Since I very first started gaming on an Apple - on a Performa 630 - back in 1994 playing games on a Mac has been a very patchy experience punctuated by some amazing highs and heartbreaking lows. But throughout quite a bit of this time one web site has kept the fires burning for the dedicated Apple FPS player - Macgamingfiles.com. Sadly this tiny sanctuary of enthusiasts seems to have shut it's doors for good.
Above: Ghost Recon Classic on the Apple Mac, a game that allowed Apple FPS fans to play with some partity with their PC owning counterparts. Macgamingfiles.com was THE place to meet up with other GhR players to discuss competitions, mods and expansions on the Mac platform.
Macgamingfiles.com and it's inspirational founder, Monoman, has tried to keep the momentum going for cult classic FPS demos and games by acting as a resource for home-made mods for such games as Ghost Recon, Rogue Spear and latterly the HALO demo. Importantly as it championed the free gaming experience for Mac FPS fans by adding features and extended playability to demo versions of commercial Mac games (important because of the premium that is placed on Mac gaming titles which cost far more than thier PC based counterparts).
Monoman himself was a legendary force behind the very solid Ghost Recon Mac community, developing a slue of mods for this game as well as providing support for others who did likewise. An elusive character I actually had the privilage of bumping into him in (virtual) person on one occassion while he was testing out some mod or other online.
Above: One of the early triumphs for Mac gaming was Bungie's Marathon series. This FPS was developed for the Apple Mac and was, in it's time, generally hailed as the 'Doom killer' by Mac and PC game critics alike. I actually had PC gaming friends who would ask to borrow my Performa 630 just to play this title! It was successes like this that inspired developers like Ubisoft to take a chance and develope titles like Ghost Recon Classic for the Mac - Macgaming files was an ardent supporter of Tom Clancy titles on the Mac.
Macgamingfiles.com was a very important part of my Mac gaming experience over the years and I remember with great fondness those early days of Ghost Recon and those Sunday morning skirmishes on GameRanger (which is now available for Mac & PC but which started out on the Mac).
Left: In many ways this is where Apple Mac FPS gaming began for me, a demo of Wolfenstien 3D in 1994. I got this on a demo disk on the cover of MacFormat - remember floppy disks?
The great sadness that accompanies Macgamingfiles.com's demise is somewhat tempered by the fact that more than any other time Apple Mac gaming is thriving and even growing - with Valve's extraordinary commitment to releasing Mac versions of it's classic games. But whatever the future holds for Mac FPS I would like to take this opportunity to extend my personal thanks to Monoman - wherever he is now - and say a fond farewell to a important, if small, corner of the Internet that represented the Mac gaming spirit.
Today the legacy of Mac gaming enthusiasts is that the platform is better supported that it ever has been with the likes of Valve, 2K Games and Steam giving Mac users some of the newest FPS releases, dispelling the old myth that there are no good games on a Mac. Macgamingfiles.com was one of the web sites which kept the movement for great Mac gaming alive. May it rest in peace.
Above: Today Mac FPS fans can enjoy the same cutting edge gaming experience that thier PC owning counterparts, with titles like CoD Modern Warfare 4, Left 4 Dead 2 and Borderlands, etc. OK so we don't get the newest games first, but in the past we never used to get them at all!