I’m a pretty heavy MMO player, and it’s probably safe to say that I’m currently mildly addicted to Wargaming.net’s recent MMO offering World of Tanks. Unfortunately I noticed after an extended gaming session that my old keyboard wasn’t up to snuff anymore, and needed to be upgraded. As luck would have it, Razer sent over one of their Anansi MMO Gaming keyboards to test, and it’s been working out great so far.
The Anansi resides in expert category of Razer products (the others being essential and elite), which is basically a fancy way of saying that it’s a product intended for the mid-end. The Anansi is optimized for the MMO crowd, and as such has a number of programmable keys for people to map extra functions and abilities to. The whole thing is pretty massive and measures in at 515x190x22mm. The overall feel of the keyboard is pretty good, and it’s probably one of the heaviest keyboards I’ve used, which means the chances of it shifting during play is close to zero.
Aside from the seven(!) programmable keys near the bottom of the keyboard, every key is backlighted, including the 5 additional keys to the left of the keyboard. The function keys also pull double duty as media controls by using them with the FN keys. The Anansi is also able to lock-out the Windows key – which prevents you from tabbing out of a match when you’re just about to bring the hammer down on an unsuspecting fool.
There are usually two types of keyboard architecture – membrane and mechanical. Mechanical keys give users better tactile feedback when pressing a key, as opposed to membrane keyboards that feel soft and squishy. The Anansi is a membrane keyboard, though it feels much better and is more responsive to similar keyboards of its type in the market. The keys themselves have a nice, rubbery texture to them, and the wide wrist rest gives maximum comfort.
Like other products in the Razer family, users can customize the Anansi to their liking. You can change the backlight to whatever color you want, or just have it cycle through the available colors. But the real star of the show has got to be the seven customizable keys on the bottom, that you can use as macros or combo keys (like alt+ctrl). I have the four top keys of mine mapped to different repair instructions in WoT, and the Spy’s different disguises in Team Fortress 2. You can always switch out different gaming profiles easily through the Razer configurator.
I do have a few complaints though – one is that the Anansi doesn’t have ports for USB devices and headphone jacks. While this may seem like a strange request for regular keyboards, there’s a number of gaming keyboards that have this functionality (Razer’s own Tarantula has it). Another is that the Anansi takes up two USB slots on my rig – one for the keyboard and one for lighting. It might seem like a small thing, but for someone who has a multitude of other devices plugged via USB (mice, joystick, audio, printers, etc.) it’s a major consideration.
Ultimately the question you’re going to ask yourself before you buy the Anansi is this: is it worth the money? Specifically, is it worth the Php 5,299 sticker price? Well, if you’re more of a casual gamer that plays games occasionally, then give this a pass. If you’re someone who wants to dominate your MMO of choice, in short, someone who wants to win – then the Anansi is well worth it.
Backlit color can be changed to user preference
Solid as a rock
Uses 2 USB ports
The Anansi gives gamers the edge over their opponents in MMOs – for a price.