Netbooks are known for their, low screen resolutions, and relatively underpowered CPUs. I would argue that none of these things actually defines a netbook. Rather, small size and low price are the defining characteristics. If someone put a Core i7 chip in a 10 inch laptop and sold it for $400, I’d be perfectly happy to call it a netbook. That’s just not likely to happen anytime soon.

Anyway, given that netbooks generally do have slow processors, low screen resolutions, and integrated graphics, you might thing that they’re not much good for gaming. And if you only play bleeding edge games, you’re probably right. But it turns out that there are plenty of games that do play well on a typical netbook with an Atom N270 CPU and 1024 x 600 pixel 10 inch display. And I’m not just talking about Bejeweled and Tetris clones.

GamingBolt rounded up 100 popular games and tested them on an MSI Wind netbook as well as a 2-year old Dell laptop and a 9-year old HP desktop. The verdict? You’d be surprised at how many ran smoothly on the netbook. That includes first person shooters like Quake III, Max Payne 2, and Grand Theft Auto: Vice City, role playing games including Final Fantasy XI Online, Neverwinter Nights, and Elder Scrolls III: Morrowind; racing games including Need For SpeedUnderground 2 and NASCAR Racing 4; strategy games including Starcraft and Civilization III; and adventure games including Prince of Persia: Sands of Time and Rayman 2.

For the complete list, and more details about gameplay on each game, hit up GamingBolt.

via Netbook Reports

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14 replies on “100 PC games tested on a netbook: Most work”

  1. that site sucks by the way, and that review or whatever about netbook games if inaccurate, falsestatement guy is actually correct. And windows 7 does have the near same results as xp when running games as far as performance. lol, its funny how everyone bashing on the guy and they don’t even know what there talking about. punks.

    1. Agree. the site really sucks. I don’t know exactly how they tested half those games, one big inaccurate thing is he wrote World of Warcraft is unplayable on the netbook. Sorry to disappoint him, but I’ve been playing WoW on my netbook, Samsung N210, for about 3 months now with no problems from the netbook.

      I also played WoW on my Compaq Presario 2100US, and hate to say it; but the netbook actually outperformed the laptop. Weird huh.

      1. I’m playing World of Warcraft on my Toshiba NB255 with the lowest graphics settings on. You dumb ass, think before you speak. And WoW runs JUST FUCKING FINE on my Netbook with those settings. I do have 2GB of RAM, but still. Think man.

      2. Actually W.O.W works on my XP netbookso your wrong. And it runs about 50 FPS on high details. My net book is a Aspire 1. Like 2 gigs memory (came with it)

  2. Oh, and I forgot to mention, the other PC game that works is Unreal Tournament 2004,

  3. My Toshiba Netbook can run American McGhee’s ‘Alice’. Also, Sim City 3000, Sim City 4, Serious Sam [the 1st and 2nd Encounters] Pro Pinball [Timeshock, Big Race USA, Fantastic Journey, The Web] Diablo, Chessmaster, Baldur’s Gate [Shadows of Amn]. It can also run MAME [Arcade Emulator]

  4. wow, gaming bolt is full of crap, he states that 25fps on avg.For some of the more modern Elder scrolls even with frame optimizers doesnt run that well and looks like crap. I guess you guys must be comparing a game to RUN compared to being able to actually play the game and enjoy it. hahaha. RUN vs playable. Iam mean yea i could get modern warfare to RUN on my netbook but playable no. Why list it, to stir up the pot? what a joke I see alot of this on this unrealistic results people claim but cant seem to show proof of it. I know GTA series runs awsome on the netbook and is very playable and med to high settings. Elder scrolls sorry, to be enjoyable and in some parts of the game its hardly playable. lol. Unless you like a game that looks like blocks.

  5. Since my ASUS 1000HE netbook is the only machine I have that still runs XP, I have been running a lot of my favorite old games on the netbook. I run Doom, C&C: Red Alert II, & Assault Cube with no problems.

  6. Most people who say netbooks can’t run games fall into two groups

    1) People who don’t (never will) own netbooks who simply hate them on principal
    2) People too afraid to try anything with their netbook, who adhere like zealots to conventional wisdom that netbooks can’t do anything.

    For the most part a netbook anyone bought in the last year will do far more then what people use them for currently. The biggest barrier to netbooks is the people NOT BELIEVING what they bought can do things.

    1. You forgot group 3)

      People who have tried to run games, and they don’t run (as well as they hoped).

      People in group 3 tend to say “yes, it will run BUT ….” and when they’re sick of explaining why it’s a bad idea to play game X, they simply say “No, it doesn’t. At least, not well enough for me to consider playable, YMMV”.

      Sure, netbooks will play games from several years ago, since they’re running at the same speed as computers from several years ago. They’ll even run some modern, casual-ish games. But when “people” talk about games (people=regular joe xbox), they’re not talking about diablo 2 or nethack. They’re talking about Cod4 and L4d. To those people? No. Netbooks don’t run games.

      1. Yeah, wow how could I have missed self loathing netbook owners…my mistake.

  7. Hmm. Neverwinter nights ran well enough to play, but I wouldn’t want to complete the entire game using a netbook – it is ALMOST too frustrating to play, but not quite. Also, you need to make config. changes to get it to that point.

    1. Depends on your tolerances doesn’t it.

      Personally I wish that manufacturers would realise that there are many gamers who would love an xp netbook with an nvidia ion. The problem is any netbook with that will almost undoubtedly be windows 7.

      People should stop saying NWN is in any way tolerable though, given the fact NWN is still relevant via player modules the hope for some casual on holiday NWN, then to install and find it runs just shy of playability is annoying. You have to remember that most people who had average PC’s when NWN was first out were able to run it as smooth as butter.

      Still there are plenty of slightly older games ie Baldurs gate 1 and 2. Planescape Torment and Icewind Dale 2. I would recomend anyone with an xp netbook install them.

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