Deciding about the best OS for gaming may seem easy for the experienced ones, unlike the newbies.
PC gaming is known for its variety, along with the huge scope of hardware and software customization.
As Windows, Linux, and macOS contend for being the best gaming OS, we are going to help you pick the winner. Read on.
Which is the Best OS for Gaming – Windows for Gaming
If there is an OS that is the most popular among users worldwide, it can be none other than Microsoft Windows. The first-ever Windows OS 3.0 was launched in 1990 that completely overhauled the way people used computers. It removed the user interface complications, making computers more usable for everyone.
Many more Windows OS versions were released later, including 95, 98, NT, 2000, etc. Following XP was Vista which was safer and smoother. The highly refined Windows 7 gave way to the tablet UI featuring Windows 8 and 8.1.
Currently, Windows 10 has become the marker of the company’s policy shift. Windows will keep advancing the 10 OS with updates.
Gaming Compatibility of Windows
The Vista Windows OS coincided with the rise of the popularity of gaming among users worldwide. Speaking of gaming in Windows, it is the best OS for gaming due to its consistency, reliability, and superior experiences offered.
There are plenty of benefits of gaming in Windows like:
- All the compatible Windows versions have consistently maintained framerates meant for optimal gaming.
- Windows is the most compatible OS for gaming which makes it attract the highest number of game launches. Its software provides the best support to almost all the games.
- PC games are mostly Windows-centric, with more than 20000 titles available for this OS. These also include some of the most popular and rare titles unavailable everywhere else.
- The games that are Windows compatible usually can be run through different means on other OS too. However, vice-versa cannot be the case.
- The biggest player in the market with the highest share of technologies
- Largest availability of games and programs
- Highly user-friendly interface
- Best support for almost all the games
- Regularly updated OS
- Internal malware protection is poorly functional
- The overall stability of the OS compromised
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Which is the Best OS for Gaming – Linux for Gaming
What makes the Linux OS different from others is its open-source functionality. It was launched as a freely flexible OS in 1991 with an open-source kernel that could be used by different OS systems. Linux is known to be more powerful, flexible, and less hardware operable, which serves professional purposes better.
The most popular Linux kernel-based OS is the AndroidOS by Google, which is used in smart devices. Some PC OS was also developed from it, including Ubuntu, Arch Linux, Valve’s SteamOS, Fedora, etc.
All these were free OS and conjointly built by several companies. However, Linux suffered from the major drawbacks of compatibility issues and a complicated user interface.
Gaming Compatibility of Linux
This OS is the second-best OS for gaming after Windows. Linux has only minor differences from Windows in terms of gaming compatibility. Following are some of the features:
- The framerates of all the Linux distributions are different, giving personalized and completely customized gaming performance. OS like Ubuntu and SteamOS are some of the best ones in this field.
- Linux has a limited selection of compatible games. Although trying to incorporate more technological changes, SteamOS Linux supports around 4000 games.
- The gaming options available in Linux are mostly user-centric. This means that while the Linux OS does include some distros that allow smoother gaming, they will only work out for particularly different gaming setups.
- While trying to play games on Linux OS, you will have to narrow down your choice to pick only among the games that are compatible with this OS. Also, the Linux compatible games are not
- Most of the popular games are not supported by the Linux OS. This includes titles like Overwatch, Fortnite, PUBG, etc., and many other AAA titles available in the market. The games available on the Linux OS platform include Minecraft, CS: GO, Dota 2, Team Fortress 2, etc.
- Linux can be the best OS for gaming for new gamers since it provides huge scope for the learning arrangement of a gaming setup. It allows the maximization of benefits through second-party applications and other modifications etc.
- Free of cost OS
- Includes plenty of distributions that can be used for different types of gaming
- The adaptability of the OS for newer installations
- Highly flexible
- Issues with software compatibility may occur
- Not a good choice for new gamers as the setup is difficult
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Which is the Best OS for Gaming – macOS for Gaming
Initially launched in 1984, macOS underwent a complete transformation in 2001 to become what it is today. While it’s the second most popular OS after Windows, it operates only on Apple devices.
The apple macOS technology is known for its tight security and privacy that comes with both merits and demerits. It is a highly efficient OS when working with compatible devices. The OS also proves to be secure, highly user-friendly, and much perfect when compared to others.
Despite all such great features, macOS has its downsides too. Some of them include low raw power quotient, software dependency for performance optimization, etc. All these drawbacks make the prices unworthy.
