|A4Tech Ultracore3 V7 Gun3 Gaming Mouse|
|Reviews - Featured Reviews: Input Devices|
|Written by Tom Jaskulka - Edited by Olin Coles|
|Tuesday, 18 December 2012|
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A4Tech V7 Test Results
It is difficult to make it to this point without mentioning the “Ultra Core3” feature of the V7. While it technically isn't included in the price of the mouse (although it can be used for a short trial period), it is heavily marketed across the entire Bloody line of mice. Each Core has slightly different functions. Core1 is a typical setup, allowing you to program each button to multiple functions (keyboard keys, media functions, increase/decrease mouse dpi), as you would expect of any other gaming mouse. The CPI settings seem to remain as you have last set them in each Core mode, which makes the initial setup a little more complicated – but conversely make returning to each mode much simpler, allowing you to return to “the way you left it.” The functions here perform as expected – after installing the driver, it is simple to open the Bloody configuration software and adjust as you see fit. I found myself spending most of my time using this mode, as it performs all of the standard gaming functions and required the least amount of tweaking. The only issue I noticed here was the on-screen CPI display would cause Battlefield 3 to pop out of fullscreen mode and into windowed mode. Simply clearing the checkbox for the onscreen display avoided the issue, but hopefully it is something that will be fixed in the future.
If you don't want to purchase the Core3 package, you can still use some extra features with the Core2 mode. In this mode, the three buttons located beneath the scroll wheel serve to switch between different burst modes – pressing the top button (labeled with a “1”) switches to normal operation, while pressing the middle (“N”) button switches to a two-shot burst mode (and changes the scroll wheel LED to green). Naturally, the “3” button will switch to a three-shot burst (with a yellow scroll wheel LED to signify the mode). These functions work as described, but not possibly as you would expect. They seem to activate a macro, causing either a single, double, or triple left mouse click – which would be beneficial, except the activated macro cannot be interrupted. Testing this feature in Battlefield 3, it became obvious that merely controlling your mouse clicks was more effective for the fast play style of multiplayer – if you were to round a corner still in 3-shot burst mode, it was impossible to provide the volume of fire you would need at close range without switching to a different mode. Given enough time and a game that didn't already provide different firing modes, Core2 might become more useful – as for me, I found playing without any burst features was much more effective.
You may need to spend some time reading through the directions, as it isn't immediately clear how the trajectory adjustment and recoil suppression work. It's actually a pretty slick system though, and works as described – just read the directions! As you can see in the screenshots, I attempted to adjust the trajectory and suppress the recoil of the G3A3 rifle in Battlefield 3 – and it took a couple tries to get it dialed in (read the directions! I spent a couple minutes adjusting the recoil in the wrong direction...). I almost gave up, writing it off as a gimmick - then you can see the groups tighten as I figured out what each adjustment does. The groups in the screenshot below were shot in fully automatic mode from right to left, from an in-game distance of ~50 meters.
It will vary per weapon, but when you get it dialed in... Notice the final groups, fired fully automatic – each in the same space as the first shot. The software makes this pretty simple to do in-game, with intuitive controls and an easy way to enter/exit the editing mode (double click "N" button to start, click the “N” button to save). Scary stuff, depending on who you ask... It was great to see it work as described though, and this is one of the most “game-changing” features I've seen added to a gaming mouse. With anything, your mileage may vary – after my success with the G3A3, I attempted to adjust the profile for the M60E4 machine gun (can you imagine? 200 rounds of precision placed bullets?), with some success.
Obviously, the software works better for weapons with less “random” recoil, but it did manage to tighten the groups enough (from left to right) to warrant some more attention. For what it's worth, there is a three-shot burst mode in the Core3 profile as well that can be adjusted as well. It is my personal opinion that your skill would increase much more if you spent the time learning the different recoil patterns of each weapon rather than tweaking software to do it for you, but perhaps I'm old fashioned... In any case, the option is there for those that are interested, and it does work – quite well.