Ergonomics are key for mice, as are durability and its ability to glide along numerous surfaces and the Rival is engineered in a way that satisfies those three main points. Ergonomically the mouse is slightly larger than its comparatively-priced competition which allows a gamer's hand to rest on it comfortable without having to hunt-and-peck for that "perfect" feel; just plop your hand down and you are good to go.
Each of the fully-programmable buttons that you can assign standard actions or even use Engine's Macro Recorder to record special actions to buttons, are within easy reach and have what I believe is the best click-action out of any mouse I have ever touched. The level of satisfaction on the click of a mouse button on the Rival is right up there near the level of glee that one gets out of using a mechanical keyboard; it is fast, easy, and effortless without like it will break when you get into wicked-click fests like Diablo III or any of the numerous and wildly popular MOBA's that are out there. This mouse is solid and built to last.
Though the ergos, durability, and the click action are great I found that the glide was a bit rough at times. I started off using the SteelSeries Qck soft gaming surface and the mouse seemed to drag a bit. Switching to a slightly rougher mat, the Mionix Sargas 320 I found that it was even worse, the mouse felt harder to move than normal and after only a few short hours I tossed the Sargas 320 to the side and replaced it with my PC Gaming Race Gaming Mat and it improved dramatically. The Gaming Mat is a bit smoother, having a silk-like surface, and the Rival was able to glide and track wonderfully across the oversized mat. On a whim I removed the mat / gaming surface altogether and gave it a go on the bare wood of my desks and found that the Rival absolutely flew over the hard surface with no resistance whatsoever. This mouse feels born-and-bred for hard surfaces and it truly shows when you give it a spin on a hard gaming surface.
With the functionality of SteelSeries Engine taking full advantage of the Rival's hardware added to the comfortable ergonomic feel and the best click that money can buy, the Rival is a powerhouse contender for the best, most affordable mouse on the market. With a gorgeous matte finish, easily-reached buttons, wonderful glide, and a click-action to die for, the Rival is one of my favorite mice to date.
Review by Robert