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Member Since 18 May 2014
Offline Last Active Feb 16 2018 10:49 AM

Topics I've Started

Some Performance observations re: Fortnite Battle Royale in macOS and Win10

16 January 2018 - 08:11 AM

So, during this past Christmas break, my sons and I played quite a bit of Fortnite Battle Royale (them mostly in Xbox One, and me on my iMac, dual booting High Sierra and Bootcamp Windows 10). For a few days, we were playing it so frequently in Win10, that I just left Windows running without rebooting back into macOS. My iMac's specs are as follows: late 2012, 21.5" 1080p screen, 2.9 GHz i5, 8GB RAM, 1 TB HD, nVidia GT 650M 512MB GPU. I'm running nVidia's Web Drivers (up-to-date as of this morning).

We have Google Fiber gigabit internet, which is hard-wired straight into my Gigabit-equipped iMac.

The reason that I tried out the Windows version is because my initial experience running the game in macOS was so negative that it had me concerned that maybe my Mac was too long in the tooth to play it well. What I found out, instead was a little bit different.

Here are my observations after playing Fortnite on both OS's:

1. The loading screens and transitions are much smoother and reliable in Windows. In High Sierra, I experience random errors, (mostly failure to join a game pop-ups). Sometimes, I would have to quit out of Fortnite, then quit out of the Epic Launcher, both of which are laborious and slow to wait for. My son, at one point, while waiting to join a game in High Sierra, asked me if my Mac was frozen up.

2. After having played around with the settings to achieve the best results, I learned that it will only play on lowest settings at 640x480 in High Sierra, with a frame rate that varies wildly between 5 FPS to 60 FPS, even on loading screens. On Windows, I can run on 720p, with all settings lowest, except for draw distance, which I max out), for obvious reasons. These settings give me a frame rate from between 40-60 FPS. Even with the in-game frame cap turned up to 120 FPS, we noticed no difference in measured frame rate.

3. Once in-game, the differences between the two OS's mostly melted away, giving an enjoyable playing experience. The only hitch I encountered was a slight stutter when scoping in with the game's sniper rifle, an action which was smooth in Windows.

4. Regarding menu performance under High Sierra: one thing I quickly learned not to do is to bring up the menu to chance graphic settings once in-game. Doing so introduced the same transition slowness I noticed in #1 above. Sometimes, the game would freeze up and I would was forced to command-tab out of it, and restart my Mac.

5. Please notice that I am not shocked that a Mac of mine's vintage experiences problems playing the game. Also, please note that I am fully aware that the game is in Early Access, which means it's not fully optimized. What I hope to do is present mine and my sons's experiences playing the game. The differences between the performance in Windows 10 and macOS High Sierra are disappointing, and I can only hope that further Metal development brings performance gains more on-par with Windows 10.

Borderlands 2 Community Patch on macOS?

09 January 2018 - 09:10 PM


Has anyone here successfully gotten the Borderlands 2 community patch to work on macOS?

I found this reddit thread where some posters seem to have had success, but parsing steps from the replies is not encouraging to me.


I'm also not sure if they are leaving some pc installation steps unspoken, but doing them nonetheless (for example, downloading the text file from github, which I know that they are doing, but they don't say it. If they aren't saying that, what other crucial steps are they leaving unspoken?)

Any insights?

WWDC 2017 iOS and macOS Games and Graphics Thread

06 June 2017 - 10:02 AM


So, last year was transformative in a disruptive way for Metal in iOS and macOS. So far, based on the WWDC Keynote, it seems that this year is going to be one of refinement and expansion.

Some things that Apple shared during the keynote were:

Metal 2 (with performance gains of up to 10x over Metal 1)
AR Kit
VR support via Steam and Vive VR
Plug-and-Play support for e-GPU solutions
(for Metal, OpenGL and OpenCL)

Also, we can peek into the full schedule for the conference (either via the WWDC app on iOS or the developer page here https://developer.ap...wdc/schedule/#/ ), so we can see what's coming for the week ahead.

(All times are PDT)

Tuesday, June 6, from 1:50pm to 2:50pm there is the "Introducing Metal 2" session.

Tuesday, June 6, at 3:00pm there is the "
Metal 2 Lab"

Tuesday, June 6, from 5:10 to 6:10 there is the "Introducing ARKit: Augmented Reality for iOS" session.

Wednesday, June 7, from 10:00am to 10:40am there is the "VR with Metal 2" session.

Wednesday, June 7, from 1:00pm to 3:10pm there is the "ARKit Lab

Wednesday, June 7, from 3:10pm to 6:00pm there is the "VR with Metal 2 Lab"

Wednesday, June 7, from 6:30pm to 7:45pm there is the "
AR/VR Get-Together"

Wednesday, June 7, from 6:30pm to 7:45pm there is the "
Games Get-Together"

Thursday, June 8, from 12:00pm to 3:00pm there is the "
ARKit Lab"

Thursday, June 8, from1:50pm to 2:50pm there is the "
Advances in Core Image: Filters, Metal, Vision, and More"

Thursday, June 8, from 3:10pm to 3:50pm there is the "
Metal 2 Optimization and Debugging" session.

Friday, June 9, from 9:00am to 12:00pm there is the "
Metal 2 Lab"

I'm hoping that we can use this thread to keep track of any useful news coming out of these sessions and labs.

Thoughts so far?