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IntelliMouse Explorer glides back to life

After three-year hiatus, Microsoft to resurrect popular optical mouse with new features to entice gamers.

Microsoft's IntelliMouse Explorer is back.

Scheduled for resurrection this October, the popular mouse will enjoy new life as the IntelliMouse Explorer 3.0, which Microsoft says will have the tracking and responsiveness gamers have pined for. No longer will devotees of the device have to trawl eBay for the discontinued devices or preserve old versions in protective cases.

Logitech on Thursday also announced new mice, but the pair of is targeted at those who do daily battle with spreadsheets rather than computer-generated warlords or enemy armies.

IntelliMouse Explorer 3.0
Credit: Microsoft
The IntelliMouse Explorer 3.0 will have
added features for gamers.

Microsoft says it brought back the mouse after three years due to popular demand. The company began to get wind of gamers' preference for the IntelliMouse's button placement and clicking scroll wheel via the blogosphere and game conventions, said Jolene Cramer, lead marketing manager for Microsoft's hardware division. The response "kind of astounded us," she said.

The main upgrade is the Teflon feet that allow the mouse to glide smoothly on a desk or mouse pad. CNET Reviews liked the customized settings and ergonomic support, but wasn't too keen on the response of the thumb-side button.

The wired, optical mouse boasts a 9,000-frames-per-second image resolution and an intelligent tracking system that cuts down on skipping. It will sell for $39.95 and includes software that lets users choose default or precision mode and toggle between favorite weapons or action-sequence settings.