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2022 Best Budget Phones for Gaming

With new brands and companies entering the smartphone market, you’d be surprised that you could get flagship specs at a budget price.

2022 Best Budget Phones for Gaming

We all love to game on the go. Stuck in traffic? Have a bit of downtime at work? Or maybe you just can’t be bothered to open your PC —your phone will always be there to save you.

If you’re looking to buy a new phone this year that is excellent as a daily device with a side of medium to heavy gaming, then you’re in the right place. The battle of smartphones is no longer confined to the flagship models but also to the mid-range budget phones so you’ll find a model that will suit your need.

With new brands and companies entering the smartphone market, you’d be surprised that you could get flagship specs at a budget price. So we rounded up the best budget phones for gaming that are run basically anything from Mobile Legends to Genshin Impact.

Here are our top picks:

1. ASUS ZenFone 8 ($649 on Amazon)

  • Chipset: Qualcomm Snapdragon 888 5G 5nm
  • RAM: 8/16 GB
  • Storage: 128 GB
  • Battery: 4,000 mAh
  • Screen: 5.9” Super AMOLED

ASUS is well-known for their powerful gaming computers so it only makes sense that they transfer that technology to their phones.

While ASUS has a dedicated line of gaming phones, ASUS ROG, which might just be the best gaming experience you’ll have on mobile, the price point is equal to or even more than the flagship phones of Apple and Samsung. The good thing is, Asus also has great mid-range phones that you can game with ease.

The ASUS ZenFone 8 proves that great things often come in smaller packages. With only a 5.9” display, this phone is as compact as it could get. The display itself is amazing, utilizing Samsung’s E4 AMOLED technology to bring your games to life. 

The gaming performance is amazing too, running demanding titles without any problems thanks to the Snapdragon 888 coupled with up to 16 GB of RAM. Of course, they have their own optimizing software the Game Genie which used to be exclusive on ROG phones. 

Game Genie lets you control every aspect of your phone’s performance and even has some nifty assists for the best gaming experience. Aside from blocking your notifications while gaming, you can also enable on-screen crosshair, temporarily disable touch capability for when you’re on the game’s auto-pilot, and more.

Through the ASUS ZenFone 8 is on the higher end of mid-range phones, you’re definitely getting the performance that you paid for.

2. Redmi Note 11 Pro+ 5G ($319 on Amazon)

  • Chipset: MediaTek Dimensity 920 6nm
  • RAM: 8 GB
  • Storage: 128 GB
  • Battery: 4,500 mAh
  • Screen: 6.67” FHD+ AMOLED DotDisplay

Xiaomi and its subsidiary company Redmi absolutely kill the game when it comes to mid-range and entry-level devices. A lot of their phones offer flagship specs at a significantly lower cost which comes as a no surprise that this brand is a go-to for gaming phones.

Just released this year is the Redmi Note 11 Pro+ 5G and it is as powerful as it looks. With a similar silhouette to Android flagship phones, the Note 11 Pro+ has an impressive display with a relatively slim bezel. Safe to say that you’re not going to have a problem with it when gaming.

Speaking of gaming, this phone can handle pretty much any heavy games with low to medium graphic settings without hiccups.  You can push your graphics to the highest for some games but expect a trade-off in battery life. Redmi makes up for it with their Performance Mode which optimizes your phone’s performance while gaming and their LiquidCool Technology 2.0 which prevents your phone from becoming too hot.

3. OPPO A94

  • Chipset: MediaTek MT6779V Helio P95 12nm
  • RAM: 8 GB
  • Storage: 128 GB
  • Battery: 4310 mAh
  • Screen: 6.43” Full HD AMOLED 1080 x 2400

The OPPO A94 is not just for gaming purposes but also a great all-rounder phone. It was marketed as the must-have entry-level phone and as one of the low mid-range devices, we’re not disappointed.

It’s very rare that you get an AMOLED display at this price point but OPPO A94 has it which makes the visual of your gaming experience much more defined. The specs aren’t bad too. It runs most staple games like Mobile Legends, League of Legends Wild Rift, and Call of Duty Mobile without a problem. But the chipset is not exactly recent, so you’ll probably experience slight changes on high demanding titles like Genshin Impact. 

4. Xiaomi Poco X3 GT ($274 on Amazon)

  • Chipset: MediaTek MT6891Z Dimensity 1100 6nm
  • RAM: 8 GB
  • Storage: 128 GB
  • Battery: 5,000 mAh
  • Screen: 6.6” FHD+ DotDisplay

If you’re on a tight budget, the Xiaomi Poco X3 GT is probably the most bang-for-your-buck budget phone as of writing. 

With an IPS LCD, high screen refresh rate, and decent specs, you’ll have a consistent gaming experience with low to medium graphics for casual games. You might experience some strain with spec-heavy games but for a phone with that price, you’re already getting more than what you paid for.

But interestingly enough, Xiaomi Poco X3 GT handles high demanding games better than its equivalent smartphones with the same price point. The temperature management is excellent too. If you’re looking for a phone under 15K pesos, then you can’t go wrong with this model.

5. Realme C3

  • Chipset: MediaTek Helio G70 12nm
  • RAM: 4 GB
  • Storage: 64 GB
  • Battery: 5,000 mAh
  • Screen: 6.5” HD+ 720 x 1600

Realme C3 definitely pushes the idea of budget gaming. With good-enough specs for an incredible price, this is the gaming phone if you’re in need of immediate replacement on a small budget and you’re looking to upgrade for a better one in the future.

Why so? Well, Realme C3 delivers on the bare minimum of the gaming aspect. Most mainstream games (like Mobile Legends and Call of Duty Mobile) are playable but not mind-blowing in experience. With that price point, you’re exchanging better graphics quality, smoother gameplay, and future-proofing your phone for your games’ updates. Nevertheless, it does the job well for the price.

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