We're used to server troubles causing issues with games, but borking hardware is a new one.
PCGamesN reports that owners of the $79.99 Razer Naga has fallen into exactly this trap. The high-end mouse uses Synapse software that requires an online activation before it is installed. And yes, Razer's activation servers have been having troubles.
CEO Min-Liang Tan, however, has been very keen to stress that this is not DRM. Although effectively it does seem to be behaving in the same way.
Synapse 2.0 is NOT DRM,” he stated. Our products work perfectly well out of the box without Synapse 2.0. We recognise that gamers will want to be able to use their gear without an online connection, and that's why Synapse 2.0 has an offline mode.
Basically you have to register, create an account, save your initial settings and if you so prefer, you can stay in offline mode all the time without going online. I realise that we have had issues with the activation server, and we're making sure we get that sorted out.”
But why use such complicated software for a mouse at all?
We invented onboard memory for gaming mice many years ago and called it Synapse to allow gamers to bring their profiles with them on the go,” he added.
However, we realized that we ran into another issue where we had to keep increasing the amount of memory onboard to provide for more storage and this resulted in higher and higher prices for gamers.
We then invented Synapse 2.0 where we could provide almost limitless amount of storage for profiles, macros, etc in the cloud as opposed to being limited by physical memory. We wanted to avoid raising prices to gamers for higher memory space onboard (think about it like having to buy bigger and bigger hard drives as opposed to having all your storage on the cloud) and provide a much better service for our users.”