Raspberry Pi Pico Turns ‘Bop It’ Into a Minecraft Controller

It’s hard to believe that Bop It, the popular handheld game from the ’90s, is over 20 years old. Many new features have been added to the device over the years, but this Raspberry Pi project adds a few more that we haven’t quite seen before.

The best Raspberry Pi projects are ones you can play with, and this Bop It hack was definitely made for gaming. The project was created by maker Seth Altobelli who programmed a Raspberry Pi Pico to interpret input from the Bop It as output for a video game controller.

The Pico registers as a USB device when it’s connected to a computer, and then the computer can recognize any twist and pull from the Bop It as a regular button press. Altobelli even managed to use the Bop It controller in Minecraft—the target game for this project.

Raspberry Pi

(Image credit: Seth Altobelli)

Altobelli had to add a component to control player movement. First, he installed an accelerometer, making it possible to move around in the game by tilting the Bop It. Then he programmed the input, which was arguably the most challenging part of the design process.