Whether you're blowing chunks out of opponents or demolishing those TPS reports, it's essential that you have the right mouse under your hand. Gaming mice, in particular, have a seemingly endless variety of options to choose between, all offering different benefits.
Here are some tips on choosing the right one for you. These mice - all available in the UK in 2018 - are ideal for gaming PCs as well as these great gaming laptops, but you can use them for day-to-day work and browsing too.
Gaming mouse buying advice
A lot of it comes down to personal choice - how it feels in your hand, and whether you find the positioning of the buttons comfortable. Incidentally, lefties should take note; these are almost entirely right-handed mice, and the SteelSeries Sensei 310 is the only model here that is ambidextrous, so you might want to consider that before splashing out.
However, aside from sheer ergonomics, there are other factors to consider. Many mice offer adjustable on-the-fly DPI settings, allowing you to change your mouse's sensitivity at the touch of a button. This is for when you need extra-fine control, such as when going for that sniper headshot.
Only three buttons on your current mouse? Most gaming mice come with anywhere from five to ten programmable buttons (which you can assign to specific functions such as sprinting, crouching or reloading), while an MMO-style mouse might cram 20 or more onto its chassis. These can give you a leg up on the competition, when used correctly.
Many also offer various backlighting options to make them more attractive to look at. Occasionally a mouse comes with removable weights, allowing you to make the mouse heavier or lighter until you’ve found your “perfect” weight.
Wired vs wireless is another consideration. Most of these mice are wired, in part because there are substantially more wired gaming mice on the market. Sticking with wired saves you from worrying about battery life and guarantees a lightning fast connection, but wireless mice are undeniably convenient and save you from messy cords. It's also worth noting that wireless connection speeds are constantly improving, so latency is becoming less and less of a concern.
Whatever you're after, whether you're a twitch-gaming fanatic looking for the perfect precision headshots or a MOBA gamer trying to maximise your DPS, there's a mouse that'll suit your needs, and after finding it, you'll never go back.
Best gaming mouse of 2018
Razer Naga Trinity
Improving on one of the best gaming mice available, Razer’s Naga Trinity offers the best of the Hex V2 and then some. Why? While many gaming mice offer a single setup, the Trinity, as the name suggests, offers three. The mouse sports an interchangeable side plate and includes 2-, 7- and 12-button plates in the box, allowing you to customise the mouse for the type of game you’re playing. It’s simple to do too, and uses a magnet to snap the plates into place.
It’s not just a gimmick either – each plate features high-quality buttons that provide tactile feedback with every click, and ergonomic placement means we’re yet to experience any misclicks – even with the 12-button plate. This brings a huge advantage to PC gamers, as it provides up to 19 programmable buttons to be used in your favourite games, all customisable via the Razer software.
Along with the ability to switch out button plates, the Razer Naga Trinity offers an impressive 5G optical sensor with up to 16,000DPI (although we were content in the 1200s) to provide the sensitivity and speed required to beat the best when gaming online.
The design isn’t too in-your-face either, which is a refreshing change for gaming mice that are usually covered in LED lighting. Don’t get us wrong – you still get some areas lit by customisable LEDs (the logo, scroll-wheel and buttons), but it’s much less distracting than others we’ve seen. It is favoured for right-handed players though, which may cause issues with lefties.
Enhance Theorem Pro Gaming Mouse
While some gaming mice can cost upwards of £100, the Enhance Theorem Pro proves that you don’t need to spend a lot to get a great gaming mouse. In fact, for the price, it’s pretty impressive.
First of all, the Theorem Pro offers 12 programmable buttons conveniently placed by where your thumb naturally rests, making it perfect for MOBA and FPS games. It also offers built-in memory, allowing you to store up to six profiles on the mouse containing not only macros, but LED light settings, DPI settings and more. This means that whether it’s plugged into your laptop, your PC or a friends PC, you’ll always have your setup ready.
Along with the thumb buttons, you’ll find quick-access DPI buttons that allow you to switch between seven DPI settings – anything from 800 to 16,400 DPI. While that’s a feature offered by many gaming mice, the Theorem Pro also offers an LED indicator on the mouse that displays the DPI level you’re currently using. That negates the need to switch to dedicated software or have annoying pop-ups flash up on-screen in those tense gaming moments.
