Glorious PC Gaming Race is the best gaming mouse maker you’ve never heard of. One of a handful of upstart vendors that have popped up with the rise of esports gear, Glorious has quickly gained a strong reputation among savvy competitive players, primarily thanks to its first mouse, the ambidextrous Model O. Despite the cringeworthy name—a sanitized riff on PC Master Race, an “edgy” old-school term for hypervigilant PC gamers—the Glorious mice are worth players’ attention. Both the Model O and its new right-handed counterpart, the Model D ($49.99 matte, $59.99 glossy), are extremely light, well-shaped, and have a distinctive look that other companies have attempted to copy. Plus, as a relative unknown in a field full of titanic brands, the mice are relatively inexpensive. Cheap, well-made, good-looking? It’s hard to top that.
When Less Is More
Like many esports mice, the Glorious D treats simplicity as a virtue. It’s a simple six-button wired mouse, with two main clickers, a scroll wheel, and a DPI-switching button in its center column. On the side are two macro buttons. There’s also a color-coded DPI preset indicator on the underside of the mouse that you can check from time to time if you switch resolutions often, though it’s not an input. What you see is what you get.
The Model D is also relatively basic on the inside. It employs a Pixart PMW-3360 sensor, and tracks accurately at up to 12,000dpi and 250 inches per second. Such a rating is about average for a $50 mouse, even from a major manufacturer. It’s also, in my experience, as much speed as you need. Anecdotally, I can say the Glorious stayed on track while playing games like Call of Duty: Modern Warfare, which requires bursts of many quick movements. Pro players might disagree, but for most people it will get the job done.
As I’ve said on many occasions, esports mice are primarily built for speed. Manufacturers drop all the nonessential features in order to get the weight as low as possible, because in theory, if the mouse weighs less, you can move it faster. Well, the Model D drops most fancy features and weighs very little—2.4 ounces, to be precise. Though the difference between the Glorious and many other simple mice is an ounce or less, moving the mouse around feels especially fluid.
That may have as much to do with its size and shape as the weight. At 5.04 by 2.64 by 1.65 inches, the Model D is slim but shapely. My hand fits perfectly into position when gripping it. Though it’s relatively low, its sloped shape guides your hand into a proper palm form, draping your hand in the most comfortable way. That said, while the shape creates an exceptional fit, the base’s low slope does not provide as much ergonomic support as it could, particularly for the base of your thumb.
One reason the mouse is so light is that it’s literally riddled with holes. PC Gaming Race is one of a couple of companies popularizing what is often called a honeycomb chassis. It looks as if a machine has punched a large number of small hexagonal holes in the shell and part of each click panel, with only a thin web remaining. The sides are solid, and thanks to a set of struts running between the sides, the mouse is structurally sound. In a week of use, I never felt the chassis bend or wiggle under my weight, even when I tried to make it do so.
For me, the design is as much an aesthetic choice as anything else. I can’t tell you how much weight the mouse loses because of the holes, or whether they make a meaningful impact on its movement. I can tell you that it looks sharp and interesting.
Unlike many esports mice, the Model D does not eschew RGB lighting. In fact, thanks to the honeycomb chassis, it can be very colorful if you want it to be. There are three lighting elements on the mouse: the piping on the scroll wheel, and two strips of RGB lighting on either side of the top panel. Because you can see through to the inside, the lighting fills up the space inside the mouse. The whole body takes on an ambient glow, plus you can see the sensor and parts inside.
Driving the Model D
Glorious makes discrete but similar configuration programs for both of its mice. The Model D app has a simple one-window design that makes it easy to find every function you might need, including remapping keys, creating macros, changing DPI settings, and tweaking lighting.
The company also adds specific customization options for very particular players. You can set a specific amount of “debounce,” a.k.a. the time in milliseconds the mouse waits after sending a click signal before looking for another. This allows you to choose between speed and accuracy when clicking rapidly at high speed. You can also set different DPI settings for horizontal and vertical movement.
At the same time, other areas are more limited than what you get with a mouse from a big-name brand. For instance, the software offers only a small number of lighting patterns and effects. You can create custom profiles with different DPI presets, button mapping, and so on, but can’t sync profiles to specific games and apps. Likewise, the Model D has no onboard memory, so you can’t easily bring your profiles with you, though you can export and transfer them externally.
It All Starts With the Basics
With the Model D, Glorious PC Gaming Race shows that it knows what’s most important about making a great gaming mouse. It needs to feel good in your hand. It needs to be sturdy and reliable. It should be powerful enough that you never see the upper limits of what it can do. Don’t get me wrong, I love the bells and whistles of more feature-rich mice (wireless connectivity, extra inputs, and all that), but the most important thing is that you nail the fundamentals.
For 99 percent of players, the Glorious D hits all these criteria, and does so for less than many of the major manufacturers. You could spend $70 on a Razer DeathAdder V2, or save $20 with the matte version of the Model D. It’s not a no-brainer choice, both have pros and cons, but the savings are hard to ignore (and the Glorious weighs half an ounce less). If you’re looking for an esports mouse, you should definitely take the time to scope out the options from niche mouse designers, starting with this one.