The Razer Naga isn’t a new product on the market – not by a long shot. But its features and appeal have made it one of the company’s most cherished creations and something of a relic amongst MMO gamers. Designed and marketed as Razer’s first mouse for the MMO player base. The Naga brings together the ergonomics of Razer’s classic hardware and fused the comfort with a shed load of buttons. But is it up to scratch to the perfectionist MMO race?
Every MMO player knows the importance of key binding off by heart. The genre relies on fast reactions, anticipation and knowing which of your dozens of skills to use at any exact second. And anything capable of making that easier generally gets instant approval from the player base elite. The Razer Naga attempts to exile the days of keyboard Marcos and shift the dominant player control to the thumbs – a gamers best friend. It humbly achieves this by providing a total of 17 buttons on the mouse. All within easy reach of your digits.
Defiantly a right handed peripheral, the Razer Naga features 12 illuminated number keys laid out in a grid along the left side of the device. These keys primarily serve as the action bar attacks of your in-game character usually controlled by the number key row of your keyboard. Working right out of the box, the mouse will immediately become the better extension of your arm.
Rather than limiting character movement to shift your hands around the keyboard, you can concentrate on avoiding your opponent’s advances while dishing out the attacks with your mouse without barely moving. Better yet, if you still want to free up the keyboard row for even more flurry blows and support, a handy switch beneath the mouse will turn its button bindings to the numpad – something far out of reach of your keyboard hand.
The thumb buttons are laid out in a grid 3×4 style. Something which will take some getting used to if you reply on a single row of skills to emulate. But for WoW players, Razer offer a popular add-on to change the action bar style into this exact grid shape to speed up the learning curve. Of course, if you choose to keep the important factors of your set-up on your keyboard, feel free to. The handy Razer system tray software will allow you to turn those keys into whatever you want. Full blown macros or just plain old modifiers. Whether you just need more keys to bind complex macros to or just want them to be within easier reach, the Naga will prove it’s worth very quickly.
In terms of aesthetics and build quality. It’s defiantly the lower point of the device. The Naga looks absolutely fantastic. It’s neon blue glows cover it’s somewhat cheaper feeling body and while defiantly a more comfortable mouse than most others, it suffers from a smaller grasp than its brothers – the ‘Orochi’ and ‘Deathadder’. Razer focus a lot on the terms of mouse grip styles. The claw and palm grips are two very different play styles when using gaming mice with professions being very clear to emphasis which they use. But we feel as if the Naga doesn’t allow for either of these rather than a hybrid of the two.
Due to the Naga’s smaller size and oddly shaped chassis, we often find ourselves rest palms on the mouse (like a palm grip) yet curling our fingers around it (like the claw grip) because of its less lengthy body. The buttons on the other hand are incredibly well positioned with two extra buttons to the left defaulting as very handy back/forward buttons in browsers and photo viewers. Yet only limited to your own imagination
We feel as if Razer may have shot themselves in the foot with this one. While its clear to see the Naga has proven to sell like hot cakes – we feel as if marketing it as an MMO Gaming mouse may have turned heads from industry professionals. With the sheer amount of keys dotted all over it’s curved body, the Naga would be a fantastic little productivity device for graphic artists and movie editors.
The mouse could act as a full hub of hotkeys and shortcuts for more complicated software programs. The Naga is a clear example that they’re the king of PC peripherals. They understand the simple needs of gamers and expand on them in the finest detail. And we think should they expand their market to professional productivity, they’ll conquer that too.
Final Score: 4.5/5