Over the years, we've seen the traditional gaming mouse take a series of major leaps into the unknown, ensuring better functionality, better build quality, and more versatility. The last few years specifically have been great for the industry, bringing us mice able to switch between wired and wireless modes (switching to Bluetooth if needed), as well as having the option to be made lighter through weight modules and quickly change from one user profile to the next thanks to built-in memory.
A lot has happened within the walls of the peripheral industry, but even though many of the flagship models on the market have pushed design conventions forward individually, there hasn't been a mouse that has brought it all together in one unit. Now, that mouse is here - meet the Asus ROG Chakram.
It's rather clear once you pull the ROG Chakram mouse out of its box that Asus has tried to create a cumulative model. One can find almost every bit of progress made on the peripheral front right here, so let's quickly summarise what we're talking about.
That's about it, yet it's easy to look at the Chakram, scratch your head for a bit and think about whether or not you really need another gaming mouse in your life. It's expensive, being sold for around £150, but then again, that's about the same price as the Razer Viper Ultimate.
That said, the Chakram has some features that other mice don't have. First of all, the Chakram actually has a joystick built into the left side of the chassis. Yes, you read that right. It sits where you rest with your left thumb and with a few customisation options enabled, it's designed to be able to control aircraft in simulation games or even add some extra dimension to, for example, fighting games. The experience certainly doesn't offer the same precision as a complete joystick does, but that's hardly a surprise considering the fact that it lacks a third axis. After a few minutes, however, it feels quite natural to use the joystick to control planes in Elite: Dangerous or move around in Mortal Kombat 11.
Apart from this, the Chakram also has wireless charging via Qi standard, which means you don't have to use a specialised pad but can use a basic wireless phone charger or the Corsair charging pad (should you have one) to charge it if you wish. The technology is hardly new, but Asus has made the Chakram versatile and it offers users a myriad of charging options. Smart.
It seems as though customisation and versatility have been the key focuses for Asus when developing the Chakram because when you pull the front panel of the mouse off you'll find that you can actually switch the ROG logo out for a personalised one. You can also remove the two mouse buttons and replace these. The buttons themselves use standard Omron switches, so ordering something that's supported won't be difficult.
It's a great peripheral, truly, and it's high-quality as well. The top panel is attached via magnets and the left side offers a nice resting position for your thumb as well as two mouse buttons. Sure, you can most definitely find a mouse with a higher DPI, but as a "jack of all trades", the Chakram is phenomenal (and our go-to mouse at the office following this review period).
This doesn't mean that Razer's Viper or Logitech's G Pro Wireless have less to offer (both of the mentioned mice destroy the Chakram's 20-hour battery life, for example) but for those looking for a mouse that has a bit of everything, the Chakram stands victorious.