It is no secret that gamers like portability to be able to play their games regardless of their location. The problem with this is that a lot of good gaming laptop computers are bulky and heavy and not exactly the thing that you want thrown over your shoulder all of the time. That being the case, they are looking for other options to pursue that will allow them to keep the portability without suffering through the awkwardness of the typical laptop.
Over the last few months, mini-laptops or netbooks have become very popular. They are often less than half the weight of a typical notebook and extremely portable. Instead of having a large laptop case and backpack, you can easily fit one of these units into the backpack and reduce your load significantly. The challenge is to find one that is as adept at gaming as the full size laptops.
The first significant difference that you are going to see is the size of the viewing screen. While you can obviously change the resolution to have the same amount of screen showing, the images will often be too small to actually see. Now if you are used to playing on portable units such as the PSP, this will not be such a challenge for you.
One area that will take a small hit is the processor. Most netbooks will have a processor that has less than 2GHz. With the features that are in a lot of games, this may not be enough to get the full gaming experience on the go. It is something that you will want to seriously consider. You will also be stretched to find one that has the memory of a good gaming notebook(see also: best laptop for gaming under 1000 and under 5oo). This means slower movements and a less than acceptable gaming experience for most.
The alternative is to find the best gaming laptops that are less expensive and do not weigh as much as say the top of the line Alienware laptop. As long as you don’t mind sacrificing a little bit, this can easily be achieved. As a matter of fact, you can find plenty of notebooks for gaming that are priced under $700 that offer plenty of memory and speed to satisfy the average gamer.
You have to remember, netbooks are meant for mostly the convenience of portability. They are something to stay in touch with on the go and not have to worry about carrying a bulky laptop case and accessories. As long as you keep that in perspective, you can use them for gaming, but do not expect the same top level performance that you will get from full sized laptop.
In the end, we would probably have to vote no for mini laptops or netbooks as a good gaming notebook. The features are not nearly what the avid gamer will expect, but they are useful in a pinch. After all, you may not have the option of taking your regular laptop with you and if you want to satisfy that urge, use your netbook, but keep the expectations lower and do not get frustrated with the lack of viewing area and speed.