Real-Life Pong Is More Like Air Hockey Than Table Tennis

Pong‘s been remade countless times and ported to every platform imaginable, but one fan has taken on the task of turning Pong into a real-life machine. It’s not just a ping-pong table, either.

Daniel Perdomo is making the Table Pong Project, and he describes it as a “real physical version and homage to the first video game ever.” It’s essentially a three-dimensional, physical representation of the video game, with a square ball that bounces back and forth and a paddle on each side. The ball and paddles are attached to the table, so you still play the game in a 2D plane.

Perdomo managed to create a faithful real-life version of the game by using magnets to make the ball and paddles move smoothly across the table’s surface. In an interview with Killscreen, he explained that the biggest challenge was getting these magnets to work properly: “The main challenge was to reach the perfect balance between magnet strength, distance, weight of the ball, and surface type. If the magnets are too weak the ball can’t follow the sudden direction changes, but if the magnets are too strong the friction over the playfield is huge and the ball can’t move fast enough either.”

It’s still in its early stages, and its website states that the team is looking for investors and assistance in making it a reality. But from the video and photographs Perdomo posted, Table Pong looks very promising. Perdomo’s ultimate goal is to bring it to market, if he can secure funding. Maybe in the future the public will be able to try Table Pong out. For now, we’ll just have to be satisfied with the pictures and video.

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