View Full Version : Game suggestions - Macbook Pro for travel...

05-02-2008, 05:08
Alright folks I'm working safety in the north and I spend a lot of time sitting around waiting for things to go wrong, so I want to pick up a few games to pass the time.

I have a MacBook Pro 17" with 2.4G Core 2 Duo, 256MB GeForce 8600M GT, 4GB RAM and the 7200rpm HHD so any game that will run on the mobile version of the video card will be fine. Once I get XP installed:rolleyes: I'll be gamer ready...although satellite Internet means online games are out.

Favourite games:

Deus Ex - both
Dawn of War - have up to Winter Assault, will be getting the rest

I'm more RTS/RPG than FPS, although I really enjoy something like Deus Ex which has a reactive narrative. If it wasn't for all the cut scenes, I'd pick up the Metal Gear series, but they got too much *play for 2min, watch 5min of Anime* :(. I prefer to keep my gaming and movie watching separate.


05-02-2008, 09:54
I take it you've played the Diablo games? They're pretty good and time consuming. Problem is that I'm not that into RPGs so advising you is difficult there.

In terms of FPS's Half-Life 2 is quite good, and with episodic content and other connected games like Portal they're usually quite time consuming and fun.

On the RTS front, try Company of Heroes, that's a good game for sure.

Sorry I can't be more helpful; my computer was mid spec when I got it and that was 4 and a half years ago, so recent developments aren't played much at all.

05-02-2008, 11:53
http://trilogyrelease.bungie.org/ - get some Marathon in there for old school Mac gaming.

Bonus, its totally free!

05-02-2008, 12:11
RPG - Baldur's Gate, Fallout, Icewind Dale, Neverwinter Nights II, the Witcher, Fable...

RTS - Try the UFO series (I haven't played since XCOM, but my brothers assure me the latter versions, including UFO 2000, are cool). If you like old fashioned RTS with a great solid line, one of my bro's says you should check out Hearts Of Iron II, or maybe the Medieval series.

I'd also suggest Heroes of Might and Magic V, it has a certain charm.

05-02-2008, 13:50
Thanks for those, I'll start looking them up for the next time I'm in town. :)

05-02-2008, 14:36
Hope you like them, you can buy the BG series + expansions, generally bundled with Icewind Dale 1 & 2, Neverwinter Nights I etc, for around 30 euros.

I recommend picking up Planescape Torment, one hell of a game, probably one of the most unappreciated too. It's from Black Isle (BG/Fallout creators), has a great story, but since it's set in the Planescape setting from D&D, it's a little too bizarre for most people.

Happy gaming!

EDIT: UFO 2000 is a fan project, you can get it free from Sourceforge. And the 3D graphics seem to be nice...

05-02-2008, 14:59
http://trilogyrelease.bungie.org/ - get some Marathon in there for old school Mac gaming.

Bonus, its totally free!

But will it run on my Intel Mac or should I download the Windows versions...?

05-02-2008, 15:05
as long as its the mac OS you using, then yes.

05-02-2008, 15:51
OS 10.4 Tiger at least until they sort out the issues 10.5 Leopard has with Adobe products. :( I'm not risking my Lightroom files for a bit...:(

Thanks for that.:)

08-02-2008, 08:55
Hold on, you run Dawn of War on OSX? Or do you use paralells or somesuch?

08-02-2008, 14:03
Nope for DoW on OSX. No games as yet.

I'm still beating my head against Parallels and Boot Camp. For some reason they just don't want to work for me.:( But I'm both hopeful and patient.:) After all, I've got huge amounts of time right now, so why not?

08-02-2008, 14:27
Sort out getting windows on it.

Buy DoW.

Never need another game again ever.

08-02-2008, 14:44
Argh. MacBook make starlight angry, starlight no like being angry!:mad:

I paid to install Parallels, then they want *more* money to activate it!:mad:

BootCamp didn't work, now you need OSX10.5 (another $100) to use it.:mad:

I'm starting to regret buying this thing.....:(

08-02-2008, 14:49
Never need another game again ever.


Do you have internet access? If so, I suggest getting Warcraft III along with Frozen Throne (the Add-on). I know, I know, Warcraft. But if you have access to the battle.net, there are very cool and different kinds of maps out there, many being more or less mods of the game. Since a few months, I greatly enjoy playing DotA. Steep learning curve and I have yet to become anything more than a shame but it's a cool game nonetheless. If you have less time, play some tower defense game or something else. It's really amazing what people do with this map designer tool.

