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This is the best Steel Battalion cockpit. Ever.

Charlie Hall is Polygon’s tabletop editor. In 10-plus years as a journalist & photographer, he has covered simulation, strategy, and spacefaring games, as well as public policy.

The fantasy mech simulator so famously fiddly it came with it's own command console and twin joysticks, Steel Battalion, is remembered fondly by fans. Sadly, the stupid-big custom controllers are hard to find in working order these days, and even harder to maintain. When you can get your hands on one, it's worth making a kind of shrine around it. And that's just what the makers of the Big Steel Battalion Box have done.

The B.S.B.B. Mk II is a dedicated Steel Battalion cockpit. The centerpiece is a re-designed controller, featuring custom lighting effects. But it's also a fully encapsulated pod, complete with a rear hatch, rotating seat and a four-point harness. There's even a ventilation system built in.

But the makers didn't stop there. No, they built a coaching station outside the cockpit where an experienced player can don a headset and keep tabs on the new player inside, all the while maintaining the genuinely claustrophobic atmosphere. There's even a black and white, infrared camera pointed at the player inside so you can see their frustration in real time.

It's a little wobbly in places, as the video shows, but it's clearly a labor of love. You can learn more about the build at their website.

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