Gaming with FPGA – Yoshi’s Nightmare

Gaming with FPGA – Yoshi’s Nightmare

How about some interesting gaming stuff!

Yes, here we are in the world of FPGA, if we are in this world we should learn with FPGA and we should Play with FPGA. There is no need to explain what is FPGA and FPGA applications, it will be familiar to you guys ( if not, you can find a lot of articles on the Knowledge base provided on our website). Coming to our point, we know that there are a ton of games. Ever thought of implementing a video game on FPGA? let us begin.

Here we won’t be giving you any deep description or code to implement the Video game on your FPGA instead we will guide you on how to implement Gaming on FPGA.

Joseph Conenna has done a brilliant job of implementing Yoshi’s nightmare game on Basys 3, Throughout this blog, we will be referring to this implementation as the original implementation. Here we will migrate Yoshi’s nightmare on the PolarFire SoC Icicle kit (MPFS250T-FCVG484EES).

The Icicle Kit is based on Microchip’s PolarFire SoC, the world’s first FPGA and Linux-capable RISC-V system in a single chip.

Block diagram

The Icicle Kit is that it doesn’t have any native audio/video interface connectors available. Therefore, to deal with it, we should employ an extension module. So we will be connecting the VGA Display Expansion module or HDMI Transmitter Expansion Module. But the only GPIO headers the icicle kit consists of are Raspberry Pi 4 interface connectors. So we will be connecting the expansion modules with these pinouts. It is possible to include audio in Yoshi’s nightmare gaming, but here we are going with only video.

The original implementation uses an NES controller. Since the NES controller was unavailable to us, we will be using a demo gamepad connected to Raspberry Pi 4 interface connectors.



Future works:

This is just the beginning of the FPGA gaming journey with PolarFire SoC. Following is the list of future works:

  • There will be forthcoming articles about FPGA gaming.
  • Various Games with both video and audio features will be deployed on the FPGA.
  • Interfacing wired and wireless game controllers to the FPGA.
  • Migration of MiSTer FPGA cores to the PolarFire SoC FPGA (Icicle Kit).

Stay tuned!

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