This is a guide for those who'd like to play FFXI on a Mac, but don't want to use Bootcamp.

It is based off this thread: https://www.ffxiah.com/forum/topic/22407/my-guide-to-ffxi-on-a-mac

What you need:

  • Homebrew (or Macports but I found it less effective)
  • Java Development package
  • X11
  • Apple Developer account to get
  • Xcode
  • FFXI Setup files (all 4 unzipped files can be downloaded free from official website)
  • Admin account on your mac, with a password

Getting Started:

  1. From your terminal, if you have homebrew, type: brew install wine

Important note: If you already have wine installed and it is set to 64bit, this may not work. What I did:
export WINEARCH="win32"
export WINEPREFIX=~/.wineffxi/ (creates a new folder, though I used the exact path to the folder, not ~/)
wineboot -u
While leaving the same terminal window open, I then navigated to the /.wineffxi/drive_c/program\ Files/ which is where I moved the unzipped FFXI files as in step 2 below. Then proceeded to step 3.

Installing FFXI:

  1. Unzip the FFXI setup folder you downloaded, if it was zipped.
  2. Navigate your terminal to the folder which has the FFXI setup file (i.e. Downloads, and the file is likely ffxisetup.exe. There should also be 3 data folders.)
  3. Type: wine ffxisetup.exe (or something similar if your unzipped file is something else)

The game should install as usual, just click the "next" button however many times to install all the expansions.


Configuring Windows:

  1. After installing the game (provided it all went according to plan), in your terminal type: winecfg
  2. In the window that comes up, on applications tab, click "Add application" and navigate to c:\program files\squareenix\playonlineviewer\ and select pol.exe, then click "open."
  3. Highlight pol.exe and choose which Windows to use while running it, XP and Vista are likely the best options.
  4. Choose Libraries tab and select dxdiagn from the dropdown menu and click "Add."
  5. Select dxdiagn and click "edit," slect "native (Windows)," click OK, then Apply.
  6. Select Graphics tab, and check the box next to "Emulate a virtual desktop." The 2 boxes below should have 800 and 600 in them. (You can close the winecfg now.)

Configuring game settings:

  1. In the terminal, type regedit
  2. Navigate to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\PlayOnlinexx\SquareEnix\FinalFantasyXI (where the xx stands for your region, i.e. US)
  3. The following is a quick reference for the values found in the above registry key:

Value Description 0000 MIP mapping 0001 Screen resolution width (in pixels) 0002 Screen resolution height (in pixels) 0003 Background resolution width (in pixels) 0004 Background resolution height (in pixels) 0007 Music and Sound effects (0=Off, 1=On) 0011 Environmental Animation (0=Off, 1=Normal, 2=Smooth) 0017 Bump Mapping (0=Off, 1=On) 0018 Texture Compression (0=High, 1=Low, 2=Uncompressed) 0019 On-Screen Maps (0=Compressed, 1=Uncompressed) 0022 Intro Movie (0=Disabled, 1=Enabled) 0034 Window Mode (0=Full Screen, 1=Window Mode) 

  1. The most important registers to edit are 1-4. I have found the game will not give improper screen resolution setting so registers 0001 and 0002 are very important. I found resolutions for 4:3 aspect ratios worked for my hardware. If you get the following text after going from pol and logging into FFXI you need to tweak your 0001 and 0002 values; "Terminated as error occurred in Final Fantasy XI. Failed to initialize Direct3D. Please check that this computer has the required specifications to run Final Fantasy XI." 

Registers 0001 and 0002 will determine both the actual size of the window FFXI runs in proportion to your monitors native resolution. I have my monitor set to 1680x1050 and my reg 0001 and 0002 are set for 1280x1024. When first double clicking the register it will appear a small window and the value for the register will be a hexadecimal number, but is easily changed to decimal under the option named base.

Register 0003 and 0004 will determine the back ground resolution and will have the biggest factor on the look of the game and frame rate. I have played with these and have settled on 1280x1024, but I will likely tweak them in the future. 

Running the game:

You probably don't want to navigate to the folder every time you run the game so:

Setting up a shortcut:

  1. If you installed Xquartz, click "Applications" then "customize", then "add"
  2. In Name column type FFXI
  3. In the command column type your path like: /usr/local/bin/wine /Users/yourname/.wine/drive_c/Program\ Files/playonline/ffxina/squareenix/playonlineviewer/pol.exe

Hopefully, everything works from there as normal.