Are Gaming Laptops Worth The Money?

The idea of a high powered mobile gaming rig is an attractive idea. Being able to take your PC game collection anywhere to play with your friends is a great idea in theory, but the reality can be a bit less attractive.

Pointy Price

The price range for good gaming laptops averages between $1000 to as high as $3000 brand new. There are a few good choices in the midrange that are as low as $500 to $900, and that should allow you to play the most popular games. Keep in mind that Fortnite, Minecraft, and Apex arent graphics monsters, so even a mid-tier laptop will keep you competitive. There is the sticking point that $1500 will get you a tower and monitor that is equivalent to the $2000-$3000 range, but you sacrifice the ability to take your games on the road with you easily. If you travel a lot and you want to play on the road, its much harder to haul a tower PC and monitor around with all your other gear. Things like a pair of video game headbuds dont take up much space, but youll get funny looks from the front desk of a hotel if you try to drag in a dual monitor setup up to your room.

I Got the Power

The graphics cards for laptops have come a long way in just a few short years, and can easily run games on high graphics settings just like their tower PC cousins. The main drawback is the price. In most cases, a comparable tower costs less part for part. The other drawback is since heat retention is a problem with any laptop, the graphics cards are usually underclocked to prevent the laptop from overheating. This will affect performance, but considering you dont want to burn up an expensive laptop, its a small sacrifice.

Sick Visuals

The other drawback to a powerful gaming laptop is the overall aesthetic. Since heat retention is an issue with laptops in general, gaming laptops have a tendency to be a bit chunky. They also have an issue with being a bit edge-lordy. The more popular ones are all sharp corners, LEDs, and massive logos. Gaming laptops are heavier than regular jobbing laptops, but they are still a lot easier to carry around than a full tower with a monitor and all the cables. Manufacturers of gaming laptops usually have other accessories to mitigate those drawbacks. There is a special laptop rests that help with the heat issue, as well as heftier bags with padded straps to make lugging them around a lot more manageable.

Final Thoughts

There are a lot of things to consider when choosing a gaming rig. If you move around a lot, or you dont have a ton of space to set up your gaming area, a gaming laptop is a viable option these days. You may sacrifice a little bit of graphical horsepower, but you save on room, ease of setup, and mobility. All you need is your favorite gaming headset, a firewire connection, and youre ready to roll. If space isnt an issue, and youve got enough room to spread out with two monitors and a massive PC case, it will end up cheaper for you than devoting a similar amount of cash to a laptop option.