November 3rd, 2011 by admin
Posted in Hardware, Reviews

View this product on AMAZONLately I’ve been trying to figure out ways to improve my gaming experience. In particular, I’ve been wanting to optimize my user interface setup. To that end, I’ve been looking at a variety of gaming-specific input devices. I’ve long been a user of the Logitech G15 keyboard, and I highly recommend it. However, while its macro capabilities are certainly useful, they aren’t always applicable to the problem at hand.

One device which has intrigued me for awhile is the WoW: Cataclysm MMO Gaming Mouse, by Steelseries. I’ve usually been skeptical about the utility of “gaming” mice, because of the additional complexity that comes along with all of those buttons. However, I’d heard good things about this particular model from other players in WoW, so I thought I’d give it a try.

My first impression of this device is that it’s BIG. The wireless Microsoft mouse I’ve been using the last few years is not at all small, but the Steelseries mouse takes it up a notch or two. It’s just about as big as I would feel comfortable with, so I’m thinking that people with smaller hands may find it to be too big. It’s also a bit heavier than most mice. Not really enough so as to be a problem, but it’s certainly noticeable.

I’ve been using mostly wireless mice for the last few years, so I found myself wishing that this one was wireless. The braided cord is on the stiff side and it’s occasionally getting snagged on something as I move it around.

I imagine the main reason it’s not wireless is because Steelseries was worried that some ultra hardcore gamers would think it introduced a millisecond of latency in response times. Personally I think you would be hardpressed to prove that such latency even exists, let alone that it could affect your gaming, but there are those people that think it matters, and in large part they are the primary market for a product like this.

One cool but purely cosmetic feature is that the mouse has a set of colored LEDs built-in, which can be set to just about any color you want. The lights pulse back and forth between dim and bright. You can use the configuration software to set the color and the frequency of the pulsing.

Buttons, Buttons, And, Oh Yes, More Buttons

One thing I didn’t like about many of the other gaming mice I’ve tried in the past is that they have a big block of tiny buttons which are all the same size and shape. I’ve always thought that would make it hard to distinguish buttons by touch alone. Or else they have buttons placed seemingly at random, with some placed where they could only reasonably be accessed by your palm rather than via your digits.

By contrast, the buttons here come in a variety of different sizes and shapes, and and they are positioned so that it’s very easy to locate the specific one you want. I found that it didn’t take me long before I was easily able to find whichever button I wanted at any given time.

There are a total of 14 buttons on this monster of a mouse. You got the basic three that most mice have, your basic left and right buttons on top, plus one in the scroll wheel. There’s one extra button by itself on the right side, down on the side near the bottom. (On the far side out of sight in the picture shown here.)

There are five “extra’ buttons on top, with two on each side of the basic left and right buttons, and one in the center behind the scroll wheel. Another five extra buttons are found on the left side where they can be easily reached with your thumb if you’re right handed.

And by the way, if you’re using this mouse you’re almost certainly right-handed. I can’t see how you could comfortably reach the five-button cluster on the left side using a digit other than your thumb. Maybe if you don’t mind limiting yourself to the other buttons, it would be OK but for the most part, sorry lefties, but once again you’re left out. (Pun not intended.)

The Software

The software for this mouse features WoW-themed artwork and has all of the expected options for assigning keystrokes and macros to each button. Despite the emphasis on World Of Warcraft, the mouse can be used with any game or desktop application.

As it turns out, the software isn’t really needed for WoW, because this particular gaming mouse is recognized directly by the game. If you go to the MOUSE section of the game’s interface options, you’ll find a checkbox for “Detect World of Warcraft Gaming Mouse”. Select it, then exit and relaunch the game. Now you can go into the Key Bindings window and directly assign the various buttons to whatever game commands you want. And since the game can track a separate set of key bindings for each character, it makes it that much easier to customize the mouse button setup for each one.

So How Does It Work?

