What do companies need to do to make their game work on mac devices?

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Some big games have mac support, some dont. Some games drop the support after a while. Whats the reason it seems so difficult to make the game work on mac?

In: Technology

It depends. Some games are built on top of frameworks which does have support for multiple operating systems already. So most of the work is already done and you only need to find the bugs which are specific to your game. Things like path names being parsed differently and such can take a bit of time to locate and fix. You might need to deploy things differently and include different libraries and such for it to work. This is why you might see a main release on Windows and then as developers get time to look at the bugs for other operating systems these will also get through QA and released.

However some games are written with frameworks and libraries which are not available everywhere. It used to be that the major separator was DirectX but this is no longer the case. There are however other libraries that have poor support for other operating systems. And if you have written a lot of the game engine yourself there is a lot of different assumptions you might have done which is correct on Windows but not the other systems. Things such as how windows work, fullscreen support, how events are handled, where files are installed and so on. Even though the game itself technically should work on all operating systems it is all these small things which actually make up a large part of your code but have nothing to do with the game that needs to be completely rewritten.

Main reason is cost vs. User base. The gaming sphere for Mac users is a vastly smaller market share to begin with. Apple also uses proprietary software and hardware which drives the cost of porting to Mac very costly and often times requires entire rebuilds of the software. They also ditched support for OpenGL and replaced it with Metal, resulting in devs yet again having to learn another API, or use “bandaids” to make the ports function. There’s also the fact that a user’s going to have to shell out much more money to obtain hardware to play AAA in a Mac format at any reasonable quality.