AMD unveils GAME! platform for gaming PCs

After unveiling its Business Class enterprise platform less than a month ago, AMD has pulled a certification for gaming PCs out of its sleeve. In a nutshell, machines that bear the new AMD GAME! badge couple AMD processors with Radeon HD 3000-series graphics cards, and AMD guarantees them to deliver “an enhanced and simplified mainstream PC gaming experience.”

To qualify for an AMD GAME! logo, a system must include at least an Athlon X2 5600+ processor, an AMD 770 or Nvidia nForce 500-series chipset, a Radeon HD 3650 graphics processor, and 2GB of RAM. AMD says such PCs should crank out 30 frames per second or more at 1280 x 1024 in current games like Enemy Territory: Quake Wars, Half-Life 2: Episode Two, World of Warcraft, Command & Conquer 3: Tiberium Wars, and Sims 2 Deluxe. There’s also an AMD GAME! Ultra spec that mandates at least a Phenom X4 9650 CPU, AMD 770 chipset, and Radeon HD 3870 graphics. GAME! Ultra machines should manage a 30 FPS minimum at 1600 x 1200 with the same titles.

According to AMD, GAME!-certified systems are available right now from gaming PC vendors Alienware, Cyberpower PC, iBuypower, Maingear, and Velocity Micro. AMD also expects the GAME! badge to make its way onto retail PCs in the second half of this year.

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    • NoOther
    • 12 years ago

    I think this is just ridiculous and unnecessary in my opinion. Anyone should be able to achieve these framerates. Hell with either AMD or Intel buying a machine today, you should be able to achieve 30fps at 1920×1200 in a number of games. It all depends on your graphics settings in the game. Are they going to start changing around their qualifications because of games like Crysis. Just what are you supposed to be able to run at these resolutions, ultra high graphics? I think really there is no point to this. You have to buy a specific machine, with a specific setup, and play specific games to qualify. Why is this even being talked about? Its simply propaganda and another way AMD is trying to get some kind of sales going.

    • pins
    • 12 years ago

    The only thing that strikes me is that they might want to add a year to the logo, as (according to the article about this at The Register) the specs for game and game ultra will be updated every six months. So if this takes off in any sort of way and games publishes start putting things like ‘plays on AMD Game’ platform on the box, then some chump’s going to buy last years Game platform, and be disappointed. Does that make sense to anyone else?

      • MrJP
      • 12 years ago

      Good idea. The only concern is that if the marketeers add in the numbers for the year, they won’t be able to help themselves from adding in a few more levels with some more letters, and then we’ll end up with:

      AMD GAME! 08
      AMD GAME! 08 Ultra
      AMD GAME! 08 Ultra XT
      AMD GAME! 08 Ultra XT XXX
      AMD GAME! 08 Ultra XT XXX Golden Sample Turbo
      …and so on.

        • green
        • 12 years ago

        it’s interesting
        the pc market has always had a sliding target of ‘minimum requirements’ for a game it’s generally enforced an upgrade cycle of sorts
        now that at least 1 company is imposing a set standard it will be interesting to see what happens with games
        do developers stick to that standard resulting in games that are available to a wider audience but results in hardware stagnating as the games don’t demand more performance
        or do developers keep doing as they always have and amd just keeps updating the badge every 6-12 months resulting in nothing more than maintaining an artificial badge and customers paying the badge tax

        i have to admit it is an interesting marketing tactic
        this obviously targets the less tech savy (ie. the majority) resulting in amd trying declare what the ‘standard’ for games are… regardless of whether or not their parts perform well
        for example (and as example only):
        – amd sets the (ultra) bar at x19xx
        – nvidia releases 8800 gts and it’s much faster
        – amd maintains that the x19xx will run the latest games
        – amd delays 28xx series for a few months (lets say 6)
        – “the masses” ignore the 8800 as the bar has been set
        – amd then releases the 29xx. it doesn’t perform well
        – amd maintains the x19xx is still all you’ll need
        – “the masses” continue to ignore the 8800
        – six months later amd releases the 3870×2
        – amd sets the (ultra) bar at 3870×2

          • Meadows
          • 12 years ago

          You’re a fanboy if I’ve ever seen one. You’re claiming the masses were ignoring the GeForce 8800 cards and haven’t even looked at one before the crappy HD 3870 X2 came out – but that’s wrong (and yes, crappy, because they should make a decent card instead of trying to win with a sandwich board).
          Many types of the 8800s sold extremely well and spelled trouble for AMD. I assume you’re not counting the derivatives that have different numbers (9600, 9800) but are basically the same thing – if we count those as well, then they didn’t just sell extremely well but handed AMD’s ass to them too.

