My eyes always sparkle in the presence of computer mice that dare to innovate — those which point boldly where no mouse has pointed before — and, though its ergonomic gaming mice look basic overall, Cougar is a company whose ethos is built upon a double helix of innovation. The Cougar Surpassion Gaming Mouse follows the script, waltzing out of its paper box unostentatiously; its size is faintly reminiscent of the Minos X5, and a 13-colour backlight effect adds some illuminative flair in the darkness. It’s crowning jewel, however, is cleverly concealed.
Tipping the scales at 96g, the Surpassion is a moderately lightweight right-handed mouse that is only slightly heavier than Cougar Revenger S (94g) and eight grams more hefty than Minos X5. And while its measurements are identical to the Minos X5, the shape juts out towards the right in a voluminous curve, lending itself to a more comfortable palm-grip and letting your ring and pinky fingers rest against anti-slip rubber flanks that don’t feel as constricting.
It’s also equipped with two side buttons for navigating back and forth between pages, though they protrude less, have less of a gap between each other, and are ideal for quick button presses in your FPS of choice. The 1.8 m plastic cable should also give you more than enough freedom of movement during tense gameplay moments.
Both sides of the Surpassion are layered with anti-slip rubber, The bonus mouse skates included in the packaging guarantee it glides smoothly across any mouse pad or tabletop. You’ll notice its scroll wheel lacks any grooves, and this doesn’t affect performance in any way, though it does remove that extra tacticle sensation you get with competitors like Revenger S, Minos X5 and others demonstrated below — so this feature will be down to personal preference and whether you like your wheel ‘groovy’. Much less noise is produced with the smoother surface which makes it more suitable to quieter environments.
A Hidden Treasure
The Surpassion‘s most original feature is the handy LCD display on its underbelly. Instead of reyling on Cougar’s typical UIX software, it embeds two textured buttons right above the bottom mouse skates that let you quickly and conveniently toggle between different DPI and polling rates.
It doesn’t give you the same precision as a DPI wheel or adjustable bar, but the instant visual feedback is a nice change from remembering which colour scheme matches whatever DPI profile you’ve set it to, and you can do it more swiftly. It reminds me of those swish new credit cards that inform owners how much money is remaining at a glace. Simple, intuitive, and forward-thinking.
The polling rate reaches 1000Hz, which isn’t as high as the Minos X5‘s 2000 Hz, but is still decent. It’s the same story with the DPI — not an astronomical 12,000 or 16,000, but 7200 will definitely get the job done in FPS games that run more accurately with lower DPI anyhow.
You can also switch between low and high lift off distance (by pressing and holding the right button), and activate angle snapping for aim unafflicted by a wobbling, jittery cursor.
Colour customisation offers 13 variations to choose from. But remember, there’s no driver to modify the colours on the logo and scroll wheel individually, and this is the sacrifice the Surpassion makes in the name of innovation.
The 2 Zone LED backlight isn’t trying to make a big statement like 16 million RGB colours or SteelSeries Rival 600′s smart colour control system, however, it does feature a good range of colours and includes a couple of different lighting modes like pulse and colour change. If you aren’t a huge fan of tweaking colour profiles, this will still serve you well.
The Cougar Surpassion is a thoughtfully designed mouse that puts comfort and ease of use at the forefront. Its original LCD display is an exciting addition whose easy-switch buttons for DPI and polling rate make up for the less customisable lighting scheme. At just $39.99 USD, this is a quality budget mouse that bucks trends in favour of a new vision. Get it here.