe beans that probably aren’t going to be the greatest at pressing only the intended button, and I have no idea how viable using claws to poke buttons would be, but I imagine it wouldn’t be good for the controller.

If his claws are so dangerous that they’d damage a controller, then that couch is toast. As is everything nice in the house. Kids touch everything. I expect they are no more dangerous than fingernails.

Significant looks and married conversation. Just guessing at most of this, but…

“Let’s not do it in front of her, but when she’s gone we’re going to have to say something to the boys about her being a Bandersnatch.”
“Talking about someone behind her back? You’re right, we probably have to. Damn it. But what do you propose we say?”
“If we say Bandersnatches are evil monsters they won’t believe us.”
“Neither would we believe ourselves, I guess. At least a warning how the community’s going to react?”
“Self-fulfilling prophecy much?”
“… You’d rather let them find out from the community….?”
“Oh dear. How do we handle this?”
“How, indeed?”

I’ve rarely commented on your site before and somehow I lost touch with it. Just recently found it again and am SO happy I have! The first four panels here have got to be my all-time favourite ever. I don’t even like the idea of neat little houses with picket fences around them but I’d be more than happy to live there. And the interior of the living room? Oh my, how I love it!!!

Koro, you have put so much detail into it and done it so beautifully! It shows how much this webcomic means to you and how much your readers mean to you too. A huge thank you!!!
(Sorry for all the “so’s” and exclamation marks but it’s so very deserved!)

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