@Jon_Irenicus: I'm sorry but I don't think that the new UFO games ...[sorry for derailing the thread in this direction again]...are as good as UFO or XCOM. UFO Aftermath was not much fun. I played through UFO: Aftershock, which was fun, but it gets very, very repetetive. To me, it's the polygon graphics instead of pixels, the lack of connection to the real world (don't know why, but I prefer to have more or less existing nations to be the investors in XCOM. That's why I didn't even consider the new UFO which is set on some other planet), the lack of aerial combat/sub combat, the smaller techtrees, ...I don't know but whatever the older games had, the new ones lack it. They just don't have this tension, this "holy poo, they are INVADING us and all I got are those eight unskilled dudes with guns which don't do a bit of damage!"-feeling.

08-02-2008, 14:56
I have Internet, but it is frowned upon to use company bandwidth for large downloads or online gaming.:p

They don't mind *some* personal usage, but there *are* limits...

08-02-2008, 15:42
Bootcamp with the new version of OSX works much better. But my bet is that to make it work good you need a legal copy of windows - with parallells the alternative will suffice. And whatever you do, don't install Vista on it.

But for straight mac games I'll point you in the direction of Heroes V, Warcraft 3 and Call of Duty 2 among others.

08-02-2008, 15:53
Unfortunately OSX10.5 is supposed to cause issues with Adobe products, and I'm leery of losing and having to re-install, so I'm putting off for now...:( I have two legal copies of XP (Home and Pro) which is what I'll use. No Vista for me.:p

08-02-2008, 16:17
That so? I haven't had any troubles with them at all, though I run CS3.

08-02-2008, 16:22
Me too, but I had heard that if you didn't do a fresh install of 10.5, then CS3 you'd end up with all sorts of problems...:( That's why I've been holding off. Being in the bush with zip for support, I don't want to lose everything, so I'll wait until I'm in town and can run down to the store if it goes sideways.

For all these headaches, I'm still wondering if I wouldn't have been better off to save the money and get a PC Laptop.:( I'm just not seeing any reason to pay the extra for Mac products...:( Lots of hype, but little substance...:(

08-02-2008, 16:44
Oh no, that's dark side thinking. If you want a PC laptop able to run with as much stability as I think your macbook is doing right now you'd have to fish out a hefty sum, and even in that case - you'd most likely be stuck with Vista.

Boy, I've seen what that does to Pc's and I tell you I'm glad I invested in a spanking new Imac with OSX 10.5 instead.

The standing recommendation from most people in the know with Vista usually recommends a fresh install anyway (even though it usually comes pre-installed) to get rid of all the extra programs, and in my experience with PC's, you're in for another world of headache until you get it up and performing for its worth.

I did a clean install of OSX 10.5 with my computer being all new of course, so my recommendation would be to transfer all your files for storage on a USB harddrive, which is always useful for backup (remember to have it formatted to FAT32) and then install the new OSX.

My experience is that there's plenty of substance with the Mac products - but spec tests usually won't show them - the key for me is being able to run a stable OS for my work-related tasks. Of course, for games, PC's trumps the mac, but in my experience that has more to do with the amount of illegal software accessible and the insane amount of tinkering which follows than anything else...

08-02-2008, 16:49
Why not try Groound Control (http://www.massive.se/NewsArticle.asp?id=1065) one of the best RTS games ever made (well in IMO)?

Yes it looks a little dated, but it still has some features not included in other more recent games.

Here (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ground_Control) is the Wiki page for it.

And BTW if you have already clicked the first link, you will have realised this game can be downloaded free of charge :D

08-02-2008, 17:23
Satan: You see, that's my issue...my old PC laptop was at least as stable as the Mac (as in it never crashed until the processor failed), but the Mac simply isn't living up to the hype.:(

Bundled software? Most of it useless, and the useful stuff is all *trial* versions. Well sorry Mac, but *everyone* offers 30-day trials of their suites these days, thanks for coming out.

Hardware? Nothing I can't get from a PC and I had to take it back within days because I was getting Video Card errors.

Useability? I understand that it'll take a bit to convert my thinking from Windows, but seriously? Mac's functionality is hurting so far. Stuff disappears from my Desktop, I've had entire programs vanish and need to be reinstalled (no idea if the other versions are taking up space somewhere on my HHD), Messenger for Mac is pathetic and if I want to use the webcam, apparently anyone I want to talk with needs to be on a Mac system or AOL...:wtf:


For all that was promised or implied...I'm pretty disappointed considering I could have gotten a comparably equipped PC lap *and* a desktop to boot.:(

Hopefully I'll learn how to get more out of it as I go, but it's been six months and it's not looking good...

