New Tello Project using Gamepads for flight control

I would be interested in hearing of any interest in the project available here:

The development of this was partially supported by a Tello Drone donation by DroneBlocks to Villanova University during the Summer of 2022.

The ESP32 controller hardware piece is relatively inexpensive to put together using a Breadboard and some off-the-shelf parts.

I also have a Printed Circuit Board (PCB) version of the hardware that I am using in some of my classes.

The software is built using the Arduino IDE and some commonly available libraries.

Most recently, support for using gamepads (like for PS3, PS4, and Switch systems) along with the ESP32 controller has been added.

Even the tiny pad shown below works:
Screen Shot 2023-07-12 at 3.16.38 PM

Check out some of the videos linked to in the GitHub ReadMe.

Interested in any comments or questions.


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@jjs357 this is incredible! I can see you’ve been hard at work. Looking forward to diving through your repo and hope to get around to building one in the near future.

Maybe we can cooperate still on a DroneBlocks course based on the work. Python serial connection for “mission” flying as well as speech-controlled flight is possible beyond hands-on flying with gamepad or gestures.

There is a blog article available at:

Maybe this can inspire more collaboration.

And now an extended project description is available on