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Mad Catz wants to make its funky gaming style mainstream with new R.A.T.M and M.O.U.S.9 mice (hands-on)

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Gallery Photo: MadCatz M.O.U.S.9 and R.A.T.M hands-on
Gallery Photo: MadCatz M.O.U.S.9 and R.A.T.M hands-on

We just got a chance to check out Mad Catz's new mice in its GameSmart line — new Bluetooth 4.0 products that are certified to work with a range of mobile devices, computers, and consoles. The new mice share both the same wacky nomenclature and design as its earlier gaming mice, the R.A.T 7 and R.A.T. 9 — though the company says the newer devices are aimed at mainstream users. Mad Catz has opted to keep the same metal chassis which made the original R.A.T. devices stand-out, but the build quality isn't quite as impressive; while the mice feel similar in the hand to earlier models, both the R.A.T.M and M.O.U.S.9 are primarily covered in a glossy plastic that feels much cheaper compared to their predecessors. Both of the mice include plenty of programmable buttons and toggles, and the company says customizing them will be easier than ever with a new "drag-and-drop" method (though we weren't able to see this demonstrated).

Both mice use the low-power Bluetooth Smart standard, which the company says allows the M.O.U.S.9 to function up to a year using a single AA battery (the diminutive R.A.T.M is said to feature the same performance, but uses two AAA batteries instead). Both mice will be available in "early 2013," and will debut with a matching price tag of $129.99.