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Wineskin vs Cider for Skyrim on an high-end Macbook


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#1 Dimillian

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Posted 14 February 2013 - 03:20 PM

Hello there,

You don't know me, but I know you :) This is my first post on this awesome community and I would like to dedicate it to my experiment with the porting scene in general but more specifically with Skyrim.
I can't say how many time I browsed this website for help resources and other things ! Now I would like to contribute a little.

Some background, I am a really geeky person + a Mac/iOS/Web dev, I happily spent days and nights tweaking and testing things.

I used to have a 2010 Macbook Pro with an Nvidia 330m, not that great for games port. At this time Cider wast the best options. Every games was faster in Cider by a lot, I could play some recent games in low/med settings quite well.
But at this time I was just a "leecher" in the games porting, downloading a wrapper, putting my game into it and playing it. If it crashed, I would just delete it.

A lot of recent games did not works on my Macbook, native games was fine but ports was just too slow, so I decided to stop gaming and go back to 100% coding :P

Few months ago I bought a Macbook Retina, mostly for my work, because it have a beautiful screen, a super fast SDD, and a overclocked Nvidia 650m which run really fast for a laptop.
So with this Macbook I decided to go back on gaming on my Macbook more seriously, because this time I could.

I'm sure you'll ask "Why do not install bootcamp and stop bother ?", I'm an avid OSX user, I have everything on it, I don't want to install Windows which take at least 30Gb on a 256GB SSD just for games. Work, reboot, games, reboot, work... no. Sometimes I play for a quick 15 mn session.... Managing 2 OS on the same computer will bother me too much. I tried for testing and comparison purpose, but it always ended up in me deleting the partition.
Windows 8 look really good BTW.

I'm a huge TES fans, back in the days I was playing Daggerfall, Morrowind and Oblivion. I also had Skyrim on my PS3, but it was ugly, laggy and my PS3 died after 70 hours of playetime in Skyrim, I lost my save....
So I decided to finally try it on my Macbook, this time the Retina Macbook is powerful enough to run it. At first I tried the Cider and Wineskin wrapper posted here by community member.
I played 50 hours of game with the Cider wrapper, but something bothered me a lot, the game was ugly. Even after installing the 2K texture pack and some lighting mod. The game was still ugly, the 2K texture was not loaded, it loaded the lowest resolution texture.
No mater what, I tried everything from switching from the SkyrimPref.ini tweaks to switching to the GW2 cider wrapper. The game was still ugly.
Plus cider is pretty limited, since it can't draw windows you can't run SKSE, Skyrim launcher, and half of the mod which come with custom SKSE script and injector. You can't modify anything in fact, it is closed... I can't wait the open source edition in the work.
With a cider wrapper you can't have SkyUI and other awesome mods.....

So I downloaded the latest Winery tools. In my mind, I was convinced that it would run slower....
I relied a lot on the WinHQ Skyrim database (the wineskin wrapper from here is outdated). So I made a custom one.
Not a big deal, at first I was not a wineskin expert but the game run pretty well on a vanilla wineskin (only 3 winetrick needed).

But there is so much more you can do to optimize the game.

So I launched it, on high settings with SKSE, some lighting mods, 2K texture, Flora ovehaul etc.... with not so much hope.
But WOW, the game was so much better !! 2K texture loaded just fine, and I got 20/25 FPS in town, 15/20 fps in forest. 40 FPS in cave and empty area.
Greats ! I tweaked SkyrimPref.ini, disabed FXAA, multi sample.
I can't list everything I've done on the Skyrim and wineskin part, I'll if you ask, but I've done so much things, I'm still tweaking it.

My Skyrim now run with med/hight settings at constant 30+fps with 100+ mods. On Windows I would have better performance, but hey, I'm playing on my Mac.

Crash ? No Crash, nothing, the game was crashing a lot on cider, sometimes freezing the computer, on Wineskin I don't have any crash at all ! What could happen is a Out of memory crash if you run too much texture mod, don't try 4K texture, 1GB rVideo is not enough. It would on Windows, not with Wineskin.

