Oh Parallels, why have you forsaken me?

So, despite being a die-hard mac zealot, I do occasionally have a need for Windows. Specifically, I need windows for many of the games I love to play. So, I’ve been using Boot Camp for a while to play Oblivion and Galactic Civilizations, and I got Parallels 2.0 and 2.5 running to play 2D games.

Parallels has been great for many things, and 2.0 and 2.5 are really stellar products, but they’ve lacked support for 3D games (or 3D anything really) and that’s been a real disappointment. So it was with a great deal of excitement that I plunked down my upgrade fee for Parallels 3.0, which promised (direct quotes “New! Run today‚Äôs most popular PC games on a Mac with support for 3D graphics” and “2. Play the hottest 3D games! OpenGL and DirectX support lets you explore a whole new world of 3D games and applications right on your Mac.”)

Sadly, I was in for quite a disappointment. These claims are simply false.

First – Parallels only supports the long-obsolete DirectX 8.1 (DirectX 10 is the current release)

Second – Only a handful of games are actually supported, and those are all extremely old/obsolete. The release notes list about two dozen games, none of which could be considered “today’s most popular” or “the hottest” – some were hot in the late 90s, but that really won’t cut it.

Third – This “update” was sold for a $40 preorder. Many of us, based on our very positive experiences with Parallels in the past ordered the upgrade on faith. This was a mistake, and I regret it, but I also feel that Parallels themselves should have known that it is unethical to pre-sell a product based on false promises and defective software.

I’ve written to Parallels tech support, who were utterly unhelpful (reaching them in the first place is an ordeal – there is no direct email address, no phone support, no chat support, and several hoops to jump through before the web-form will allow a question to be submitted.) They claim that because they were “first” with 3D support (a bald-faced lie, as VMWare and Crossover both had (poor, but better than this) 3D months before this release) they can’t be held accountable for the feature’s defects.

It’s not just me – the Parallels Support Forum has been a firestorm of activity, with similar comments. There has been little or no response from parallels themselves. It’s time to announce a refund policy or a timetable for actual, honest, working 3D support. Are you out there Parallels? We’re done trusting you on blind faith. We have options now. VMWare has been honest and aggressive, and their features actually WORK. Get your act together – I for one won’t be sinking another penny into your defective fraudware.

One thought on “Oh Parallels, why have you forsaken me?

  1. I totally agree with you on their customer support, but at least you got through.. Parallels are notorious for simply ignoring support requests. How is that for business ethics?

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