Today, I was a bit bored so I decided to install Wine on my Mac. I am running Mac OS X Lion. Normally, when I wanted to play a Windows-only game, I would fire up Windows 7 through Boot Camp, but I wanted to try something different.

After quite some time of messing around, I finally managed to install everything that I needed to and run it. When I fired up the game, I noticed a few things: the gameplay is not very smooth and the mouse control is not very sensitive.

The second problem can be overcome by adjusting the mouse sensitivity, but this is odd because if I were to load the same game using Boot Camp, the mouse would be much more sensitive at the same sensitivity than it would be using Wine. Anyways, the first problem is a bit more concerning.

I am running a 1999 game on 2011 hardware, so I would imagine that performance shouldn't be an issue. I could play Counter Strike (1.6) on my Boot Camp partition without a single hiccup/slow down. However when I load the game up using Wine, the frame rate is slashed by half, and the performance is rather bad. I understand that Wine is not going to give native performance, but it performs at least 150% worse than it does using Windows. Is this normal?

Have any of you had a problem similar to this? If so, how (if you) did you solve it?

Thanks a ton in advance!

  • did you try all 3 video modes? it's slow in all 3?
    – e-MEE
    Commented Jan 17, 2012 at 7:08
  • 1
    OpenGL games generally works better than Direct X games, if the game had OpenGL mode, try switching to that mode and see if the performance is better.
    – Lie Ryan
    Commented Jan 17, 2012 at 10:54
  • I have only tried OpenGL. I'll try the other two modes. Commented Jan 18, 2012 at 1:22

1 Answer 1


Wine itself isn't optimised for graphics applications and games. The issue is less about the hardware and more about software.

Certain interfaces to the graphics drivers may not have had as much attention paid to them as they have in Windows itself.

There's also the issue of the translation layer between DirectX APIs and OpenGL for rendering the graphics in an Mac OS environment, which could be a cause of latency.

There are other derivatives of Wine that have been optimised for games, namely:

In regards to Cider - it's not an end-user targeted product, so you won't be able to easily download and use it to play your games. Cider is used by developers and publishers to wrap their game as a stand alone app bundle that will run on a Mac. However, there are websites out there that spend time putting windows games into Cider wrappers. I'm not 100% sure on the legality of that practise, so I won't link to it (though, I believe you need to own the game yourself and all you download is the wrapper).

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