The Glorious Elements Ice pad attempts to fill an undeserved niche in the mousepad market, a fast smooth cloth pad that doesn’t sacrifice speed for control. As soon as it was announced, the mousepad was hailed as a direct competitor to the Artisan Shidenkai. What resulted was a unique pad with its own feeling and personality.
Presentation and Build Quality
The Glorious Elements Ice Pad comes packaged in a flat box, which means you won’t need to unroll it and wait for the edges to settle down flat.
Out the box build quality feels really good to begin with. Stitching is clean around the edges and not too raised compared to other pads. Not as attractive or as well made as Artisan but it gets the job done. Rubber base is nicely textured and it barely shifts with normal use but it can shift if you bump your wrist or hand directly against the edges. The surface looks and feel very smooth with barely and bumpiness or texture. When you’re using the pad itself you’ll mostly feel the flat laminated layer that’s laid over top the pad.
With the height of 4mm the thickness of the pad is very standard but it still has a low profile feel due to the low height of the edge stitching. It reminded me a bit of the mid-hardness pads that Artisan puts out. Overall the build quality feels premium out the box and the pad gives off a feeling of quality.
Surface and Performance
In terms of the feel of the pad, it’s hard to describe. The word ice is definetly a good descriptor as it’s fast with very little initial friction. It doesn’t feel like a hard pad but instead of a normal cloth pad with a thin laminated layer over top. From what I’ve seen and heard about the pad its not as fast as the Shidenkai but it’s still plenty fast out the box. What’s a bit confusing about the pad is that it seems to be impacted by your environment. When my room was cold the pad just felt faster and it felt very cool to the touch. I can see this pad slowing down in hot humid environments so that should be a consideration for some gamers. While the pad is advertised as a glass-infused surface it wasn’t something I could feel from using the mouse as the laminated-type surface gave off an air-hockey table feel to the glide.
Now onto the main issue I’ve had with the pad which is the how much slower the vertical glide feels compared to the horizontal glide. This seems to be a common issue but I don’t know if it is present on pad they produced. Despite advertising X/Y axis being uniform, it definetly feels much slower vertically than horizontally. This can be tested by gliding your mouse on the surface and you’ll notice it comes to a fast stop vertically compared to the horizontal glide. I’d say it’s 25-35% faster horizontally that vertically which took a long time to get used to.
This differential makes it really difficult to flick upwards accurately and I find myself over or undershooting targets in game. It almost feels like you’re playing with mouse accell on these diagonal movements. I compensated for this by lowering my sens. Its also hard to do 180s for me in-game with this pad and eventually I got better at handling the differential by spending a week with it in game. If you don’t like pads that make you change your muscle memory, you might want to avoid this pad.
In terms of stopping power, this mouse does not have a lot of it. Don’t expect to stop on a dime with the Ice pad but you can press down the mouse into the pad to slow it down faster. There’s not too much sponginess in the midlayer so you won’t feel the mouse sink into the pad at all if you press down into it.
In terms of size, this is pretty standard and I’m happy with it in 90% of situations. There are rare instances when gaming where I wish it was a bit larger. That being said unless you are a really low sens player, you’ll be able to use this pad comfortably without taking up a ton of desk space so it offers a really good tradeoff for most users especially given the speed. The rubber base also was quite good in my use. You can get it to shift around if you bump into the edges but in terms of just moving your mouse on the pad it felt quite stable.
My other main concern with this mousepad is that it slows down over use. It really shows fingerpints and scuffs easily so I can imagine that durability may not be as good as promised. There’s definetly a chance that your pad will eventually develop some slow spots in commonly used areas and will require replacement. This is a consideration considering the asking price of $39.99 on the pad isn’t exactly in budget territory.
The Artisan Elements Ice Pad offers a unique premium feeling surface that may be favorable for fans of fast pads. That being said there are a long list of caveats that may make it less than ideal for lots of gamers. If you don’t mind adjusting your muscle memory to the inconsistencies of the pad this still may be a good choice for some gamers that don’t want to go with a hard pad but still want plenty of speed.
Stable rubber base
Smooth, fast premium feeling surface
Y Axis glide is a lot slower than X axis
Laminated surface puts durability into question
The Ice Pad is worth trying if you like a unique mouse surface but it’s not well suited for all gamers and doesn’t reach the quality of Artisan pads.
Where to Buy