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Unsure if your Mac will run Civ5? Read this

Xyth

History Rewritten
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I'll begin by saying that they're called minimum specs for a reason. Here they are again:

• Operating System: 10.6.4 (Snow Leopard)
• CPU Processor: Intel Core 2 Duo (Dual-Core)
• CPU Speed: 2.4 GHz
• Memory: 2 GB RAM
• Hard Disk Space: 8 GB
• Video Card (ATI): Radeon HD2600
• Video Card (NVidia): Geforce 8600
• Video Memory (VRam): 256 MB
• Media Required: DVD-ROM (Physical, boxed copies only)
• Peripherals: Macintosh mouse and keyboard

Here's a more detailed breakdown of supported video cards:

Supported Video Cards:
NVIDIA GeForce® 8600, 8800, 9600M, GT 120, 320M, 330M
ATI Radeon HD 2600, HD 3870, HD 4670, HD 4850, HD 5670, HD 5750

NOTICE: Apple Intel Chipsets only. Power PC Processors (G4 and G5) are not supported.
NOTICE: Intel(r) integrated video chipsets are not supported.
NOTICE: This game is not supported on volumes formatted as Mac OS Extended (Case Sensitive

Here's Aspyr's official statement on what Minimum spec means:

Minimum System Requirements:

These are the very lowest possible specs you can have before you start to experience performance issues with the game. Being below the minimum system requirements can cause problems we cannot fix. If you just meet the Minimum Requirements, you should be able to enjoy the game on minimum graphics settings. We DO NOT recommend purchasing a game if you do not meet the Minimum System Requirements.

What if I’m just below the minimum specs? (i.e. 2.26 GHz v 2.4 GHz)

We DO NOT recommend purchasing a game if you do not meet the Minimum System Requirements. If you purchase a game without meeting minimum system requirements we will be unable to provide support from a customer care perspective.

What sorts of problems or performance issues can I expect if my hardware does not meet minimum requirements?

Performance issues could include slow downs, crashes, graphical issues, and not launching, among other problems. It is impossible to predict specific problems for individual users.

Here's the RECOMMENDED specs:

Recommended System Requirements

CPU Processor: Intel Quad Core
CPU Speed: 2.6 GHz
Memory: 4 GB RAM
Video Memory (VRam): 512MB

So there you have it. Sources for these quotes are from here and here.

The next lot of information is from me, not Aspyr, and is highly opinionated but reasonably truthful nonetheless:

• If you have a MacBook Air - Civ5 is not for you, it was not designed for 3D games.
• If you have a pre-2009 MacBook - Civ5 is not for you, it was not designed for 3D games
• If you have a 2009+ MacBook - it will probably run but consider a MacBookPro or desktop next upgrade if you are serious about playing the latest 3D games.
• If you are still on Leopard - you have no excuse not to upgrade unless you don't have US$29. Leopard is no longer updated by Apple, you will never get the fixes you need.
• Do not expect Mac Civ5 and Civ5 via Bootcamp to have similar performance. They use completely different graphics drivers.
 
It should run on the higher-end Air just fine on low, though turns might take a little longer. Not really much of a difference between 2.13 ghz and 2.4. Someone on the Steam forums reported that the first 100 turns on his Air was running fine, but he didn't specify the processor.
 
• Do not expect Mac Civ5 and Civ5 via Bootcamp to have similar performance. They use completely different graphics drivers.

Okay, now could you elaborate on that a bit?

I'm fresh out of HD space on this sucker (2010 MBP 13") because of my Bootcamp partition (which I added solely for Civ 5). What's more, I really doubt I'd ever get Microsoft to authorize my copy of Windows again, so if I kill my Bootcamp partition to install the Mac version and it doesn't run...well, then I'm kinda out of luck.

Plus, is the Mac version patched up yet?

Edit: Oh, nvmd. I found Portal eating up a few Gigs and now I have room to try out the Mac version. And I see the patches aren't up to date yet, but will be soon, right?
 
It should run on the higher-end Air just fine on low, though turns might take a little longer. Not really much of a difference between 2.13 ghz and 2.4. Someone on the Steam forums reported that the first 100 turns on his Air was running fine, but he didn't specify the processor.

Aspyr don't recommend it and they made the game. I think they know what they're talking about. My theory is they've chosen 2.4Ghz as the minimum deliberately to exclude systems such as the MacBook Air. People are welcome to try but it's not wise for us to recommend or suggest it.

