Hey all! This piece is for anyone who calls himself a ‘serious gamer’ or ‘hardcore gamer’. Ignore this if you game only casually. While you can play an odd game with a substandard mouse, gaming mat and headphones, if you’re genuinely interested in improving your performance in video-games especially in the multiplayer, you really should consider getting good quality gaming equipment which includes an accurate and ergonomic mouse, a gaming mat which is suitable for the feet of your mouse, a good set of headphones and other components which you may or may not need, for example, a decent keyboard from a well-known brand.
Choosing a mouse:
First, consider the genre of the games you like most. Like FPS, RPG, RTS etc. When buying a mouse, put comfort above everything else, the mouse should fit well to your hands and also try gliding it on the gaming surface of your choice. It should glide smoothly for most gamers, though, some prefer a bit of friction between the surface and the mouse feet. For RPG gamers, there are some specific models like Razer Naga (which has a nice and handy 12-button thumb grid which you can customize according to your needs.)
Few mice to consider are SteelSeries Ikari, SteelSeries Xai, SteelSeries Sensei, Razer Imperator, Razer Mamba, Razer Naga (exclusively for MMORPG and RPG gamers), Logitech MX518 and so on.
Choosing a surface:
Okay, choosing a gaming surface is not as easy as it sounds. Always, try and buy a large surface specifically if you play at relatively low sensitivity setting. Not all mice feet are same. Some older models like Razer Deathadder have older Teflon feet and it’s quite a task to find a suitable gaming mat for those feet. For most newer mice though, options are aplenty. To check the quality of a gaming surface, glide your mouse on that mat. If you like the friction (or the lack of it), this surface is for you. And, I say it again, buy a pretty large surface for maximum comfort.
Headphones are generally neglected by gamers. People choose desktop speaker systems (2.1 and 5.1) over headphones or are too lazy to upgrade. A huge mistake, mainly because a typical set of headphones costing Rs. 2000 will give an equivalent sonic experience of a speaker system costing Rs. 10,000 more. Also, in my opinion, headphones are more comfortable than speakers as the audio emitted from headphones is more focused than speakers to their destination. For FPS gaming, choose a headphone set which is able to pick up the minutest of sounds (like the sound of footsteps). Much better, if it supports surround sound, as it will enable you to be aware of your enemies coming from any direction and will give you the extra advantage over them.
While this is quite an optional category, a bad quality keyboard will bottleneck the performance of your other high end components. Get a well built, comfy keyboard and one which supports several key presses at once. RPG and MMORPG users might consider buying keyboards with dedicated macro keys from the likes of Razer and SteelSeries.