I haven't owned a Mac since 2007, is bootcamp still the best way to play PC games?

Winstonp

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Original poster
Jan 2, 2005
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I'm probably going to get back into Mac OS and I was curious if restarting the computer into a Windows installation is still the best way to play? I have an eGPU with an RX580. I like to play CoD type games and recently I've been chipping away at Fallen Order.
 

vkd

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Sep 10, 2012
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Here's a controversial opinion. I don't like having to reboot to game, I'd rather game in Mac OS so I can easily and quickly flip to my other stuff as required and then back to gaming and vice-versa. So if I wanna play a game and its not on macOS but on Windows, I'd check and/or test it to see if it'll run in an emulator, either vmWare Fusion or Parallels. Yes, these are regarded as compromising and limiting and so forth, so instantly denounced and condemned by the larger and wider community on here. BUT I can get a surprising amount of games working like this, including Tomb Raider up to the 2013 reboot and Assassin's Creed all games up to AC3, gonna test AC4 Black Flag again one of these days. And look, my ol' heap is a 2011 i5 iMac with a 'poxy' video card Radeon 6770M 512MB.
 

Winstonp

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Original poster
Jan 2, 2005
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Boston
Here's a controversial opinion. I don't like having to reboot to game, I'd rather game in Mac OS so I can easily and quickly flip to my other stuff as required and then back to gaming and vice-versa. So if I wanna play a game and its not on macOS but on Windows, I'd check and/or test it to see if it'll run in an emulator, either vmWare Fusion or Parallels. Yes, these are regarded as compromising and limiting and so forth, so instantly denounced and condemned by the larger and wider community on here. BUT I can get a surprising amount of games working like this, including Tomb Raider up to the 2013 reboot and Assassin's Creed all games up to AC3, gonna test AC4 Black Flag again one of these days. And look, my ol' heap is a 2011 i5 iMac with a 'poxy' video card Radeon 6770M 512MB.
You lost me at "2013". I guess I'll keep a dedicated gaming rig.
 
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Plutonius

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Feb 22, 2003
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Here's a controversial opinion. I don't like having to reboot to game, I'd rather game in Mac OS
It's not controversial at all.

I only use bootcamp if the game doesn't run under MacOS.

The good news is if the game runs under Win 10 and MacOS and you buy it on Steam, you are able to load both the Win version and MacOS version. That way, if you aren't happy with the performance of the MacOS version, you can run the Win version in bootcamp.

I'm probably going to get back into Mac OS and I was curious if restarting the computer into a Windows installation is still the best way to play? I have an eGPU with an RX580. I like to play CoD type games and recently I've been chipping away at Fallen Order.
Games will run better under bootcamp because of MacOS and because MacOS games are usually ports from Win games (poorer optimizations etc).

That being said, gaming on a Mac is much better than 2007 and, in most cases, you can do without bootcamp unless you want the greatest performance.

The best way of determining an answer is to try your game under MacOS and bootcamp.
 
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Pangalactic

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Nov 28, 2016
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Bootcamp all the way. Virtual machines are way too resource heavy for gaming, and Mac versions of the games -apart from maybe Blizzard games and turn based strategies -are much worse than the windows ones.
 
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Huntn

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May 5, 2008
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I'm probably going to get back into Mac OS and I was curious if restarting the computer into a Windows installation is still the best way to play? I have an eGPU with an RX580. I like to play CoD type games and recently I've been chipping away at Fallen Order.
The answer is "yes".
I agree Bootcamp for Mac gaming, while admitting as of 2016 I was out of the Bootcamp business when I threw in the towel, refusing to pay $3000 for a MBP with a dedicated graphic card. So I upgraded to a less expensive MBP, and now rely exclusively on my PC for gaming. It helps that I’ve retired and don’t travel for work like I used too. I also have a Xbox 360 I play with when the grandkids come over.
 

faust

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Sep 11, 2007
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I'd recommend keeping a dedicated gaming rig. I play FFXIV on MacOS, and it plays well, but I can't imagine how obnoxious it would be to have to reboot into Windows to play non-MacOS supported games.
 
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decafjava

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Feb 7, 2011
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Not really a game (entertainment though) but X-Plane runs really well on my Mac under MacOS. Then again it is partly developed on Mac and is the only flight sim ported to all three desktop OS: Windows, Mac and Linux. Also mobile versions for iOS and Android.
 

Winstonp

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Original poster
Jan 2, 2005
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Boston
I'd recommend keeping a dedicated gaming rig. I play FFXIV on MacOS, and it plays well, but I can't imagine how obnoxious it would be to have to reboot into Windows to play non-MacOS supported games.
Yeah I ordered a MacBook pro but I'm keeping my old PC and egpu for now. Thanks
Not really a game (entertainment though) but X-Plane runs really well on my Mac under MacOS. Then again it is partly developed on Mac and is the only flight sim ported to all three desktop OS: Windows, Mac and Linux. Also mobile versions for iOS and Android.
Not a big fan of that game. More of a CoD and Battlefront guy.
 

decafjava

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Feb 7, 2011
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Yeah I ordered a MacBook pro but I'm keeping my old PC and egpu for now. Thanks

Not a big fan of that game. More of a CoD and Battlefront guy.
Excellent, completely different genre though. Which titles in those series are your favourite? The recent SW Battlefront II piqued my interest if I had a console.
 

