There are two big families of drones: FPV and non-FPV (sometimes called cinematic). Flying non-FPV, GPS stabilized drones (like the DJI Mavic family of drones) requires almost no training, you just put the drone in the air and it stays there, waiting for your instructions.

Flying FPV (in acro mode) has a steep learning curve (but is, arguably, much more fun). The way to learn is to use a proper simulator. The most versatile and popular one is Liftoff and costs around $20, but there are many others, including free ones. You should also buy a dedicated controller since normal game controllers don't work well (the throttle joystick needs to stay where it is instead of returning to center). Dedicated drone controllers can be found around $40-50 used.

And then off you go! Be prepared to spend at least 20 hours on a sim before you can fly IRL (it took me around 100 hours to really be comfortable). It's surprising how well the learned skills transfer from the simulator to the real thing.

Not entirely unrelated, but FPV drones are now the main weapon of the Ukraine war. They started using them against tanks, then groups of soldiers, but have now found that they are cost effective enough to go against individual soldiers.

The drone soldiers operate in small teams from underground bunkers close to the front from which they launch hundreds of drones a day, with different types of drones for different targets. The limiting factor is the amount of drones, Ukraine plans to build one million of them this year domestically.

Apart from jamming, there's not much to defend yourself against drones except staying underground, or moving fast enough that there is no time for you to be spotted and tracked. But drones can see kms away and move at hundreds of kmph, then go after you personally, even inside buildings, and even at night with infrared vision.

In an interview they asked a drone-ace how many ennemies he killed, he said he couldn't remember; "Do you remember how many cups of coffee you drank last year?".

I am not sure what to think about all this, but it is certainly fascinating

It's quite annoying that every stage of the lesson requires you to recalibrate your controller.

When I learned to fly racing drones, I used Velocidrone; I have no experience of FPVSim.

Even if you don't plan to eventually fly an acrobatic or racing drone, the sim experience can be a bit relaxing & focused. I used to practice on a 2nd monitor while I was in large mandatory group meetings for work.

If you do plan to build and fly drones, then a simulator is absolutely worth every penny. You pay for real drone crashes with time and money, and you probably need 100 hours of practice before you can handle the real thing (and not that well).

If I were going to get back into the hobby, I'd probably try to do long range fixed wing aircraft with FPV and flight automation. The view will be much more enjoyable and the batteries will last much longer. I think there's also less community pressure around RC planes vs. drones, especially the loud racing ones.

Does anybody fly Ardupilot? Last time I was really into flying I used DRonin, which sadly got abandoned. I have a real aversion to BetaFlight, though I know it's got 90% of the market; however, Ardupilot seems to have a reasonably active community.

I don't really care about freestyling - I'm more interested in cruising over forest canopy, and having a reliable return to home function if radio signal gets lost. (I have probably 15 built out airframes; over time I probably need to replace defunct hardware, but a lot of it still seems reasonably acceptable. Quite a few f7 controllers for example.)

For those considering getting a drone license in Europe, this is free and official and applicable to whole EU
Huh, once I figured out how to switch to first person view and acro mode and hooked up my PlayStation controller this was surprisingly fun – it behaved a little like a more friendly helicopter simulator. The most annoying part was that I couldn't have throttle on a completely separate control from the rotation axes, and the frequent brief freezes I got in Firefox.

If this is an indication of what it is like to fly real FPV drones, I'll have to put a lock on my wallet.

Having been intrigued by this (see my other comment) I decided to try out one of the more featureful higher-fidelity simulators, and discovered something else: I get really motion sick after just a few minutes.

Is this

(1) because my turns are uncoordinated,

(2) because I have an incorrectly configured viewport,

(3) because I'm not cut out for FPV flying, or

(4) a matter of persevering and getting used to the perspective?

Can anyone recommend some good drones outside of DJI?
Is there an alternate control system other than sticks? Looking for the mouse-keyboard combo
Is there a native Linux client yet? That's why I stick to velocidrone, liftoff, and wings.
Hey, we gotta get ready for the alien invasion somehow!

Too bad in most parts of the EU is illegal to fly drones. You can do it if you are far from populated areas but you need to go trough a complicated bureaucracy and obtain a permit before each flight.