The X-wing has landed. Propel showed off the new X-wing, TIE advanced, and 74-Z speeder drones at Star Wars Celebration Europe in London last summer, and the company wowed fans and press with their presentation. From the opening of the box, with Star Wars music blaring and the hand-painted vehicle illuminated from behind, every moment of the new Propel drones is an experience. While it's hard to recreate the impressive Death Star trench or Endor forest that Propel had at the convention, the drones are still an absolute blast and a breathtaking collectible once you get it home.
Propel sent Comicbook.com the drones to check out, and we did a full unboxing video to show off the T-65 X-wing. Every step is a unique Star Wars experience - even the out box is a collectible, with a wax-sealed case and an embossed X-wing on the outside (the TIE and 74-Z Speeder have their respective vehicles, naturally). When you do take the outer box off, music from John Williams' seminal scores plays, appropriately tuned to each vehicle. In the video, we run down each part that comes with, but we'll focus more on the actual beauty of the actual device here. Each one is hand-painted, down to the tiny R2-D2 on the display top and the battery packs, and it's one of the highest-quality looking X-wings available.
Taking the drone out for a spin is the fun part, though. Before doing so, I highly recommend reading the manual, both because there are a lot of functions difficult to discover on your own while in action (and that also wastes precious battery life time, as you'll get around 10 minutes out of a fully charged battery), and because there are some neat in-universe Easter eggs in there for you. Again, presentation is everything here, so music plays out of the controller, with sound effects and dialogue (especially when you're doing tricks or in battle mode). Heck, even when you're just putting batteries in the controller, Artoo and Threepio chat with you along the way.
Flying it is a blast; it's easy to get a hang of the general controls, but remember that it's very light, so you may see it drifting in the wind a bit in windier cities. It's fast, and the tricks are one-button and very easy to pull off.
Battle mode isn't something we tested for the unboxing, but witnessed at Celebration. Up to 12 drones can battle, with built-in IR canons and target zones that function up to around 2-3 meters apart. Three hits makes your drone spin to the ground, and takes out out for a few seconds before you can get back into the battle.
At $199, the price may seem a little high at first for a Star Wars toy, but it's so much more - it's a Star Wars toy, a collectible (really a few collectibles), a great, fully-functioning drone that is fun and easy to fly. Basically, if you're a Star Wars fan and you so much as see this box being opened, you'll want to take one home.
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