Winstonp

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Original poster
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Excellent, completely different genre though. Which titles in those series are your favourite? The recent SW Battlefront II piqued my interest if I had a console.
I liked CoD WW2, all the modern warfares, battlefront I was good, II is okay. Really liked Fallen Order.
 
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amgff84

macrumors regular
Sep 22, 2019
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I'm probably going to get back into Mac OS and I was curious if restarting the computer into a Windows installation is still the best way to play? I have an eGPU with an RX580. I like to play CoD type games and recently I've been chipping away at Fallen Order.
I use Shadow. In contrast, there is bootcamp if you want to run your hardware. Mac's, with there cooling inefficiencies running Windows and gaming on them, would be a hard no in my book. However, some have excellent experiences with bootcamp. I prefer Shadow, see this ---> Link to my topic on Shadow.

I also prefer Shadow because I run older machines, and even with Windows Bootcamp, wouldn't be able to game on my Macs. I'm not sure what you paid for your eGPU, but it could probably fund your first year of Shadow, if you were to sell it.

Personally, I decluttered all my tech and sold off my two gaming rigs, and rely solely on this for gaming. It works.
 

Winstonp

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Jan 2, 2005
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Boston
I use Shadow. In contrast, there is bootcamp if you want to run your hardware. Mac's, with there cooling inefficiencies running Windows and gaming on them, would be a hard no in my book. However, some have excellent experiences with bootcamp. I prefer Shadow, see this ---> Link to my topic on Shadow.

I also prefer Shadow because I run older machines, and even with Windows Bootcamp, wouldn't be able to game on my Macs. I'm not sure what you paid for your eGPU, but it could probably fund your first year of Shadow, if you were to sell it.

Personally, I decluttered all my tech and sold off my two gaming rigs, and rely solely on this for gaming. It works.
I will absolutely try shadow.
 

Irishman

macrumors 68030
Nov 2, 2006
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BootCamp works easily, but it still works within the limitations of your Mac’s hardware, so even that will eventually stop being a satisfying solution. Over the past year, I have been enjoying nVidia’s GeForce NOW streaming service. That works well for offline games best , because there is a tiny bit of latency, even though I can still manage 5-6 kill games in Fortnite. I recently finished “Rise of the Tomb Raider”, all on Ultra settings. It was so much fun, and they largely fixed the issues that I had with the 2013 ”Tomb Raider” and the way it handled playable QuickTime events.

Now, I’m playing Borderlands I for the first time, via the GOTY Enhanced game (because the enhanced version is not out for Mac yet.), and that is great, too. We have Google Fiber internet, so that helps alot.

I’m saving up my quatloos for when Borderlands 3 comes to Steam in April.

So, for me and the kind of games I like to play, GeForce NOW works very well, so much so that I can’t believe it is still free in Beta.
 
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Winstonp

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Jan 2, 2005
845
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Boston
BootCamp works easily, but it still works within the limitations of your Mac’s hardware, so even that will eventually stop being a satisfying solution. Over the past year, I have been enjoying nVidia’s GeForce NOW streaming service. That works well for offline games best , because there is a tiny bit of latency, even though I can still manage 5-6 kill games in Fortnite. I recently finished “Rise of the Tomb Raider”, all on Ultra settings. It was so much fun, and they largely fixed the issues that I had with the 2013 ”Tomb Raider” and the way it handled playable QuickTime events.

Now, I’m playing Borderlands I for the first time, via the GOTY Enhanced game (because the enhanced version is not out for Mac yet.), and that is great, too. We have Google Fiber internet, so that helps alot.

I’m saving up my quatloos for when Borderlands 3 comes to Steam in April.

So, for me and the kind of games I like to play, GeForce NOW works very well, so much so that I can’t believe it is still free in Beta.
Thanks for the insight. Does this software use a remote GPU or your own local GPU? Does it only require a decent streaming bandwidth?
 

Irishman

macrumors 68030
Nov 2, 2006
2,658
584
Thanks for the insight. Does this software use a remote GPU or your own local GPU? Does it only require a decent streaming bandwidth?

It uses nVidia's remote hardware and windows installation.

All you need is fast internet.
 

MisterSavage

macrumors 68000
Nov 10, 2018
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1,644
Bootcamp has been an awful experience for me with my 2017 iMac. Installed it and the game I wanted to run ran really slowly. Realized I didn't install the drivers from Bootcamp Assistant so did that and put myself into an awesome reboot loop where 95% of the time Windows won't boot and just reboots. What's an even bigger kick in the teeth is that the game runs fine in the 5% of scenarios where I can boot into Windows. I found posts about other people that hit this issue but no solutions.
 

maflynn

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Staff member
May 3, 2009
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Boston
Bootcamp has been an awful experience for me with my 2017 iMac.
I haven't had an awful experience but conversely, it has never been problem free either. The drivers that apple provides is almost always inadequate in some form. I now go by the mentality if you really want to play games you ought to do that on a windows machine.
 

amgff84

macrumors regular
Sep 22, 2019
156
159
If you want awful, try steam on Ubuntu. At the time, there were very few of my games that ran on it, it was also new on ubuntu too. It's probably better now.
 

Horselover Fat

macrumors regular
Feb 2, 2012
167
205
Germany
If Bootcamp is problematic for you why not just install W10 from a USB stick? That‘s how I did it because Bootcamp never worked for me either.