Drone Fighter quadcopter review from an enterprise perspective


    On our RC Land playgrounds, we use Byrobot's Drone Fighter quadcopter. There was already an overview of this quad on the hub , so I will not repeat a detailed description of the control, battle system, etc. This is a review from the perspective of a company that uses this quadrocopter for commercial purposes as a rental.

    I apologize in advance for the quality of the photos below. Taken on the phone, not processed - did not even manage to take a couple of quadra to the studio to remove normally, the load on the playground was too high.

    The combat system The

    ability to conduct real battles is the first point that we paid attention to. A unique feature that has no analogues in quadrocopters. And this is what you need for commercial success.

    1st plus - shots have a certain direction in space. Yes, due to the scattering of infrared rays in air, the coverage area is quite large. From two meters you can hit 3-4 opponents with one shot if they are close to each other. A sort of “multikill”. But getting into the one behind the player is unrealistic. It seems like an obvious thing, but having a huge advantage - the player needs to maneuver and aim at the enemy in order to win. Just take off and shoot into space is not effective.

    2nd plus. The “lives” are finite. It also seems elementary, but it is precisely the limited amount of HP and the manifestation of victory / defeat that give the player an understanding that he can both win and lose. This motivates for active actions, makes you constantly calculate the flight path of yourself and the enemy, in order to strike in time, without falling under enemy fire. As part of the 5–5 battle, this is extremely difficult, which means greater pleasure if successful.

    3rd plus. Team game. The Drone Fighter combat system does not have the ability to arrange a deathmatch. There is no “friendly fire." This brings the team together, makes them act together. Players who come to us constantly are already starting to think through a strategy. Of course, while this is all quite primitive, in the style of “you fly to that corner, and we two will bypass them from the side”, but it gives the prospect of developing sports discipline from these fights. In addition, the phenomenon of “a team of parents versus a team of children” is quite common. In the case of adolescents who have only two thoughts in their heads: how to assert themselves and why my parents don’t understand me, such games contribute to mutual understanding in the family. After the battle, players on both sides have something to discuss.

    4th plus. Special abilities. These are keyboard shortcuts that give the quad some unique ability for 10 seconds. For example, complete invulnerability. Or the ability to invert the opponent’s controls. There are five of these “perks”, each of them can be used only once per battle. Thanks to these things, it becomes impossible to constantly use the same tactics, in addition, the numerical superiority of the team is not a guarantee of victory. Once, in front of my eyes, a player who remained one of his team managed to defeat four opponents by correctly using these same special abilities. Because of them, every battle is unique.


    An important feature that we did not pay much attention to at first. Drone Fighter is modular. It can be easily disassembled without any tools in one to two minutes. What does this mean in practice? It is easy to replace a failed part. Motor lost traction? 5 seconds, and the player soars up to the ceiling with a new motor. Did the blade break? It doesn’t matter, we have their cart and a small cart. The ability to quickly fix a quadrocopter, using native parts worth a penny, is very, very important for the enterprise, especially at the start, when the business is not yet profitable.


    This is a special song. The first batch of quadrocopters, which we ordered right before launch, turned out to be the usual market option. Over 20 days of work, 5 devices failed. This implies that the most important part has been covered - the board, which is also the basis for the quad. After each dead quadrocopter, a slight panic began. It was easy to calculate that in a month and a half we would have remained without apparatuses at all. And working with 5-6 working quadras is also not an option.

    Contacted the manufacturer, outlined the situation. This breakdown is suitable for a warranty case, so we were sent 10 free second-generation amplified boards for free. It turned out that the current market option is not particularly suitable for commercial activities, flying perfectly in the hands of one owner, who values ​​and values ​​them. But we have those who fly clearly and accurately, and there are those who carefully apply the quadra to the ceiling or to the walls. Therefore, the boards could not stand it - the load is too high. However, Byrobot has already made boards with enhanced soldering and a more solid base. At the time of ordering, these boards were not yet included in the release, but the manufacturer promises to put them on sale in November. More than a month has passed since the beginning of the use of these boards, and not one has yet broken. Pah-pah. Equipment consumption again returned to normal.

