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Will Hogwarts Legacy Run on Your Laptop?

The new Harry Potter game is getting rave reviews (and plenty of contoversy), but can your low-end PC run it?

Dan Ackerman Editorial Director / Computers and Gaming
Dan Ackerman leads CNET's coverage of computers and gaming hardware. A New York native and former radio DJ, he's also a regular TV talking head and the author of "The Tetris Effect" (Hachette/PublicAffairs), a non-fiction gaming and business history book that has earned rave reviews from the New York Times, Fortune, LA Review of Books, and many other publications. "Upends the standard Silicon Valley, Steve Jobs/Mark Zuckerberg technology-creation myth... the story shines." -- The New York Times
Expertise I've been testing and reviewing computer and gaming hardware for over 20 years, covering every console launch since the Dreamcast and every MacBook...ever. Credentials
  • Author of the award-winning, NY Times-reviewed nonfiction book The Tetris Effect; Longtime consumer technology expert for CBS Mornings
Dan Ackerman
2 min read
staircase at Hogwarts
WB Games

Hogwarts Legacy, the newest game set in the Harry Potter universe, has been a smashing success (albeit prefaced by the controversy over J.K. Rowling's comments regarding transgender people). Out now, the game is available on nearly every modern console system, and also for Windows, where you can get it via Steam or the Epic Games Store.

Because it's a modern PC game, its system requirements are beyond the capabilities of your average work or school laptop, and call for a discrete graphics card. However, the minimum, according to publisher WB Games, is an Nvidia GeForce 960 (or Radeon RX 470), a card that was released in 2014 for desktops and 2015 for laptops. 

Read more: Hogwarts Legacy: Platforms, Release Dates, More for the Harry Potter RPG

What are the required PC system specs for Hogwarts Legacy?

The game offers four sets of recommended or required hardware, but the lowest-end ones won't get you much more than 30 frames per second at low quality settings. Decent hardware should get you 60fps at 1,920x1,080-pixel resolution. 

On PC, the game automatically evaluates your hardware and sets what it thinks are the best graphics settings, but you should still play around with them to find what works best for you. 

Hogwarts Legacy PC specs

LowHighUltraUltra 4K
CPU Intel Core i5-6600 or AMD Ryzen 5 1400 Intel i7-8700 or AMD Ryzen 5 3600Intel Core i7-10700K or AMD Ryzen 7 5800X Intel Core i7-10700K or AMD Ryzen 7 5800X
RAM 16GB 16GB 32GB32GB
GPU Nvidia GeForce GTX 960 4GB or AMD Radeon RX 470 4GB Nvidia GeForce 1080 Ti or AMD Radeon RX 5700 XT or Intel Arc A770Nvidia GeForce RTX 2080 Ti or AMD Radeon RX 6800 XTNvidia GeForce RTX 3090 Ti or AMD Radeon RX 7900 XT
Storage 85GB 85GB 85GB 85GB 
Settings 720p / 30 fps, Low1080p / 60 fps, High1440p / 60fps, Ultra2160p / 60fps, Ultra

Will Hogwarts Legacy run on a Mac?

No, it's on consoles (PS4 and PS5, Xbox One, Xbox Series S and X) and Windows only for now. If the game gets added to a cloud service like Nvidia GeForce Now, that could be a Mac-friendly workaround.

OK, but how does it really play?

I loaded the game up on both a high-end gaming laptop and a midlevel nongaming laptop. The Razer Blade 18 has a Core i9 CPU and Nvidia's RTX 4080 GPU, and I was hitting around 120-140fps at Ultra settings and 2,560x1,600-pixel resolution. 

Then I tried a Samsung Galaxy Book Pro laptop, with Intel's Arc graphics chip. That sounds like it would be supported based on the chart above, but the Arc chip referenced there is a higher-end, model, not the more mainstream version in the Samsung. In this case, even with every setting turned down as far as possible, I could only manage a frame rate in the low/mid-20s, which I wouldn't consider good enough for even casual gaming. 

So, will Hogwarts Legacy run on your work or school laptop without a discrete Nvidia or AMD GPU? Sadly not. 

Watch this: Big-Screen Gaming With the Razer Blade 18