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Can I play 3D videogames using Parallels Desktop for Mac?

APPLIES TO:
  • Parallels Desktop for Mac Business Edition
  • Parallels Desktop for Mac Home Edition
  • Parallels Desktop for Mac Pro Edition

Question

  • I have Parallels Desktop installed on my Mac. Is it possible to play videogames in my Windows virtual machine?

Answer

With Parallels Desktop for Mac you can run games and applications that require DirectX or OpenGL support in your virtual machines.

  • The DirectX10.1 and OpenGL2.1 support can be enabled for Windows-based virtual machines with Parallels Tools installed.
  • The OpenGL2.1 support can be enabled for Linux-based virtual machines with Parallels Tools installed.

NOTE: the majority of modern 3D games are very resource-intensive programs which require a discrete graphics adapter (standalone GPU) for desired performance.

Install Parallels Tools

Follow instructions from KB115835 to install Parallels Tools in your Virtual Machine.

Enable gaming profile

Open virtual machine configuration window > General tab > Configure for > Change > choose Games only.

Supported versions

  • OpenGL 2.1
  • OpenGL 3.2*
  • DirectX 10.1
  • Shader Model 4

* - supported in Parallels Desktop 13 for Mac for the following applications:

  • DIALux 6 evo
  • Northgard (game, Early Access since Feb 2017)
  • Unigine Heaven & Valley benchmark
  • OpenGL Extenstions Viewer (glviewer)
  • id Software games: Rage, Wolfenstein: The Old Blood, Wolfenstein: The New Order



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