Do Gaming Mouse Pads Really Matter?

Mouse Pads; we have had them since the first mainstream computer mouse was introduced. Over the years, they have become more and more technical and better suited to gaming. They have adapted and have become a staple part of our gaming setups. And now you are here, asking the question, do gaming mousepads even matter?

A gaming mouse pad can be specially designed for certain play styles, and they are optimized for gaming, so yes, they do matter. If you have a laser mouse, you don’t necessarily need a mouse pad, although it is recommended. For an optical mouse, you do need a mousepad.

A gaming pad doesn’t just matter; it can make gaming feel better. Having a mousepad that is right for you is best. Choosing one according to your play style will help you get better at it. In this article, we will go through everything you need to know about why gaming mousepads do matter and more. So, keep reading.

Do gaming mouse pads matter?

Although gaming mouse pads might not seem that important, they actually are. What a lot of people don’t know is that the type of gaming mousepad that you use can affect how you play the game.

You get different surfaces built for different things like speed, control, accuracy, and much more. The size of your gaming mousepad also makes a difference. For someone who uses a high DPI, the size of the mouse pad doesn’t really matter. For people who use a low DPI, a bigger mousepad is better.

A higher DPI just means that the mouse moves more, relative to how much you physically move it. DPI stands for “Dots Per Inch.”

Do mouse pads make a difference for gaming?

Using a gaming mouse pad can make a huge difference in your game. It can allow you to get better at certain disciplines within games. A good mousepad will also help the sensor in your mouse to do a good job at tracking.

A perfect example of this would be if you are predominantly a sniper in video games like Battlefield or call of duty, you would want a control mousepad. We will get into the different types of surfaces that gaming mouse pads have later on in the article.

Do you really need a mouse pad?

This depends on what sensor your mouse uses, and we will get into that in a bit. I just want to add, even if you don’t need a gaming mousepad, depending on what mouse sensor you use, it is still advised to use one.

Using a mouse pad helps prevent damage. This is because using a mouse on a rough surface like a desk can accelerate wear and tear. If you have an expensive gaming mouse, then it is better to try and prevent this. So, I recommend always using a mousepad.

There are two main mouse sensors that we use today. The most popular one being the optical sensor. The type of sensor you have determines whether or not you need a mouse pad.

Optical mouse

With an optical mouse, you do need to use a mousepad, and I will explain why.

An optical sensor is made up of LED lights. If you try and use the mouse on a reflective surface, then the LEDs won’t work properly. The more reflective your surface is, the less responsive your optical mouse would be.

An optical gaming mouse is generally not as expensive as a laser mouse, but they perform great in games.

Lazer mouse

If you are using a laser mouse, then you can get away with not using a mouse pad. This is because a laser mouse can read and calculate the movements of the mouse on a surface more accurately.

Why are gaming mouse pads so expensive?

You get cheap gaming mouse pads, and you get more expensive ones. There is no set price for one. That being said, some gaming mousepads are very expensive, and that is for a good reason.

The reason some gaming mousepads are so expensive is because of the materials they are made out of. If I am being honest, the name brand that is associated with the mousepad can influence the price, but that is the reality for almost anything that we buy.

Why are gaming mouse pads so big?

Recently, gaming mousepads have been getting bigger and bigger. The thought pattern behind it is; it is not just for your mouse anymore. Mousepads are now being designed to cover your entire play area.

Gaming mousepads now act as a shield between your desk and your keyboard, as well as being a mouse pad.

I use a big mouse pad, one that covers my entire play area. One of the best things that comes with it is when I’m playing console instead of PC. When I’m using a controller, my controller doesn’t vibrate against the desk if I put it down in between play sessions, and there happens to be a little rumble. This ultimately makes my controller last longer.

What is a good mouse pad size: gaming

It might seem like a pretty big deal to choose the size of your mouse pad, but I recommend getting one that covers your play area so that your keyboard can rest on it as well.

This gives you quite a bit of freedom as to how big you want your mouse pad movement area to be. You can just shift your keyboard further to the left and keep your mouse closer to the right with as much space as you need.

Do mouse pads wear out?

Unfortunately, gaming mouse pads do suffer from wear and tear. It does not matter what quality they are. The only difference a high-quality mouse pad can make is the prolonging of it wearing out

Optical vs Laser gaming mouse: is there a big difference?

It’s always been thought that a laser mouse is more associated with a high-end gaming setup and that they are better because they offer a higher range of DPI. Also, it is because they often come with a higher price tag.

I think sometimes this whole thought pattern can be misleading. See, you might pay more for a laser mouse and not have as much fun as you did with an optical mouse. The fact is, just because something is more expensive does not always mean it is better.

I personally prefer gaming with my optical mouse and I will explain why.

An optical mouse gives you better responsiveness and more accurate readings. Even though a laser is more capable of delivering a more accurate reading, it is sometimes too good for its own good.

A lot of the time, when you are using a laser mouse, you might notice that there are a lot of jitters every now and then. This is because a laser mouse doesn’t track slow movements as well as LED lights or optical sensors. A laser mouse is too accurate. I hope that makes sense.