I decided to get used to using all the extra buttons one toon at a time, starting with my hunter, Starchaser. My focus has been on optimizing combat, so functions like bringing up the world map or guild roster aren’t something I need mapped to a dedicated mouse button. So far I’ve not used all of the buttons, because I thought it would be easier to get used to using them a few at a time. Currently I’ve got something like this:

Button 4 – Pet Attack
Button 5 – Multi-Shot
Button 7 – Serpent Sting
Button 10 – Steady Shot
Button 11 – Aimed Shot
Button 12 – Chimera Shot

This setup gets me though most solo fights without having to use the keyboard at all. I’ll admit I’m still getting used to it, and still working on finding the comfortable split between using the mouse buttons and using the keyboard. But I’ve got a long list of different setups I want to try. My next step will probably be to figure out a couple of buttons for setting traps and abilities which are used mainly in boss fights.

There is a minor glitch I’ve seen but the blame doesn’t belong to the mouse. It’s actually the game’s fault. If you have the mouse pointer over an icon in one of your action bars when you click one of the extra buttons, it’s treated like a regular mouse click. This is a bit annoying because you’ll find yourself occasionally clicking and not gettting the desired result until you realize that the mouse pointer needs to be moved.

In Conclusion

If you’re looking for more precise control, want quicker access to game commands, and don’t think you’d get lost trying to figure out all the extra buttons, this mouse may be the device you’re looking for. However, if you have small hands, I’d recommend that you try it out first, or at least make sure you buy from some place with a decent return policy.


Disclosure: I purchased this device at Fry’s Electronics. No materials were provided by the manufacturer.

, , , , ,

Leave A Comment


Warning: Creating default object from empty value in /homepages/24/d105192557/htdocs/sites/cry-havoc/wp-content/themes/CryHavoc/footer.php on line 57

Warning: simplexml_load_file(): http://www.wowarmory.com/character-feed.atom?r=bronzebeard&cn=romy:1: parser error : Opening and ending tag mismatch: link line 1 and head in /homepages/24/d105192557/htdocs/sites/cry-havoc/wp-content/themes/CryHavoc/footer.php on line 128

Warning: simplexml_load_file(): //worldofwarcraft.akamaized.net/static/scripts/core.js?v=3.7.0"></script></head> in /homepages/24/d105192557/htdocs/sites/cry-havoc/wp-content/themes/CryHavoc/footer.php on line 128

Warning: simplexml_load_file(): ^ in /homepages/24/d105192557/htdocs/sites/cry-havoc/wp-content/themes/CryHavoc/footer.php on line 128

Warning: simplexml_load_file(): http://www.wowarmory.com/character-feed.atom?r=bronzebeard&cn=romy:5: parser error : EntityRef: expecting ';' in /homepages/24/d105192557/htdocs/sites/cry-havoc/wp-content/themes/CryHavoc/footer.php on line 128

Warning: simplexml_load_file(): j=d.createElement(s),dl=l!='dataLayer'?'&l='+l:'';j.async=true;j.src= in /homepages/24/d105192557/htdocs/sites/cry-havoc/wp-content/themes/CryHavoc/footer.php on line 128

Warning: simplexml_load_file(): ^ in /homepages/24/d105192557/htdocs/sites/cry-havoc/wp-content/themes/CryHavoc/footer.php on line 128

Warning: simplexml_load_file(): http://www.wowarmory.com/character-feed.atom?r=bronzebeard&cn=romy:118: parser error : Opening and ending tag mismatch: link line 1 and html in /homepages/24/d105192557/htdocs/sites/cry-havoc/wp-content/themes/CryHavoc/footer.php on line 128

Warning: simplexml_load_file(): warcraft.akamaized.net/static/scripts/navbar.js?v=3.7.0"></script></body></html> in /homepages/24/d105192557/htdocs/sites/cry-havoc/wp-content/themes/CryHavoc/footer.php on line 128

Warning: simplexml_load_file(): ^ in /homepages/24/d105192557/htdocs/sites/cry-havoc/wp-content/themes/CryHavoc/footer.php on line 128

Warning: simplexml_load_file(): http://www.wowarmory.com/character-feed.atom?r=bronzebeard&cn=romy:118: parser error : Premature end of data in tag link line 1 in /homepages/24/d105192557/htdocs/sites/cry-havoc/wp-content/themes/CryHavoc/footer.php on line 128

Warning: simplexml_load_file(): warcraft.akamaized.net/static/scripts/navbar.js?v=3.7.0"></script></body></html> in /homepages/24/d105192557/htdocs/sites/cry-havoc/wp-content/themes/CryHavoc/footer.php on line 128