          Do some research before you dismiss the so called “GeForce 8800”. I should also let you know that nVidia released the GTX first, and not the GTS. Also, note that I’m not being a fan for a change but rather trying to inform you.

            • MrJP
            • 12 years ago

            I suggest you read again more carefully before you start throwing fanboy accusations around. πŸ˜‰

            He was clearly suggesting a hypothetical situation where AMD had this GAME! marketing running from before the 2900XT launch. The 8800 was such a strong product that things probably wouldn’t have turned out like this anyway, but it’s an interesting thought that if AMD can sell the idea of a fixed basic specification to both the mass market and the game developers, then it could be a very powerful way of keeping their products prominent in the market regardless of overall performance leadership.

            I can’t see Intel and Nvidia sitting idly by while AMD stakes out the standard specification for a gaming PC, but they’ve been at each other’s throats so much recently that cooperation seems unlikely in the short term. Perhaps that’s the key to this: AMD is moving now to try to mark out some turf before Intel gets up to speed with GPUs and starts to sell a Centrino-like branded platform for games.

            • Meadows
            • 12 years ago

            I see.

            Well, as for intel, I doubt anyone has to worry about their competency in the field of graphics processing – people want proof, not promise.
            And nVidia – they can’t release a platform on their own without CPUs, AMD won’t help them make a competing platform, intel won’t help them sell anything (it’s actually a nice thing that prebuilt AMD computers take up nForce motherboards too – anything against intel, I guess). They don’t even have a half platform until they fix their motherboards, so yes, looks like AMD has a green light in front of them.

        • willyolio
        • 12 years ago

        i think year numbers would definitely be needed for this. kinda like car.

        AMD GAME 2008 should guarantee that it plays all 2007 games at a good quality/resolution/framerate.

    • thermistor
    • 12 years ago

    #30 Chauvanism at its finest…That’s OK, all the allowance my wife lets me have goes to computers anyhow.

      • alex666
      • 12 years ago

      It was a joke, I couldn’t resist.

    • alex666
    • 12 years ago

    Isn’t the fastest growing segment of gamers adult females? So having this logo on a computer would really help these women know which computer to buy.

    • provoko
    • 12 years ago

    30 frames per second or more at 1280 x 1024
    30 FPS minimum at 1600 x 1200

    This is what GPU companies and desktop companies should be going for.

    • MrJP
    • 12 years ago

    I think this is a pretty good idea compared with most of the marketing drivel that these companies usually come out with. It’s a win for the average retail buyer, who will actually get something that can do what it says on the box. And it’s a win for AMD if it means they get to sell a few more Phenoms. (Of course, anyone “in the know” knows that you could take the X2 5600+ out of the “Game” machine and drop it into the “Game Ultra” machine, and you’d probably get much the same frame rates with those games at those resolutions).

      • ludi
      • 12 years ago

      Bump.

      Yeah, I know the both of us are talking into thin air, since the “See no non-tech, hear no non-tech, speak no non-tech” crew is busy piling on this move for being insufficiently tech, but I likewise think that it’s better than most of the branding schemes AMD has spit up lately.

    • ludi
    • 12 years ago

    This is at least a step up from previous AMD marketing strategies, which was to come up with Intel-like code name words for platform branding but then fail to promote them, leaving John Q. Public with no clue what the word might mean and why he should want it (unlike, e.g. Centrino, which is equally meaningless as a word but had a bulldozer of a marketing campaign behind it).

    “Game!” and “Game! Ultra”: Do I want to game, or do I want to game faster? It’s simple and efficient enough that it might actually work.

