Will my Macbook Pro support Skyrim?

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Excuse this novice for asking such a predictable question on a technical site, but it can be hard to come by qualified advice. I have a Macbook pro, model 8,1, and I'd like to know if I could (with Windows 7 installed via BootCamp) run Elder Scrolls 5 with reasonable success. I tried to run Two Worlds 2 from steam and it said something about needing a shader, I don't know what this means (I expect it has something to do with graphics) but it does raise concerns about running an even newer game with my setup. I haven't changed anything as far as hardware goes so I should have everything a 8,1 model should come with stock. Any advice, knowledge or experience would be greatly appreciated from people who probably know far more about my Mac than I do.
 

vansmith

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Please provide us with the following information: CPU type and speed, RAM and graphics card and memory.

Here are the requirements from Bethesda:
Recommended Specs
Windows 7/Vista/XP PC (32 or 64 bit)
Processor: Quad-core Intel or AMD CPU
4GB System RAM
6GB free HDD space
DirectX 9.0c compatible NVIDIA or AMD ATI video card with 1GB of RAM (Nvidia GeForce GTX 260 or higher (i.e GTX550Ti); ATI Radeon 4890 or higher).
DirectX compatible sound card
Internet access for Steam activation

Minimum Specs
Windows 7/Vista/XP PC (32 or 64 bit)
Processor: Dual Core 2.0GHz or equivalent processor
2GB System RAM
6GB free HDD Space
Direct X 9.0c compliant video card with 512 MB of RAM
DirectX compatible sound card
Internet access for Steam activation

According to MacTracker, you have the early 2011 13" MBP with either the dual-core 2.3 or 2.7Ghz processor with 4GB of RAM (assuming you haven't upgraded) and the Intel HD 3000 GPU with 384MB of shared memory. If so, you're out of luck - your GPU isn't good enough. Are these indeed the specs of your machine (just to confirm)?
 
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Your Mac's Specs
Black MacBook 2.2GHz C2D, 4GB Ram - iMac G4 700MHz, 512MB Ram
Please provide us with the following information: CPU type and speed, RAM and graphics card and memory.

Here are the requirements from Bethesda:

According to MacTracker, you have the early 2011 13" MBP with either the dual-core 2.3 or 2.7Ghz processor with 4GB of RAM (assuming you haven't upgraded) and the Intel HD 3000 GPU with 384MB of shared memory. If so, you're out of luck - your GPU isn't good enough. Are these indeed the specs of your machine (just to confirm)?

Does the game actually check to see if you have the required GPU or will it still "attempt" to run?

I know it wouldn't run very well, maybe 30FPS on the lowest settings, but I do think he'd still have a shot at it working.
 

chscag

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Also... the Intel HD 3000 will borrow 512 MB of system memory if 8 GB is installed. Whether or not that makes a difference though, I don't know as I'm not a gamer.
 
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the Intel HD 3000 will not be enough to play the game. Would not even be worth the try. It is not meant to game on.
 

vansmith

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Also... the Intel HD 3000 will borrow 512 MB of system memory if 8 GB is installed.
I did not know that. Thanks for pointing that out. :)

As noted here, 384MB is the minimum and not the maximum as I had assumed. Like chscag though, I'm not sure how that will affect your experience especially since the HD 3000 is not a discrete GPU. I'll have to leave this question to those who have that GPU.
 
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Yes, those are exactly my specs. Intel HD 3000 with 384 MB of VRAM. Is it only the lack of graphics ability that is stopping me? I have the 2.3 Ghz model. Thanks for saving me some money, guess that's why they say Macs aren't meant for gaming. Does anyone think what chscag mentioned would make a difference? If upgraded my RAM and that would supply me with 512 MB, wouldn't that make my VRAM 896? Does that come closer to adequate?
 

vansmith

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The assertion that Macs aren't suitable for gaming has more to do with the software (operating system) than the hardware. I can play games just fine on my hardware but I only have a limited selection.

Upgrading the RAM may allow OS X to allocate more memory to the GPU (I'm getting close to the limits of my knowledge with respect to graphics hardware here) but you'd still be limited by the fact that the GPU is integrated and not really designed for games like Skyrim. According to this however, some people have managed to get it working. This MacRumours post even has a video of someone playing it with the HD 3000.

Regardless, I hesitate to recommend it simply because you can't return open games. If you do want to try it though, see if there is a demo available so you can get a feel for the performance.
 
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mid '09 13" MBP 2.53 C2D, 8Gb RAM, 250 Gb HD, SL and Win7
Do not waste your time. I bought an Asus G53 (i7-740QM, nVidia GTX 460M, 8Gb RAM) for my gaming fix and with graphics set at 1920x1080, all medium settings, ambient occusion on, no AA or AF I only get 25-35 fps according to fraps. HD3000 graphics+Skyrim=slideshow
 
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Black MacBook 2.2GHz C2D, 4GB Ram - iMac G4 700MHz, 512MB Ram
Macs may not necessarily be for gaming, but I do know that you're able to get much more out of them than expected when pushed to the limits.

I can get my iMac G3 with a 500MHz processor and 16MB of VRAM to stream youtube videos. My iBook G4 with 32MB of VRAM to run Minecraft at a decent 25FPS.

That being said, I still wouldn't buy skyrim if your only gaming platform is your MBP. If you had already bought the game, or received it as a gift, that would be a different story.

Do you have a console? PS3 or Xbox 360 might be a better option for you.

Edit: Just found a thread with somebody using an older 2010 MBP with the NVIDIA GeForce GT 330m (288mb VRAM) and claim it runs fine. http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=1279613
 
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That being said, I still wouldn't buy skyrim if your only gaming platform is your MBP. If you had already bought the game, or received it as a gift, that would be a different story.

Depends on the MBP. Mine, runs it fine. But I also have the top of the line MBP with the 2 vid cards.

If the MBP has only the Intel card, don't waste your money.
 
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Ive got a late 2011 MBP 2 GHz Quad Core i7 AMD Radeon HD 6490M. I really want to get skyrim but I need to be able to run it smoothly on my mac. What level of graphics about could I run it at with these specs while keeping an okay frame rate? Any help is greatly appreciated.
 

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