OS X Open question to the forum regarding the types of titles that come to the Mac..

Discussion in 'Mac and PC Games' started by smoketetsu, Sep 23, 2013.

  1. smoketetsu macrumors member

    smoketetsu

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    Mar 28, 2008
    #1
    I see some people here considering switching to or back to the PC and listing a wider variety of titles as a reason. So.. I'll pose this here the same as I did at IMG:

    There's something on my mind lately and that is the lack of variety of titles that get ported to the Mac natively. There's a larger variety of titles being ported to Windows PC all the time and yet only a subset of these games ever get ported to the Mac natively. Especially since we are getting faster more feature packed drivers in the near future (in OS X 10.9 Mavericks). Wouldn't you like to see a wider array of games native to the Mac? Why should we have to settle for (face it) half-baked Wine ports or rebooting into Windows every time we want to play the latest form certain companies or genres?

    I've been told by a certain someone that the blame rests on the community not filing requests for games. I can almost see this as a reasonable excuse considering when I look in Facebook most of the requests are for Total War #890 this or Strategy Game #575 that and less for action games, platformers, shooters, or hell, fighting games, etc. Perhaps the former is all the Mac audience is interested in? If not then please make your voice heard. I periodically make requests for games off the beaten track but more people need to do this. It seems we are happy when we get titles out of the blue that aren't of the usual such as the recent example of Metro Last Light but we don't do enough requesting of such titles.

    It's hard to know who to blame for the dearth of genre diversity on the Mac. But I have a feeling the customer and the companies are both to blame to some degree. Is anyone with me or are you all fine with the selection of games you get natively as it is and or are satisfied with constantly rebooting into another OS or futzing with Wine? If not I suggest you hop onto twitter, facebook etc. and start requesting away. Don't worry if they seem to ignore the request or not.
     
  2. PatrickCocoa macrumors 6502a

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    Dec 2, 2008
    #2
    Very Interesting . . .

    Very interesting, but it won't work. There are several reasons why titles are not natively ported to the Mac, and lack of requests on social media is not one of them.
     
  3. smoketetsu, Sep 23, 2013
    Last edited: Sep 23, 2013

    smoketetsu thread starter macrumors member

    smoketetsu

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    #3
    Not according to my exchange this morning with a certain person who works at a certain Mac porting house. If he's to be believed the reason why we don't get more is simply because we don't ask for them. I'd call him out but I'm not sure that'd be good form.

    Nevertheless, this isn't the first time someone has told me something wont work... a long long time ago I thought of petitioning for games to be ported (to the PC at the time) and I was told it'd never work... later on some games ended up being ported because of online petitions (such as Dark Souls) and requests (Mortal Kombat 9 on the PC).

    Either way I've been specifically told by an industry insider that we don't ask enough so the more people ask the better. There are chances that despite all the best efforts it may not work.. but don't be a debbie downer now. We have enough negativity on the internet.

    Also, I myself am not saying that "requests on social media" is the sole reason why we don't get many games that are on Windows. But lack of requests is being used as one excuse.
     
  4. saturnotaku macrumors 68000

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    #4
    You said it yourself - the PC. Macs are a tiny subset of the computer gaming market, and "hardcore" gamers a tiny subset of that.
     
  5. smoketetsu, Sep 23, 2013
    Last edited: Sep 23, 2013

    smoketetsu thread starter macrumors member

    smoketetsu

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    #5
    So does that mean not even a single effort should be made to show an interest? Also there are many games for which we can show interest that don't require hardcore gamers to play. The variety and selection just keeps growing and growing.. on PC at least. Seems that people like to complain but they don't want to do anything about it?
     
  6. doh123 macrumors 65816

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    Dec 28, 2009
    #6
    Sure requests could work... but they base what profit they can make off a port on many many factors.

    If they get a petition or request from say 5000 people, that won't sway them at all.

    if they get it from 100,000 people, then they may look into it.

    Most Mac gamers will not waste their time asking for ports they know just aren't going to happen. Just about every big game I see come out that looks interesting to me, I see people asking about Mac versions all the time... yet its never done.

    Is it possible there are 100,000 people who would be happy and request the game and buy it if ported? Sure... someone finding all those people and letting them know the details and how to request or sign a petition is extremely difficult.
     