    • cegras
    • 12 years ago

    AMD, to be honest, has so far been a much better experience for me.

    Getting intel’s southbridge to work properly (and it still doesn’t) was a total nightmare for me. But I might just chalk that up to inexperience.

      • swaaye
      • 12 years ago

      I’m guessing here that you haven’t had many (more than one?) Intel-based systems. Just what problems are you having? Intel has been superior in every way to my AMD platform experiences over the past 15 years. Not that I’ve had particularly bad times with AMD stuff, but Intel usually just works.

        • A_Pickle
        • 12 years ago

        AMD or Intel systems don’t bother me.

        I have never had a good experience with an Nvidia card. I could care less about the performance — Radeons play games just fine, and I don’t have to wait six months for drivers.

          • Meadows
          • 12 years ago

          I guess you’re just the next person spouting ignorance about nVidia’s betas which are fairly regular.

            • willyolio
            • 12 years ago

            some people prefer not to use beta drivers, thanks.

            • Meadows
            • 12 years ago

            NVidia’s “WHQL” drivers are the same, just with a Microsoft stamp. So, I don’t get your point.

          • ludi
          • 12 years ago

          Define “never”. I’ve used twelve 3D cards from 3dfx/ATi/Nvidia in the past ten years, starting with the original VoodooGraphics, and the only seriously bad luck I ever had was with third-party drivers (Diamond, please report for execution) and ATi drivers prior to around 2003 or so.

        • shank15217
        • 12 years ago

        you are not giving any real information, just stating an opinion “Intel has been superior in every way to my AMD platform experiences over the past 15 years”… hah

          • NoOther
          • 12 years ago

          This is all opinion based. It has also been my experience that Intel platforms have been more consistent and performed better than AMD/ATI. It has also been my experience on review and benchmark sites that this has been consistently shown. The only time AMD was on par or slightly a leg up was with Athlon64 chips, but that was quickly squashed by Intel’s new designs. I have been building systems 1995 and these are my personal experiences:

          1) I have known far more people that own Intel/nVidia setups than I have people that have AMD/ATI setups. The market share charts show this same impact as well.

          2) Even though I have known far more Intel/nVidia owners, they have had fewer problems with systems than the AMD/ATI owners.

          From these 2 things alone, that shows to me that AMD/ATI have far ‘more’ problems per percentage than Intel/nVidia. If you have more customers and fewer problems, there must be a reason. Thus I have always seen a much greater percentage of AMD/ATI users have problems than Intel/nVidia.

          The other thing to note here is that I have seen much more fanatical AMD/ATI people than Intel/nVidia. Several of the people I knew that did use AMD/ATI would not even report their problems for fear or ‘proving’ that their products were inferior in any way at all than Intel/nVidia. That is just ridiculous, if your products doesn’t work right, it doesn’t work right, get it fixed. Fandom at the expense of your own personal experience is completely retarded. I love Intel and nVidia, but only so far as they give me products that work consistently. I was very dissapointed with 680i and 780i experiences and almost bowed out of the nVidia motherboard market completely, but then they came out with the 790i and all was good again.

      • moose17145
      • 12 years ago

      Intel’s southbridge, or NVidia’s southbridge? Because i have yet to have any problems with any Intel chipset. Have had plenty of issues with NVidia chipsets though.

    • thermistor
    • 12 years ago

    Hey, if Intel can platform-ize with indigenous Intel products, why not AMD?

    If I was an RSP in a chain store, I’d be loving this. I could just offer a good-better-best scenario for my customers and let the chips fall where they may. Kinda like the ‘brain’ thing.

    Unfortunately for AMD, the only place where this makes sense is in retail, and for the (declining) number of people content to buy a desktop. The HP/Acer/Lenovo’s of the world have not seen fit thus far to do a retail gaming brand/logo (akin to Dell’s XPS)…which leads me to believe there just isn’t the market for this.

    • PoohPall
    • 12 years ago

    It is great to see AMD supporting the PC as a gaming platform. Their processors offer significant value for the majority of the market.

