For decades, Macs have been the go-to choice for people working in the creative industries, trumping equivalent Windows offerings when it comes to things like video editing, graphic design and much more besides. There are counterarguments to this claim, of course, but few particularly convincing ones.
One thing that it is impossible to debate is that Windows PCs are undeniably superior when it comes to gaming. From software support to hardware upgradability, hardcore gamers have little choice but to stick with Microsoft.
Thankfully for the Apple faithful, the Mac gaming scene has come on a long way in recent years and while it might never dethrone PCs as the platform of choice for this pastime, there is a lot for Mac owners to shout about in terms of interactive entertainment.
So what has changed to even the odds and what does the future hold for gaming on Macs for anyone who is dead set against eloping with a non-Apple desktop or laptop?
Power In Browsers
One major boost to a Mac’s gaming prowess has been made possible indirectly by the rise of browser-based gaming.
From casino titles available on Casumo.com to battle royale-style experiences like War Brokers, there are a vast array of options available to any Mac users who are happy to fire up a browser to enjoy modern gaming experiences.
Of course, there are limits to browser games in comparison with standalone, locally installed alternatives, but as technology progresses and the baked-in abilities of browsers improve, this gap will continue to close.
Popular Game Launchers
These days it seems like every major publisher wants to have its own distinct game launcher to act as a platform to both sell new titles to customers and also as a means of preventing piracy.
At the moment the top-selling Mac games on Steam include the always-appealing sim Football Manager 2020, the jaw-droppingly gorgeous third-person action-adventure Shadow of the Tomb Raider and the surreal multiplayer survival game Rust.
Blizzard’s Battle.net launcher may have a minute library of games when compared to Steam, but it still offers the likes of Hearthstone, World of Warcraft and Starcraft II. EA’s Origin is similarly available on Mac, meaning that games like The Sims 4 and Dragon Age 2 can be purchased and enjoyed with ease.
Of course, a lot of the gaming experience on Mac is entirely dependent on the kind of hardware that your particular computer is packing, which is a similar conundrum faced by Windows users. So how do Macs fair in this department?
With so many different Mac iteration to consider, it is actually relatively tough to work out whether a given model will be good for gaming, for a given value of ‘good’.
That said, it is possible to make some broad statements about the suitability of particular product families within the wider Mac range. For example, the MacBook Air, even in its latest generation, is not endowed with a discrete GPU, instead of relying on integrated acceleration to do the trick. This means that it will be fine for browser games, but less suitable for a triple-A experience, of the kind offered by Shadow of the Tomb Raider, for example.
The latest iMac, on the other hand, is more adept in this respect, with AMD Radeon Vega Pro graphics available and up to 8GB of RAM available specifically for handling graphical workloads. Admittedly this is once again aimed at creative users, but the gaming applications of this hardware are still relevant.
Sure, for the time being, there is no way for a Mac to match a PC equipped with an RTX 2080Ti, but if raw performance is not that relevant and you are more interested in sticking with Apple and enjoying a degree of flexibility when it comes to content creation and gaming, there has never been a better time to own a Mac for all-round performance.