For the past few years, we've all seen it. Drones are a hot item. The allure of launching one of these crafts into the air and running it through its aerial paces is visceral. And, they're a whole lot of fun.
But figuring out what type of drone is right for each type of potential pilot does require a little bit of thought. If you're turning controls over to a novice, it needs to be a craft with simplified operations–and it better be sturdy enough to survive a few mistakes.
If your new flyer is a child, do you only consider the fun a drone can offer, or do you lean into the teaching moment of it all as well? Should you offer up a gift that's as much about science, engineering, and aerodynamics as it is about actual flying?
The team behind Force Flyers are clearly in the informative camp. But, they haven't forgotten that the play of flying can't get lost in the experience. That's why the company based in Columbus, Ohio has created a whole line of Building Block Drones–tiny crafts that mesh the worlds of STEM training and real aerial fun together.
Each of these kits is like a cross between a Lego set and science class. At their core, these toys are fundamentally still flying machines, each with its own six axis gyro and auto flight stabilization. But, since these flying machines are assembled with blocks in a host of different configurations, builders are going to have to be willing to learn a thing or two about aerodynamics, weight distribution, and the sciences that govern flight if they want to get it up in the air.
Whether indoors or out, each flies with its own digital proportional control for true precision flying with a maximum range of nearly 250 feet. They're also able little stunt crafts as well, capable of pulling off maneuvers like 360-degree flips with no problem. Just charge one up with its easy USB port, and pilots can enjoy their flying time. That's assuming they put the drone together correctly, of course.
The flagship of the line is the Heli, which is a very traditional quadcopter design.
Then there's also the Fly and Drive collection, featuring four vehicles, which can be configured as both a drone and also a ground vehicle to maximize their playability. They each come with their own unique color schemes, accessories, and tiny figures, from the space flyer and auto racer models, to drones built for police officers, firefighters, and even the military.
- DIY Building Block Fly and Drive Drone (Racing) – $27.99; originally $40
- DIY Building Block Fly and Drive Drone (Space Racer) – $27.99; originally $40
- DIY Building Block Fly and Drive Drone (Police) – $27.99; originally $40
- DIY Building Block Fly and Drive Drone (Fire) – $27.99; originally $40
- DIY Building Block Fly and Drive Drone (Army) – $27.99; originally $40
Finally, there's also a Space Fighters collection, including another four crafts that look like they may have been inspired by a certain popular film series. Whether you like the look of the Star Destroyer or the Snow Speeder, the Sidewinder or the Command Shuttle, each is ready to hit the skies and defend the galaxy…or at least, your living room.
- Space Fighters Building Block Drone (Star Destroyer) – $27.99; originally $40
- Space Fighters Building Block Drone (Snow Speeder) – $27.99; originally $40
- Space Fighters Building Block Drone (Sidewinder) – $27.99; originally $40
- Space Fighters Building Block Drone (Command Shuttle) – $27.99; originally $40
Each Building Block Drone retails for $40, but when you use the promo code BFSAVE20 at checkout, you can get access to early Black Friday prices for only $27.99.
Prices subject to change.