Civ 3 on M1 MacBook Pro?

Puffmammy

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Long time Civ 3 player and was curious if anyone knows any tricks for getting Civ 3 to work on a new M1 MacBook Pro.
 

Quintillus

Archiving Civ3 Content
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First of all, welcome to CFC! :band:

I'm not the right person to answer the question definitively, but I'll tag @AlanH , who is our resident self-proclaimed Mac addict. I don't know whether he has switched to M1 yet, but he's probably better-informed if there is a chance of running Civ3 on M1.

That said, of what I know, there are two main hurdles. The first and perhaps biggest is that Catalina (10.15) dropped support for 32-bit applications, which includes Civ3. So even if you were on an Intel Mac, with 10.15, I don't think you'd be able to run it.

The other is that Civ3 is compiled for Intel processors (or for older copies, PowerPC processors). It might be possible to run Civ3 with Rosetta, if that were the only hurdle. But I don't think Rosetta on M1 would support 32-bit Intel applications, since 10.15 dropped support for them.

The other alternative for Civ3 compatibility on Intel Macs running 10.15, to run Windows on a virtual machine, is to the best of my knowledge not possible on M1 Macs.

So that leaves one last-ditch option that would work for some other games, but not Civ3: NVIDIA's GeForce Now, which recently added M1 compatibility. The way it works is you download a program that connects you to a remote machine with a powerful graphics card, and can log into your Steam library from there, and stream Steam games remotely. Unfortunately, 2K (Firaxis's parent company) removed their games from GeForce now, so I don't think that would work either.

Hopefully AlanH has another more promising idea, but... :dunno: It might be a good idea to keep another machine around to satisfy your Civ3 cravings.
 

Puffmammy

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Sep 27, 2022
Messages
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First of all, welcome to CFC! :band:

I'm not the right person to answer the question definitively, but I'll tag @AlanH , who is our resident self-proclaimed Mac addict. I don't know whether he has switched to M1 yet, but he's probably better-informed if there is a chance of running Civ3 on M1.

That said, of what I know, there are two main hurdles. The first and perhaps biggest is that Catalina (10.15) dropped support for 32-bit applications, which includes Civ3. So even if you were on an Intel Mac, with 10.15, I don't think you'd be able to run it.

The other is that Civ3 is compiled for Intel processors (or for older copies, PowerPC processors). It might be possible to run Civ3 with Rosetta, if that were the only hurdle. But I don't think Rosetta on M1 would support 32-bit Intel applications, since 10.15 dropped support for them.

The other alternative for Civ3 compatibility on Intel Macs running 10.15, to run Windows on a virtual machine, is to the best of my knowledge not possible on M1 Macs.

So that leaves one last-ditch option that would work for some other games, but not Civ3: NVIDIA's GeForce Now, which recently added M1 compatibility. The way it works is you download a program that connects you to a remote machine with a powerful graphics card, and can log into your Steam library from there, and stream Steam games remotely. Unfortunately, 2K (Firaxis's parent company) removed their games from GeForce now, so I don't think that would work either.

Hopefully AlanH has another more promising idea, but... :dunno: It might be a good idea to keep another machine around to satisfy your Civ3 cravings.
Wow, thank you for all the thought put into this. I honestly didn't expect that given how old the game is. But yet another reason why I enjoy this site and the forums so much. People are just really helpful. Yeah, I've begun to think it might just be easiest to find a cheap older laptop for playing a legacy game such as this (or any others.) I know it sounds silly. For whatever reason, something about Civ III just got its hooks in me and the replay factor just went off the scale for me. I never got into IV, and V was okay. VI is a version that I'm actually currently playing and finding some enjoyment. But I just keep coming back to III. Thanks again for your help!
 

AlanH

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Hi. I'm sorry, I can't help wrt M1 compatibility. My Macs are rapidly heading towards "vintage" status, and I'm unlikely to buy a new one any time soon.
 
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