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With the Razer Nostromo, people may not know the name but certainly can recognize the gaming keypad from the online web series, Video Game High School. Despite not being able to do the crazy things that they depict with the Nostromo, this Razer product is “designed to give the player the upper hand with cutting edge ergonomics for intuitive game control while playing in complete comfort.”
Developed with Belkin, the Nostromo is powered by a threaded hard wire USB cable which offers the player a constant connection to his or her game with 1000hz ultrapolling. The Razer Nostromo also comes with 16 fully programmable hyperesponse keys that give a player the flexibility to assign macros with unlimited lengths. With that said, the keypad can support up to 20 different gaming profiles, which gives the player the ability to easily switch to his or her button preference and quickly get into the action. The Razer Nostromo includes a programmable 8-way directional thumb pad with a removable joystick, which pulls out with little effort if you prefer a d-pad. The Razer Nostromo also comes with an adjustable wrist pad which can be moved back for larger hands. It is actually quite comfortable and seems to be composed of the same kind of poly-carbonate material that certain electronic devices use already.
The styling of the Razer Nostromo reminds me so much of the early Nintendo Power Glove. Since the design resembles a hand facing down, the Razer Nostromo has back lit keys with blue light that have an on/off function. In comparison to the size of my hand, its quite large like a baseball glove. But with size aside and lack of desk space, the Razer Nostromo button placement is very accessible. The buttons themselves are soft when pressed and do not feel like they need a lot of pressure. At the same time, they feel just right and not too sensitive. While some buttons may need to be changed in regards to either the game itself or if you have smaller hands, there is no instance of where it felt like I had to stretch out to reach a button or two. The customization aspect was pretty much the same with my experience with the Razer Orochi. The only difference is that there are 20 different configurations that you can save and easily change to with a few clicks.
With that said, the Razer Nostromo felt weird to use at first, mainly because I was used to the keys on my laptop. After a while, using the Razer Nostromo felt like second nature as it is molded in the position your hand would be on a normal keyboard. I felt the benefit immediately as my wrists weren’t tensing up as much, even after prolonged game playing. The games that I used to test the Razer Nostromo were, Mass Effect 3 Multiplayer, Blacklight: Retribution, Sleeping Dogs, RaiderZ, and Guild Wars 2. While I had to adjust some of my preset keys to accommodate for certain games, it didn’t hamper my playing experience or performance while playing these games. It was basically business as usual.
In short, the Razer Nostromo is a gaming keypad with lots of customization options for the hardcore gamer. It certainly gives a edge when gaming can feel like you’re running a 5k marathon against other players from different parts of the world. Even if that isn’t the case or if you’re more of a casual gamer playing some of the high profile games, the Razer Nostromo certainly can make life feel a little bit easier. The styling itself is very sleek and almost futuristic. Retailing at $69.99, it’s certainly an accessory that I can recommend to fellow gamers that are in need of softer keys and quicker hotkeys.