Gaming on laptops does cost a lot more. Given you want it to run smoothly that removes any of the laptops that can game but with some limitations.
Good luck in your search. I'll part my kid exchanged his 1,400 buck gaming laptop for a simple Asus k55n at 380 bucks which I popped in another 4GB ram. He says it runs smoother than the 2010 gaming laptop. If you can get a look at that one as well as an A10 AMD powered laptop, let's hear what you find.
Ok guys here is the deal. I'm your average college student who is somewhat into technology, but not super in tune with computers. I was given a macbook for graduation 3 years ago and it is awesome. For school. For 3 years now I've been wanting a gaming laptop for my love of strategy games. Games such as the total war series, Civilization, and other simulation games are incredibly fun for me. Games like Fifa, Battlefield, Assassin's Creed and skyrim I enjoy on the Playstation. (Even though I heard skyrim is fun on pc). Anyway, I don't know enough about laptops to make a good decision about a gaming laptop. I want my strategy games to run smoothly with fantastic graphics, and since I don't plan on playing super high end games I don't feel the need to drop tons of money on a gaming laptop. Everything I search says spend 1800, or spend 2500 when I just don't have that money. My budget is 1300. What is the best laptop I can get for my buck that will allow me to play the games I enjoy on that price. Any help at all is greatly appreciated! Also I have considered a desktop instead of a laptop but I enjoy being able to sit on my couch and watch the NBA playoffs while gaming