Going Native

Bah. Not only was I wrong about Trinity being released yesterday (told you I’m distracted by school!), but the Mac client I had downloaded for Multiplicity was not patchable from Tranquility. I had to re-download the entire client, which stalled three times around 500 MB into an 884 MB download. I changed locations, hoping it had something to do with my wireless connection at the university, but when I tried the download again, there was a message saying they were having a problem with the Mac client, and it would be unavailable for a little while.

It was about 20 minutes before I could start the download again, and to CCP’s credit, whatever was causing trouble with the download seemed to be resolved pretty quickly. My last attempt at downloading worked and I was able to install and launch Eve with no problems.

I’ve got a couple of tiny issues with the Mac client, but overall, it’s almost indistinguishable from playing Eve off my XP/Boot Camp partition. I’ll have to give it a little more time, but the graphics seem shinier and sharper on the Mac client. I’m playing the Windows and Mac version on the exact same machine, so it’s a pretty good base for comparison.

My major complaint: I spend a lot of time playing Eve without a mouse attached to the laptop. It’s really a laptop for me. At night, I’m often sitting on my bed, or my daughter’s bed, with the laptop on a pillow on my legs. There’s nowhere to put a mouse to the right of me, so I just use the touchpad.

On the MacbookPro, if you put two fingers on the touchpad and click the button, it acts like a right-click from a mouse. It works really well on the XP side of things. Since Eve is one hell of a lot of right-clicking, I’ve gotten pretty good at the two-finger touchpad right-click. Most of that right-clicking also works fine in the Mac client, but there’s one important place that’s sketchy.

To zoom in and out on your ship without a mouse and scroll wheel, you can put two fingers on the touchpad and push forward or pull back. Works great on the XP side, it’s pretty terrible on the Mac side. It either jumps from zoomed all the way in to zoomed all the way out, or it kind of threatens to zoom by getting jittery, but it jumps right back to where you started when you lift your fingers off the touchpad.

This may have to do with my touchpad settings in the Mac OS itself. I didn’t get too involved with it last night, because I wanted to run my first level 4 mission, and I was too impatient to set up my Overview on the Mac side. I was doing a little ratting with a Rifter while testing out the Mac, and the sketchy scrolling and lack of Overview settings made me grumpy and I booted into XP to run the level 4 mission.

Today, I’m hoping to have time to set up the Overview and then dig into trying to fix the touchpad tracking issue. If I can get that sorted, I’ll be able to play exclusively on the Mac side for a while and see if it’s as solid as it appears to be.

I’m guessing that if I hooked up a mouse, my problem would disappear, so I’m somewhat of a minority case. Overall, it appears that CCP did a kickass job on the Mac side, and I’m really happy they did. I wish more companies would pay attention to Linux and Mac. I’m absolutely not a Windows hater, but I like the Linux and Mac operating systems too. I’d love to spend more time in them, but I don’t, mainly because of the lack of game support (and lack of time to monkey with things on the Linux side). What can I say? I spend a lot of time gaming 🙂

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