So in my opinion you should always say go for a good optical mouse.

What kind of Gaming mousepads do you get?

One of the most important features of a gaming mousepad is its surface. You might have been thinking that the most important part of a gaming mousepad is its build quality, but that’s not actually true.

You get three main types of gaming mousepads. You get control mousepads, speed mousepads, and finally, hybrid mousepads. Each of them is built for different types of gamers. The hybrid is probably my favorite, as it gives me more options in terms of how I play.

While having a certain type of gaming mouse pad does not mean that you have to play a certain way. It just helps you if you get the one that suits your style. The truth is, though, most people will not be able to tell the difference.

Speed Mousepads

Let’s say that you are playing a game like Fortnite. Let’s also assume that you are good or trying to get better at building. For this, you should have a speed pad. If you have ever watched Fortnite building, you will know why a good builder in Fortnite has to be extremely fast and accurate. The speed mouse pad will help you with that.

A speed pad will most often be smooth, which allows your mouse to glide over it with more ease. There will be much less resistance on a speed mousepad.

Control mouse pads

If you are the type to play at a slower pace, perhaps as a sniper or a long-range gunner, a control pad is the right one for you.

A control pad has a rougher surface area that causes more resistance when you move the mouse. This allows you to be more precise when aiming.

Hybrid mousepads

This is for pretty much everyone, and as I said, this is my favorite as it gives you more flexibility in how you play. If you are like me and you play lots of different games and switch your play style up, then this is the mousepad for you.

The surface of a hybrid pad will be a little less smooth than a speed mousepad. It will also be a little less rough than a control pad. So, as its name would imply, it is the best of both worlds.

Do gaming mousepads have RGB

Gaming mousepads do have RGB options. If you are interested in RGB lighting, what they are, what it does, or if you are looking at switching to an RGB setup, read this article. We cover everything you need to know about RGB lighting.

My top 5 best gaming mousepads

Alright, we have gone pretty in-depth in this article, I think it is time to give you a list of my absolute favorite mouse pads. My number might not be the best, but, according to some pros, my number 2 is the best.

1.   The Razer Firefly Hard V2 RGB Gaming Mousepad: $49.99

This is a mousepad built for control but acts as more of a hybrid, and that is why it is number 1 on this list. It has some of the best optical tracking and accuracy that I have experienced.

The little cable management feature that they added is superb, especially for those who like a clean setup. The mousepad also has some of the best customizations I have seen on a mousepad with their implementation of RGB.

The mousepad has a “sync feature” where the lights are synced to supported games. This adds to the immersion of your gaming session.

2.   The SteelSeries QcK Gaming Surface: $10.76 – $58.99

This mouse pad is one of the favorites amongst the professionals. You can choose from classic to XXL. You can be more specific by choosing which edition you want, whether it is the PUBG special, thick, hard, or RGB.

You can choose a soft surface for speed or a hard surface for control. The RGB is easy to set up, just plug and play, and it has 2 customizable zones.

3.   The HyperX FURY S – Pro Gaming Mousepad: $14.99 to $59.99

This mouse pad is built for speed and accuracy, almost like a hybrid. HyperX has made a name for themselves as a big player in the gaming market with its outstanding quality of products. They won’t hold anything back, even for mousepads.

The FURY S comes in a few different selections, and you can choose from small to extra large. You can choose from Black, Special edition, RGB, and a Speed edition.

4.   The Razer Goliathus Extended Chroma Gaming Mousepad: $39.99 to $79.99

I know Razer made it onto this list again. The Goliathus is just such a great mousepad. It has a subtle RGB chroma light around the edges that can be customized and even synced with supporting games.

The version of this mousepad that costs $79.99 is the Special edition Gears Of War pad. The mousepad looks incredible and is a must-get for any fans of the Gears series. It also adds a little bit of extra personal touch to your setup.

5.   The Corsair MM300 Anti-fray, Thick Gaming Mousepad: $39.99

I have decided to go with the Corsair MM300 Anti-fray cloth thick. Corsair is one of my favorite brands, especially for peripherals. You know that you are getting a quality product when you buy from Corsair.

The mousepad works great with Optical and laser sensors. The tracking is superb, and the quality of the materials is the normal high-quality standard that you can normally expect from Corsair.

The MM300 also comes in different shapes, sizes, and styles. They also have an RGB model to choose from.


Well, that brings us to the end of this article. I hope you found it informative enough. I tried to cover everything that I feel is important to know. A mouse does not always need a mousepad, especially a laser mouse. It is highly recommended to use one, though.

A gaming mousepad can make a huge difference in gaming. This is especially true when you buy one that compliments your play style. You can choose between speed, control, or hybrid gaming mousepads.

I listed a few of my favorite mousepads to use. The SteelSeries seems to be the 1st choice for competitive gaming. The Razer mousepads that I listed are my favorites; I love the feel and look of the pads.

David Sacks

I have worked in the IT industry since 2011 and have been an avid gamer my whole life. My first consoles were the sega genesis and the Nintendo SNES. I play both console and PC games, I love both. I decided to become combine my passion for gaming with my passion for writing.

Recent Posts