The Mac has never been a gaming-friendly platform, though that could change soon. During WWDC 2022, the technology company announced MetalFX, a new graphics scaling technology that will allow AAA games to run on Mac and other company devices. MetalFX is very similar to NVIDIA’s DLSS technology and uses algorithms to scale frames without losing quality.
In practical terms, Macs could run graphics-intensive games without the need for a dedicated GPU, as is the case with PCs. One example is Resident Evil Village, Capcom’s latest title that can run smoothly on Apple Silicon Macs. Masaru Ijuin, director of Capcom’s Advanced Technical Research Division, revealed that survival horror runs smoothly on a MacBook Air at 1080p or a Mac Studio at 4K thanks to MetalFX.
The technology renders smaller frames to which high-quality spatial scaling and anti-aliasing algorithms are applied. Scaling is a technique that is gaining ground in the gaming industry thanks to NVIDIA’s DLSS. Games like Control, Death Stranding, or Cyberpunk 2077 itself can be enjoyed in high quality without sacrificing performance by using low or mid-range equipment.
Frame scaling delivers amazing results
“Previously this was only possible on high-performance consoles and gaming PCs,” said Masaru Ijuin. “Now we can offer it on every Mac with the Apple processor,” he said. MetalFX will be available for all Apple Silicon devices, such as the iPad Air. No Man’s Sky is coming to Mac and iPad later this year and will take advantage of this technology.
In addition to MetalFX, Apple has also announced a new API for Metal 3 that will allow faster loading of resources in games. This technology, similar to Microsoft’s DirectStorage, would provide a direct channel between storage and the unified memory system. In this way, the GPU would access the high-quality textures and models in less time.