  7. smoketetsu, Sep 23, 2013
    Last edited: Sep 23, 2013

    smoketetsu thread starter macrumors member

    smoketetsu

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    Mar 28, 2008
    #7
    That's what I said to Mr. Native Mac Port developer (he'll come and identify himself here if he wishes)... and he responded that it's a self fulfilling prophecy if they don't request. I told him that it seems to me that people have been mostly requesting stuff they know for sure is a sure thing. That's what prompted me to bring this question to the community itself.

    Also, I'm pretty sure there's never been 100,000 people requesting any game on the Mac and yet some games still manage to get ported. I mean if 100,000 people is what it takes then we're screwed.. period. I wonder if there's even a set number of interested parties required for say.. Feral to look into a title.
     
  8. edddeduck macrumors 68020

    edddeduck

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    #8
    Saw this thread and figured what the hell I'll add my 2 cents as I have been a mac gamer and then a mac game maker so I have been on both sides of this fence. :)

    As someone working at a Mac games company I can definitely say you're not 100% correct. :)

    Social media is not the most important factor as you insinuated, interest from the original publisher, contract price, porting costs and a few other points are all major factors. However requests and mentions on social media do play a part in the final judgement especially if the game is not the kind of game that has been ported to the mac before.

    For example if loads of comments are made about game 'X' then it might be investigated again if it was previously dismissed or it can reaffirm the title as a good choice to license. I can think of a couple of titles where fan demand was a factor in the game being ported.

    The Football Manager / Championship Manager series was ported in part due to fan demand, I know as I requested a Mac port and then was lucky enough to help test the Mac version when it was released. :)

    Can't speak for other porting companies but personally if I saw a petition for a game signed by 5000 Mac users I would definitely have a look and pass it onto licensing as something to look at. I don't think even Empire Total War or Call of Duty had 5000 social media requests!

    Petitions won't always work, you could post a petition with 10 million signatures for Mario and it won't happen doesn't mean Mac porting companies wouldn't be interested.

    So to summarise game requests won't guarantee a Mac port but they are noticed by staff in porting companies and can help with a decision even if all the request does is make someone think "maybe we should check that game out". That's better than doing nothing IMHO.

    Just my 2cents :)

    Edwin
     
  9. Macman45 macrumors demi-god

    Macman45

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    #9
    If you go back just a couple of years, there were very few titles that actually appeared in the MAS as official releases. Things have improved a lot since then, and whilst there remains a long way to go, major titles are now appearing in the MAS. I another couple of years, I think we can look forward to a much wider selection without having to resort to Bootcamp, Parallels or the like.
     
  10. kgian macrumors regular

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    Jul 17, 2011
    #10
    Also there is this other thing: Low cost macs, like the mac mini have no dedicated graphics card and can not run current games very well...that decreases even more the user base.
     
  11. Dirtyharry50 macrumors 68000

    Dirtyharry50

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    #11
    I'm pretty satisfied overall with the variety of games ported with the noteworthy exception of RPGs. I don't know if it is possible or will ever happen but it would be amazing if Bethesda and EA RPG games could be ported by Feral and/or Aspyr to the Mac. I would think those games would be popular with Mac gamers given how well received they have been elsewhere. I am thinking now of games like the Mass Effect series, the upcoming Dragon Age III (maybe EA will release their own Mac version?), as well as the Bethesda Fallout games and Elder Scrolls games. Risen 2 is another one that would be nice to see come to Mac. In general, RPGs seem to really be lacking versus other genres.
     
  12. imacken macrumors 65816

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    Feb 28, 2010
    #12
    Things are so much better on the Mac than they were not that long ago.
    I mean, look at what we've had recently - Bioshock Infinite, Deus Ex HR, F1 2012, Batman Arkham City, XCOM, Witcher 2 and many more.
    Also, I run Skyrim @ 2560x1440 under Parallels with no problems at all. (I refuse to go into bootcamp for a game!)
    One question I would like to ask is how hard are certain games to port? (One for eddeduck!)
    My experience recently of buying the Windows version of Tomb Raider 2013 (a very graphically demanding game) on Steam and playing it at full resolution very smoothly in a standard Wine wrapper made me - probably naively - think that the lack of ports maybe more down to contractual arrangements, etc. than lack of willing or technical difficulty.
     