It’s not just the tech that’s impressive about the Theorem Pro, though. The design is perfect for those long hours of gaming; it’s slimline and lightweight at only 141g, and the shape has been contoured to the shape of your hand, complete with finger groves. Even the macro buttons are ergonomically shaped to fit the grove of your thumb.
And of course, a gaming mouse wouldn’t be a gaming mouse without LEDs. The Theorem Pro features a fractal design that shines with LED light, customisable (as is just about everything else) via the Theorem Software for PC.
If you want to spice up your setup even further, Enhance also offers the Pro Gaming Mouse Bungee Cable Holder. It’s designed for competitive gamers, and offers spring-loaded cable support that responds to motion with frictionless support. In essence, it eliminates drag caused by the cable whether your movements are subtle or dramatic. It’s not that expensive either, at only £19.99/$24.99 on Amazon.
If you’re upgrading your gaming setup on a budget, the Enhance Theorem Pro is the ideal solution. And, to help that little bit more, we can offer a 20 percent discount for Tech Advisor readers in the UK and the US. Simply use TAKE20US or TAKE20UK at the checkout to get your discount on us!
Logitech G502 Proteus Spectrum RGB
The G502 Proteus Spectrum RGB is part of the gaming range from Logitech, which has a substantial pedigree when it comes to PC peripherals.
The G502 is one of the most user-friendly mice we've tested - it fits ergonomically into the hand, and we barely had to move our thumb to reach the two side buttons. Counting these, the Proteus has 11 programmable buttons, including a thumb button and on-the-fly DPI switching.
There's also a button for shifting scroll wheel function, which allows you to change from clicky to free-scrolling mode at the press of a button.
The DPI levels are adjustable, and are indicated by three LEDs (that can be switched off through the software). Along with the DPI LEDs, the Logitech ‘G’ logo is the only section that includes RGB backlighting. It’s a shame the G402 doesn’t include more than this somewhat desultory twinkle, but we can forgive it on the strength of its design.
The visual design of this mouse is weirdly pretty; matte-black with gloss detailing and smooth, arresting contours, it’s minimalist chic that’s cool without being overly flashy. The body feels solid and well put-together, and it’s relatively weighty, but can be customised through its adjustable weights.
Logitech has come a long way over the years to fine-tune its software, and with the Logitech Gaming Software, you will be able to customise every single aspect of the mouse, from macros and basic functions to mouse mat calibration!
Asus ROG Spatha
The Asus ROG (Republic of Gamers) Spatha is the latest gaming mouse from Asus, sporting a completely new design with a rather detailed Mayan-style grip on the left hand side next to six fully programmable thumb buttons, ideal for use in MMOs and MOBAs alike.
There aren’t only six buttons though – there are twelve buttons across the mouse ready to be customised via the ROG Armoury software available for Windows. That’s only touching the surface with regards to the app, as it also lets you customise button response, polling rate, acceleration, angle snapping and more, perfect for pro gamers.
The magnesium alloy-constructed ROG Spatha boasts extremely high sensitivity, thanks to the use of an 8200dpi laser sensor coupled with a DPI switch. As well as this, the ROG Armoury offers surface calibration, providing you with the best performance for the surface it’s being used on.
This combination allows you to switch between high and low sensitivity with a single click while giving you finer control when aiming with a precise weapon like a sniper rifle, for example.
If that’s not impressive enough for you, then maybe this is: the Asus ROG Spatha is both wired and wireless, depending on your personal preference. You can use the supplied Micro-USB cable to connect the mouse to your PC, or alternatively, you can connect the receiver/charging station and use it wirelessly until it requires a charge. It gives users the freedom to play how they like without having to compromise.
Along with the above features, it comes with fairly standard LED customisation that lets you change not only the colour of the logo on the mouse and scroll wheel, but also the light that leaks out between the thumb buttons along the left-hand side of the mouse.
