Gaming peripherals tend to go for futuristic designs with plenty of bright lights, but they can make a huge difference in how smooth and enjoyable your gameplay is. A gaming mouse, in particular, can up your game significantly.
Of course, gaming mice come in various unique setups, and what some consider amazing might be terrible for you. We’ve compiled a list of the best gaming mice you can buy in 2021, each with its unique selling points that will appeal to various gamers.
What to consider when buying a gaming mouse
If this is your first time delving into the world of gaming accessories, picking the right mouse might seem daunting. There are tons of different mice out there with heaps of unique specs often described with abbreviations, which might confuse newcomers. The ones you will see most often are DPI (dots per inch) and CPI (counts per inch).
Without getting too technical, both terms refer to the mouse’s sensitivity — how much distance is covered on the screen related to the physical movement of the mouse. The higher the CPI or DPI number, the wider the range of sensitivity you can specify. You will see both used by different manufacturers, but the thing to remember is that higher numbers don’t mean the mouse is better.
Another important thing to consider is whether to buy a wireless or wired mouse. If you are aiming for top-notch performance, our advice would be to opt for a wired mouse. Despite major improvements in wireless mice over the years, latency is still slightly higher, and you need to deal with a lot of extra annoyances such as connecting, charging, and so on. On the other hand, a wired mouse is very much plug-and-play (installing drivers aside, since you will likely have to do the same with wireless) and generally cheaper.
If you need top-notch performance and low latency at an affordable price, a wired mouse is the better choice.
However, the biggest determining factor when buying a gaming mouse is what types of games you play. Going on lengthy WOW raids? Your ideal gaming mouse should have extra programmable keys for quick and efficient casting. The same applies to MOBA and ARTS fans. CS: GO players, on the other hand, or those that have given into the FPS battle royale trend, will appreciate a mouse with low latency and extreme precision. Competitive real-time strategy players could also benefit from such a mouse to select and maneuver units quickly. Still, gamers that switch between genres will want a gaming mouse that covers all basics.
Other things to keep in mind are mouse weight and size. These are all up to you — if you have small hands, a slim mouse is essential, for example. This is why we’ve included these stats on our list. So, without further ado, here are the best gaming mice you can buy in 2021.
Best gaming mice:
Editor’s note: We’ll be updating this list of the best gaming mice regularly as new ones launch.
1. Logitech G502 Hero
Max DPI: 16,000 | Sensor: Optical | Buttons: 11 |Weight: 121 g | Width: 75 mm| Length: 132 mm
- Pros: Durable, many customizable buttons, thin braided cable.
- Cons: Can be bulky or too heavy for some, not suitable for left-handed use.
The Logitech G502 Hero is an updated version of the original G502 — probably Logitech’s finest gaming mouse. It has been lauded as one of the best overall, and its successor has more than earned its place on our list. With the new Hero sensor, the G502 Hero now sports a max DPI of 16,000 and has a report rate of only 1ms. As can be expected from a gaming mouse, it also has a programmable RGB light, which can shine, pulsate or “breathe” in various colors.
Logitech has also kept the Sniper button on the left side of the mouse for fans of first-person shooters, where your thumb would usually be. Pressing it instantly activates your lowest DPI preset so your aim can be as precise as possible.
2. Razer Basilisk Ultimate
Max DPI: 20,000 | Sensor: Optical | Buttons: 11 | Weight: 249 g | Width: 75 mm | Height: 42 mm | Length: 129 mm
- Pros: Ergonomic design, plenty of buttons, mechanical switches.
- Cons: Right-handed design, heavy, a bit pricey.
Whether you’re buying a first gaming mouse or you’ve been around the block a few times, you’ve no doubt heard of Razer. The Basilisk Ultimate is one of the company’s finest offerings, with lower click latency and an improved wireless protocol for power efficiency. It’s equipped with 11 buttons that you can remap in minutes, thanks to Razer Synapse.
Powering the Basilisk Ultimate is a Focus Plus 20K optical sensor and an optical switch rated for 70 million clicks. Even better, the Basilisk Ultimate is completely wireless and offers a battery life of over 100 hours, which is plenty for even the longest of marathons. If you prefer the security of a wired option, the Basilisk V2 is also available with a nearly identical design.
3. Logitech G903 Lightspeed
Max DPI: 16,000 | Sensor: Optical | Buttons: 11 |Weight: 109.96 g | Width: 66 mm | Height: 40 mm | Length: 130 mm
- Pros: Ambidextrous design, significantly improved battery life.
- Cons: On the expensive side, heavy.