08-02-2008, 17:42
Well, everyone has different experiences I suppose, as you might guess mine have never been good with PC's.

Since I've just converted to macintosh fully though I can relate to that they take some getting used to, but from my perspective they're actually easier to use than a PC, but you are limited within some confines with what you can do.

The problems you describe sound weird to me though. Only time I had programs vanish on me was when I hadn't realised you needed to drag them into the applications folder in order to install them. But that leaves no traces on your HDD.

I know messenger doesn't perform over the top, but it works. In that case though, microsoft's to blame ;)
There are other apps which combine the functions for messenger and ICQ among others into one. I can't recall what they're called right now, but I think Sgt. John Keel mentioned a few in another thread.

Isn't Iworks included with your version? It should be - I get Iphoto, Iweb, Igarage and all the other apps full versions for free.

But yeah, specwise with hardware I don't think macs can compete with Pc's. My POV is that they do however perform way better in relation to the OS, leading to increased stability in my experience, but like I said I've only had bad experience from using PC's so...

How much of a computer nerd are you? Because macs have this little thing called applescript...

I used to have a HP laptop of the newer kind which broke down with a frequency I could almost set my watch by. And it was a different part every time. I paid more for that than I would've with a new mac and pc desktop. Computers also cost about 25-35% more over here than they do in the US. Dunno about canadian price levels though.

Still, I think that when you've paid some 1000+ dollars for a machine the least you can expect is that it works as intended... the computer business is far too lucrative for my liking these days...

08-02-2008, 18:08
Yes, the limitations are becoming evident.:(

Putting stuff in the Apps folder is just one example of how Macs are *counter*-intuitive:(

I totally get that Microsoft bears responsibility for Messenger, but Apple bears responsibility for not having an alternative that works without having all your friends sign up for something new... Again, counterintuitive... I'll check for SJK's suggestion...

iWorks - 30 day trial. Which isn't too useful because no one else (the MS Office world) can read the Pages documents. Exporting to Word is fine, except *that* is only a 30-day trial...

I'm so much a nerd I did my MCSE/DBA for fun... But it's been a few years and Mac is totally new...

All in all, I'm not impressed after spending over $3500 for what was the highest end laptop Apple made at the time...

More and more I'm seeing Apple as selling *geek toys* that are long on style (supposedly) and short on substance. If I can somehow get Windows (thus games) running, have video conferencing, and put the rest of the so called advantages to work, I'll change my tune, but so far...:(

In the mean time I'm going to try to download Ground Control and have some fun.:D

08-02-2008, 21:23
Well it looks like Parallels is deciding to co-operate and I now have Windows XP Home (didn't figure Pro was worth the space just to run games) up and running.

DoW Gold (incl Winter Assault) here I come!:D

Next trip to civilisation and I start working through the list of games.:)

Edit: Of course it would be silly to assume that my shiny new top end laptop could run a four year old game.:( Why won't Parallels let Windows use my Video Card?:cries: Argh!

09-02-2008, 03:44
Y'know, starlight, I was wondering what the problem was when you said you installed XP Home.

I started writing, then I closed the thread as I had nothing else to add.

But now I've remembered.
XP Home doesn't support Dual-Core. He will only use one Core. You need Pro, in order to maximize your computer's potential :p

Sorry if some bits here don't seem too logical or well organized, it's 5 a.m., my head hurts like hell (I've been playing Torment 4 hours straight and just taken off my lenses) and English isn't my native language. Sort of. Get XP Pro. You get the picture.

09-02-2008, 05:47
XP Home is running fine (and seems to recognise the Core2Duo fine...), it's DoW that won't run because I don't have Hardware Transform and Lighting.:( Or so it says...:( I thought the Video Card would do it, but I'm not to sure XP is using my video card as it seems to be using 64M of shared memory from the 2G available to Parallels...

I dunno. Must sleep, head hurts...:(

09-02-2008, 11:52
C'est impossible - MacBook Pro is equipped with an Nvidia GeForce 7600 - It should run DoW better than mine!

Gimme the specs on your MB - I'll roam some forums to see what I can get. Oh, and Home does recognize the C2D fine, but I'll only use one core out of it. It ain't that bad, the Sun Corp. charged you another OS for every core you had, if you wanted it running properly.

09-02-2008, 13:25
I managed to get the DoW intro movie running...sort of. I had audio, but no video...:(

Thanks for the assist, let me know if you need more...

