The market for gaming mice exploded a couple of years ago, with companies like Razer, Logitech, Steelseries and Roccat all releasing mice that were focused on the serious pc gamer. DPI values kept getting pushed higher and higher – pretty much to the point where the vast majority of games didn’t even experience any difference anymore. Another popular addition was the inclusion of programmable buttons and macros, allowing even the most complex control schemes to be mapped onto a single mouse (albeit with a ton of buttons).
After a period where hardware manufacturers kept pushing each other further and further, the market has somewhat stabilized now. This is great news, because it creates room for brand new and innovative concepts to appear. Enter the Kiro by Roccat – a ‘superdextrous’ mouse designed for the competitive gamer but at a price point that is affordable to the more casual e-athlete as well.
What makes the Kiro different, and what on earth is ‘superdextrous’? That’s probably best explained when looking at the ambidextrous mice that have been around for a good number of years now – in gaming and non-gaming form. An ambidextrous mouse has a symmetrical design, making it easy to use for left-handed players as well as right-handed players. A mouse that’s not ambidextrous might have buttons on only one side of the mouse, or might be shaped in a way that’s not comfortable for left-handers. So what makes the Kiro ‘superdextrous’? Well, the downside of the majority of ambidextrous mice is that the (button) design is simplified somewhat. What you include on one side of the mouse, you have to include on the other – and adding too much quickly hurts the ergonomics of the device.
This is where the superdextrous nature of the Kiro comes in. It’s the first mouse we’ve seen that converts from a right-handed mouse to a left-handed mouse, without sacrificing anything in terms of ergonomics. The way Roccat does this is as simple as it is ingenious: the side panels of the Kiro come off and can be swapped around. So if you’re in the majority and are a right-handed player, you could choose to have an array or extra buttons on the left side while keeping the right side of the mouse nice, smooth and buttonless for a comfortable grip. If you’re left-handed, you just exchange the panels for a different set and you’re good to go. The Kiro comes with a standard set of panels, but your options will greatly expand once Roccat launches their 3D printing service that gives you the option to design and order your own side panels as well.
The superdextrous aspect is definitely the standout feature of the Kiro, but it comes in a fully featured package. The mouse has a nice neutral design that should appeal to most and sits comfortably in your hand regardless of the side panel configuration you choose. Playing around with the RGB lighting is available using Roccat’s own software suite, which also allows you to program buttons and macros.
At its default settings, the Kiro is a good all-purpose mouse, but it does allow for that extra bit of precision as well by configuring the DPI settings (either on the fly or in the software suite). It may not be the level of control and precision that pro gamers are looking for (though they wouldn’t be looking at this price point either), but it’s definitely enough to set the Kiro apart from the non-gaming mice out there.
If you were ever on the fence about investing in a gaming mouse then the biggest pro that that Kiro brings is its excellent price point – available for under €50, this is a real bargain for a fully features gaming mouse. It’s modular in design as well, and although not that many right-handed people will be sharing their mouse with a left-hander (or vice versa) this also means you can add a multi-button side panel if you ever want to explore the MOBA universe – without having to spend a lot more on a specialized mouse.
The fact that Roccat’s latest handles all the basics well (performance, ergonomics) AND sports a set of unique extra features at a competitive price point makes the Kiro a solid recommendation for the holiday season.