Alien: Isolation’s demands are primarily GPU-based, and it doesn't require a ton of horsepower at that. Therefore, the Alienware 15 feels right at home (pun intended). Compared to the other GTX 1060 laptops, our Alienware takes the bottom slot, but it's not far behind the competition. With an average of 110.99 FPS, the i5 system is more than sufficient.
Ashes of the Singularity
Ashes of the Singularity is a pretty CPU-intensive game, and one that even systems with i7-6700HQ processors struggle to conquer. Because it's limited by its i5 CPU, the Alienware falls behind the better-equipped configurations. At only 30.8 FPS, the Alienware 15 sees between a 7-15% performance decrease comparatively.
Similarly, Bioshock Infinite can make some demands of a system's CPU, in addition to its GPU. Both the Leopard Pro and Strix 15 score within the margin of error, given their identical CPU and GPU. The Alienware takes a significant (10-15.61%) performance hit compared against other GTX 1060-equipped laptops. But then Bioshock Infinite isn't exactly the most demanding game.
DiRT Rally is more fond of generous GPU frame buffers, and also rewards a strong CPU. As such, the Alienware wins and loses in this battle, but ultimately it outperforms the Leopard Pro, albeit by a fraction, thanks to the Leopard Pro's 3GB GTX 1060 module.
Grand Theft Auto V
Grand Theft Auto V is an incredibly demanding and VRAM-reliant game. The Alienware outperforms the Leopard Pro in all of GTA V's benchmark scenes. That isn't to say a strong CPU wouldn't benefit GTA V performance; the difference isn't great, but the Alienware 15 still falls behind the Asus laptop, which has both an i7-6700HQ and a 6GB GTX 1060.
GRID Autosport likes a strong overall platform performance, so the Alienware 15 ends up in last place yet again. We witness a whopping 32.1% performance difference compared with the Asus Strix 15, and even a 23.2% performance gap compared with the Leopard Pro, which only has half the Alienware laptop's VRAM.
In Hitman, systems will benefit most from having a strong GPU with a sufficient amount of VRAM. But even though the Alienware 15 has a larger 6GB GTX 1060 module compared to the MSI Leopard Pro, its less powerful i5-6300HQ spells its defeat. Both systems perform below 60 FPS, whereas the the Asus Strix 15, which isn't hindered by an i5 or less VRAM, maintains a 61.33 FPS average.
Metro: Last Light Redux
Metro: Last Light Redux is a heavy-hitter that taxes even the most powerful systems. It comes as no surprise that the least powerful system we’ve tested so far doesn’t fare very well. At best, the Alienware system falls behind the Leopard Pro-218 by 12.7%. It seems like the absolute minimum specifications required to maintain a solid 60 FPS are an i7 and a GTX 1070, so the Alienware's i5 and GTX 1060 just don't make the cut.
Rise of the Tomb Raider
Rise of the Tomb Raider also likes a strong GPU and more VRAM, so the Alienware 15 has a chance to shine over its peers. The Alienware scores 31.31 FPS on average, which is almost 50% better than the MSI Leopard Pro. It also outscores the Strix 15 by a couple of FPS.
Similarly, The Division benefits from more VRAM, but not to the extent that game performance is hindered like it is in Rise of the Tomb Raider. The Alienware's 6GB GTX 1060 grabs 45.6 FPS on average, which is slightly above the Leopard Pro and just a cut below the Strix 15. It's safe to safe that performance in The Division isn't hindered by the i5-6300HQ.
The past couple of titles were kind to the Alienware 15 because they favored systems with adequate VRAM, but performance in Thief weighs slightly in favor of platform performance once more. The Alienware scores 53.7 FPS on average, which is about 10% less than the ideal 60 FPS. Even the Leopard Pro is able to achieve above 60 FPS, despite having less VRAM, so we can definitively pin the bottleneck on the Alienware's CPU.