How Mac Computers Made It To The Gaming World

Comments Off on How Mac Computers Made It To The Gaming World

Mac makes its first move

It seems strange now, but Apple used to be treated a lot like Microsoft’s ugly sister or thick brother. People thought their Mac computers were inferior, and everyone was confused about just why Apple was still trying to launch into a market that was so heavily dominated by another company. But as we all now know, those people were all wrong! These days Macs are used for on and offline gaming and they’re taking pride of place in trendy, creative offices around the world.

Mac Gaming

How Mac gaming almost never was

Apple were used to being treated like substandard intruders who didn’t belong in the computer technology business, and so they decided to try to protect themselves. Oddly, this meant cutting games from their operating system.

By analysing their place in the market, they worked out where the chinks in their armour were and how their enemies could exploit them. Senior members of the Apple team realized that there was a negative perception of the Mac permeating some areas of its target audience, the accusation essential being this:

“Macintosh computers are a bit…you know…a bit childish. I’m not sure they’re suitable and complex enough for me and my very serious work.”

The Apple marketing team unanimously agreed that they’d launch the first Mac without any inbuilt games. That way they wouldn’t draw attention to the Mac’s picture-led interface which some people had already dubbed ‘toy-like’.

Not wanting to be bullied for bringing out a silly computer wasn’t the only reason for a lack of games on the original Mac though – there was also the slight problem of the small amount of memory the computer held within it. It would have been nearly impossible to include a game into the operating system. So forget ideas of playing SimCity or a quick hand of poker – Mac gaming was a thing of the future!

Before big gaming, came a little Puzzle

Andy Hertzfeld played a massive role in the creation of the first ever game for Mac. Andy was a talented member of the Apple Mac team whose business card declared him to be a ‘Software Wizard’.

Andy created Puzzle – it was a fun, addictive game but most importantly it was also small enough to only take up a tiny bit of the Mac’s memory.

Puzzle was supplied with all Macs from 1984-1994. After that, a revamped version with the same premise was released – it was imaginatively named Jigsaw.

Apple in Wonderland?

The first separate, packaged game officially released by Apple for Mac was a chess game called Through the Looking Glass. It originated from a game created for the earlier Apple Lisa computer but a demo of it was shown at the launch of the first Mac and the game was then released shortly afterwards.

Through the Looking Glass was a basic 3D chess game where Alice/you had to avoid being captured by the computer’s pieces. However, despite being based on one of the most popular traditional board games on the planet, Through the Looking Glass was a flop. Apple didn’t invest properly in its launch marketing and it never became a hit.

To this day, Through the Looking Glass is the only game ever to be written and published by Apple.

To mark the game’s 25th Anniversary, a special edition called AliceX was launched on iOS.

Mac Gaming starts to get serious

After Through the Looking Glass was released, developers outside the company started to produce games for the Mac too. Dark Castle, SimCity and Microsoft Flight Simulator all came out in the 80s and were available for Mac, although they were not designed specifically for it. Software companies merely worked on developing the games for both platforms at the same time.

Without Mac there’d be no Halo

In 1999 a software company called Bungie showcased a revolutionary creation, fresh out of their fledgling studio. They’d already had some success with another game called Pathways of Darkness which had won the hearts of reviewers and players alike – but now they had something even better; Halo.

‘What?’, you may be thinking, ‘but Halo came out on Xbox!’ and you’d be right. The game was initially due to be released in a year’s time but before that happened, Microsoft crept in and snapped up Bungie – along with all the games they’d created and were working on. Halo was then released exclusively on Xbox in 2001.

It took four and a half years for Halo to make it back to the platform it was conceived on!

Casino comes to Mac

In 2010 there were a host of gambling games for Mac released (the full list of Mac games is pretty long). Although players didn’t bet real money, the rules and play of the games was exactly the same as it was in land based casinos.

Hoyle brought out a range of different casino based games including Hoyle Slots and Hoyle Casino whilst others focused on crazy slot action, like the Burning Monkey Casino game.

Playing online with a Mac

Since the first online poker hand was dealt in 1998, things have really moved on in the world of online gambling. Gone are the days where you had to be a PC user to play online or use the downloadable software supplied by casinos and poker sites. These products are all widely available for Mac now.

In fact, in an attempt to appeal to as many customers as possible, most reputable gambling sites now offer a Mac version as standard. Visit any of these sites on a Mac and when you try to download the software, you’ll be sent to a specific Mac page where you can access the version that’ll work for you.

With online gambling about to come back to the USA – Mac gaming is bound to increase massively. And now that experts think Mac OS could be outselling Windows by 2015, companies can no longer afford to think of Apple Macs as Microsoft’s inferior cousin!

Comments are closed.