Mousal Musings

May 21, 2010 at 5:57 pm | Posted in General | 2 Comments

Wotcha everyone,

Slight departure from the norm here; instead of rambling on incessantly about a game, I’m going to ramble incessantly about getting a mouse.

Not the sort I just saw.  Where?  There on the stair.  Where on the stair?  Right there!

No, the sort that gamers like.  The fancy-shmancy sort that are supposed to help us game with the sort of mongoose-like reactions that will make us leet kiddies, as opposed to old geezers.

Let me explain a little more.  I game with a trackball.  This is because I injured my wrist whilst doing manual labour a few years ago (and have sworn off manual labour ever since) and due to an extensive gaming habit the dratted thing refused to heal.  RSI mouse wrist, basically.

After 6 months of pain, I finally wised up, swapped to a trackball, and the pain was gone in two weeks.

However, whilst I really enjoy using a trackball (and really enjoy not being in pain/having a seized up wrist), I am aware that they’re just not as accurate or twitchy as a mouse.  You get about 95% of the accuracy of using a mouse in normal use, dropping to about 85% when gaming.

And gaming is where accuracy counts most.  In first person shooters, I was always clumsy and random; nowadays I just aim for the torso, as I’d rather be hitting center mass than not hitting headshots at all.

The utility isn’t quite there either.  All the Trackballs I’ve seen have just the two buttons, because their designers must think that trackballs are used by staid gentlemen, who drive older Volvos in a sedate fashion and have a spaniel that only ever goes for long, ambling walks.  As opposed to rabid gamers who’ve sacrificed their wrists at the altar of gaming.

More buttons, please.

For more buttons, the controller of choice is the mouse.

So I’ve been looking at mice over the last couple of days.  This is because Fallen Earth has first person shooter style controls in combat, and I am wasting a surprising amount of ammunition.  Those quarrels and bullets cost, you know.  It’s not just for Fallen Earth, though; I’m playing a few games that could do with a mouse over a trackball.

And I’m wondering which direction to take.  Cheap and cheerful is not going to do it for me.  I’m no controller snob, but a £5 mouse just won’t have the build quality, ergonomics, or number of buttons that I need.  Oh, I suppose I am a bit of a controller snob then.  Maybe I should just point out that I need a mouse that’s “fit for purpose”.

This means going mid- or high-end.  And that means deciding on a decent quality mouse (the mid-end) or throwing financial reasoning out of the window, and getting a gaming mouse (that would be the high-end).

Hmm.  In typically male fashion, I’m angling towards a mouse that is far more engineered than I need.  Both wireless and wired, rechargeable battery, crazy dpi and response times, too many buttons, and far too many flashy lights and what-have –you.

Yes, I keep being drawn to the hyper-expensive gaming mice.


The sensible part of me wants to look at the more serious mid-range mice, reasoning that they’re expensive enough as they are, whilst being more than enough to respond to my ageing and decrepit responses.  But sometimes I remind myself that if I *am* going to mangle my wrist due to using a mouse, I might as well go out holding one that is, frankly, sooooo shiny.




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  1. Borodun seemed very happy with his Microsoft gaming mouse. I found it light and responsive. They have a a range ( and I believe his was the X5. The X8 is the cordless version, but how light it’ll be with batteries included…?

  2. The Register have literally just published a roundup of 10 gaming mice. I haven’t read the article yet, but it could be useful.

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