Gaming Compatibility of macOS
When compared to the above two OS that is the best OS for gaming, and macOS is the least compatible one. Although it has certain great features, there are plenty of limitations too. Following are some of the aspects of gaming in macOS:
- High-end gaming is not a service that macOS excels at. The support needed for gaming software was never a part of the macOS inventory. Even the games working on macOS aren’t the best at optimization and update levels.
- The operating system doesn’t have many problems but with the hardware compatibility levels. The apple devices are non-customizable and compact, which renders GPU burling and user modification difficult.
- To your surprise, macOS does support Stream along with more than 7000 Steam games. Other than that, it does include popular gaming titles, including Rocket League, Minecraft, CS: GO, League of Legends, etc.
- The macOS games are meant for certain target users only that can coincidently find their game on macOS.
- There exist certain games are dedicatedly designed for macOS. Such games are optimized accordingly to allow a smooth playing experience and open the scope to newer choices.
- Excellently stable OS
- Exceptional integration of hardware and software components
- Extremely secured OS
- Highly intuitive and neatly designed user interface
- OS exclusively compatible with the Apple devices
- Supports a very less number of third-party games and programs
Deciding the Winner of the best Gaming-compatible OS
We have seen the features of all the major OS separately and how compatible they are for gaming software. Now, it’s time that we choose the best OS for gaming. Well, we don’t think any name would be the right choice but Windows OS.
To be more specific here, Windows 10 is the best OS that supports the highest number of games. Windows 10 has got the most advanced features meant to support the latest technologies and streaming platforms. You can enjoy the most optimized and smooth gaming experience exclusively in the Windows OS.
There is no way Linux or macOS can compete with Windows in terms of the number of games supported. Linux users might consider switching to Windows if they want to have a better gaming experience. Coming to the macOS, it just is not the best OS for gaming if it’s not for the games exclusively supported by this OS.
While the number of games supported by macOS is higher than that of Linux, it still lags far behind in the optimal technologies needed for gaming. You will need to make external arrangements for a macOS to support high-quality gaming on the platform.
Online Gaming Stores – Best Alternatives for Native OS
While there are plenty of drawbacks in OS when it comes to gaming performance, alternatives have appeared with better support. We are talking about the online game stores that are proving to be more convenient and cheaper options.
The Blu-ray disks and Retail DVDs might still sound promising, but these online alternatives have better features.
One more reason to go for the online gaming platforms includes the free optical drives hardware. Manufacturers have chosen to launch hardware without including optical drives in them. Even such hardware cannot make it up for disc de-popularization.
Valve’s Stream serves as the sole activation base for most of the games released by different third-party gaming stores. It is compatible with all the three major OS we are discussing in this article.
Following are some of the great providers for Steam as the best OS for gaming:
Origin is a platform owned by EA meant to sell the games launched by EA solely. It is compatible with Windows and macOS and can also be installed on Linux PC but with compromised features.
net is a platform owned by Blizzard meant to sell the games launched by Blizzard solely. net is compatible with Windows and macOS.
3. Microsoft Store
Microsoft Store platform was initially launched with the name Windows Store. You can find the games launched by Microsoft and some other companies as well on it. This online store is only compatible with Windows OS.
GoG is probably the last most popular company that is trying to become a sole game seller platform other than Steam. It means Good Old Games which indicates the classic old games sold by the platform.
Alongside this, the platform only sells certain new titles that are extremely popular. Currently, GoG is only compatible with Windows and macOS and might get available for Linux devices, too, as the company is working on it.
FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions)
- Q: Can I play all the latest games on Linux?
- A: While Linux compatibility has improved, not all games are available for the platform. However, the number of Linux-compatible games is steadily increasing.
- Q: Does gaming on macOS require a Mac computer?
- A: Yes, macOS is exclusive to Apple’s Mac computers, so you need a Mac to enjoy gaming on macOS.
- Q: Is Windows the only OS for serious gamers?
- A: While Windows dominates the gaming market, Linux and macOS offer compelling alternatives with their own unique strengths.
- Q: Can I dual boot different operating systems for gaming?
- A: Yes, it is possible to dual boot multiple operating systems on your computer and choose between them depending on your needs.
- Q: Which OS is best for competitive gaming?
- A: Windows is often favored for competitive gaming due to its wide game library, excellent performance, and extensive hardware support.
While Windows OS is the best for gaming, it is understandable that every OS has its specialties and drawbacks. Choosing any of the three OS for gaming also depends on personal choice since each of them serves several unique purposes.
Tell us what you think about the best gaming OS, and share your valuable inputs in the comment section below.