Is the Surface Pro 6 good for gaming?
A vast Windows-powered PC gaming library
The Surface Pro 6 might not be the most powerful gaming PC out there, particularly since it lacks dedicated graphics, but thanks to the vast catalogue of games available on Steam and other digital game retailers, you can rest assured that there will always be hundreds of titles in all shapes and sizes on offer.
You won't be playing photorealistic contemporary titles on this thing, at least not without severely compromising on resolution and frame rates. The Intel UHD 620 graphics that powers the Pro 6 simply isn't up to the task. However, it will run less-intensive modern titles like Minecraft, Fortnite, and Overwatch at a reasonable level.
Where you'll get the most performance and quality is from titles designed for less intensive platforms. Games like Civilization, Pillars of Eternity, Hearthstone, and Football Manager fare very well on the tablet-optimized hardware in the Pro 6, and older games like XCOM: Enemy Within, World of Warcraft, Skyrim, and Fallout 3 will run practically flawlessly.
But which configuration?
Naturally, like most Surface devices, the Book 6 comes in multiple configurations. There are core i5 and core i7 versions, with 8 GB RAM and 16 GB RAM options. Obviously, running games on the 16 GB model will improve performance, but you shouldn't notice a massive bump moving from a core i5 to a core i7 unless you're playing on a particularly CPU-intensive game.
All configurations use the Intel UHD 620 graphics, and sadly there are no options for a Thunderbolt 3-powered external GPU dock, which would partially improve the Pro 6's graphics processing problems.
Go for the 16 GB model if you can, but, you can still find hundreds of classic games that will run well even on the 8 GB model. Just ensure that you lower the display resolution to maximize overall performance.
An additional downside is that the Pro 6 doesn't come with a keyboard or mouse, so you'll have to grab those separately. The type cover is $100 (opens in new tab), and the keys are quite compact for standard WASD-style gaming, but you can always attach a larger, better keyboard if you plan to stick the Pro 6 on a desk.
Surface Pro 6
A huge portable Windows gaming legacy awaits
While the Pro 6 is certainly no gaming powerhouse, the decades of available classic Windows games makes this pint-sized PC a great portable gaming tablet.
Jez Corden is a Senior Editor for Windows Central, focusing primarily on all things Xbox and gaming. Jez is known for breaking exclusive news and analysis as relates to the Microsoft ecosystem while being powered by caffeine. Follow on Twitter @JezCorden and listen to his Xbox Two podcast, all about, you guessed it, Xbox!
Get the best of Windows Central in in your inbox, every day!
Thank you for signing up to Windows Central. You will receive a verification email shortly.
There was a problem. Please refresh the page and try again.