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The Best Chromebooks for Gaming

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Chromebook that is wherever This day. Chromebooks are perfect for today’s always-on online life as a simple, inexpensive machine for everything from checking email and social media to writing dissertations, attending Zoom calls for classes and work. Has been proven. But what about after class and after working hours? Can I play games on my Chromebook?

I haven’t found a subset of Chromebooks explicitly created for the game yet. Also, Chromebooks will not be certified as traditional gaming laptops. But that doesn’t mean you need to limit your Chromebook entertainment to social media scrolling, YouTube immersiveness, and Netflix bing. In fact, today there are several different approaches to playing games on Chromebooks, and even some ways to enjoy the most popular games today.

Acer Chromebook 317

(Photo: Molly Flores)

Whether you’re using a locked-down system at school or want to enjoy more low-powered laptops running Chrome OS, you can take advantage of some fun options for each hardware price and level. increase.

What is a Chromebook?

If you’re new to Chromebooks, it’s a laptop that runs Google’s Chrome OS instead of Microsoft Windows or Apple macOS. If you’ve used a web browser before, you can use Chrome OS without any problems.

Chrome OS is built around the same Chrome browser that you may be using on other laptops. Google’s approach to software is simple. It provides enough operating system to go online with everything else built on the basic browsing experience. For many users, this is enough for everyday computing and provides all the tools you need to engage for hours on Facebook, YouTube, and Gmail.

Google Pixelbook Go Chrome App Menu

(Photo: Molly Flores)

However, you can do more with Chrome OS if you want. Google has developed a number of useful cloud-based productivity tools. Google Drive provides online storage, and Google Workplace provides documents, spreadsheets, and presentations that match familiar Word, Excel, and PowerPoint apps. And many other tools are now available in the cloud, from Adobe Photoshop to the same Microsoft Office apps. You can also run browser extensions to add functionality to Chrome OS and Android apps and open thousands of smartphone and tablet apps available on your current Chromebook.

Lenovo IdeaPad Flex 5 Chromebook

(Photo: Molly Flores)

And browser-based operating systems aren’t going away anytime soon. 2021, Chrome OS Soar to 2nd place It was the first major operating system to break through macOS. For those who have millions of consumers, students and business people using Chromebooks and want an easy way to work online, but don’t need all the features of a powerful Windows machine. Has evolved into a great option.

So wait: can you really play games on your Chromebook?

The term “gaming” may be reminiscent of high-performance gaming laptops and dedicated consoles from Microsoft and Sony, but in reality, the gaming world is the so-called AAA and expensive releases from major studios. It’s much bigger than the title. From retro games to casual games that make your smartphone so entertaining, many gaming opportunities don’t require expensive GPUs or a single decorative LED.

Today, there are four main ways to play games on your Chromebook. Each has its own considerations regarding the type of hardware you are using.

  • You can rely on browser-based games that only require you to visit a website.

  • You can run Android games and offer all the best games on the Google Play store.

  • You can stream your game via Google Stadia or a similar streaming service

  • If you want to work, you can install some Linux games directly on your Chromebook.

our How to play a game on a Chromebook The guide has more details, but here is a brief description of the options.

Browser-based games: play directly in Chrome

The easiest option for Chromebook games is browser-based games. These work fine in the Chrome browser without the need for downloads or particularly powerful hardware. They range from basic versions of chess and checkers to classic classics like Pac-Man and Doom, to a huge number of indie games that you can play online for free.

Retro games are free to play in your browser from several legitimate websites. Classic game arcade(Opens in a new window) To the internet archive Coin Operation Arcade(Opens in a new window).. Google also has its own collection of browser-based games. GameSnacks(Opens in a new window)Runs in HTML5.

Acer Chromebook 514 (2022, Core i3)

(Photo: Molly Flores)

Many of these games can be accessed by simply navigating to the appropriate website, but you can install some browser extensions to make some games playable in your Chrome browser. These are the simplest gaming options on this list and most game extensions are free. And an important benefit: the advantage of being able to play offline.

