Razer Marauder StarCraft II Keyboard Review

By on February 16, 2011
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Packing a punch, like a real Terran.

Good: Small size, Heavy and sturdy feel, Rubberized keys, Backlit keys and board, APM Lighting System, Elevated keys
Bad: Can't change default lights, Combined navigation and numpad keys
Price: AED 495
* The price is the Suggested Retail Price at the time of review. Please call a retailer to confirm the latest price for this product.

The Razer Marauder performed exactly as advertised within StarCraft II. While typing and playing on a membrane keyboard was certainly not as exciting as the Black Widow Ultimate (yeah, I’ve been spoiled), the lack of noise was certainly welcome.

I really liked that the Marauder had naturally elevated keys; this may not be much for a lot of people, but personally it felt nice to have a keyboard sit flat on the surface, yet have they keys aligned just the way I like them. The integration of the NumPad with the Navigation keys did remind me of using a laptop keyboard, but it wasn’t as annoying as I thought it would be.

Now let’s talk about the APM and Alerts Lighting System, which were more helpful than I actually expected them to be. As a multiplayer match would progress and the if I noticed that the APM lights on the Marauder would turn to yellow or green, I immediately realized that I was (quite literally) slacking, and started making more efforts. The same principle can be applied at a higher level of gameplay where any pro player can have a visual feedback on their performance, except it’s not some distracting graph on their screen, but where they are entering each keystroke. The Alert system did indeed help, but every time I got attacked or had any other even in-game that required my attention, I would get visual cues on-screen as well as audio warnings; having the keyboard blink in different colors for warnings didn’t add much.

In conclusion I would just say that the Razer Marauder keyboard is worth its price (and more) only to serious StarCraft II players. If going to buy it just because it looks cool, then you’ll be left wanting for some other key features that are prominent in Razer’s other keyboards, but not here. For instance the full spectrum lighting system isn’t actually available at all times; the color will stay blue out of StarCraft II. Then there’s the fact that the Marauder’s keys are set like those in mid-sized laptops. As a StarCraft II player, I really enjoyed and appreciated all of the features of the Marauder keyboard, and no doubt the target audience will pay up more than willingly for the whole set; but more on that in the other reviews.

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From auditing to editing, I now test and analyze the latest gadgets and games instead of the latest financial statements. Both jobs are equally intense and rewarding. When I'm not burning up hardware in the name of science, you'll find me nuking in DOTA 2 or engineering in TF2.

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