Razer Co-Founder and Former President Robert “Razerguy” Krakoff has died at the age of 81. The gaming mouse pioneer started his journey with gaming peripherals back in 1996. Razer became a standalone entity in 2005 — years after operating as a subsidiary of San Diego, California-based Kärna. The first flagship product of the company — the Razer Boomslang, which is considered as the world’s first gaming mouse — helped Krakoff gain a huge popularity among PC gamers. Since then, Razer has become a renowned name in the world of gaming and is catering to the growing audience in the market of e-sports worldwide.
Last week, Razer announced Krakoff’s death through its official social media channels. The company said that the executive’s “unwavering drive and passion for gaming lives on and continues to inspire all of us.”
Born on October 4, 1940, Krakoff became popular in the gaming world by formally launching the Razer Boomslang under the subsidiary of Kärna in 1999. The mouse had helped Razer gain the attention of young gamers who were looking to have high sensitivity and precision.
Razer initially did not start its operations as a company and was a brand under Kärna. However, since the California-based company had to cease its operations in 2000 due to financial constraints and went bankrupt in 2001, Krakoff co-founded Razer as a separate entity with Singaporean NUS graduate Min-Liang Tan in 2005.
According to a case study available on the Web, neither Krakoff nor Tan invented the Razer Boomslang. It was, instead, a creation of a marketing agency named Fitch that also created the Razer brand as well as its three-headed snake logo. Razer itself credited Fitch for developing the mouse in its launch press release, as noted by The Verge.
Nevertheless, the Razer Boomslang became a household name among PC gamers of the time. The company even released Razer Boomslang Collector’s Edition as well as two iterations of its Boomslang versions in 2003.
The Razer Boomslang was based on the mechanical form-factor that included a ball to operate the cursor. However, Razer moved to optical mice in 2004.
Krakoff was not just the Co-Founder of Razer but also its face for both online and offline promotions in its initial years. The executive was featured in its commercial and appeared as “Razerguy” on the retail packaging of Razer devices.
Alongside being an active part of the growing gaming industry, Krakoff was a fitness enthusiast. He created a blog with his wife, Dr. Patsi Krakoff, in which they covered fitness and nutrition content for elderly.
Krakoff was also an author — wrote a list of books since 2009, according to his LinkedIn profile. The titles include black comedy tale Die Laughing and action-adventure fiction The Aztlán Kid.
In 2001, Krakoff also co-founded supplements company MindFX Science that is claimed to offer “mental performance enhancement” drinks for athletes, gamers, and professionals.