How to use the VEX IQ Controller Without Programming

You can use the VEX IQ Controller with your robot without programming using a customized VEXcode IQ Blocks project.

For this example, we will configure two individual motors and a Drivetrain that will be assigned to the Controller’s buttons and Joysticks. The two individual motors that we will use for this example will be the Arm and Claw motors from the Clawbot configuration. If you do not have a Clawbot, you can still add two individual motors following the same steps. 

The ports for the individual motors and Drivetrain are as follows:

  • Motors:
    • ArmMotor: port 10
    • ClawMotor: port 11
  • Drivetrain:
    • LeftMotor: port 1
    • RightMotor: port 6

The steps that we will follow in this article are:

  • Adding Motors
  • Adding a Drivetrain
  • Adding a Controller
  • Assigning the Motors to the Controller’s Buttons
  • Assigning the Drivetrain to the Controller’s Joysticks
  • Saving Changes
  • Download and Run a Project

Adding Motors

To configure a motor, select the Devices button to open the Devices window. 

Select “Add a device.”

Select “Motor.”

Select the desired port number for your motor. For this example, select port 10 for your Arm Motor.

Re-name the Arm motor by changing the name in the text box at the top of the Options screen to “ArmMotor”. If you select an invalid name, the text box will highlight red to indicate. 

Once the motor is re-named, select “Done” to submit the device to the configuration. Leave the direction selection as-is unless you would like to further customize the motor.

Note: Selecting “Cancel” will undo any changes you have made to the device and will not be a part of the configuration.

Note: For more detail about configuring a motor, click here.

Repeat “Adding a Motor” steps for adding the Claw Motor and select port 11. Do not add the Drivetrain motors using these steps.


Once the motors have been added, the next step is to add the Drivetrain. A Drivetrain can be used both with and without a Gyro. This is example will be focused on adding a Drivetrain without a Gyro.

  • To configure a Drivetrain with a Gyro click here.

Adding a Drivetrain

To configure a Drivetrain, select the Devices button to open the Devices window if it is not already opened. 

Select “Add a device.”

Select “Drivetrain.”

Select the desired port numbers for your Left and Right motors. For this example, we will select port 1 for the Left Motor and port 6 for Right Motor. Ports that are already configured for other devices will be unavailable. Port 2 is shown grayed out as an example of a port that is unavailable.

Turn the Gyro off by un-checking the Gyro box.

Once the Drivetrain has been configured, select “Done” to submit the device to the configuration or “Cancel” to return back to the Devices menu. Leave the Drivetrain settings as-is unless you would like to further customize them.

Note: Selecting “Cancel” will undo any changes you have made to the device and will not be a part of the configuration.

Note: For more options about configuring a Drivetrain without a Gyro, click here.


The Controller can now be added to the configuration after the individual motors and Drivetrain have been configured. 

Adding a Controller

To configure a Controller, select the Devices button to open the Devices window if it is not already opened. 

Select “Add a device.”

Select "Controller".

Now that the Controller has been added to the robot configuration, the Arm and Claw motors can now be assigned to the Controller’s buttons and the Drivetrain can be assigned to the Controller’s Joysticks.

Assigning the Motors to the Controller’s Buttons

Configure a motor to a button by clicking on the buttons on the Controller. Clicking the same button multiple times will cycle through your configured motors. Stop once the desired motor is displayed. The controller has four button groups (L, R, E, and F). Each group can have a single motor (that is not apart of the Drivetrain) configured to them. For example, ArmMotor cannot be configured for both the L and R button groups, only one of them. Once a motor has been configured, it will not display as an option for the other buttons.

Assigning the Drivetrain to the Controller’s Joysticks

You can change the drive-mode of the robot using the Joysticks by selecting the buttons to cycle through the modes until the desired mode is shown. The four modes are: Left Arcade, Right Arcade, Split Arcade, Tank. 

Left Arcade - All movement is controlled by the left Joystick.

Right Arcade - All movement is controlled by the right Joystick.

Split Arcade - Forward and backward movement is controlled by the left Joystick while turning is controlled by the right Joystick.

Tank - The left motor is controlled by the left Joystick while the right motor is controlled by the right Joystick.

Note: For more options about configuring a Controller, click here.


Once the Controller has been Configured, the changes need to be saved.

Saving Changes

Select “Done” to complete the configuration or the changes will not be saved.



Now that the Controller has been configured and the changes have been saved, the project can now be downloaded and run.

Download and Run a Project

Select Download to download the project to the Brain’s selected slot.

Note: The Download, Run, and Stop icons will turn briefly gray until the download is complete.

Select Run to start the project while your robot is still connected to your computer.

Note: For more information about how to download and run a project, click here.