(Pocket-lint) - Lenovo's Legion brand is a regular on the PC gaming front, so it's perhaps no surprise that the company set forth under these auspices with its dedicated gaming phone.
It's a segment of the market that's seen plenty of activity in recent years, with Asus using its ROG brand to the same end, and Razer, Black Shark and Red Magic all attempting the same thing.
But can the Lenovo Legion dominate the gaming battleground?
The Lenovo Legion Duel is very good at what it sets out to do. The combination of a big display, specific gaming features and amazing sound quality make for a phone that's excellent at gaming.
There are some quirks - it seems to get hotter than it's rivals - and there are some software oddities around the gaming feature. But on the whole it's a great experience when playing.
Where the phone really struggles is in the everyday job of being just a phone. It's bulky, it has a preference for landscape orientation use, and we're not convinced the pop-up camera will be totally reliable - which is going to be a downside for those wanting a phone to last them the next couple of years of daily use.
Ultimately, however, the Legion Duel offers a lot for your money. There are downsides, but there are decisions to be made: if you spend most of your time gaming, there's a lot here for you; if you're a more casual gamer then there are lighter phones with more software refinement and just as much power.
Lenovo Legion Phone Duel
- Designed around gamers
- Great sound quality
- Loads of power and performance
- Super-fast charging speeds
- Software buggy
- Gets warmer than you might expect
- Cameras are a little inconvenient
Designed for gaming
- Dimensions: 169.2 x 78.5 x 10mm / Weight: 239g
- In-screen fingerprint scanner
- Pop-up side camera
- Stereo speakers
- Rear RGB logo
There's nothing subtle about the Legion Phone. Lettered with the words "stylish outside, savage inside" the complex finish to the exterior of the phone is designed to catch the eye. It shimmers when the light catches it, centred around a central LED decoration, much in the same way as a gaming PC flaunts its wares with RGB lighting.
The Legion branding can be set to illuminate and that rear logo can be set to pulse when gaming, as a notification or when charging. Thankfully, you get full control, so you can turn off the red flashing when charging at night.
The Legion is a big phone, with a flat display and healthy bezels, giving you somewhere to grip without obscuring the display and risking accidental touches, while the front-facing camera is a pop-up unit on the landscape side of the phone. Yes, to save you from notches or punch-holes - and to ensure face time in-game - the camera has moved completely.
There's some texture to rear sections of the phone to provide a modicum of grip, while the cameras, again, sit in the centre of the rear rather than at the top. That means you're not putting your fingers all over them when gaming.