Razer came out with the Naga Epic Wireless in late 2010 and to this day, even after several iterations of it since then and compared to current-day others, it’s the best gaming mouse I’ve ever used.
With its 17 buttons, the Razer Naga Epic debuted as an MMO-specific mouse, but I consider it perfect for FPS games and that’s how I primarily use it. Yes, I originally bought it to play it with Star Wars: The Old Republic, but I’ve never been an MMO player and surprisingly, it transitioned into a killer FPS mouse that I’ve yet to find a better alternative, even with today’s mice packing a crazy amount of technology.
The only caveat is that the wireless function doesn’t work; this has always been a wired mouse for me, which is still the preferred way to play FPS games because it eliminates the possibility of wireless lag (i.e., the time it takes the mouse cursor to register your hand movement). Even at a measly 5,600 dots per inch (DPI) laser sensor, essentially an ancient relic now, the Naga Epic Wireless has never failed to provide pin-pin accuracy and response time.
However, what makes the Naga Epic Wireless stand out over its predecessors is not its custom – albeit basic implementation of – RGB lighting , but its custom-fit side panel on the right side, opposite of its array of 12 side buttons. It comes packaged with three sizes to best fit your hand type and playing style (e.g., palm, claw or fingertip grip) and are held on by magnets; easy to remove and attach. I use fingertip grip and I have pretty small hands, so the smallest side panel is best for me.
Unfortunately, all the Naga mice that’s been released since 2010 are a “one-size-fits-all” style, which is equivalent to using the largest side panel on the Naga Epic Wireless. I’m not sure why Razer decided to go this route, perhaps to make cut down on manufacturing costs, but none of the current Naga mice are acceptable for me.
The most popular mouse on the market today is the Logitech G502 Proteus and its size and feel are pretty close to the Naga Epic Wireless with the smallest side panel. So I find it odd that Razer decided to make the new Nagas so damn fat, at least for me. Unfortunately, I’ve become so accustomed to the 12 side buttons for FPS games that it’s difficult for me to transition to newer mice. (However, the search continues, as I’m waiting for my Naga Epic Wireless to die any day now.)
Even with Razer implementing mechanical switches on the 12 side buttons on newer Nagas, the Naga Epic Wireless side buttons have a more premium feel, are slightly more indented (making more natural to feel which buttons are which) and are easier to depress. And overall, the build quality of the Naga Epic Wireless is still the best out of all the Nagas, even the top-of-the-line Naga Epic Chroma. All of the newer models sport a matte plastic finish, which does aid in better grip, but something about the piano black finish on both side panels of the Naga Epic Wireless make it stand out more. Though, the removable side panel does tend to accumulate grime rather quickly, it’s very easy to clean compared to matte finishes.
The RGB lighting, as mentioned above, is rather basic, but the Razer Synapse software does allow you to customize it a bit. More importantly, it does its job by illuminating the 12 side buttons, as well as the scroll wheel edging.
Using this for FPS games like any of the Battlefield series is superb. Battlefield requires frequent switching between weapons and gadgets, and having dedicated buttons for a specific item has given me split-second advantages in critical moments. Do I use all the side buttons? N0. But what’s great about having so many is that I can dedicate the ones easiest for me to feel and press without thinking twice; for example, I use the 7 and 8 buttons to toggle my map functions (zoom and overlay). In addition, similar to a keyboard’s F and J buttons, Razer has put small notches on the 5 and 11 buttons to allow the user to easily identify where his or her thumb is resting. It’s allowed me to
become one with this mouse more than any other mouse on the market over a seven-year span.
On the bottom of the mouse, there is a mechanical switch that allows you to choose “NUM” or “123” for determining the 12 side buttons to mimic your number pad or the top 1 – 0 buttons. In the latter mode, buttons 11 and 12 are specified as “Mouse 11” and “Mouse 12” when binding them in-game. Or, you can bind any of the mouse buttons to any keyboard button using the Razer Synapse software. For me, I’ve always used the “123” mode.
Besides the left and right click buttons, which I’ve never had an issue with, additional buttons are two small buttons below the scroll wheel that is set to adjust DPI by default, but you can customize it to anything you want. For a long time, I had the top button set as my microphone enable when using communications apps like TeamSpeak, but it failed to register my actuations after a while. Razer hasn’t implemented mechanical switches into those buttons yet, so it’s possible the newer Nagas might also fail if used in similar fashion. In addition, what might be a deal breaker for some, the scroll wheel doesn’t actuate left or right. For me, I’ve used that function on mice that offer it.
Weighing in at 134 grams with the battery, the Naga Epic Wireless is considered to be on the heavy side for FPS games. However, I’ve always played with the battery inserted. But since mine is always wired (and the only way I recommend using this mouse), you have the option of removing the battery and save 28 grams, bringing the total weight to 106 grams, which is the sweet spot for FPS games.
Although in the first year of owning the mouse, I had to have it replaced through warranty because one of the side buttons stopped accuatating / registering, all in all, the Naga Epic Wireless has stood the test of time. It’s unthinkable for any gaming peripheral, especially a mouse, to last nearly seven years, but this has. I’ve tried several alternatives, but this is the one that feels the most natural and gives me the best in-game performance. Even though it’s been discontinued by Razer, you can still find it sold online. A new-in-box version will run you about $110 – $120, which is a testament to how revered this mouse still is.
The Naga Epic Wireless gets a Consumer Fanatics rating of 9/10.
Razer, if you’re reading this, refresh this mouse and make sure you include those modular side panels!