We set out to have some fun with a microcontroller, when we finished we had an electronic dartboard with video display capable of 4 players with 4 distinct games.
Electronic dartboards are fun to play, but we noticed that there were two types, the basic electronic with a cryptic LCD display, and the expensive bar versions with color or monochrome displays. There are no boards with a video display for home use, unless one has a few thousand dollars for a bar version. Thus, we set out to create an inexpensive electronic dartboard with a descent video display.
A Halex Comet electronic dartboard was taken apart, gutted, and rebuilt with a microcontroller with the responsibility to detect a dart hit, generate video, and control the game play. The first step was to read a dart hit; after all, if we couldn't read a hit accurately it would be time for a new project. The next step was to read a hit while generating generic video. Once this was accomplished, push buttons and display graphics were added. The final steps were to program the dart games and make the prototype stand alone. If more time was available more games and graphics would have been added, however, the games chosen are very complex. Some of these steps were simple, others took days to execute, but the project concluded with an electronic dartboard with a 98% accuracy reading that generates video for up to 4 players with the option to play: 301, Cricket, Drinking Game, and Grading Game.