Finding the right gaming mouse among all the options can be a struggle. There is a dizzying array of mice available, from stripped-down, lightweight five-button mice for shooters to 17-button mice for MMOs. There are a lot of factors to consider: looks, grip style, comfort, sensor quality, wired versus wireless, button selection and arrangement, onboard settings storage, and RGB lighting (obviously), to name a few. These details can have a major impact on your gaming experience. On the other hand, sometimes mice have features that are overhyped and not worth the extra cost for most people.
Between the folks that contributed to this version of our gaming mouse guide, we’ve tested hundreds of gaming mice. As with keyboards, you can technically game with any mouse. But for any game where reaction time and accuracy are factors, there’s a bigger gap between gaming and non-gaming mice than there is between a good gaming keyboard and a good general-purpose mechanical keyboard.
Best wireless gaming mouse
The Razer Basilisk V3 Pro has 11 programmable inputs, a hyperfast scroll wheel, optical switches, and a ridiculous 30K sensor. It works over Bluetooth, USB-C, or 1,000Hz HyperSpeed Wireless — which bumps up to 4,000Hz if you pair it with the Mouse Dock Pro, which also adds magnetic Qi charging.
Connection: USB-C, Bluetooth, 2.4GHz / Charging: USB-C, Qi (with wireless charging puck), magnetic Qi (with Mouse Dock Pro) Polling rate: 125Hz (Bluetooth), 1,000Hz (2.4GHz or wired), 4,000Hz (with Mouse Dock Pro) / Sensor and resolution: Focus Pro 30K / Weight: 112g / Inputs: 11 / RGB: Razer Chroma
The Razer Basilisk V3 Pro is a wireless gaming mouse with an incredibly high-res sensor, a 1,000Hz wireless connection — which bumps up to 4,000Hz if you add the wireless charging dock — and 13 RGB lighting zones. It is virtually indistinguishable from the wired Basilisk V3, which we also like, with the same aggressive claw shape and 11 programmable inputs. Less obvious improvements include a ridiculous 30,000 DPI optical sensor and third-generation Razer optical switches.
The V3 Pro’s RGB lighting is more robust than the wired V3’s, and its chassis is more resistant to smudges and fingerprints. The hyperfast scroll wheel automatically switches to smooth scrolling based on how fast you spin the scroll wheel, instead of toggling when you push a button like Logitech’s implementation.
Most modern games recognize all of the Razer’s buttons and inputs, so you can remap them in game settings, but you’ll still want to download Razer’s Synapse software, which lets you program and assign macros as well as customize the lighting zones. The V3 Pro can store five profiles on its onboard storage, which is nice if you use multiple computers.
By default, the V3 Pro uses Razer’s HyperSpeed wireless dongle, which has a 1,000Hz polling rate (about the same as a wired mouse and much faster than Bluetooth). If you have a HyperSpeed keyboard like the BlackWidow V3 Mini we recommend in our gaming keyboard buying guide or a HyperSpeed headset, they can share a dongle. (It also supports Bluetooth and wired connections.)
The V3 Pro can charge via USB-C or with any Qi-compatible wireless charger if you add the charging puck. But you can also buy the Basilisk V3 Pro bundled with the Mouse Dock Pro. Apart from adding magnetic wireless charging, which just looks cool, the charging dock ups the V3’s polling rate to 4,000 Hz, which is faster than most wired gaming mice.
You can expect the Basilisk V3 Pro to last around 90 hours on a single charge if you put some power-saving measures in place, but even with the RGB lighting turned on and 4K polling rate enabled, the V3 Pro can last for well over 40 hours before you need to top it off.
You can get the Basilisk V3 Pro for $169.99, with the Qi charging puck for $179.99, or with the dock and the puck for $202. The dock is $69.99 on its own, so if you want it, you should get it bundled. It’s a tall price to pay for the whole package, but it nets features that you won’t find on other wireless gaming mice.
There’s also a new Basilisk V3 X HyperSpeed, which is $69.99, a whole Benjamin cheaper. It runs on a single AA battery, has nine inputs instead of 11, and doesn’t have wireless charging — or even wired. It does have 1,000Hz HyperSpeed Wireless and Bluetooth, though.
Best wireless gaming mouse you never have to plug in
The G502 X Plus is Logitech’s equivalent of the Razer Basilisk V3 Pro — or vice versa. It uses Logitech’s Lightspeed 1,000Hz wireless tech and is compatible with the $120 Powerplay mat, which wirelessly charges the mouse as you play.
Connection: USB-C, 2.4GHz / Polling rate: 1,000Hz (2.4GHz or wired) / Charging: USB-C, wireless (with Powerplay mat) / Sensor and resolution: HERO 25K / Weight: 106g / Inputs: 13 / RGB: Logitech Lightsync
The closest competitor to the Basilisk V3 Pro is the Logitech G502 X series. The $160 G502 X Plus is very similar to the V3 Pro, with a claw-style shape, 1,000Hz polling rate, 13 inputs instead of 11, and slightly fewer lighting zones. (It doesn’t support Bluetooth, though that’s not a big omission in a gaming mouse; it’s mostly useful for using the same mouse on non-gaming devices.)
