ExtremeTech investigates the matter:
Would you pay $20, $40, or more for a mouse pad? Well, people do. Along with the advent of gaming mice comes the "professional mousing surface." Baked with all kinds of technologies, such as aluminum composition or 7/100 of 1" thick, the professional mousing surfaces available for anywhere from $10 to the stratosphere all claim to make your performance soar in competitive gaming. Some also make promises of superior ergonomics, but the key in most cases is that, with this mousing surface, you'll transform from a target to a threat the next time you wade into a multiplayer first-person shooter..Check out their article over here.