Roccat Kain 200 AIMO Wireless RGB Gaming Mouse Review
A precise click meets a luxurious coating
NOTE: Roccat graciously sent me a final retail unit of this mouse to review at my discretion alongside marketing assets and technical information. I don’t receive a kickback if you decide to buy one, and none of the links in this article are affiliate links. I wasn’t sponsored to write this, and I had full editorial control over this article.
In an era where excellent sensor performance and low wireless lag are the norms rather than exceptions, a gaming mouse must nail the smaller details in order to stand out. The Roccat Kain 200 does exactly that, and at a price that’s affordable compared to the rest of the market.
Selling for a standard retail price of $99 (lower than average for flagship gaming products), the Roccat Kain 200 AIMO features two RGB lighting zones and supports both a fast wireless system and a wired connection. It has a 16,000 DPI optical sensor co-developed with PixArt, and fully programmable buttons thanks to the Roccat Swarm software. It’s available in both black and white. You can check out the official site here. In the box, you get some instructions, a nice braided USB cable, and a dock and wireless dongle.
Roccat also sells two cheaper wired-only versions of this mouse: The $69 Kain 120, which still features the excellent performance coating and a 16,000 DPI sensor, and the $49 Kain 100, which foregoes the performance coating on the side panels in favor of a more traditional textured shell, and has a slightly downgraded sensor that’s still a dependable model.
At the risk of spoiling later paragraphs of this review…getting that coating all the way around is absolutely worth the small price bump.
This is my first experience using a Roccat mouse. The company’s tagline is “Experience Precision,” and their “Titan” switches and clicks are designed to provide extra feedback to players with a more enjoyable snap. Sometimes these marketing buzzwords are just fluff that’s added after the fact to make things sound good, but in my last week using the Kain 200, “precise” is exactly the word I’d pick to describe it.
I have to start with the Titan Click (tm). The button mechanisms on the Kain 200 are uniquely designed to maximize click speed, player feedback, and durability. They’re a little bit louder and more robust than the clicks on other gaming mice I’ve used, with a light crisp snap and clean actuation that’s impossible to miss. If you’ve ever used and enjoyed a clicky mechanical keyboard, or the d-pad on the new Xbox controller, you’ll also get a kick out of the way the buttons feel here. It truly is a more precise, enjoyable click experience, and Roccat promises that it’s faster behind the scenes too in terms of processing lag and responsiveness.
I was skeptical about the many marketing claims surrounding the click, and delighted when it actually did feel instantly different and more enjoyable compared to most other gaming mice I’ve tried. It’s not a huge difference, but it’s noticeable. The Titan Click is even more prominent on the company’s ultra-light Burst Pro mouse, which you can read my review of right here.
The mouse wheel also benefits from a complete design overhaul compared to other mice, and its click action is sturdier and more crisp-feeling than the norm. It doesn’t have any wobble or unsteadiness to it, and it’s one of the few mouse wheel clicks I’ve used that responds just as nicely as the buttons do.
Aside from the standout performance and true precision of the clicks, the other biggest surprise about this mouse is the coating. At first glance, it seems like a standard rubberized matte coating, the sort that looks great for the first few milliseconds and then wears out and gets shiny. Those impressions vanished once I touched the Kain 200 for the first time, and I realized that this coating is awesome. It has a smooth, slightly slicker feel than I expected, and is more luxurious than I ever could have guessed. It’s wonderful to touch, with just the right balance of grip and comfort, and Roccat promises in the marketing that it’s very easy to clean.
Sure enough, after a week of gaming use, my left and right buttons both developed small shiny areas from my exciting finger oil. But both spots were easy to wipe away with a quick cleaning. The coating is impressive and makes the mouse feel rather unlike any other gaming peripheral I’ve used. It doesn’t seem like it’d be that big of a deal, but it’s pleasant to come back to the mouse and enjoy the way it feels every time I start a new gaming session. I will absolutely write an update a number of months from now about how the coating holds up. I’m eager to see whether the claimed durability is really there, and I have the hunch from the first week that it’s going to do well.
I know it’s weird to focus on these smaller details and refinements instead of the major specs and features of the mouse, but so many companies get those big things right now by using known-quantity sensors and high quality wireless components, and Roccat is no exception. The 16,000 DPI “OwlEye” sensor was built in conjunction with PixArt, the makers of today’s finest optical mouse sensors. It’s based on their 3355 low power wireless sensor, and tracks beautifully. The wireless technology is also fast and accurate, with a small dock that you can place on your desk to get the dongle as close as possible to the Kain 200 for maximum signal performance, if you’d like.
In a nice touch, the Roccat Swarm software includes a signal strength meter for the wireless connection so you can be sure that you’re getting the best connection. The software is also where you can turn on Roccat’s AIMO lighting system, which as far as I’m concerned is the gold standard for gaming peripheral RGB. You can still fully customize the lighting if you want, but AIMO takes all of the fiddling away, giving you one-setting access to vibrant lighting that directly and instantly responds to your actions. The lighting will also seamlessly transition across all your Roccat peripherals that support AIMO, so for example as you click the left mouse button waves of light will also push their way into your keyboard, headset, and mouse surface. It’s wonderful and fun to use, and makes a strong case for switching all your peripherals to be in their ecosystem, if RGB lighting is something you’re into.
The Kain 200 is comfortable to hold even over longer multi-hour sessions. It has a subtle ergonomic shape that’s designed for right-handed use, and that I found comfy regardless of grip style. I mostly preferred to use a palm grip, but even in a fingertip or claw the side buttons are still placed in such a way that they’re easy to hit, and the main buttons respond well to presses across a wide range of their surface.
Wireless performance is indistinguishable from using the backup wired connection. You’ll have to plug the mouse in to charge it, and you should get between 35 and 50 hours of battery life depending on your lighting settings. That’s not the highest battery life ever, but still fine for the level of performance here. The cable is designed to slot firmly into both the included dongle dock and the mouse itself, and when plugged in the mouse operates in a seamless wired connection mode.
That cable is the source of my only small complaints about this otherwise exceptional mouse, and they’re both nitpicks. Firstly, because of the way it’s designed to notch into both the mouse and the small wireless dock, it has a long deeply recessed plug on it. This means you may have trouble using any USB cable with this mouse other than the included one. Secondly, the connection that the cable makes is so firm that it is sometimes harder to remove than I’d like.
Other than those super minor gripes about the cable, this is an amazing mouse. It’s astoundingly comfortable with its premium-feeling coating. The Titan Clicks are among the most responsive I’ve ever used and not just a marketing gimmick. And at its price of $99 means it’s one of the best values in flagship wireless mice. Competitors are happy to charge more money for similar feature sets, and they don’t offer this same cool coating or re-engineered snappy click. I’ve loved the Kain 200 during my week with it. If the shape seems right for you, it should absolutely be where you start shopping for a wireless gaming mouse.