These games only require a Chromebook that can connect online.The choices are a bit limited, but you may be able to recognize some titles such as: Flappy Bird When Temple Run.. Most work with a keyboard and mouse, but may also provide gamepad and touchscreen input support.

Lenovo IdeaPad Duet 5 Chromebook

(Photo: Molly Flores)

These games do not rely on local processing power, large installation files, or special input devices, making them a great option for the average Chromebook. It’s also browser-based, so it works on all Chromebooks, including school-issued systems.

Android games: Play the phone app on your Chromebook

The following are Android games played using the support of the Android app built into the new Chromebook. (Supported on almost all Chromebooks over the last few years. Check if you’re using an older model.) From simple clickers to complex RPGs and action titles, the Google Play Store is a game you can enjoy right now. there are a lot of. There are some caveats with Chromebooks.

Two things to note are important. First, if your Chromebook doesn’t have a touch screen, you may not be able to play some Android phone games correctly. Second, most school districts have Android support disabled by default, so students may be out of luck. But if you’re one of the millions of Chromebook owners who are free to use Android apps, enjoy a wealth of gaming options through the Google Play store, from viral hits like Among Us and Wordle to rich games of all genres. I can.

HP Chromebook x2 (2021)

(Photo: Molly Flores)

very, Best android game We recommend a phone that works the same on Chrome OS, but there is a problem. As already mentioned, for Android games designed for mobile phones and tablets, you’ll want to get a Chromebook with touch capabilities. A convertible or removable 2-in-1 design is highly recommended.

Google Stadia game controller

(Photo: Molly Flores)

Streaming for fun: games with Stadia and Steam

If you want to play more mainstream games or AAA titles, you need to use game streaming services such as: Google Stadia.. In fact, Stadia is pre-installed on many new Chromebooks, but you can use it for $ 9.99 per month after the free trial period. What’s the good side? You can play AAA games such as Saints Row IV, Darksiders III, Control, Far Cry 6 (often free with membership). Stadia game list(Opens in a new window) Check out the hundreds of titles available.

Of course, there are other game streaming services as well. vapor For personal online services like Shadow(Opens in a new window) When Parsec(Opens in a new window).. However, not all Chromebooks can run these services.

For example, Steam for Chrome OS is only available on models that meet certain hardware parameters. Because the game requires enough CPU and GPU power, Steam on Chrome requires an 11th generation Intel Core i5 or Core i7 processor, Intel Iris Xe integrated graphics and at least 8GB of RAM. These are the relatively high quality components of Chromebooks. With these restrictions in mind, I’ve included my favorites in this list.

More DIY approach: Linux games on Chrome OS

Finally, Chrome OS is built on the Linux kernel, so you can try running Linux games on your Chromebook. This opens up the entire range of software, many of which are free to use.

Lenovo ThinkPad C13 Yoga Chromebook

(Photo: Molly Flores)

However, moving to storing and running programs locally requires a machine with more processing power and more storage than a regular Chromebook. This means it’s running on an Intel Core or AMD Ryzen chip, rather than the low-power ARM processor typical of low-cost Chromebooks. You can also step up to more memory and larger, faster solid-state drive (SSD) storage instead of the smaller eMMC flash memory of the economy model.

This solved it. There are two ways to be at the forefront of Linux. You can go to the official Google-approved route and use the following to install your Linux app: Crostini(Opens in a new window)You can use, or to install a complete Linux desktop Crouton(Opens in a new window)..Both options are explained in the guide How to install Linux on your ChromebookAnd either can be used to access the Linux game catalog on Steam. GOG(Opens in a new window)..

Games on Chrome OS: It’s still a stretch, but it has a lot of fun

We’ve talked about some options for enjoying games on your Chromebook. From Pac-Man rounds in the browser to popular Android phone games, from streaming via Google Stadia to installing a Linux operating system dedicated to games.

But after all, it’s worth pointing out that even the best Chromebooks aren’t comparable to the cheapest Chromebooks we’ve chosen. Best cheap gaming laptop.. Instead, Chrome OS games aim to provide a fun way to use what you already have or need to buy for other, more important purposes.

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