In the end, I was a Cider believer, but on a powerful machine, Wineskin is so much more powerful, you can customize everything, it is much more flexible, edit regedit, wincfg at a glance... Plus it can rune multiple exe and draw Windows so everything that run on a native Windows just works.

I ended up putting a lot of other Game in Wineskin, a lot works with the vanilla one (Wrapper 1.5.23).

Now I can't wait hearing your experiment ! I would love to hear your story.

I like to tweaks configuration, anyone have HiAlgoBosst running ? Overriding D3D9 in WinCFG does not seems to work. If we got this working, ENB DLL injector would be fine.

#2 cluthz

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Posted 14 February 2013 - 10:29 PM

For skse and enb you will need wine.
Cider will give better performance, but you'll loose those mods.

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#3 Huan

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Posted 21 February 2013 - 09:33 PM

Dimillian, could you tell me exactly what you did up to the .ini tweaking? I've been feverishly trying to do the same, yet I've completely failed so far. I can't even get to the game's main screen without a CTD.

If you could post that info, I'd be much obliged.


EDIT: Is it smart for me to do a Skyrim Steam install within a Wineskin wrapper, then slapping on Razor1911's cracks onto it?

#4 Dimillian

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Posted 21 February 2013 - 09:39 PM

Here is my full ini
In your case I'm not sure if this is because of the ini file, CTD could be because of something wrong with the wrapper.
It works absolutely great on my rMBP.
I also added some keys in my regedit, I gained like 5-10 FPS (disabling GLSL and more). I'll post my full regedit modifications tomorrow, I don't have my external SSD right now.