The biggest advantage the G502 X Plus has over the Basilisk is that it works with Logitech’s $120 Powerplay mousepad, which charges the mouse via magnetic induction as you use it. Of course, that does require spending another $120 on a mousepad you have to plug in, but the G502 X Plus can also charge via USB-C if you don’t feel like doing that. Logitech also has the G502 X Lightspeed, which drops the RGB lighting and lowers the price from $159.99 to $139.99. – Alice Newcome-Beill
Best wired gaming mouse
Connection: USB-A / Polling rate: 1,000Hz / Charging: N/A / Sensor and resolution: Razer Focus+ 26K / Weight: 101g (not counting cable) / Inputs: 11 / RGB: Razer Chroma
One thing about wired gaming mice: they never run out of battery! They’re also a lot less expensive! The wired Basilisk V3 has just about all the same features as the wireless one, including that great scroll wheel, for about $50 or $100 less than the wireless version. Its sensor is “only” 26K DPI instead of 30K, its optical switches are second gen instead of third, and it has 11 lighting zones instead of 13, but who’s counting?
Best cheap gaming mouse
The Prime is a no-frills, five-button wired gaming mouse with a 18,000 DPI sensor and a detachable Micro USB cable so you can simply replace the cable if anything happens to it. And you can swap between five on-device profiles with a button on the bottom of the mouse.
Connection: USB-A to Micro USB / Polling rates: 125Hz to 1,000Hz / Charging: N/A / Sensor and resolution: SteelSeries TrueMove Pro 18K / Weight: 69g (not counting cable) / Inputs: Five / RGB: One zone
The SteelSeries Prime isn’t the most luxurious mouse SteelSeries makes. There’s no OLED display, fancy lighting zones, or extra buttons. Instead, you get a wired gaming mouse with five opto-mechanical buttons, one RGB lighting zone, and a sensitivity selection on the bottom for under $40. That’s it.
SteelSeries did cut some corners to bring the price down. The main thing is that it feels like it’s made from cheap plastic — you know, the kind you’d find on a mouse that came bundled with your desktop. It still feels solid enough, though, and its buttons are nicely tactile.
One thing that I was surprised to see as soon as I opened the Prime up, however, was the detachable cable. This is a wired mouse, but it uses a standard Micro USB cable. This is something I’d expect to see in mice twice the cost of the Steelseries Prime, and it means you don’t have to worry about the mouse experiencing an early death due to cable failure.
The Prime is right in the middle of SteelSeries’ Prime lineup; the Prime Plus is virtually identical but adds an OLED screen at the bottom that makes it easier to toggle through the on-device sensitivity profiles. It’s usually between $10 and $30 more than the regular Prime, but sometimes it’s actually cheaper. Depending on the price difference, it’s worth picking up if you feel like you’d use that feature. – Jackie Thomas
Best mouse for MMOs and MOBAs
The Scimitar RGB Elite is a great mouse for MMOs, MOBAs, action RPGs, or really any game that benefits from having an entire number row’s worth of buttons right at your thumb. Swap weapons or abilities without taking your fingers off of the WASD keys!
Connection: USB-A / Polling rates: 125Hz to 1,000Hz / Charging: N/A / Sensor and resolution: Pixart PMW3391 18K / Weight: 122g (not counting cable) / Inputs: 17 / RGB: Four zones
For most people, a gaming mouse only really needs to be good at pointing and clicking on an enemy’s head. But for anyone who plays MMORPGs like World of Warcraft or Final Fantasy XIV, if you can add a bunch of buttons to your mouse, that’s free keybindings, baby. There are tons of mice out there with an entire keypad’s worth of thumb buttons — the Razer Naga pioneered the genre. I’ve tried all of them, and the Corsair Scimitar RGB Elite is the best. It’s the one that feels best in my hand — partly because you can adjust the position of the number pad — which is important during long raids and dungeons.
The buttons on the side of the mouse are numbered one through 12 and have RGB LEDs illuminating them. By default, they emulate the number row at the top of your keyboard. And to be honest, in the years I’ve been using the Corsair Scimitar and mice like it, I’ve never once changed that default setting. This is because, in games like World of Warcraft, all of your abilities are bound to keys one through = on your keyboard, which makes the Scimitar RGB Elite a plug-and-play affair.
Obviously then, the Scimitar RGB Elite is going to have a huge following among MMO devotees, but even in other games, the number pad on the side is useful because so many games bind weapons or abilities to the number row by default. I have eased off of MMOs over the last year or so, but I still use the Corsair RGB Elite as my daily driver — and have for almost 10 years.
There are a couple of downsides, though. There are two buttons right between the left and right mouse buttons. One of them switches between sensitivity settings. I cannot tell you how many times I have accidentally pressed one of these buttons in the middle of a raid and completely screwed up my performance for like 10 seconds while I figure out what the hell is going on. It’s something that’s easily fixed in Corsair’s iCue software, but it’s still annoying.
But if that’s the only bad thing I can say about a mouse that I’ve been using for years, it must be a good sign, right? – Jackie Thomas
Other good gaming mice
- The $89 Lamzu Atlantis Mini is a great lightweight, no-frills gaming mouse with a high-precision sensor. It works in wireless mode (125Hz) or wired (1,000Hz) and is popular among the competitive shooter set. Unfortunately, it’s frequently out of stock in the US. It’s worth picking up if you can find it, though.
- The Logitech G303 Shroud is a minimalist ambidextrous gaming mouse that works with Logitech’s 1,000Hz Lightspeed dongle. It’s good, especially if you prefer its shape to the more aggressive right-handed claw shapes of the Basilisk V3 or Logitech G502 series, but those two mice are a bit more feature-packed.
- The Cooler Master MM720 wired gaming mouse is lightweight, at just 49g, and cheap — it’s often under $30. But its design is just a little bit more divisive than the SteelSeries Prime, which has the advantage of a replaceable cord.
- The Razer DeathAdder V2 is a good, inexpensive wired gaming mouse, but it’s largely superseded by the Basilisk V3 for not much more money.
Updated on August 3rd 2023 with new selections and testing results.