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Gaming on the Lenovo Legion Pro 5i: ‘Alan Wake II,’ ‘Starfield,’ ‘Forza Motorsport’ performance

Gelo Gonzales

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Gaming on the Lenovo Legion Pro 5i: ‘Alan Wake II,’ ‘Starfield,’ ‘Forza Motorsport’ performance



The Pro 5i has excellent style, and boasts solid performance for this generation's AAA titles, hitting a sweet spot for 1440p gaming

We’ve been playing with the Lenovo Legion Pro 5i for about a month now, and while it’s priced at P130,000 and not what you’d call a mainstream device, we do think it’s one of the best-looking gaming laptops in this price range. 

We’ve always loved the look of a Lenovo Legion laptop because of its sleek, understated style. Compared to the louder look of, say, an MSI or ASUS ROG laptop, the Legion Pro 5i looks more mature, with its confident silhouette with just the right amount of flair such as the hexagonal air vents, the premium matte finish, and the perfectly sized, reflective Legion logo on the display shell.

Of course, looks are subjective, but if you’re looking for something more subtle than brash, the Legion Pro 5i is a contender. 

It’s often hard to recommend a gaming laptop once it reaches the P100,000 mark for me, because at that point, I’d rather build a desktop computer that allows for more budget flexibility when choosing components, and more importantly, steady upgradeability. With a laptop, often, that’s what you’ll be working with for the next 5 years or so, save for maybe a RAM upgrade. 

It doesn’t help that Philippine prices of gaming laptops are considerably higher than those sold in the US. For example, the Legion Pro 5i has a sticker price of P129,000 locally, while in the US, the same model with the same specs goes for $2,000 or P111,000. 

We suppose some complicated business economics are involved, which we will not go into, is at play here, and this kind of price discrepancy happens industry-wide and not just Lenovo, and not just for laptops. But for many of us, at P129,000, we seriously start thinking about whether we need the portability, or we can just go for a much cheaper desktop build that will net the same, if not better, performance. 

With that caveat out of the way, if a high performance laptop is truly needed and you want to game while on vacation – or maybe at a coffee shop – the Pro 5i works as well as its advertised specs: a 13th-gen Core i7 chip, an RTX 4060 GPU, 16GB of RAM, 1TB of storage, and a 16-inch 2560 x 1600, 240Hz display.

There were three new games that I tried on the laptop: Starfield, Forza Motorsport, and Alan Wake II. 

The Legion Pro 5i shows excellent results for the first two, Starfield, and Forza Motorsport. 

On Forza, you can crank it to high global settings on 4K resolution, and still net a respectable but sub-60 frames-per-second (fps) performance averaging from 48 to 55 fps on most races, with DLSS (an AI-enabled feature for general performance improvement) set at auto. 

Set it to a lower resolution of 2,560 x 1,440 (1440p) on the same settings to get a better near-60-fps average. If you want a consistent 60-fps performance, global settings must be tweaked from high to medium quality. 

On Starfield, on high and ultra settings at 4K, with dynamic resolution turned on (a performance feature that decreases resolution in demanding scenes), the frame rate hovers from 30 to 40 fps, while medium settings bump up the average to the mid-40s to 50s. 

Alan Wake II appears to be the most demanding of these three, and I found that setting the display resolution to 1440p rather than 4k, while setting the render resolution to 1,485 x 835 has shown the best results for me as far as the performance and image quality tradeoff is concerned, at about 35 to 40 fps on medium settings. The atmospheric game is also a nice showcase for the display’s excellent contrast ratio.

Depending on who you ask, Alan Wake II is either really demanding, and a “true” next generation game or is badly optimized. Whatever the case is, the game looks like it’ll be a perfect benchmarking title for the coming year or two.

As you can see here, the Legion Pro 5i is capable but is obviously not the type that would let you crank settings up to their absolute highest. You’d need a laptop likely in the P200,000 or P300,000 range to do that for the latest games. 

For less graphically demanding competitive multiplayer games like Overwatch, Valorant, or League of Legends, as expected, you’ll be able to take advantage of the laptop’s 240Hz display, giving you frame rate figures above 120 fps. 

The 240Hz display helps with the smoothness of the image as well, even if you’re not hitting a 240fps frame rate.

That’s something I like about the Pro 5i. It has top performance for competitive games that require smooth rendering over image quality, while still bringing respectable results for those new blockbuster titles with fancy graphics. If you’re that type of gamer that seriously plays competitive shooters, with some single-player gaming on the side with titles such as Starfield, Baldur’s Gate III, and Alan Wake II, the Pro 5i is for you. 

I like the TrueStrike keyboard as well, as it has deeper key travel, and a slightly better bounce than traditional keyboards. It’s not as good as mechanical keyboards, but there’s some effort here. 

If you don’t need a 240Hz display – and honestly, the increase in refresh rate from 144Hz to 240Hz feels like a lesson in diminishing returns – and are willing to tweak the settings lower, with the aforementioned tested titles as benchmarks, you could probably look for an RTX 4050 laptop in the P80,000 to P90,000 price range. 

Or, as mentioned, you could opt to sacrifice portability, and opt for a desktop build in the P70,000 to 80,000 price range anchored by a desktop version of the RTX 4060 as well – although in at least two reviews by notable tech YouTubers, the difference between the desktop and desktop versions of this particular GPU is surprisingly negligible. 

Other alternative models from competing brands you may want to check out as well include the similarly specced and priced ASUS ROG Strix G16, which is cheaper at P120,000 with a slightly weaker CPU and a slower 165Hz display; or the P120,000 Acer Predator Helios 16 with the better RTX 4070 GPU, and Intel Core i9 processor. –

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Gelo Gonzales

Gelo Gonzales is Rappler’s technology editor. He covers consumer electronics, social media, emerging tech, and video games.