    • d0g_p00p
    • 12 years ago

    How can this be bad? Much better for any non-enthusiast (ie majority of the public) who want’s to purchase a PC that can play games.

    Better than getting the Vista and Core 2 Duo stickers on your computer and trying to play any current game on the market with your built in Intel GMA video.

      • amerikhan
      • 12 years ago

      agreed.

      According to Intel, its not worth upgrading your GPU. Just keep buying more expensive Intel processors. Thats the ticket.
      *Sarcasm*

      • Hattig
      • 12 years ago

      This is the sort of proposition AMD should be putting forward to potential customers, who might otherwise buy a Core 2 based system, with naff Intel graphics, and then realise that it sucks for games.

      Of course a logo and stickers doesn’t help much if you’re not educating your potential customers … but maybe in store it’ll help when people see the logos. Of course the salesman will probably talk the purchaser into buying something with Integrated Intel graphics anyway.

    • PRIME1
    • 12 years ago

    AMD Radeon 3650 Game Live! Phenom X4 9650 Vista Home Premium Ultimate Ready.

    That’s one big sticker to cram onto a case.

      • eitje
      • 12 years ago

      they’ll be etching it into the case window. πŸ˜€

    • amerikhan
    • 12 years ago

    Intel’s new “smart, smarter, genius” ratings that they place on their processors are much more lame than AMD GAME!. Talk about dumbing things down.

    • tfp
    • 12 years ago

    Well they have to do something while their products are not compelling.

      • anjulpa
      • 12 years ago

      And hopefully this earns back some of the constantly diminishing public image.

      • Meadows
      • 12 years ago

      Much like intel marketing their P4 somehow, right? πŸ˜‰

    • flip-mode
    • 12 years ago

    I like how the logos fit together.

    “Game” = Lame. AMD Lame. Great job AMD, don’t even make it hard for me.

    Besides the “Game” slogan I think it’s a much better marketing campain than the “Live” platform which should have been AMD “Video”. Heh, come to think of it, “Video” sounds a lot better than “Live”. Live just doesn’t speak to anything, IMO.

      • eitje
      • 12 years ago

      q[

    • herothezero
    • 12 years ago

    To whom exactly are these people marketing?

    Is anyone at home there?

      • Jigar
      • 12 years ago

      yes, people who don’t know sh_t about computer can relay on this logos πŸ˜‰

      • willyolio
      • 12 years ago

      you are aware that there’s tons of people who want a high-end gaming computer, but have little technical computer knowledge? how do you think alienware stays in business?

        • tocatl
        • 12 years ago

        Agree :)…

    • indeego
    • 12 years ago

    EXTREMEg{http://www.fwtpfcu.org/asp/products/product_3.asp<]Β§ )

      • BobbinThreadbare
      • 12 years ago

      Haha, that’s great.

    • Meadows
    • 12 years ago

    “Live!” was a pretty dull and over-used naming clichΓ© already, and then they come up with something that sounds outright hilarious: “GAME!”

      • flip-mode
      • 12 years ago

      Word. I don’t know how it is that AMD sucks so bad at this. I guess they’re targeting people that need things explained…. simply?

        • Meadows
        • 12 years ago

        You are on point.

        • willyolio
        • 12 years ago

        can you suggest something better? if a non-techie is looking for a gaming computer, and one says “AMD GAME” on it, while some other computers have “Live” or “centrino 2” or “Vista Certified”- well, gee, that actually does help, doesn’t it?

        what would you propose? “AMD GETS30FPSINCOD4ANDQUAKEWARSAT1280x1024”?

        it’s easy to throw insults. that puts you on the average IQ of an XBOX Live gamer. now, to get into the double digits, you’ll have to do better.

          • flip-mode
          • 12 years ago

          I think I could.

            • Price0331
            • 12 years ago

            I don’t see any suggestions from you though.

            Hmmm, I guess you can’t.

          • eitje
          • 12 years ago

          maybe have easier-to-understand processor & video card ratings & models?

          • Price0331
          • 12 years ago

          I agree, I think this is a decent solution to the masses that want to play computer games, but may not know what they are buying.

          Making it simple is always a plus.

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