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Whenever games state their system requirements they only ever seem to mention nVidia or AMD cards. How do I find out if a game will run using intel graphics?

Is there a single database or list on the internet that I can check?

I am specifically interested in the Intel HD 3000 if that makes any difference.

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I think this is perilously close to a "shopping recommendation" question. For what it's worth, I have had only one problem with games not working on my laptop's intel integrated graphics card (Bioshock, which had problems on my PC as well...) –  Raven Dreamer Apr 7 '11 at 6:33
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I edited it to remove references to buying a product, which was really just background information - the base question as to finding out which games are supported by intel graphics remains the same. –  jwaddell Apr 8 '11 at 4:40

5 Answers 5

up vote 2 down vote accepted

You can try Can You Run It?, though that will only work if you have a Windows machine, and, I guess, only after you bought the laptop.

As a general idea, what's the price range on the laptop you wanna' buy?

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Gaming is not my primary consideration, I've pretty much decided which one I'm getting (the Lenovo x220). Would just be nice to know before I buy a game that it will actually run. –  jwaddell Apr 8 '11 at 4:44
    
Well, in that case, Can You Run It? is your best bet. You can verify if your computer can run a huge list of games. –  Ragnar Apr 8 '11 at 6:03

You should always rely on actual demos to see how a game runs on your machine, rather than comparing GPU models. Just because it is supported doesn't mean it will run well.

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Would probably do this, but not every game gets a demo... –  jwaddell Apr 8 '11 at 4:42
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@jwaddell If you really need to try the game before you spend on it and the publisher doesn't let you do so legally... I dunno, vote with your wallet ;) –  badp Apr 8 '11 at 13:29

Generally, I've found that if you are trying to game on a laptop, and it has integrated graphics, then you will probably be sorely disappointed with the results.

Unless if you are running a game that is not graphics intensive, that is. Along the lines of Flash games or such.

I am of the demographic where I am really only interested in last-gen games, and I also need to pickup a new laptop (mine just fizzled out). The only requirement I really have going into is is that it have a dedicated graphics card. This way, I know I'll at least be able to run Fallout and Half-life2, which are the last two games I purchased ;)

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The Steam Hardware Survey shows that 90% of the users have Nvidia or ATI cards. store.steampowered.com/hwsurvey So, game developers focus on making games for that hardware. In addition, Nvidia and ATI cards are very powerful, and they're the best choice for gamers. I know this doesn't answer your question, but if you want (heavy) 3D-accelerated games at good framerates, you won't get it from non Nvidia or ATI cards. –  Denilson Sá Jul 20 '11 at 5:09
    
That doesn't really answer the question though. He is interested in integrated vs non-integrated video memory. The issue then becomes not one of the hardware manufacturer, but the fact that an integrated card has to share system RAM with everything else going on at the same time. –  espais Jul 20 '11 at 13:18

Some game makers will claim that your integrated graphics card is inadequate even when it isn't. Can You Run It told me my system fails every single game I've tried, but I've managed to run some of them. So just try, and use a Virtual Graphic Card to fool the program if you need to.

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Intel HD 3000, integrated in Intel i5/i7 PCus is a really low-end graphics card. Can hardly be used to play anything more than flash or light-engine games. This is the main reason why is not even reported inside minimum requirements for a game.

In this article by AnandTech you can see how low are the performance of this card with games like Dragon Age : Origins, Call of Duty : Moder Warfare 2 and so on. I can reach 40/50 fps only at 1024x768 with low settings.

Anyway to answer your question, when you have doubt on a graphic card performance I suggest you to Google something as " Review"; there are a lot of sites that make very nice and deep performance reviews (Anandtech, Guru3D, etc.). Sometimes I use the database of PassMark to get a raw performance index of a certain graphic card. You can search an ATI/nVidia card that has the same score of HD 3000 and look if that cards are accepted as minimum requirements for the game.

Finally, playing a demo of the game before buying it, if you are not sure your graphic card can manage it, is always highly recommended.

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