The Basilisk, one of the newer entries in Razer’s gaming mouse lineup, has been my daily driver for the past few months. But even in such a short time, it’s become one of my favorite mice. Recently, it dawned on me why: the Basilisk blends aspects of my two favorite mice of all time, the Logitech MX Master and the Razer DeathAdder, to great success.
Loyal readers may recall that both mice are consistently in the running for the best in their respective categories; the MX Master for work and the DeathAdder for gaming. While it makes some compromises compared to both of those mice, the addition of numerous customization options make it a great mouse for both work and play.
With its RGB lighting and glowing Razer logo, there’s no doubt this mouse was made for gaming. However, look closer, and there are a few features even seasoned key jockeys would enjoy.
Let’s start with the shape: it feels like the MX Master, with its sculpted thumb rest and raised scroll wheel. The Basilisk is shorter and narrower than both the MX Master and the DeathAdder, making it a little harder to use with a palm grip, so I found myself using a claw grip more.
Unlike most gaming mice, it avoids being garish, which is surprising to say about such a feature-rich mouse. It has customizable LEDs, but they’re subtle. And its rounded, almost boring-looking shape doesn’t scream “VIDEO GAMES!” like so many sharply-angled and attention-seeking gaming mice.
Under the large, easy-to-reach forward-and-back buttons, the Basilisk adds a rare, third thumb-accessible button in the form of a DPI clutch, which I found to be a bigger game changer than I had originally anticipated.
Most gaming mice either settle for standard forward and back buttons, or go way overkill with six to eight. The former is too few, and the latter looks out of place anywhere besides a League of Legends tournament. But the Basilisk’s customizable clutch serves as a great middle ground.
The clutch is intended to act like a sniper button, which allows FPS players to switch between regular and super-low sensitivity for better accuracy. But coupled with the Synapse 3 software, you can customize the clutch to work like any other button.
For instance, I mapped it to the mimic the scroll wheel click. This made moving down web pages really easy. And when I’m gaming, the extra button is really nice to have. Better still, the Basilisk includes three clutch levers of varying lengths that you can swap in and out at will.
I specialize in “low-skill” tank characters in Overwatch, so DPI is less of a factor in my game play. However, I found no discernible tracking problems, and since it’s a wired mouse, there was no input lag whatsoever.
Another thing I really love is the rubberized scroll wheel. The Basilisk allows you to choose a resistance level that best suits your taste. So, if you want to glide up and down pages without any click, you can turn down the resistance. But if you’re a fan feeling every “step” register, you can turn the dial way up. I found this super helpful when my scroll wheel let’s me quickly swap between weapons while I’m gaming.
Typically priced between $50-$70, the price is in line with the rest of Razer’s offerings, but a bargain when you consider all of the brilliant little features, like the DPI clutch. I’ve used more mice than I can count, from companies like Logitech, SteelSeries, Apple, and Razer. And the Basilisk performs as well as any that I’ve tried.
For the next iteration, Razer should make it a tad bigger for palm grip-users like myself. That, and perhaps wireless connectivity, would put it over the top.