This $100 price drop on one of the best handhelds for Xbox Game Pass and native PC gaming is no April Fools Joke

Last year in 2023, ASUS debuted the ASUS ROG Ally, a handheld gaming console built to compete against the ever popular Steam Deck handheld. It is a powerful device capable of playing Xbox and PC video games both locally and online cloud gaming.

The ASUS ROG Ally normally fetches a hefty MSRP of $499.99. However, Best Buy is currently hosting a special 20% Easter Monday discount for the device, selling it a $399.99.

It should be noted that this is the Z1 model, not the Z1 Extreme model. The Z1 model  is a fair bit less powerful than its Z1E cousin, but it'll power through 3D games on the more simplistic-looking end, and run 2D games flawlessly. 

ASUS ROG Ally (Z1) | was $499.99 now $399.99 at Best Buy

ASUS ROG Ally (Z1) | <a href="https://shop-links.co/link?acampID=0&affgroup=%22Content%22&ar=1838227318663990059&cmp=RMX&intl=nosplash&irgwc=1&loc=Howl+Technologies%2C+Inc.&mpid=376373&nrtv_cid=53247d09fe75e3a4db98b5a0c6d9776a143d3b4de24259997db4aa2eec58e535&ref=198&skuId=6543664&utm_source=narrativ&publisher_slug=future&exclusive=1&u1=hawk-custom-tracking&url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.bestbuy.com%2Fsite%2Fasus-rog-ally-7-120hz-fhd-1080p-gaming-handheld-amd-ryzen-z1-processor-512gb-white%2F6543664.p%3FacampID%3D0%26affgroup%3D%2522Content%2522%26ar%3D1838227318663990059%26cmp%3DRMX%26intl%3Dnosplash%26irgwc%3D1%26loc%3DHowl%2BTechnologies%252C%2BInc.%26mpid%3D376373%26nrtv_cid%3D53247d09fe75e3a4db98b5a0c6d9776a143d3b4de24259997db4aa2eec58e535%26ref%3D198%26skuId%3D6543664%26utm_source%3Dnarrativ&article_name=hawk-article-name&article_url=hawk-article-url" data-link-merchant="bestbuy.com"">was $499.99 now $399.99 at Best Buy

Take gaming with you on the go with the ASUS ROG Ally. This device will allow you play xCloud games, Steam games, and more with its Ryzen Z1 Series processors and Windows 11 compatibility.

Perfect for: Gamers looking for a high-quality portable gaming PC system that can run even modern games at medium settings. 

Avoid it if: You'd prefer a more streamlined, curated experience, rather than dealing with full-fat Windows. In this scenario, an Xbox Series S or Steam Deck might be a better option. 

💰Price check: <a href="https://goto.walmart.com/c/1943169/565706/9383?subId1=hawk-custom-tracking&sharedId=hawk&u=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.walmart.com%2Fip%2FASUS-ROG-Ally-RC71L-Handheld-game-console-512-GB-SSD-white%2F5243461652%3Ffrom%3D%2Fsearch" data-link-merchant="walmart.com"">$479.99 at Walmart

ASUS' handheld gaming PC is a gamer's best ally

Whether its PC games or Xbox Game Pass titles, the Asus Rog Ally can play them all. (Image credit: Windows Central | Jez Corden)

While this deal for the ASUS ROG Ally may look like an April Fool's Joke, we can assure you that it is 100% genuine and a great opportunity to net yourself one of the best gaming handhelds at a discounted price. 

As mentioned in our own Rebecca Spears' review of the Asus Rog Ally, it is an exceptional gaming handheld system capable of running games natively from Steam, Xbox Game Pass, or indeed, any PC storefront. It can play offline titles or online games through online services like Battle.net, Epic Games Store, or Xbox Game Pass, it's also a great option for cloud gaming with NVIDIA GeForce Now or Xbox Cloud Gaming.

RELATED: Six-month ASUS ROG Ally re-review.

The ASUS ROG Ally is equipped with powerful hardware to ensure your games are running at high graphical settings. These include an AMD Ryzen Z1 Extreme or AMD Ryzen Z1 processor, a 7-inch 1920x1080 (16:9) IPS touchscreen with VRR support, and a Zero Gravity thermal system with dual fans. It should be noted that this is not the Z1 Extreme model, which can run even higher-end games capably. The power on this device is perhaps more comparable to a Steam Deck, although it beats the Steam Deck too in some scenarios. It'll power through a low of modern games on low or medium settings at 720p, and run 2D games like Hollow Knight flawlessly. 

In addition, the ASUS ROG Ally runs full Windows 11 so you can browse and install non-gaming apps on your handheld, customizable control settings, and a sleek ergonomic design that makes it comfortable to use for long periods of time.

That being said, there are some caveats to consider before taking advantage of this deal. The ASUS ROG Ally has relatively short battery life of up to 4 hours when not charging, it is installed with a ton of bloatware you will want to turn off to get better performances, and it can potentially cause microSD cards to overheat and malfunction — although firmware updates have improved this issue. You can also offset the battery issues by combining it with a power bank from our best ASUS ROG Ally accessories round up. 

If you can overlook the drawbacks, and if you're looking for a high-quality portable handheld system to play the best Xbox games and best PC games while on the go, then the ASUS ROG Ally is for you. Especially with Best Buy's special discount, reducing its MSRP from $499.99 to $399.99, which will save you $100 when purchasing it.

Alexander Cope

Alexander Cope is a gaming veteran of 30-plus years, primarily covering PC and Xbox games here on Windows Central. Gaming since the 8-bit era, Alexander's expertise revolves around gaming guides and news, with a particular focus on Japanese titles from the likes of Elden Ring to Final Fantasy. Alexander is always on deck to help our readers conquer the industry's most difficult games — when he can pry himself away from Monster Hunter that is!