A grumble at Call of Duty 4…

in Mac Software edited February 2015

I’m not a hardcore gamer but I do enjoy video games when I get the chance. One of the joys of owning a Mac is the feeling of perfection and quality. Games like Portal 2, Limbo, Bastion and Trine 2 all look and run great on a Mac (especially with a Bluetooth PS3 controller). This is where I start my Call of Duty 4 rant...

COD4 maybe a 4 year old game but it’s still one of the best FPSs available on the Mac, and a game I’d heard so much about but hadn’t played. It seemed like the ideal choice.

COD4 seemed to run well on the MacBook Pro with all graphics options set to their maximum values. But there was something amiss which wasn’t immediately obvious but once spotted was a very obvious - there were no shadows being cast by characters or objects! WTF!

I contacted Aspyr and their response was, to me, surprising: “since your hardware model was released after the latest update for Call of Duty 4, shadows are disabled in game as it does not recognize your device”. So COD4 does not recognise any Mac released after 2008 and therefore turns off certain graphical options including dynamic shadows! Even trying to manually editing the COD4 config.cfg file to force shadows doesn’t work. As a Mac user who enjoys the privileges of product perfection, this was really annoying!

Grudgingly I downloaded the Windows version of COD4 and installed it on a Windows 7 Bootcamp partition (the product key for COD4 Mac works on the Windows version too). The Windows version allows for shadows plus there are a number of other graphical options available too. Playing the game in Windows not only looks a lot better but it also feels smoother too. The Mac version pales in significance to the PC version. A couple of screenshots below. See if you can tell the difference...

That’s the last time I buy anything ported by Aspyr!

Rant over,



  • Reply 1 of 1

    Hi Mateus 109,


    ?I have just read your post complaining about the dynamic shadows of your Call of Duty 4 Modern Warfare, I do also have this game in my mac and at the beginning It didn't have dynamic shadows too...But I have recently found a solution for this game so that in the graphic settings menu the option dynamic shadows does appear, the solution is to update the game to v1.7.1 and then download XQuartz which is almost the same as the directx for windows, then just install XQuarts and the cod1.7.1 patch, and there you are, it did work in my cod 4 modern warfare with all the settings at maximum...


    Hope you won't have any trouble with yours...;)

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