OS X New to Mac, Old to games..

Harry Pujols

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Feb 3, 2014
13
1
Hey everyone -
Brand new MBPR 13" owner right here!

I've been a casual PC gamer for years - recently using a Toshiba laptop that had a mid-range (5 years ago) dedicated graphics card. So I've been able to play COD4, Oblivion, Civ IV, Borderlands, Bioshock, etc etc.

A couple of questions:

* With the integrated graphics card on the MBPR, I'm assuming I can play games of that caliber still, but would I be able to run newer games as well? (borderlands 2, skyrim, etc)

* As I'm so new to the Mac world, I'd prefer not installing a Windows partition just yet - am I able to download the Steam client for Mac (and then subsequently game through that)?

* Or is buying through the app store a better route (instead of Amazon digital/Steam)?

Thanks in advance!
HP
 

Dirtyharry50

macrumors 68000
May 17, 2012
1,769
182
You certainly can go to steam powered.com and download/install the Mac Steam client. If you owned some Windows games that are Steamplay titles, you'll instantly have some stuff you could play natively on your Mac via Steam. For example, COD4 and Civ IV are Steamplay titles. So if you own them on Steam for Windows, you also own them on Steam for Mac. The original Borderlands is available for Mac on the Mac App Store as are many other good games. Do a search there for "Feral Interactive" and also "Aspyr Media." These are both companies that do excellent ports of Windows games to Mac OS X. You'll find lots of good stuff just checking them out. And of course, Steam have over a thousand Mac titles to look into. You can check the Store pages to see what the system requirements are on a per game basis for whatever you are interested in. So make sure your GPU is supported or if it isn't clear ask here about a particular game with your particular graphics chip.

Personally, I like shopping on both the App Store and Steam. I've had good experience with both myself. Amazon is fine too. I got some games there as well. EA's Origin is also available for Mac for a few select titles such as the Sims series, Dragon Age II and some Feral games. Those are all good starting points at the least.

Some will tell you that you need Windows to play games. I disagree and rarely use it myself even though I haven't gotten rid of it yet on my iMac. The only reason to bother with that really is if there is something you really want to play bad enough that isn't on Mac such that you are willing to spend for Windows, set it up and reboot to it whenever you want to play that game. Some folks swear by this as the way to go and others are content to stick to Mac for the most part if not entirely. I fall into the latter camp myself. I have more Mac games than I know what to do with.

Congratulations on your new toy. I hope you enjoy your Mac as much as I do mine. :D

By the way, if you like Blizzard games, World of Warcraft, StarCraft II and Diablo III are all available for Mac on Blizzards own store and elsewhere. There's really just a ton of good stuff for Mac now. Some of the Total War strategy games are on the Mac App Store: Rome, Empire and Napoleon. I could list all kinds of stuff but you should go have some fun window shopping for yourself. I think you'll be pleasantly surprised to find quite a variety to pick from.

You mentioned Skyrim and that game is not available in a Windows version but people do play it on Macs using something called Wineskin. That's a little involved to learn about but not that bad and it does work well for a lot of games although not all, Windows games I mean. My advice would be save looking into that for a little later and explore the Mac games options first. You can always investigate Wineskin here later on which you could use to play Skyrim, assuming it is okay for your system specs, particularly the graphics chip.

Oh, I forgot to mention where you asked about it, Borderlands 2 (which Aspyr ported) is available on either Steam or the App Store for Mac OS X too. So just go to either place and check out the system requirements to be sure you can run it okay on your particular Mac. Aspyr also ported the most recent Bioshock game (Infinite) to Mac as well and again both places carry it.
 
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Huntn

macrumors demi-god
May 5, 2008
17,413
17,163
The Misty Mountains
Hey everyone -
Brand new MBPR 13" owner right here!

I've been a casual PC gamer for years - recently using a Toshiba laptop that had a mid-range (5 years ago) dedicated graphics card. So I've been able to play COD4, Oblivion, Civ IV, Borderlands, Bioshock, etc etc.

A couple of questions:

* With the integrated graphics card on the MBPR, I'm assuming I can play games of that caliber still, but would I be able to run newer games as well? (borderlands 2, skyrim, etc)

* As I'm so new to the Mac world, I'd prefer not installing a Windows partition just yet - am I able to download the Steam client for Mac (and then subsequently game through that)?

* Or is buying through the app store a better route (instead of Amazon digital/Steam)?

Thanks in advance!
HP
Welcome aboard! :) You should always check Steam because there are frequent sales there. You might find this "Steaming Your Mac" Guide of interest. You might end up installing a Windows partition too for more choices. As far as AAA games, like Borderlands, you'll have to compare what you have to minimum system requirements. Some games don't like integrated graphics. Some games will play even if the hardware does not meet minimum specs, however graphic requirements seem to be what makes or breaks a game running on your hardware. Ideally if there is doubt, you'll find a demo or ask in a forum like this.

