Software, usage and conclusion
The Asus Sica ships with the Republic of Gamers Armoury software, designed to support all the company's gaming mice. The software allow users to tweak the USB polling rate, alter the DPI between 50 and 5,000 and add simulated deceleration or acceleration as required. Options are also available to modify the LED lighting pattern, solid or breathing, and alter the brightness to four intervals, one of which is off.
The software has a clean layout and all the functions work as the user would expect after a recent software update was issued to fix some functionality problems. One of the more tedious elements of the software is having to manually drag the updated profile onto the mouse each time changes are made. However, this is designed to make sure the user doesn't erase their current profile without intending to do so. The user can save as many profiles to the software as desired, although there is no easy way to change these profiles on-the-fly, and the same can be said for the DPI settings.
The ROG Sica is a lightweight and nimble gaming mouse that tracks with precision and brings all the benefits of a high-quality optical sensor into play. We tested it on the latest Asus ROG mousepad known as the Whetstone. As claimed by Asus, the tactile feedback offered by the left- and right-click buttons is significantly better than many other gaming mice which make use of a unibody chassis.
Despite the Teflon feet the mouse doesn't glide as smoothly as we'd hope given the light weight, and we believe that Asus could consider slightly thicker Teflon pads on the Sica to prevent other parts of the mouse from causing drag on the mouse surface. That said, the mouse still holds up well during long gaming sessions without causing fatigue.
In some game genres, particularly FPS and RPG, we found the Sica to be held back by the lack of additional buttons - the ability to bind thumb buttons to in-game actions is sorely missed. The inability to adjust the DPI on-the-fly poses further issues for when gamers need more control in FPS titles, the so-called 'Sniper button' that temporarily lowers the DPI to allow the user to get a better shot is a notable omission.
However, given the MOBA and RTS audience targeted by the Sica these issues may not be so relevant, so they should enjoy the precise control and tactile feedback offered. The Sica is well-suited to RTS titles like Company of Heroes and MOBA titles like League of Legends where much of the gameplay input is done through a keyboard and the mouse is primarily used to select units and navigate around the in-game map.
The ROG Sica features a special Mayan-style textured pattern at the back of the mouse which Asus claims is designed to improve the user's grip. During gaming the textured surface isn't used since it is too far back on the mouse to make contact with a conventional claw-style grip. We'd like to see Asus extend the surface all the way to the front of the mouse since the lack of buttons on the side means there is certainly space for it. On a positive note the coating applied to the ROG Sica holds up well to sweat and stickiness over extended gaming sessions remaining, for the most part, mark-free.
The Asus Republic of Gamers Sica gaming mouse is expected to retail for £29.99 here in the UK. Considering some of the absent features it would be fair to say the Sica is a little on the pricey side, though the Sica makes up for this in other areas.
A notable rival at this price is EVGA's Torq X3(L) which offers a similarly-priced ambidextrous design with programmable buttons on both sides of the mouse. Users looking for an ambidextrous mouse at this price point have a trade-off to make between the ergonomics and sensor quality of the ROG Sica and the extra buttons and LED options on the Torq X3.
The strength of the Sica rests with its specialised design that has been finely tuned for competitive MOBA and RTS gaming. It may not be able to compete with other general-purpose gaming mice on extra features and value for money, but it wasn't designed to. The Sica has a specific audience in mind and for that audience it delivers the experience that gamers have come to expect from ROG products.
The Asus ROG Sica is a minimalist gaming mouse that will appeal to a MOBA and RTS gaming audience where simplicity of design, excellent tactile feedback and a high-quality sensor are crucial requirements. The ROG Sica doesn't surpass rival brands in value-for-money but it does offer an affordable way into the ROG's new line of quality gaming peripherals and is another welcomed addition to the ambidextrous segment.
Satisfying tactile buttons
Sacrifices some features in its specialisation
ASUS ROG Sica ambidextrous gaming mouse
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