Roccat Kone Aimo
Despite the mid-range price-tag, the Roccat Kone Aimo offers a fairly premium experience. The ergonomic shape of the mouse fits the palm of your hand perfectly, and your fingers comfortably fall into the groves along the body. There’s even a thumb-rest that doubles up as a customisable trigger, an idea that is both practical and innovative (and something not featured on any other mouse in our roundup).
That might not be the first thing you notice about the Kone Aimo, though. Why? It’s the king of LEDs, boosting the number of LED strips from two to four when compared to the original Kone. It certainly looks impressive, and offers a range of preset (as well as custom) colour options to choose from via Roccat Swarm, the bundled software for PC that allows you to customise not only the LED lighting but custom buttons, scroll speed and more.
Under the hood, you’ll find the latest PixArt Owl-Eye optical sensor, offering up to 12,000DPI in 100DPI-increments, although we found the best results to be around the 1800-3000 mark. It also features what Roccat calls ‘Easy Shift’ technology – a tri-button thumb zone (one of which we mentioned above) that features two wide buttons above where your thumb rests, along with one below. The tactile and audible feedback from the buttons is satisfying, and should help provide an edge in battle. You’ll also find two buttons directly beneath the scroll wheel, allowing you to adjust the DPI on-the-fly.
It’s not wireless, but it does come with a 1.8m braided cable that should survive quite a bit of wear-and-tear.
SteelSeries Rival 700
Although when compared to other gaming mice, the SteelSeries Rival 700 can look a bit ‘basic’, it’s far from it under the hood. It features an advanced optical sensor that offers zero hardware acceleration and 1:1 tracking, enabling precise movement – and you can tell the difference instantly, especially when combined with a 144Hz monitor.
It features a whopping 16,000 DPI, up from 6500 on the original Rival, enabling gamers to find the perfect cursor sensitivity for their style of gaming – although, in our experience, trying to use the mouse at 16,000 DPI is almost impossible.
SteelSeries Engine 3 enables gamers to access various Rival customisation settings, including programmable buttons, polling rate, angle snapping and acceleration and deceleration speed. Though if you’re looking for loads of programmable buttons, look elsewhere: there are only seven buttons and a scroll wheel on the Rival 700.
One new addition to the Rival 700 is tactile alerts thanks to a built-in vibration motor. Via SteelSeries Engine 3, users can set up hotkeys for games that feature attacks with cooldowns (like League of Legends) that’ll alert them as soon as the attack has been recharged. The uses spread far beyond that though, as it’ll also notify you of things like low health, ammo, headshots and more when playing FPS games if set up correctly. It’s a very handy feature for pro gamers, but setting it up properly can take a while.
It also features a customisable OLED display that can either play a GIF of your liking, or display real-time stats for supported games. We’re not so sure about this feature as we can’t get into the habit of looking away from the screen when the information is already in front of us. It’s a fun way to customise your mouse though, for those that want the personal touch.
The internals are only part of the package when it comes to the Rival 700, as design is just as important for a great gaming mouse. The Rival features an ergonomic design that’s comfortable to use for hours on end that’s reminiscent of gaming mice of the past.
It boasts a matte finish, but still manages to feel smooth to the touch and the anti-sweat coating helps to maintain contact when the pressure is on – although you can swap it out for a glossy cover if required.
SteelSeries Sensei 310
For those looking for something a little cheaper than the Steelseries Rival 700, we present the Steelseries Sensei 310. It doesn't feature the OLED display or built-in vibration motor, but it does boast an ambidextrous design ideal for those lefties out there.
It also boasts what Steelseries calls 'the world's first true 1:1 eSports sensor' up to 3.500CPI. More specifically, the Sensei 310 features a 12,000CPI PixArt TrueMove 3 optical sensor, providing incredibly accurate tracking, whether it be small adjustments or huge sweeping movements. Moving a distance on the mouse results in that exact same distance on screen with no kind of jitter.
Beyond the sensor, the Sensei 310 is impressively light at 92.1g, which when coupled with silicone side grips and fiber-reinforced plastics provides a comfortable gaming experience, even when you're clicking away for hours at a time.