  13. edddeduck macrumors 68020

    edddeduck

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    #13
    Long Answer: Depends on the game, some games the first alpha build is smooth and relatively bug free and fast to develop. Others can be a massive effort with many developers to get running stably. Little things like the original game relying on compiler bugs for optimisations or OS specific API bugs for it to run can be "fun" to track down, middleware that is PC only is another one that can add time and effort to a project.

    Short answer: It depends on the game you are talking about. Every game is a unique snowflake. :)

    Edwin

    p.s. If anyone wonders I won't name any examples so please don't ask me to :)

    Edwin
     
  14. old-mac-man macrumors regular

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    Dec 29, 2012
    #14
    Kickstarters is a good place to look.

    Shroud of the Avatar
     
  15. saturnotaku macrumors 68000

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    #15
    Kickstarter is a form of gambling. There is no guarantee that you will see a finished product even if it receives funding.
     
  16. Dirtyharry50 macrumors 68000

    Dirtyharry50

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    #16
    That's exciting news. I was aware of this project but did not know they are planning a Mac release as well. Awesome!

    I am aware of and following some other kickstarter projects that are planned for Mac which is wonderful. It's nice to know those are in the works. I just wish some current mainstream stuff like I listed could be ported as well.
     
  17. edddeduck macrumors 68020

    edddeduck

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    #17
    Your requests and others in this forum and the internet in general are always noted by myself and filed away for evaluation etc. We are gamers too, if we could we would port every awesome game that exists we would but time is limited and licensing is not always easy! :)

    Edwin
     
  18. Dirtyharry50 macrumors 68000

    Dirtyharry50

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    #18
    Thanks. That is nice to know. An RPG brought to us by Feral sometime would be a lovely thing. :)
     
  19. Cougarcat, Sep 25, 2013
    Last edited: Sep 25, 2013

    Cougarcat macrumors 604

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    #19
    I do see a fair amount of "Mac port?" topics on the Steam forums. I think your average person who buys a game from the MAS or Steam now and then isn't aware of the particulars of Mac gaming, and might not even be aware of the concept of porting houses.

    Another thing is the dearth of Mac games in general discourages a lot of people from requesting things because it seems rather fruitless. It's like creating a petition on petitiononline.com. I made one once for Blizzard to port Starcraft's Editor to OS X and got like 300 sigs. Lol, what a waste of time...

    An idea just occured to me: Amazon has a feature that will email you when a Bluray title is released. What about an option in Steam to let you know when a title comes out on Mac or Linux? If Steam were to implement this, they could share this information to the developers, and indicate so by a checkbox: "Your interest will be passed on to the developers." It would be a very easy low-barrier way to indicate your interest.

    Anyone know Gabe's email? ;)

    Personally, I feel that Mac gaming has never been healthier. I have 125 Mac games on my Steam. That's nuts. Yes, Asypr has seemed to have slown down, but more developers (especially indies) seem to be doing ports themselves. Thanks to Unity, almost all Kickstarter games have Mac versions. The dearth of certain genres on the Mac is more of an indication of their health on the PC in general. We just feel it a bit more because our pool of games is a lot smaller.
     
  20. old-mac-man macrumors regular

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    Dec 29, 2012
    #20
    Rome II please :)

    ----------

    This is true, however you can get the information on planned Mac versions for ..... (Drum roll) free!
     
  21. edddeduck macrumors 68020

    edddeduck

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    #21
    We released Lord Of The Rings: War In The North 10 days ago, thats an RPG.

    But your comment for future titles in this genre is duly noted!

    Edwin
     
  22. saturnotaku macrumors 68000

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    #22
    As long as the information is taken with the necessarily pile of salt, yes.
     
  23. Dirtyharry50 macrumors 68000

    Dirtyharry50

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    #23
    Thanks very much Edwin. I am very happy to see you guys release War in the North and I plan to buy and play it. It looks like one I'll enjoy very much. :D
     
  24. old-mac-man macrumors regular

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    #24
    If you say so. I'm happily playing Smallworld 2, Godus and War for the Overworld betas as the fruits of my Kickstarter backing so far.
     

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