Logitech is back on the list already with the G903 Lightspeed, a high-end ambidextrous wireless gaming mouse. It’s equipped with a Hero 16K sensor and 10 times the battery life of previous versions. You can stay in action for up to 140 hours with RGB enabled or 180 without it. One of the coolest features is the PowerPlay compatibility — you can wirelessly charge while you stay in the game.
The G903 Lightspeed is equipped with 11 customizable buttons and a fully ambidextrous design that fits most hands comfortably. Logitech’s aforementioned Hero 16K sensor delivers exact gameplay with 1:1 tracking and over 400 IPS. If you prefer to play while plugged in, the G903 Lightspeed comes with a braided charging cable to help you out.
4. Steel Series Rival 650
Max CPI: 12,000 | Sensor: Optical | Buttons: 7 | Weight: 121 g | Width: 62 mm | Height: 43 mm | Length: 131 mm
- Pros: Swappable weights, rated for 60 million clicks.
- Cons: Right-hand design, fewer buttons than some options.
The Steel Series Rival 650 is one of the best wireless mice you can get from the brand, and its adjustable weights offer 256 different combinations. With a TrueMove 3 sensor and customizable lift-off, the Rival 650 is a mouse built to play how you do. There’s no fancy OLED display like you’d find on the Rival 710, but the button layout can keep you locked into the action.
While the Rival 650 is wireless by default, but you can also try a wired version. If you stick with the wired option, you should see about 24 hours of battery life, and 15 minutes of charging will net you 10 hours of power. The Rival 650 touches a maximum speed of over 350 IPS, and with built-in RGB, you might feel even faster than that. It’s a right-handed mouse by design, so you may want to test your comfort level before picking one up.
5. Razer Viper 8K
Max DPI: 20,000 | Sensor: Optical | Buttons: 8 |Weight: 71 g | Width: 57 mm | Height: 37 mm | Length: 127 mm
- Pros: Ambidextrous, featherweight design, incredibly low polling rate.
- Cons: Squeaky buttons can feel flexible in the hand.
We’re back to Razer for another gaming mouse, and this one is an update to a classic favorite. At first glance, it looks like Razer’s original viper, but it packs the highest polling rate around to cut down on latency. While some premium mice top out at a 1KHz polling rate, the Viper cranks it to 8KHz.
However, the Razer Viper 8K goes beyond the high polling rate. It has a flexible build, perfect for ambidextrous use, and it comes with a long cable for the largest desks. Razer designed its Viper as an esports dream, and it’s one of the lightest mice on our list at 71g.
6. Roccat Kone AIMO Remastered
Max DPI: 16,000 | Sensor: Optical | Buttons: 12 | Weight: 130 g | Width: 85 mm | Height: 39 mm | Length: 124 mm
- Pros: Easy Shift allows for 24 total functions, grippy and dirt-resistant coating.
- Cons: Right-handed design, can be heavy for some.
The Roccat Kone AIMO has been around since the company began making gaming mice in 2007. Over the past decade-plus, the mouse has grown and evolved with the needs of gamers, becoming what it is today. Roccat’s Easy-Shift technology makes the Kone AIMO one of the most flexible mice around, with 24 total functions across the 12 buttons.
Underneath all of that functionality, you’ll find a 16,000 DPI Owl Vision sensor and five independent RGB lighting zones. Although the Kone AIMO has a distinctly right-handed design, the thumb support in the middle has been refined over numerous years for the best possible gaming experience. It’s another wired gaming mouse, though the cable is nicely braided to last for many gaming sessions to come.
7. Glorious Model O
Max DPI: 12,000 | Sensor: Optical | Buttons: 6 | Weight: 67 g | Width: 66 mm | Height: 37.5 mm | Length: 128 mm
- Pros: Extremely lightweight for fast, resistance-free gaming.
- Cons: Very few buttons, rated for 20 million clicks.
Sometimes you have to make sacrifices if you want to reach top speeds. That’s somewhat of the case with the Model O from Glorious, as it drops down to just six programmable buttons. However, the tradeoff comes because it weighs in at around half of what the heavy Steelseries Rival 710 does. Much of this weight loss can be attributed to the unique honeycombed shell, as it uses far less material than most competitors.
The Model O isn’t just a featherweight competitor, though. It’s packed with plenty of RGB options, and it sports an ambidextrous design for easy usage. The mouse is wired by design, but Glorious claims that its Ascended Cable eliminates the need for third-party options thanks to its light, braided design.
If you have a smaller hand, you can also grab the Model O Minus that’s 8mm shorter and weighs 10g less. Right-handed gamers can check out the Model D or Model D Minus as well, though the design is the same overall.
That does it for our list of the best gaming mice for 2021. Of course, you might need a few more accessories to complete your setup. Why not check out these lists?