Hunting for Black Friday PC gaming deals can be stressful, so stop what you're doing, take a deep breath, and share a laugh with me over the most horrific gaming keyboard I have ever seen. I do not want you to buy this keyboard. In fact, if you insist on looking at its specs I want you to do so in an incognito Chrome tab so that Amazon won't recommend you products even remotely like it. You should not buy this keyboard, no matter how good a steal it sounds at $50 for a mechanical keyboard and mouse combo. I cannot be left to witness it alone though.
It's not uncommon to see gaming keyboards or mice on the cheap from manufacturers we've never heard of. Typically though, these flimsy budget products aim to be inconspicuous. They look similar enough to a Razer or Logitech keyboard, sufficiently gamer-y with their RGB lights, that your parents or partners might be tempted to snag you one for that tempting $50 price tag.
But not this keyboard.
Oh no, this thing wants to stand out. It's so egregiously ugly and over-engineered that it's just begging me to investigate. It wants to be exposed. It had the entire PC Gamer team asking questions we're not sure we want to know the answers to:
- Why is the wrist rest asymmetrical?
- Is it because your right hand should always be mousing, never resting?
- What is going on with that circular bit of the mouse beneath your palm?
- Why does the key font look like a '90s era FPS interface?
- Is it seriously connected with that tiny USB receiver?
- Who was it that demanded it also function as a desk organizer?
It even comes in white! What a glorious monstrosity of gaming gear design. I'm not the only PC Gamer writer that's been tempted to buy it just as a novelty. Don't you do it though! We want better for you.
If you're looking to get some of that RGB flair at a reasonable price, here's a combo of Razer products that will come in at $55 before tax.
Razer Cynosa Chroma | Low profile |
$59.99 $34.99 at Amazon (Save $25) (opens in new tab)
The Chroma is already a great budget board, but at almost half price its worth consideration even despite it being membrane board. What's great is you get a low profile, spill resistant keyboard from a trusted manufacturer.
Razer DeathAdder Essential|6,400 DPI | Wired | Right-handed |
$49.99 $19.99 at Amazon (save $30) (opens in new tab) For the majority of games and gamers, the DeathAdder Essential is a fantastic mouse. The design is simple, with two perfectly placed, generously sized thumb buttons. It also has an excellent optical sensor that will work on both hard and cloth pads, and the ultimate body shape for a claw or hybrid claw/palm grip.
Jokes aside, this $50 LexonElec keyboard (opens in new tab) is one of those Black Friday deals to be wary of. Don't be seduced by a keyboard that's cheap now and may well need to be replaced in under a year.
It would be easy to wind up taking a risk on this one when the Amazon customer reviews average out to 4.2 stars. Down in the written reviews, however, you'll find gems like "two days after gushing how much I love it.... it died." Another customer threw theirs away after six months when the keyboard stopped consistently registering keystrokes, a common complaint in other low reviews.
"I actually just came inside from slamming this keyboard against a tree like a baseball bat," says another.
As we've been pointing out this week and will continue through the big weekend, not all that glitters—or in this case glows—is gold.
Just here for more peripheral horror? Here are the most offensive gaming mice ranked. I may just ask Tyler to consider this one.