ZeniMax responds to Elder Scrolls Online’s Mac problems

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Gamers who are using Mac to play the Elder Scrolls Online have been complaining about the game being unplayable.

The first issue reported about this problem started on October 22, 2018. According to Mac users, they experienced extremely low FPS after the v4.2.5 patch update.

Some players say the FPS drop they experienced ranged from 80-100 down to 15-25 FPS. This FPS drop made it difficult for Mac players to participate in Elder Scrolls Online’s PvP mode.

One player reported that according to the v4.2.5 patch notes, the developer of Elder Scrolls Online, ZeniMax, switched the Mac graphics renderer from OpenGL to MoltenVK (Metal).

The switch is said to support the upcoming major release of macOS, the macOS Mojave.

ZeniMax has just confirmed the problem the patch has caused, on the Elder Scrolls Online support forum:

We’ve been actively working non-stop on the Mac performance issue with the new API.

It’s one of our highest priority tasks, but it’s a complicated issue that requires a large amount of reworking / testing and we’ve had to fast track a lot of this work due to OpenGL no longer being supported by Apple.

– Alex Tardif, Graphics Engineer

Alex Tardif added that in the future, OpenGL would not be an option because ZeniMax has a new API for compute shader support for computers running macOS.

This will apparently allow ZeniMax to utilize graphics hardware for things they couldn’t do before, like GPU particles.

Apple’s support for OpenGL has officially ended.

Apple announced it on the Worldwide Developers Conference in June 2018. But it doesn’t mean that OpenGL had been removed by Apple.

It could take Apple about two years before they could completely remove OpenGL.

So, the sudden move on ZeniMax to switch away from OpenGL has made some Elder Scrolls Online players confused.

With ZeniMax admitting that the FPS drop in Elder Scrolls Online is a complicated issue, it seems like it could take them some more weeks to finally be able to give their players a proper fix.

Some players have began demanding compensation for the lost time because they had already paid their subscriptions for the next 11 months. It’s not clear yet whether the affected players are elligible for compension.