    On the left is an ordinary board, on the right is a reinforced one. Find 10 differences, yeah.

    The remaining parts have a fairly high strength. The protection of the blades generally breaks on major holidays, only four in 2 months. Screws get chipped more often, about 2-3 per week.

    With motors, too, a special situation. They quickly lose their moment of rotation, the device becomes less frisky. When it comes to the fact that it does not take off at all, the motors change. But the whole nuance is that if they “lay down” a couple of days, they again begin to work normally. Therefore, in the table we have a special box with the inscription “Sleeping tired motors”, where they are waiting in the wings. Since the launch, only 6 motors have completely failed.


    This is also of great importance. 40 LEDs are not a joke. The color designations of the front and tail of the quadrocopter perfectly help to navigate in the air when it is not visible where the long part of the body is and where the short. Team colors allow you to distinguish opponents from teammates. Well, and the indication of various states - shot, hit, special ability - all this allows players in real time to understand what is happening to them and the enemy.

    And a pleasant trifle - brightly glowing and buzzing quadrocopters attract the attention of those who walk past our boxing in the shopping center.


    When 12 absolutely identical devices are on the table - it's pretty boring. Therefore, we immediately thought about how to personalize them.

    Fortunately, the manufacturer turned out to have sets of protections and blades of different colors. We ordered a full range, except for blue, it was not available at that moment. Then they began to think about stickers.

    Four stickers of different colors are included with the quad. Unfortunately, their visual style is too monotonous. Therefore, we developed our own design of stickers on the case, and also gave each quadrocopter its own name. Our squadron has the Death Star, Optimus Prime, the god of war Ares, and even Ebola.

    The main model of this post is Mars itself.

    The individual names of the quadra facilitate the communication of the coach with the players. It is much easier to shout “Amanita - defeat!” Than to remember the names of the players, and then endlessly apologize, because I mixed it up. And the players themselves have their “personal” quadrocopters - coming back again, they choose the same device that they flew the last time. Although, of course, we still try to get to know the client, because personal contact is always more pleasant.

    And, most importantly, due to the different color of the devices, the players do not have any confusion about whose quad. They always see their own, there is no funny effect when you look at someone else’s quad, and you think that you control your own.

    Working hours

    The scourge of all multicopter is a short flight duration on one battery. Different manufacturers solve this question in different ways, if at all. In most cases, the situation is this - you fly for 15 minutes, then you charge the battery for an hour. Byrobot solved the problem more elegantly.

    The standard equipment includes a charging cradle for one battery connected via USB to a computer. But in addition, you can buy a charger for four batteries immediately, powered by a network. Of course, for us this option is preferable, also because it charges 20 minutes faster than a USB adapter.

    Flight time on one battery is 10-12 minutes. While the quad is flying, four batteries are charging. As soon as the battery is depleted, a new one is put in a couple of seconds - and the flight continues. In fact, it allows you to fly endlessly. We bought 20 chargers for 12 quads, but only 12 are connected, and this is more than enough for 12 players to ensure a continuous flight. Another plus in the piggy bank of the manufacturer.

    And another nuance associated with batteries - they are also used in remote controls. There is no need to litter the space with spent finger batteries, and then take it all to the nearest recycling point. The battery in the remote is enough for about 5 hours of operation, and they change as easily and quickly as in quadras. Unified power system “decides”.


    I will not paint the quad control mechanism, as promised. But if we consider the management in general terms, it becomes clear that it is somewhat different from similar-sized quadrocopters. The thing is that with a controller and a gyroscope, the player is given more control. The processor regulates engine speed during maneuvers, corrects some player errors, but to a limited extent - with a strong drift, for example, the device itself does not straighten out, but the player can do this manually. The Drone Fighter keeps the height automatically in Expert control mode and in Initial when the battery level is above 50%. All this does not complicate the management, but makes it more interesting - to make a steep turn and dive under the enemy is easier when you know at what point the quad will go down a bit. This is the freedom to control which I have not met in other multicopter. And despite all these nuances and manners, players get used to managing in just 10-12 minutes. We highlighted this stage, called it “training” and provide it for free. That is, absolutely everyone can visit us and fly for 10 minutes for free. Limitation - training is done only once. Therefore, the next time I have to shell out.

