How to play Eco on Mac

Screenshot of Eco

Eco is a popular open world survival craft game developed by Strange Loop Games. It was originally released for Windows on 6 Feb, 2018.

You still can't play Eco on Mac because a native Mac version was never released, but you can play Eco on Windows running inside Mac. Here's how.

What is Eco?

Here's a quick description:

Create a civilization capable of stopping a meteor without destroying the ecosystem in the process.

How to play Eco using Parallels

Even if you don't have a PC, you can install Windows on your Mac using Parallels. Parallels is virtualization software with full support of DirectX and GPUs, which will give you a decent graphics performance. With a couple of clicks, you can install Windows 10 on Mac and ten switch between MacOS and Windows instantly. You can run Windows just like on a regular PC, install Steam and enjoy Eco game on Mac.

Even though the virtualization is relatively easy to set up, it requires you to buy both Parallels and Windows licenses. Since you'll be running two operating systems side by side, you'll need to dedicate at least 20-30GB of disk space for this setup and also a strong machine to run both operating systems at the same time.

If you have an older Mac or have a Mac with an M1 chip which doesn't fully support virtualization yet, you might want to try a virtual computer running in the cloud such as Second Computer.

How to play Eco using Second Computer

Alternatively, you can create a virtual computer in the cloud using Second Computer. Instead of license fee for Windows and Parallels, you pay by the hour (so it's much cheaper if you are using it infrequently) and you control the computer via a web browser. That means even if you have an older computer, you can run the latest games in the cloud without maxing out your processor or memory.

One added benfit is that since the computer is located in the cloud, you can access it from any device you own. So in theory you can play Eco not just from your Mac, but also from your iPhone and Android device (it's not going to be a very nice experience though on such a small screen size).

Either way, Second Computer provides a nice alternative for running non-native Mac apps on your Mac by connecting to a computer in the cloud.

Happy gaming!

Open World Survival CraftSurvivalMultiplayerBuildingOpen World

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3 comments on this post

flytothemoon

Jan 20, 2021

Love the ambition, loathe the execution.For a game like Eco to work as intended, you need a large group of players locked into the same small world. That's part of the reality of ecology: we all have to live here. We all have to share resources, make a living, think about our own needs and those of our children. But this game? I couldn't even play on a multiplayer server without my computer freezing or the game straight up kicking me out because my connection wasn't good enough.Instead, I spent a few painful hours poking around solo just to see if there was any fun to be had. There wasn't. The resource-gathering loop of the game is horrendously tedious. The building is slow. The skill progression is grindy. The interface is unintuitive and unattractive. All the actual gameplay pillars that should be enjoyable to interact with have been treated as secondary concerns. This leaves the only avenue of interest to be the potential sociological implications behind the intended multi-player experience. But again, unless you're already deeply committed to the premise, even that isn't super appealing.As I said, I love the ambition on display here. To even attempt to simulate something this complicated is pretty mind-blowing, and I salute the vision of the designers (in theory).There's a lot I could say here about how these devs approached a very big, largely unexplored technical challenge. For the purposes of a Steam review, I don't think my opinions have too much value in this regard. I'm not a professional game developer. I can barely spell 58008 on a pocket calculator, much less could I have pulled off something as cohesive as what the creators of ECO have come up with.All that being said, I just can't recommend spending money on this title as a games consumer. It's an interesting project. I hope more concepts of this kind are eventually made by others, who can perhaps analyze ECO more effectively than I can anyway.

sweetc

Aug 4, 2020

After 4 different servers and 148 hours of game-play I have to say that I don't see playing this game online again. No one works together or cooperates. As soon as you get rolling a group will come in and blackball you plum out of trade. Looking at it's long history and slew of issues, I really cant see a reason to either play it solo or even keep it installed and wait for a patch. I think a private group of maybe 12 people with the same playing times could have a really great game, but that's the only way this game really works well. Coop games only work with people you know. Lock your server and keep it to a controlled few and it's a great game to play.

_Mitch_

July 13, 2020

---{Graphics}---☐ Masterpiece☑ Beautiful☐ Good☐ Decent☐ Will do☐ Bad☐ Awful---{Gameplay}---☐ Try not to get addicted☐ Very good☐ Good☐ Nothing special☑ Ehh☐ Bad☐ Awful---{Audio}---☐ Eargasm☐ Very good☐ Good☑ Decent☐ Not too bad☐ Bad☐ Earrape---{Audience}---☑ 0+☐ 3+☐ 7+☐ 12+☐ 16+☐ 18+☐ 21+---{PC Requirements}---☐ Check if you can run the calculator☐ Potato☐ Minimum☐ Decent☑ Fast☐ Rich boy☐ Ask NASA if they have a spare computer---{Difficulity}---☐ Just press some buttons☐ Easy☐ Significant brain usage☐ Easy to learn / Hard to master☑ Not so easy☐ Difficult☐ Dark Souls---{Story}---☐ Epic☐ Lovely☐ Good☐ Average☐ Not great☑ Something is not nothing I guess☐ Doesnt have---{Game Time}---☐ Endless☐ Very Long☐ Long☑ Depends on you☐ Not too short☐ Short☐ Long enough for a cup of tea---{Price}---☐ Buy now☐ Consider to buy it☐ Worth the price☑ Wait for sale☐ Maybe if you have some spare money left☐ Do not buy it☐ Do not throw money into a trash can---{Bugs}---☐ Never had any☑ Minor bugs☐ Few bugs☐ Some bugs☐ Can get annoying☐ Ruining the game☐ The game itself is a bug