[WINE]
glsl=disabled
OffscreenRenderer=fbo
[Display]
iTexMipMapSkip=1
bFXAAEnabled=0
fMeshLODFadePercentDefault=1.2000
fMeshLODFadeBoundDefault=256.0000
fMeshLODLevel2FadeTreeDistance=2048.0000
fMeshLODLevel1FadeTreeDistance=2844.0000
fMeshLODLevel2FadeDist=10000000.0000
fMeshLODLevel1FadeDist=10000000.0000
fSpecularLODStartFade=2000.0000
fLightLODStartFade=3500.0000
fTreesMidLODSwitchDist=3600.0000
iShadowMapResolution=512
fShadowBiasScale=0.5000
iShadowMaskQuarter=3
iBlurDeferredShadowMask=0
bFloatPointRenderTarget=1
fShadowDistance=2000.0000
iMaxDecalsPerFrame=10
iMaxSkinDecalsPerFrame=3
iAdapter=0
iSize W=1920
iSize H=1200
iMultiSample=1
iMaxAnisotropy=16
iPresentInterval=0
bFull Screen=1
sD3DDevice="Direct3D HAL"
fInteriorShadowDistance=3000.0000
fLeafAnimDampenDistEnd=4600.0000
fLeafAnimDampenDistStart=3600.0000
fGamma=0.9600
iShadowFilter=3
bShadowsOnGrass=0
fDecalLOD2=1500.0000
fDecalLOD1=1000.0000
fShadowLODStartFade=200.0000
iTexMipMapMinimum=0
bTransparencyMultisampling=1
iWaterMultiSamples=0
bDeferredShadows=1
iShadowMode=3
bTreesReceiveShadows=1
bDrawLandShadows=1
bDrawShadows=1
iScreenShotIndex=0
bShadowMaskZPrepass=0
bMainZPrepass=0
[Imagespace]
iRadialBlurLevel=2
bDoDepthOfField=1
[LOD]
fLODFadeOutMultActors=15.0000
fLODFadeOutMultItems=15.0000
fLODFadeOutMultObjects=15.0000
fLODFadeOutMultSkyCell=1.0000
[Grass]
b30GrassVS=0
fGrassStartFadeDistance=8000.0000
fGrassMaxStartFadeDistance=8000.0000
fGrassMinStartFadeDistance=200.0000
bAllowCreateGrass=1
bAllowLoadGrass=1
bDoTallGrassEffect=1
bShadowsOnGrass=1
iGrassCellRadius=4
iMaxGrassTypesPerTexure=4
[Decals]
bDecals=1
bSkinnedDecals=1
uMaxDecals=100
uMaxSkinDecals=35
uMaxSkinDecalsPerActor=20
[TerrainManager]
fTreeLoadDistance=40000.0000
fBlockMaximumDistance=150000.0000
fBlockLevel1Distance=40000.0000
fBlockLevel0Distance=25000.0000
fSplitDistanceMult=1.1000
bShowLODInEditor=0
[BlurShaderHDR]
bDoHighDynamicRange=1
[BlurShader]
bUseBlurShader=0
[Launcher]
bShowAllResolutions=1
uLastAspectRatio=3
bEnableFileSelection=1
[Water]
iWaterReflectHeight=1024
iWaterReflectWidth=1024
bUseWaterDisplacements=1
bUseWaterRefractions=1
bUseWaterReflections=1
bUseWaterDepth=1
[MAIN]
fSkyCellRefFadeDistance=150000.0000
bGamepadEnable=1
bCrosshairEnabled=1
fHUDOpacity=1.0000
bSaveOnPause=1
bSaveOnTravel=1
bSaveOnWait=1
bSaveOnRest=1
[Interface]
fMouseCursorSpeed=1.0000
bDialogueSubtitles=1
bGeneralSubtitles=1
bShowCompass=1
[GamePlay]
bShowFloatingQuestMarkers=1
bShowQuestMarkers=1
iDifficulty=2
[Controls]
bUseKinect=0
fMouseHeadingSensitivity=0.0125
fGamepadHeadingSensitivity=1.9000
bAlwaysRunByDefault=1
bInvertYValues=0
bGamePadRumble=1
bMouseAcceleration=0
[Particles]
iMaxDesired=150
[SaveGame]
fAutosaveEveryXMins=15.0000
[AudioMenu]
fAudioMasterVolume=1.0000
fVal7=1.0000
uID7=0
fVal6=1.0000
uID6=0
fVal5=1.0000
uID5=0
fVal4=1.0000
uID4=0
fVal3=0.7500
uID3=466532
fVal2=1.0000
uID2=554685
fVal1=0.8000
uID1=1007612
fVal0=0.9500
uID0=94881
[Clouds]
fCloudLevel2Distance=262144.0000
fCloudLevel1Distance=32768.0000
fCloudLevel0Distance=16384.0000
fCloudNearFadeDistance=9000.0000
[General]
iStoryManagerLoggingEvent=-1
bEnableStoryManagerLogging=0
fDefaultWorldFOV=75
[Trees]
uiMaxSkinnedTreesToRender=35
bEnableTreeAnimations=1
bRenderSkinnedTrees=1
[NavMesh]
fObstacleAlpha=0.5000
fCoverSideHighAlpha=0.8000
fCoverSideLowAlpha=0.6500
fEdgeFullAlpha=1.0000
fEdgeHighAlpha=0.7500
fEdgeLowAlpha=0.5000
fTriangleFullAlpha=0.7000
fTriangleHighAlpha=0.3500
fTriangleLowAlpha=0.2000
fLedgeBoxHalfHeight=25.0000
fEdgeDistFromVert=10.0000
fEdgeThickness=10.0000
fPointSize=2.5000


#5 Huan

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Posted 21 February 2013 - 09:46 PM

OK. I'll wait. Though I'd like to know: what Winetricks, engine version and installation method did you use? 'Cause I think my problem lies somewhere there.

#6 Dimillian

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Posted 21 February 2013 - 09:52 PM

You can test my ini, if you have a rMBP it should works OTB.
The game run on high, I use the 2K texture pack, if you don't use it you could push the texture detail to high from the Skyrim launcher.
With the 2K texture pack you can't, you'll have a out of memory error after 3 mn of playtime. So you have to set the on medium.
Regedit is only a bonus.

