That’s an excellent question. Lets start with finances. I plan to finance my machine fully with money from ebay sales, any outside jobs, and charity. Ebay sales have been working out real well. In fact I bought my first piece for the arcade back in November 2012. So what did I purchase first, you ask?
This is an Aimtrak light gun from the Ultimarc company, based out of the UK, and it is beautiful. This box set retails for $95, it may seem a little steep but do some poking around and you will find this is THE gun you want for your arcade. It is a very sturdy gun that came highly recommended by many different satisfied users. I looked into a competitor’s more affordable and wireless option but found far too many complaints to consider it as my trusty sidearm.
The front of the gun has a button on each side easily accessible by the other hand’s thumb and forefinger to use as reload and grenade buttons. This kit also includes a 4″ thin black sensor bar that reports the movement of the gun back to the computer as an extra mouse. The trigger is set to the left mouse button and the other two as left click and middle mouse buttons. Most common set ups don’t even require any driver installation. I did, however, have some difficulty getting the gun to calibrate but by following their simple instructions on their website it was a painless set up.
Basically the sensor bar works the same way the receiver on your Wii does. It receives the signal from your device and it tells the PC where the device is. This way, the gun can work on ANY projection device. LED? Check. CRT? Check. 1972 black and white TV with rabbit ears? Check. What about projection screens? Can it be calibrated for a wall? You bet. The sensor bar comes with 2 velcro strips glued to the bottom so it sits firmly on top of the monitor or most any type of display device imaginable. Its only limitation is range which I’m guessing is somewhere around 5 meters, due to the 4 meter USB cable on the gun. Over time, the USB cable on my sensor has been constantly pulling on it so its starting to tilt upwards slightly. This will be fixed when I attach it to the monitor in the cab as I am planning on removing the velcro and mounting it straight to the monitor, making a slight gap in the bezel just to make sure it can still receive a signal.