CrossOver is a popular compatibility layer for running Windows software on Mac, Linux, and Chromebooks, based on the open-source Wine project. The developers have been hard at work on a new version with improved DirectX 12 support and other changes, and now it’s finally available as the CrossOver 23 update.
CodeWeavers, the company behind CrossOver, outlined a few of the most notable improvements in a blog post. The headline feature is initial support for DirectX 12, the Windows graphics API that is used in many modern games and 3D applications. The blog post explained, “Diablo II Resurrected and Diablo IV are currently running well on macOS Ventura, making them the first DirectX 12 games working on a released macOS version.”
DirectX12 support has been possible on Wine and CrossOver for Linux thanks to the VKD3D project, which is primarily developed by Valve. That’s the reason why many Windows games are now playable on the Steam Deck and other Linux platforms. However, macOS doesn’t support the required Vulkan graphics library — Apple wants developers to use its own Metal graphics library instead. CodeWeavers pointed out the difficulty in translating DirectX instructions to Metal in a 2021 blog post, and nearly two years later, we’re seeing that work pay off.
CrossOver 23 is based on Wine 8.01, which means all the changes and improvements from the last few Wine updates have been integrated (over 5,000 changes, according to CodeWeavers). It also adds initial support for geometry shaders and transform feedback, which “unlocks many games that previously suffered from missing graphics or black screens in-game.” Some of the games that were previously broken and now work include Risk of Rain 2, TEKKEN 7, Octopath Traveler, Street Fighter V, Astroneer, MechWarrior 5: Mercenaries, and Trailmakers. The EA game launcher is also working, allowing games like The Sims 4, Titanfall 2, and Mass Effect Legendary Edition to be played.
CrossOver is paid software available through $74 per year subscription (so about $6.17/mo), which includes updates and bug fixes and email and phone support. If you don’t renew, you lose access to dedicated support and updates, but CrossOver should continue to work until updates to macOS or the Windows software cause something to break. No one likes subscriptions, but at least you can install CrossOver on as many of your own computers as you want — take that, Adobe. There’s also a lifetime purchase option for $494, which gives you access to updates and support for forever.
You can buy CrossOver from the company’s website, and right now, there’s a sale that drops the price to $56.98. As a warning, it’s not yet fully compatible with the upcoming macOS 14 Sonoma update, but CodeWeavers will release a free update with the fixes once they’re ready.