    An important factor is the ability to calibrate the quadrocopter. When replacing the battery, it sometimes seems like a malfunction - the device starts to obviously blow to the side. This is due to the displacement of the center of gravity after replacing the battery, and in this case, the device can be calibrated by increasing or lowering the “idle” engine speeds. It is solved simply: we push the battery all the way, so calibration is required only if one of the players accidentally knocked down the settings.

    Drone Fighter also has two control modes - Beginner and Expert. The latter is distinguished by the fact that it is used without protection of the blades, gives the quad a greater speed and maneuverability, and also opens up access to somersaults. Now our players fly in the first mode, the second we give only to those who received a certain achievement. About them a little lower.


    On Byrobot website, special software is available, with which you can update the firmware in quad or remote controls, fly on a simulator, and also see statistics on a specific device. Only the number of battles, victories and the total flight time is displayed there.

    During the development of the project, we tested this statistics collection mechanism for a very long time and tried to adapt it to our needs, but, unfortunately, the built-in statistics collect too little data for our service, and there is usually no time to connect to a computer and read the results. At home, these statistics are more than enough, but it took us more.

    To motivate the client to re-play, we created an achievement system. These achievements are issued based on statistics collected by the coach during the game clients. Statistics are collected only for those who ordered a Pilot card - in fact, a client card, which, however, does not give any bonuses at first, except for statistics. But the more a player collects hours, wins, losses and other data, the more bonuses he receives. Free flight time, constant discount, access to Expert control mode are just some of them. The built-in statistics collection system in this regard is less convenient - to check the data you need to connect the quadrocopter to the computer, the number of special abilities used is not taken into account, in addition, sometimes you have to do factory reset quads, which erases all the data.


    Of course, Drone Fighter is now out of competition from the point of view of a playground with drones. If only because he has no analogues. At the same time, it has a number of disadvantages, which have to be either compensated by something else, or simply endured. Byrobot is currently developing a second version of the combat quadrocopter, but they can’t even name the approximate release dates. If you suddenly know other models of battle drones, indicate them in the comments - we could just skip them when looking for other options. It will be interesting to take a look.

    PS I remember that in the survey of the previous post, the majority voted to continue the story of our discovery. The material is being prepared, I want to tell you more interesting things, so the publication is scheduled for November. In the meantime, I will talk about things easier. Below you will find a new poll about the topic of the next post, where there are both old topics and a couple of new ones. And this time, you can choose several options. Thanks for attention!

    UPD Some time after the publication of this post, it turned out that many readers misunderstood my descriptions of the cons and strength of Drone Fighter. I remind you, this is a review from the point of view of the enterprise. On our playgrounds, quadras fly 7-8 hours a day without a break, while each of the devices will surely hit with all the foolishness in the wall or ceiling at least three times in half an hour. The players are different. And if we have the first version of the Drone Fighter board safely covered in three weeks, this does not mean that it will live as little at home. We developed the project for 8 months, during which we actively tested drones. And not one died during this period, because this testing was closer to normal use rather than to the bacchanalia that is happening on the site now. According to my personal estimates, with private use of Drone Fighter, the first version will work fine for two to three years. And very soon, an updated version will appear on the shelves, which will "live" even longer. In my opinion, Drone Fighter is one of the most durable quadrocopters on the market at the moment, and by the efforts of Byrobot it has become even more reliable. So is it worth it to worry?

    If you like the idea of ​​our project, and you think it would be nice to open a similar playground in your region, then we have an interesting thing for you - a franchise offer . We are ready to share experiences and ideas. We want everyone to be able to fly regardless of where they live. Join us, Luke!

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