Warning: simplexml_load_file(): ^ in /homepages/24/d105192557/htdocs/sites/cry-havoc/wp-content/themes/CryHavoc/footer.php on line 128

Warning: simplexml_load_file(): http://www.wowarmory.com/character-feed.atom?r=bronzebeard&cn=romy:118: parser error : Premature end of data in tag link line 1 in /homepages/24/d105192557/htdocs/sites/cry-havoc/wp-content/themes/CryHavoc/footer.php on line 128

Warning: simplexml_load_file(): warcraft.akamaized.net/static/scripts/navbar.js?v=3.7.0"></script></body></html> in /homepages/24/d105192557/htdocs/sites/cry-havoc/wp-content/themes/CryHavoc/footer.php on line 128

Warning: simplexml_load_file(): ^ in /homepages/24/d105192557/htdocs/sites/cry-havoc/wp-content/themes/CryHavoc/footer.php on line 128

Warning: simplexml_load_file(): http://www.wowarmory.com/character-feed.atom?r=bronzebeard&cn=romy:118: parser error : Premature end of data in tag meta line 1 in /homepages/24/d105192557/htdocs/sites/cry-havoc/wp-content/themes/CryHavoc/footer.php on line 128

Warning: simplexml_load_file(): warcraft.akamaized.net/static/scripts/navbar.js?v=3.7.0"></script></body></html> in /homepages/24/d105192557/htdocs/sites/cry-havoc/wp-content/themes/CryHavoc/footer.php on line 128

Warning: simplexml_load_file(): ^ in /homepages/24/d105192557/htdocs/sites/cry-havoc/wp-content/themes/CryHavoc/footer.php on line 128

Warning: simplexml_load_file(): http://www.wowarmory.com/character-feed.atom?r=bronzebeard&cn=romy:118: parser error : Premature end of data in tag base line 1 in /homepages/24/d105192557/htdocs/sites/cry-havoc/wp-content/themes/CryHavoc/footer.php on line 128

Warning: simplexml_load_file(): warcraft.akamaized.net/static/scripts/navbar.js?v=3.7.0"></script></body></html> in /homepages/24/d105192557/htdocs/sites/cry-havoc/wp-content/themes/CryHavoc/footer.php on line 128

Warning: simplexml_load_file(): ^ in /homepages/24/d105192557/htdocs/sites/cry-havoc/wp-content/themes/CryHavoc/footer.php on line 128

Warning: simplexml_load_file(): http://www.wowarmory.com/character-feed.atom?r=bronzebeard&cn=romy:118: parser error : Premature end of data in tag head line 1 in /homepages/24/d105192557/htdocs/sites/cry-havoc/wp-content/themes/CryHavoc/footer.php on line 128

Warning: simplexml_load_file(): warcraft.akamaized.net/static/scripts/navbar.js?v=3.7.0"></script></body></html> in /homepages/24/d105192557/htdocs/sites/cry-havoc/wp-content/themes/CryHavoc/footer.php on line 128

Warning: simplexml_load_file(): ^ in /homepages/24/d105192557/htdocs/sites/cry-havoc/wp-content/themes/CryHavoc/footer.php on line 128

Warning: simplexml_load_file(): http://www.wowarmory.com/character-feed.atom?r=bronzebeard&cn=romy:118: parser error : Premature end of data in tag html line 1 in /homepages/24/d105192557/htdocs/sites/cry-havoc/wp-content/themes/CryHavoc/footer.php on line 128

Warning: simplexml_load_file(): warcraft.akamaized.net/static/scripts/navbar.js?v=3.7.0"></script></body></html> in /homepages/24/d105192557/htdocs/sites/cry-havoc/wp-content/themes/CryHavoc/footer.php on line 128

Warning: simplexml_load_file(): ^ in /homepages/24/d105192557/htdocs/sites/cry-havoc/wp-content/themes/CryHavoc/footer.php on line 128

stdClass Object
(
[stats] =>
[inventory] => stdClass Object
(
)

[progressionraw] => {}
[progression] =>
[raidlistraw] => {}
[raidlist] =>
[archivements] =>
)