Putting the MacBook through the paces with Warhammer Online
Since the new MacBooks were released earlier this week, everyone's been talking a good bit about gaming on the thing, but our friend (and TUAW alum) C.K. Sample III decided to actually load up a game and make the new Nvidia chips put up or shut up. And as you can see above, put up they did: he loaded up XP in Boot Camp, installed Warhammer Online (not a small task, with a 13GB install and all the patching it took about two hours), and entered the Age of Reckoning with all the graphics turned up. The verdict: it worked. And pretty well -- while there was a tiny bit of slowdown on the highest settings (and YouTube compression makes it look worse than it is), the game was clearly playable and actually looked really good. The trackpad wasn't too easy to use, but you already know that for any substantial games, you've got to plug a mouse in anyway.
This was the 9400M running in the new MacBook, with the 2.4 GHz processor and 2GB of RAM. You have to think the MBP would run even better, too. Seems like Apple's done it -- even on the low end machines, gamers should have no problem (assuming they're willing to load up Boot Camp and deal with a permissions error or two) running even the latest PC games. Now if we could only convince game companies to all make Mac-specific versions...
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