I'm talking to the new chip on a breadboard, trying to use a crystal-less approach since we'll be getting USB "start-of-frame" signals from the USB. The good news is... well, it seems to work, seeing as I'm communicating with the chip via USB and I've physically pulled the the crystal out. The bad news, I guess, is that I'm not sure WHY it works
Right now, though... MAN DO WE HAVE MORE SPACE if this works. I uploaded the "BasicJoystick" sketch which is about 22k, and since the old AtMega32u4 had only 32k flash (not counting the bootloader) we were a little close. Now, with about 256k flash, we've got hilarious amounts of room to spare.
Curiously, it's only showing up under "USB Game Devices" as an "Orbo", but it does show the right six-axis sixteen-button report. I don't have a serial port on the breadboard but I ordered a serial breakout so we should have orb comm soon and we'll see what we REALLY have.
But for now... I gotta say, I'm excited again. We should have more progress in the next few weeks, and I'll have to redesign the basic board, but at least we're making steps forward again. If I get a good response from the orb once connecting it, and the breadboard design works, I'll push forward for a PCB and we'll start serious testing. Probably won't make Christmas quite, but we'll be close.