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SteelSeries Merc Stealth Gaming Keyboard

Updated on October 1, 2009

One of the problems with playing Massively Multiplayer Online Role Playing Games (MMORPG) games is learning the controls.  Most veteran players of World of Warcraft, Warhammer 40,000, and other such games adapt quickly, but it can take some players a long time just to figure out how to move, attack, and anything else that is necessary to get around an MMO game. 

I remember when I was playing NCSoft’s City of Heroes, it took me quite a while before I was able to get into a controlling groove.  I eventually learned the subtleties of the game such as talking to other characters and then just fun stuff like dancing.  Eventually, players can figure out hotkeys, but there isn’t really a simple way of learning them save writing them down on a separate sheet of paper. 

What helps gamers is a gaming keyboard, and SteelSeries makes some of the best.  I’ve already done a separate report on the Zboard, and how convenient it is.  Unlike the Zboard, the Merc Stealth doesn’t have interchangeable sets of keys.  Instead, it has one ergonomically correct keyboard that is tilted at a 11 degree angle for extra comfort. 

On the left side of the keyboard are all the fun keys for playing an MMO walking, jumping, crouching, and turning in a certain direction.  The best part is that they are very convenient and easy to use, much better than just an ordinary keyboard layout. 

Of course, there are many gaming keyboards capable of doing that.  What makes this one different is that it has the SteelSeries Z Engine that can enable programmability of all keys.  In short, every key could be made a hot key, so the gamer can set up his or her favorite setup.  According to the SteelSeries site, it has pre-defined profiles for more than 150 games. 

Another terrific selling point is how the keys have a cool-looking illumination that is underneath them.  It can glow in three colors of blue, red, and violet, and four different illumination modes which include subtle, ambient, intense, and off (which is apparently a setting). 

Installing the SteelSeries Merc Stealth is as plugging it into a USB port, and then plugging the other two cords into the microphone and headphone jacks.  By the way, each of these connectors are gold-plated.  The Merc Stealth has its own set of microphone and headphone jacks for those who want to install their own pair of gaming headphones with mics.  It also comes with 2 USB ports, so when you lose the USB port on your desktop on laptop, you can gain another. 

You should be able to get the SteelSeries Merc Stealth on the company website for approximately $89.99.  I have included a video that will show you how it works, but I’m sorry about the quality.   

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