Hack a Day website chief Caleb Kraft and his Springfield, Missouri, team built a pair of giant teetering tabletop mazes. In the game, two players per table compete to race a steel ball through their maze first. The wooden labyrinths proved easy to build, but mild panic set in as the 72-hour mark approached. The builders worked frantically to wire buttons and magnets so that competitors could temporarily trap their opponent’s steel ball. “We finished the electronics within the last half-hour,” Kraft says.
Twin brothers Pat and Mike Murray engaged in more than a few thumb wars as kids, so building a mechanized version of the classic game seemed like a no-brainer. As part of the Maker Twins, an eight-person team based in Scottsdale, Arizona, the duo built steel-and-plywood frames, covered them in foam, and wrapped the units in duct tape. When a player yanks a joystick, their faux thumb moves in the opposite direction. The first to pin an opponent for two seconds sets off a victory buzzer.
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