The promise of a gaming mousepad is somewhat intangible—"more precise mousing." But can you really tell if it's letting you headshot more dudes? Razer's Vespula, however, offers something you can feel: Two completely different mousing surfaces in one.
Thirtee-five dollars, retail—meaning you'll probably be able to find it for cheaper.
An aggressively (m)angled rectangle, Vespula is hard mousepad with two distinct surfaces, one on each side: A "precision" surface, which is textured and bumpy, like the softer side of side of sandpaper, and a speed side, which is smooth, not unlike the glass trackpads on MacBooks. The difference between the two is immediately apparent—when applying the same amount of force to the mouse, it moves half the distance on the precision surface. So, if you're sniping, the precision side is better, since make more subtle movements by default. If you need zip all over the pad with quickness, the speed side is a better bet.
The large groove cut into the bottom of the pad is for a gel wrist rest, which is a nice idea in theory, but it's way too tall—no matter how I positioned my chair or wrist, it wasn't comfortable in the slightest. And I wish there was more mousing area, too.
There's also no way to dynamically switch between the different surfaces—believe it or not, it's annoying to flip the pad around mid-gun fight (stupid physics!).
To me, what's most important about a pad beyond the fact that it works is how it feels, since the micron-level measurements companies bloviate about are beyond all but the most anal of gamers. The Vespula's a good mousepad. Tracking's undeniably accurate. But the question of exactly how much more precise Vespula is versus a regular pad for gaming is nearly rendered moot by the fact it offers the very tangible benefit of two very different mousing surfaces that each have a distinct feel. At least one of them, you're sure to like.
Two mousing surfaces, one pad
Average sized, but more tracking area would be nice
The wrist rest sucks