Model Name: MacBook Pro
Model Identifier: MacBookPro3,1
Processor Name: Intel Core 2 Duo
Processor Speed: 2.4 GHz
Number Of Processors: 1
Total Number Of Cores: 2
L2 Cache (per processor): 4 MB
Memory: 4 GB
Bus Speed: 800 MHz
Boot ROM Version: MBP31.0070.B02
SMC Version: 1.18f2
Serial Number: W87300MJXA9
Sudden Motion Sensor:
State: Enabled

GeForce 8600M GT:

Chipset Model: GeForce 8600M GT
Type: Display
Bus: PCIe
PCIe Lane Width: x16
VRAM (Total): 256 MB
Vendor: NVIDIA (0x10de)
Device ID: 0x0407
Revision ID: 0x00a1
ROM Revision: 3175
Color LCD:
Display Type: LCD
Resolution: 1920 x 1200
Depth: 32-bit Color
Built-In: Yes
Core Image: Hardware Accelerated
Main Display: Yes
Mirror: Off
Online: Yes
Quartz Extreme: Supported
Display Connector:
Status: No display connected

09-02-2008, 13:41
Ah, one itsy-bitsy question: do you have the latest drivers for your Nvidia? You should download them and perhaps install the latest Direct X. I would also recommend installing XP Pro if you need the second core!

09-02-2008, 14:00
I'll double check the drivers, but I *think* they're up to date...

I'll work on XP Pro when I get home again. Being in the bush *does* have it's disadvantages.:(

09-02-2008, 18:11
After much (more) research I've discovered two things:

1) Parallels (which I paid about $100 for and requires more money for activation) can't see my video card....ever....so if I stick with Parallels, it'll cost me even more money *and* I can only ever use 64M of shared RAM...so no decent games. :(

2) Boot Camp now requires OSX 10.5 (a $90-ish upgrade), which is supposed to be a worse OS than Vista. :(

Can someone please tell me why on earth I bought this thing? Mac is supposed to be easier, better, more everything....yet all I've had are headaches and it's cost me a fair bit *more*:( than a comparable PC Laptop would have...:( Never again will the Mac crowd get the benefit of the doubt with me.

Oh well, at least I know a few people who are interested in buying it...

09-02-2008, 18:25
Macs are great computers, if you are interested in DTP, image manipulation or sound editing etc.

Otherwise, you buy a PC.

When buying a computer the golden rule is to identify what type of software and programs you want to run, then buy the computer which will run that software. Not the other way around.

BTW I'm not bashing Macs at all. I used them professionally for more than 15 years and would not hesitate to buy one to run DTP software.

09-02-2008, 18:46
I got it primarily for all the photo-editing (Photoshop/Lightroom) I'll be doing as a photographer, because they got such excellent reviews for that. That was the primary draw.:) The huge screen and other hardware features were great bonuses.

The second reason was that the new Intel Processors meant that I could have one machine to run the photo side *and* the few Windows programs I still have (mostly games and Office). Running both OS's was the final nudge to moving to Mac from about 15 years of PC/Windows use, since I could bring my games and such with me and not lose anything.:)

I'll admit that it's not the machine per se that I'm disappointed with, since it's a reasonable piece of hardware, but the hype and promises that were made regarding it's capabilities. It has monumentally failed to do the things I bought it for based on the suggestions of a great number of people. In addition to those failings, it has cost a fair bit more that a comparable PC Laptop which would have done all the things I wanted.

I took a chance and paid the premium to get a Mac, and now I realise that most of the people I talked with either didn't understand what I wanted, or they didn't know what they were talking about because the machine I bought certainly doesn't do the jobs I described as important to me.:(

I guess it's time for this Thread to die quietly...:(

09-02-2008, 18:48
Wintermute speaks the truth, but I've got to say - No OS is worse than Vista. Period. In fact, Leopard's great.

09-02-2008, 18:52
Starlight, I think it may be wise to have a chat with Nick ;)

10-02-2008, 01:18
What about an older version of Boot Camp? A friend of mine has a Mac and he uses it, and he doesn't have the latest Mac Os.

Besides, another friend of mine bought her Macbook Pro and all she had to pay were 10€ for the upgrade to the next OS...

10-02-2008, 12:56
Why not try Groound Control (http://www.massive.se/NewsArticle.asp?id=1065) one of the best RTS games ever made

fantastic, downloading now thanks for telling us Wintermute.

have you tried some of the old C+C games (RA2/ Yuri's revege) or shogun and possibly medieval total war?