And, in true Steelseries fashion, you can customise the LEDs and button mappings of the mouse via SteelSeries Engine. It'll all be saved on a 32-bit ARM processor, meaning you can switch PCs without having to install Steelseries Engine to load your presets.
If the ambidextrous design isn't for you, you might be interested in the Rival 310.
Asus ROG Pugio
The Asus ROG Pugio is one of very few mice in our roundup that are truly ambidextrous, making it an attractive options for lefties and righties alike. It offers two configurable side buttons on both sides of the mouse that, thanks to the use of magnets (who doesn’t love magnets?) can be swapped out with button covers to stop them being accidentally activated when not in use.
It’s not the only customisable element of the mouse either. The Pugio features a push-fit switch socket design that allows you to easily swap out switches fort varying levels of resistance. It uses Omron switches for a satisfying click feel, and Asus even provides a secondary set in the box for you to find the right resistance. The push-fit design also extends the lifespan of the mouse, as it’s easy to replace the switches if they get broken.
The ROG Pugio also sports a 7200 DPI optical sensor with 30g acceleration, and a quick-access DPI switch beneath the scroll wheel. But, unlike other mice in our roundup, the Pugio only allows you to switch between two DPI profiles on-the-fly. It does have a handy DPI LED indicator though, so you know which setting you’re using at a glance.
It sports a sleek, low-profile design with a three-zone LED lighting system. You’ll also find Mayan-inspired engravings on the thumb grips, scroll wheel and on the bottom of the mouse to make the Pugio look a little more unique. We do have one complaint though; the small, low-profile design mean those with larger hands may not find it very comfortable to use for long periods.
Corsair M65 RGB
The Corsair M65 RGB mouse is, appropriately enough, a sleek, dangerous-looking thing of beauty, a mix of contours and sharp angles. The matte surface is non-slip for fast, precise movements, it has a braided cable, and it feels pleasantly solid.
It’s also part of Corsair’s RGB range, meaning it has three separate lighting sections that can be customized with 16.8 million colours in a variety of ripple, wave and chase effects.
While design and aesthetic appeal are clearly a key focus of this mouse, it by no means skimps on the features. The 8200 DPI sensor is the best we tested, and it comes with on-the-fly switching via two buttons below the scroll wheel, although the colour-changing indicator is less convenient than the Kone’s voiceover system.
It also features a ‘sniper switch’ as mentioned above, so you can drop your DPI down at a moment’s notice to nail that perfect pin-point headshot. The two side buttons are well-placed in thumbs-reach and the M65 feels reasonably comfortable in the hand, aside from a lack of pinkie support. For the more particular gamer, Corsair’s mouse also offers three ‘tuning zones’ to tweak the center of gravity to your individual satisfaction.
Corsair’s configuration software covers all their peripherals, so applying customized lighting patterns between devices is a snap. The lighting management software itself can be somewhat confusing, but the options for creating patterns and effects are almost infinite, so it’s a good trade.
The software also includes macro functionality, so you can bind specific custom macros to any button you wish, as well as additional commands such as multimedia control.
The Corsair M65 RGB is ideal for those gamers who want their battle stations to look as awesome as humanly possible. However, it’s also one of the best-equipped mice we tested, and would be equally at home in the hands of a tech-spec purist.
Coolermaster CM Storm Alcor
The Cooler Master CM Storm Alcor is, to all intents and purposes, identical to the Sensei 310. The design is the same (bar the tiniest of differences), and the two side buttons are in the same place.
However, there are some fairly key differences. Firstly, the Alcor is available for under £30 which is great value.
The DPI settings come in four levels, with the CM Storm logo on the palm section changing colour to indicate the current state. We could argue that it would be better placed in a more visible location, but this is a quibble at best.
Admittedly, we couldn’t find any support software for customizing DPI levels or macros, something every other mouse we tested was able to provide. The quality is also a little disappointing – it’s solid enough, but doesn’t feel particularly different to a bog-standard desktop mouse.
The semi-gloss finish also had a tendency to get a little sweaty during extended sessions, which didn’t happen with any of the others.