I use Wineskin 2.5.8 with the WS9Wine 1.5.23 engine.
Then you need to run winetricks D3D9, XACT, VCRUN2008.
Finally run the .exe from the directx10 folder within your Skyrim directory to install needed .dll.
Then run Skyrim launcher, hit install, boom. (or install from DVD/ISO).

Create a new blank wrapper, do that, you should have a basic Skyrim working.

#7 doh123

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Posted 21 February 2013 - 09:58 PM

Have you tried out using the Mac driver any instead of X11?

#8 Dimillian

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Posted 21 February 2013 - 10:01 PM

Tried, still too early I believe, task switching + windowed mod are still buggy. The game was kinda slower, 1 or 2 FPS loss.
In the end (AKA a later version) will it make a huge difference for heavy game ? I mean it is native instead of X11, it should run a lot faster, no ?

#9 zoroaster

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Posted 22 February 2013 - 12:41 AM

I am running Skyrim since the first day on Mac. Initially I used Cider because Porting Team has a good Cider port and at that time Wine did not really work, the performance was really bad.

But a few months later Wine 1.4 was released and since then Skyrim works with fewer restrictions and at nearly the same speed for me. There were mouse issues and other things that needed fixes but no performance issues anymore. I am using 2K textures and high config with FXAA instead of AA but no other performance tuning modifications since about a year because Skyrim is excelently programmed and default config works not bad at all.

I have tested a lot but sticked with Wine 1.4 and later with Wine 1.4.1 with mouse fixes for most of the time. Since three days I am using Wine 1.5.24 with a one line AMD speed fix and speed is nearly the same as before, all depends on Wine configuration.

I have only tested Mac driver once with Wine 1.5.23 until now but that did not work at all, too much features are missing and I could not even start Steam (in my opinion the only real advantage in the future will be that Wine apps will better embedded in OSX).

#10 Huan

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Posted 22 February 2013 - 02:38 AM

Am I the only one who can't use wine tricks vcrun2008?

EDIT: Figured out my problem was with the "windowed mode" of the game. Glad that's out of the way.

However, the game is unreasonably sluggish. I'll try to fiddle around with it to see what I can do. I'm surprised, given your testimony (and I don't think my iMac 208 is THAT old, especially since Skyrim used to work OK a year ago).

#11 Dimillian

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Posted 22 February 2013 - 07:44 AM

View Postzoroaster, on 22 February 2013 - 12:41 AM, said:

I am running Skyrim since the first day on Mac. Initially I used Cider because Porting Team has a good Cider port and at that time Wine did not really work, the performance was really bad.

But a few months later Wine 1.4 was released and since then Skyrim works with fewer restrictions and at nearly the same speed for me. There were mouse issues and other things that needed fixes but no performance issues anymore. I am using 2K textures and high config with FXAA instead of AA but no other performance tuning modifications since about a year because Skyrim is excelently programmed and default config works not bad at all.

I have tested a lot but sticked with Wine 1.4 and later with Wine 1.4.1 with mouse fixes for most of the time. Since three days I am using Wine 1.5.24 with a one line AMD speed fix and speed is nearly the same as before, all depends on Wine configuration.

I have only tested Mac driver once with Wine 1.5.23 until now but that did not work at all, too much features are missing and I could not even start Steam (in my opinion the only real advantage in the future will be that Wine apps will better embedded in OSX).

So we are on the same boat :) I use a Xbox controller, but I did notice a mouse problem when disabling my controller.
I disabled mouse acceleration, a lot of places says that it make the game run faster.
Is there any fix for this mouse issue ?

#12 Dimillian

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Posted 22 February 2013 - 07:46 AM

View PostHuan, on 22 February 2013 - 02:38 AM, said:

Am I the only one who can't use wine tricks vcrun2008?

EDIT: Figured out my problem was with the "windowed mode" of the game. Glad that's out of the way.

However, the game is unreasonably sluggish. I'll try to fiddle around with it to see what I can do. I'm surprised, given your testimony (and I don't think my iMac 208 is THAT old, especially since Skyrim used to work OK a year ago).