• Do not expect Mac Civ5 and Civ5 via Bootcamp to have similar performance. They use completely different graphics drivers.

Okay, now could you elaborate on that a bit?

Windows Civ5 relies on Direct3D, Mac Civ5 relies on OpenGL as do all Mac games. The most recent versions of OpenGL (4.x) are similar in capability to the latest versions of Direct3D (11) but unfortunately Apple for some frustrating reason have not deigned to update OpenGL further than a messy hybrid of 2.1/3.0, approximately 4 years out of date.

This is why Windows games almost always run better than the Mac version on the same system. This is also why Mac Civ5 has quite high system requirements. However, a few people have reported Mac Civ5 running BETTER than the Windows version on Bootcamp. If this is true then Aspyr have done a stellar job and/or Firaxis did a terrible one. Personally I'm guessing said people have not played very far in or on larger maps.


EDIT: Mac version is not fully patched up yet, Aspyr assure us it will be soon though. They suggest we'll get the next patch sooner than the Windows folk even.
 
I have a 2008 MacBook pro (with snow-leopard).

Civ5 runs fine with bootcamp, Win7 and dx9 (dx10/dx11 crasches the game).
I tried Civ5 for some minutes* yesterday on OSX. Playable yes, but it doesnt run as smooth & fine as on bootcamp.

* Cant leave my japaneese game on bootcamp :)
 
FYI, even if you smash the recommended specs, you are still not guaranteed the game will run.
 
As of right now, I have it running in the 9400m on my 2008 MBP. It looks great. When I switch to performance mode (9600m), it fails immediately.

It works fine in the 9600m in bootcamp, and in either card through Crossover Games. Not sure what the deal is with the 9600m, doesn't make much sense, as it's the supported card... I'm going to try a few more times. I'd like to post over at ASPYR, but I can't register, the link there for their forum register appears to be broken..any suggestions?
 
2metalhawk: got same problem here. since i've switched to 9600 it keeps giving me this EXC_BAD_ACCESS (SIGBUS) error
 
Trying deleting com.aspyr.Civ5.plist from your Preferences folder. If that doesn't work try removing the entry that says GameDisplayID in that file.
 
So my Macbook can probably run it? Sweet! Thanks so much Xyth, this is very helpful! :)
 
Trying deleting com.aspyr.Civ5.plist from your Preferences folder. If that doesn't work try removing the entry that says GameDisplayID in that file.

That seems to do the trick. Thanks!

So, either way, it runs fine on the 9400m and 9600m. I've yet to characterize the differences.

On the one hand, it's great that it's "native". I'm really glad I was able to get it without extra cost from my PC version purchase. Way to go Steam/Aspyr!

On the other, I can run it in Crossover pretty well, too (I think that it's faster/better looking from Aspyr than running the win version in xover, but...I may get better patching/mod compat in xover..).
 
Trying deleting com.aspyr.Civ5.plist from your Preferences folder. If that doesn't work try removing the entry that says GameDisplayID in that file.

Sorry, cant find this file. Where should it be located?
 
It's at ~/Library/Preferences/com.aspyr.Civ5.plist, where ~ means your Home folder - the one with a house icon.
 
My theory is they've chosen 2.4Ghz as the minimum deliberately to exclude systems such as the MacBook Air.

Doubt it. There is nothing "special" about the Air––It's just a MBP with a lower clock rate and SSD. Same Core2Duo, same 320m. If you look at benchmarks, it's pretty much on par with the MBP. 2.4 Ghz was probably just their arbitrary cutoff where they felt anything lower meant for unacceptable wait times between turns towards the end of games.
 
My theory is they've chosen 2.4Ghz as the minimum deliberately to exclude systems such as the MacBook Air.

I am impressed they used specs going almost three years old. When the Mac port for Civ3 and IV first came out, you needed a machine less than a year old.

This particular spec pains me because I purchased the $300 cheaper iMac back in early ‘08 because at the time because the Apple salesman could not show me any games where the 256MB video card made a difference over the 128MB stock version! (I had set up an appointment just for this very purpose. I was very disappointed.)
 
the 9400m isnt in the supported cards list at the top, but MetalHawk says it works fine.

does the 9400m support the game or not?
 
It seems that top-end iMac early 2009 cant run better other than maps smaller or equal to "Small", so with 18 slots of start...

Processor is the limiting factor, so the RAM or Video Card are OK...

So you could having 18 Civs with no City-State, having 9 civs with 9 city-states or by default 6 with 12 city-states...
 
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