5 Solutions to How to Play Windows Games on Mac
As more and more people make the switch from a Windows PC to a Mac, some of them may not realize the changes they are facing. One of them is the fact that there aren’t that many popular Windows games for the Mac. Worse still, the AAA games they play aren’t easily playable on macOS.
Can you play Windows games on a Mac? You absolutely can. So, if you are one of those Mac owners or maybe potential Apple computer owners who are wondering how to play Windows games on Mac, we have the answers for you. Read along to find out how to play PC games on your Mac.
Here’s how to play the latest PC games on your Mac through GeForce Now
For those unfamiliar, GeForce Now is a cloud-based streaming service powered by Nvidia servers. This service allows you to run games remotely without having to install them on your computer. When it comes to the game collection, you’ll be pleased to know that GeForce Now has an extensive library consisting of Steam, Battle.net, and Uplay titles. Those who are hardcore PC gamers know these online gaming platforms.
While you can download and install GeForce Now on your Mac for free, you’re limited to a one-hour session, and most of the time you’ll have to wait in a queue before you can start playing a game. If you don’t have the patience to wait that long, you can opt for a $10 Priority membership.
Needed time: 5 minutes.
Follow the steps below to download and install GeForce Now on your Mac.
- Create an NVIDIA account by visiting the website.
You can also sign in with your Google or Facebook account.
- Download and install GeForce Now for Mac.
- Sign in with your NVIDIA account.
- Search for games and then start playing.
Play Windows games through Boot Camp
Apple’s Boot Camp is one way to install Windows on your Mac, another through Parallels Desktop. The difference between the two is that when using Boot Camp, you can only boot either macOS or Windows. To switch between the two, you need to restart your Mac.
On the other hand, when you use Parallels Desktop, both macOS and Windows run simultaneously, so you can easily switch between them.
It should also be noted that installing Windows 11 via Boot Camp is only possible for Intel-based Macs. So if you have an Apple Silicon Mac, you should skip this part and move on to the other methods of playing Windows games on Mac.
Follow this Apple Support document to walk you through installing Windows using Boot Camp
Play Windows games through WineBottler
WineBottler is an online game hub where you can download Windows apps. To do this, you need to install the Wine app, which is a compatibility layer that can run many Microsoft applications. Follow the steps below to play PC games on your Mac with WineBottler.
- Go to https://winebottler.kronenberg.org/ and then download the stable version of the app.
- Install WineBottler on your Mac.
- Open WineBottler on your Mac, then select the Games tab.
- Search for Steam and then click Install.
- Sign in with your Steam account (create an account if you don’t already have one).
- Browse the Steam Store and download the PC games you want.
- To start playing, just go to your Steam library and select the game you want to play.
Note that there aren’t many Windows games compatible with Wine. However, the choice is better than nothing.
Use CrossOver Mac to play Windows games
Another application that you can use to play Windows games is CrossOver Mac. This app also uses Wine technology. However, unlike WineBottler, CrossOver is a paid app. So, if you don’t mind paying $40 to play Windows games, you can go for this option. The good news is that you can even play Windows games on an Apple Silicon Mac with this app.
To play Windows games on your Mac via CrossOver Mac, all you have to do is download and install the app on your computer. Once CrossOver Mac is running, install Steam using the CrossOver Software Installer. Once installed, open Steam and find the games you want to play.
Using Parallels Desktop
Finally, you can also play Windows games available on Steam through Parallels Desktop. However, this can consume a lot of resources of your Mac. But if you’re already running Parallels Desktop, then this step would be easier for you.
If you are running Parallels Desktop on your Mac for the first time, be warned that it will consume a lot of your computer’s resources. But the good news is that you can easily switch between Windows and macOS without restarting your computer. If you’re ok with that, follow the steps below to set up Parallels on your Mac.
- Create a new account on the Parallels website.
- Install the app by following the steps below:
– Go to the Parallels Desktop for Mac page from the dashboard.
– Scroll down to the Install and Activate section.
– Download the latest version of Parallels.
– Grab the activation key.
- Download Windows (Apple Silicon Mac users need to download the ARM version).
- Start the Windows installation from Parallels.
- Go back to the installation wizard and click Next to set up a virtual machine on your Mac.
- When Parallels finds Windows 11, click Create.
- Enter your activation key.
- Once Windows 11 is installed, install and open Steam.
- Browse and install the Windows games you want to play.
Final Words: Choose the best way to play Windows games on your Mac
With the five options listed above, choosing which one to use so you can play Windows games on your Mac depends on your preferences, the type of Mac you’re using, and the money you’re willing to spend. It should also be noted that playing Windows games using these methods may not always replicate the same gaming experience as playing native macOS games. But like I said, it’s better than not being able to play Windows games on your Mac at all.