Skyrim is an heavy game, it was very sluggish on my Macbook Pro 2010, the Macbook Retina is a lot more powerful. On a 2008 machine I think you should run it under bootcamp.
What is your graphic card ?
You may also try the cider wrapper, I used to get better performance on an old configuration.

#13 zoroaster

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Posted 22 February 2013 - 06:52 PM

View PostDimillian, on 22 February 2013 - 07:44 AM, said:

So we are on the same boat :) I use a Xbox controller, but I did notice a mouse problem when disabling my controller.
I disabled mouse acceleration, a lot of places says that it make the game run faster.
Is there any fix for this mouse issue ?

The mouse issue is fixed since Wine 1.5.11, see here.

#14 Dimillian

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Posted 23 February 2013 - 08:07 AM

Here is my regedit key, this is the best possible settings for NVIDIA card, I did gain a lot of FPS, around 5-10.

http://cl.ly/N8iz


#15 Huan

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Posted 27 February 2013 - 08:50 PM

FYI, I stumbled upon a Wineskin wrapper from "Paul the Tall": http://www.paultheta...skyrim-mac.html

I tried it, it worked like a charm for my computer (iMac 2010; still a bit sluggish for my iMac 2008 though).

#16 zoroaster

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Posted 03 March 2013 - 01:08 PM

I switched back to my old Wine 1.4.1 version here. My experience is that this is still the most stable version and Wine 1.5.24 seems to have memory leaks because after a while (and in case of heavy combat  a very short while) Skyrim performance begins to degrade.

#17 Clay

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Posted 20 July 2013 - 10:02 AM

View PostHuan, on 22 February 2013 - 02:38 AM, said:

Am I the only one who can't use wine tricks vcrun2008?

EDIT: Figured out my problem was with the "windowed mode" of the game. Glad that's out of the way.

How exactly did you solve this? Have the same problem plus I have absolutely no sound when I use all of those settings … any idea?

#18 porthos

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Posted 26 July 2013 - 12:18 AM

I'm running a wine Skyrim, which was running with built in video drivers. However, one day had crash that require a force quit game. When restarting the game, it telling me that it's  going to detect my video card (radeon 5770); that Bethesda states this card run skyrim on ultra high.  So. Now the game is sluggish and unplayable thanks to it detecting video card. Question is there away to stop the game from doing the video card check?

#19 cluthz

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Posted 26 July 2013 - 05:00 AM

View Postporthos, on 26 July 2013 - 12:18 AM, said:

I'm running a wine Skyrim, which was running with built in video drivers. However, one day had crash that require a force quit game. When restarting the game, it telling me that it's  going to detect my video card (radeon 5770); that Bethesda states this card run skyrim on ultra high.  So. Now the game is sluggish and unplayable thanks to it detecting video card. Question is there away to stop the game from doing the video card check?

No, but you can set the config as you like.

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#20 ETH052004

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Posted 28 July 2014 - 01:14 AM

can you place a download link to where you got the wine game. i took the cider wrapper but it opened and closed. i dont know what i did wrong..

I was thinking to make my own wrapper from wine.

#21 ovvldc

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Posted 28 July 2014 - 06:30 AM

Making your own should be doable. Make a fresh wrapper and use Winetricks to install xact, vcrun2008, and d3dx9_42. That should do the trick. Also, you might want to manually set the amount of video RAM.

I use the CX12.5 engine now, but Zoroaster's 1.4.1 with XInput patch engine works very well too. I have trouble with SKSE not working on the 1.6.x and 1.7.x series..

#22 Dovahkiin_Drakamos

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Posted 20 September 2016 - 10:24 PM

Okay here ar my setting:
macbook pro retina, 15 in (mid 2015)
processor: 2.2 GHz intel core i7
memory: 16 GB 1600 MHz DDR3
Graphics Intel Iris Pro 1536 MB

i can ope skyrim and click new game one is is set to low graphics and i get sound an everything but i get a hard freeze two second after clicking "new" game. I downloaded it with the latest wineskin engine and wrappers, but i have no desire to mess with mods or cracks if i can avoid them-ive had my fair share of viruses. HELP. dont wann bootcamp and dont wanna buy windows




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