I myself was very disappointed that the new MBPs only come with dedicated graphics on the top of the line model $2600 where you used to be able to get it on the second tier model at $1999. I've got a 2011 15" MBP which plays games well. I've been very happy with it, but mostly I'm playing on Windows 7. Next Mac will most likely be an iMac as I'm not traveling as much these days.
 
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Harry Pujols

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Feb 3, 2014
13
1
Thanks for the feedback/info!

Installed steam last night (holy crap, i've never had such an easy install before!). Unfortunately my version of borderlands wasn't SteamPlay, so I can't play it on my macbook - no biggie.

Good to know that Blizzard games play well on Mac - I was a D2 LoD guy for years and years (and years). Might have to give D3 a poke.
 

saturnotaku

macrumors 68000
Mar 4, 2013
1,924
51
Good to know that Blizzard games play well on Mac - I was a D2 LoD guy for years and years (and years). Might have to give D3 a poke.
Save your money. I played the heck out of Diablo II and was fired up for the third installment. Biggest waste of $60 ever.
 

tillsbury

macrumors 65816
Dec 24, 2007
1,411
314
Thanks for the feedback/info!

Installed steam last night (holy crap, i've never had such an easy install before!). Unfortunately my version of borderlands wasn't SteamPlay, so I can't play it on my macbook - no biggie.

Good to know that Blizzard games play well on Mac - I was a D2 LoD guy for years and years (and years). Might have to give D3 a poke.
Download the demo version. I was bored senseless by the end of that, which saves you the money.
 

Harry Pujols

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Feb 3, 2014
13
1
so was perusing the App Store last night and stumbled across Trine and Trine 2 both at significant discounts.

Are those games any good? I'm assuming the first will run fine on my late Oct RMBP 13", but will Trine 2? And lastly (sorry, still so new to this). Will they be playable direct from the laptop keyboard/trackpad? Or am I going to have to abandon my couch for a tabletop with a separate mouse?

thanks again all!
HP
 

Huntn

macrumors demi-god
May 5, 2008
17,413
17,163
The Misty Mountains
Thanks for the feedback/info!

Installed steam last night (holy crap, i've never had such an easy install before!). Unfortunately my version of borderlands wasn't SteamPlay, so I can't play it on my macbook - no biggie.

Good to know that Blizzard games play well on Mac - I was a D2 LoD guy for years and years (and years). Might have to give D3 a poke.
As a great alternative, check out Torchlight or Torchlight 2, reasonably priced. D3 requires Blizzard's fingers in your britches at all times. :p
 

saturnotaku

macrumors 68000
Mar 4, 2013
1,924
51
so was perusing the App Store last night and stumbled across Trine and Trine 2 both at significant discounts.

Are those games any good? I'm assuming the first will run fine on my late Oct RMBP 13", but will Trine 2? And lastly (sorry, still so new to this). Will they be playable direct from the laptop keyboard/trackpad? Or am I going to have to abandon my couch for a tabletop with a separate mouse?

thanks again all!
HP
Neither Trine game is graphically intensive. They'll run just fine on your system. I would not advise trying to play any game (except casual stuff like Peggle) with the trackpad. Use a mouse. You need not give up playing on the couch in order to do this. I use a Logitech N315 lap desk, which fits my 15-inch MacBook Pro perfectly and has a little pull-out tray for my Logitech G602 wireless gaming mouse. It's a neat setup that allows me to play in bed.
 

Madd the Sane

macrumors 6502a
Nov 8, 2010
510
39
Utah
For Windows-only games, CrossOver is a good choice. Wineskin is also another option. Both are based on the open-source project Wine, which is a reimplementation of the Windows APIs. Note that some games work better than others: OpenGL games don't have to jump through quite so many hoops. Also, not all of the APIs or functions are implemented.
 

Harry Pujols

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Feb 3, 2014
13
1
Thanks for all the replies and comments guys!

Downloaded Trine over the weekend (for a buck, figured even if I hate it, I'm not out a lot of $$)

Immediate impressions:
* Amazingly easy and fast to install.
* Almost laughably fast at loading/exiting
* Looks beautiful - not sure if that's just due to the nicely illustrated/colored backgrounds - or if it's the Retina display - either way, I'll take it!


Another question:
If I wanted to display this on my big screen... would I be better off airplaying through AppleTV? Or going the HDMI out route?
 

Madd the Sane

macrumors 6502a
Nov 8, 2010
510
39
Utah
If you stream it to an Apple TV, there will be lag due to compression, sending it over the network, and decompression. Some steps may be faster, and the lag may not even be noticable, or even a hindrance.

I haven't tried any sort of game streaming in my house, so that is all I can tell you.
 

armalite

macrumors member
Mar 25, 2011
41
0
NE Ohio
The great thing about Mac is that you can use bootcamp and install Windows, I do :) I use Mac for my photography then boot into Windows for my gaming. Sure do wish more games like BF was made for Mac.
 

Serban

Suspended
Jan 8, 2013
5,163
920
Try Diablo 3, they changed it a lot since a couple a days ago. And with the addon will be what it should suppose to be from the beginning