Asus has been aggressively innovating its gaming laptops and the results are out there now for every gaming enthusiast to see. The Republic of Gamers (RoG) series of gaming-plus laptops from the Taiwanese gadget-maker has been quite popular among gamers for a while now thanks to the sheer performance, strong hardware and impressive display and graphics faculties, at affordable prices.

The most recent entrant to the RoG stable is the Strix Scar II, which is dedicated to hardcore FPS (first person shooter) and Triple A (AAA, kind of a gold standard in games) game players, and comes with improved design and hardware. On the design front, there are palpable differences from the earlier versions. The RoG Strix Scar II looks elegant and uber modern. It is armed with formidable specs — Intel Core i7-8750H processor supported by NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 graphics and 6 GB GDDR5 VRAM. The device has a memory of 16 GB DDR4 and this can be expanded up to 32 GB RAM. The laptop has an SSD capacity of 256 GB and sports a massive 1 TB Firecuda SSHD. The FireCuda SSHD uses NAND Flash memory, which helps improve data speeds. This will come handy while playing games installed on the SSHD.

The Strix Scar II is clearly the device for the modern-day gaming generation, having shed the legacy design glitches. For instance, the new thin screen frame has cut the width of the laptop significantly and the way the display screen sits on the body is quite enamouring. Thanks to the narrow screen frame of the new IPS display, the Strix Scar II is 2.33 cm shorter in width vis-à-vis its immediate predecessor. It is also a little smaller than standard 15-inch laptops, making it look extremely compact and powerful. In fact, this offers a better visual experience.

As RoG fans already know, the RoG Gaming Center acts like a gaming hub, which offers information on all that you want to know about the device and its gaming experience, such as system information, CPU and GPU clock speed and temperature. It also provides configuration files and memory optimisation functions. There are various other options such as the RoG Aura keyboard lighting control, the dedicated functionality of fan overboost, options to swiftly change gaming modes, display mode control (GameVisual) and more. In sum, the gaming experience is glitch-free and gratifying.

The audio department of the Strix Scar II is much better than the older versions. Several users have complained on online forums that the RoG series tends to face some issues on its audio faculties (such as the audio getting distorted when it goes full volume), but the Strix Scar II offers a controlled and clear audio experience. The backlit chiclet keyboard is nicely spaced out, offering a comfortable travel distance, with a hotkey dedicated to the RoG Gaming Center. FPS gamers will surely like the transparent WASD key groups and Kevlar weave and camouflage markings around and across the keyboard. The device has a relatively smaller, and hence convenient, power adapter.

Another impressive component of the Strix Scar II is the RangeBoost zero blind spot technology, which helps the laptop tune performance according to signal strength and optimise radiation pattern to reduce blind spots, and helps compensate variations in the WiFi connection. These days most gamers, especially the neo converts, love to see visualisation of sounds while gaming, which helps them figure out movements and other actions faster and respond swiftly. Asus has fine-tuned its software Sonic Radar III to visualise audio effects fairly well.

The Strix Scar II is powered by the cooling technologies from ADC, making gaming literally a cool affair. Yet, the device can get mildly hot during long-hours of gaming (four hours non-stop in our case, which is not an unusual duration for an average gamer). That said, the RoG Strix Scar II is a machine built for the future. Even though many existing games do not necessarily demand the kind of computing skill the Strix Scar II possesses, but considering the way games are evolving and the impressive growth of e-sports in India and abroad, Asus knows gaming laptops are going to be in great demand in the future and a device that can give a little extra will surely have more takers.

The Asus RoG Strix Scar II clearly lives up to the legacy of its predecessors and takes the gaming experience several notches up.

Price: ₹1,39,990 onwards

Pros: Superb display, compact, innovative design, clear audio, seamless gaming experience

Cons: Keyboard gets dusty easily, heats up a little during long duration gaming (four hours or more)