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Half-Life 2: Episode Two Black Box Bundle

TweakTown has a photo of a voucher that will be bundled with AMD HD 2900XT video cards that will provide purchasers of the upcoming accelerators with a free copy of the Half-Life 2: Episode Two Black Box. Hopefully the timing of this will work out better than the 9800 XT/9600 XT Half-Life 2 bundle (story), which ended up preceding the release of the game (story) by more than a year.

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28. Re: No subject May 10, 2007, 22:53 Ecthelion
 
Didn't they just charge extra because of the bundled games?
I don't think so. Their price points have always seemed to remain about the same over the years. Kind of like actual games (I still remember when everyone was predicting they would go up, and we got like 3 games that cost more than $50 - meanwhile, games are still $50 just like they were 5 years ago).

 
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27. Re: Jerykk May 10, 2007, 03:35 Jerykk
 
To me, I read that as: the numbers of the ATI card are a little better than the one Nvidia card and not as good as the other Nvidia card.

Actually, the numbers are significantly better. 20+ FPS difference in many cases. It only really matters when it pertains to the games I play and the settings I play at. I don't really care how a card performs at 1024x768 because I never play at that resolution. I also don't care how Prey performs because it already runs fine on my system and I've already beaten it.

However, there are many games that my card can't really handle at 1280x1024, max details. Supreme Commander drops into the single digits when the battles get busy. Oblivion runs like utter crap too in various locales. Gothic 3 runs like utter crap regardless of where I'm at. C&C3 is capped at 30 FPS, but it drops into the 20s and below when there are a lot of units on-screen. Spider-Man 3 runs like utter crap all the time. I still haven't beaten Call of Juarez because it runs so crappy. Sure, I could improve performance on these games substantially by lowering resolution and detail settings but then I wouldn't be getting the best experience.

That way, you spend about 1 hour of research time every couple years instead of 100 hours.

Finding out what cards are good doesn't exactly take 100 hours. A significant new card comes out approximately once a year. A quick glance at the wealth of reviews on launch will give you a good indication of the card's performance. It's more of a 10-minute affair. Given that I only upgrade after a couple of card generations, I only read reviews thoroughly when I'm actually planning on buying one.

Instead of worrying about it and researching every damned card that comes out of those two companies, just stop bothering and wait for a game that you love enough to ask some of the tech-geeks that care about all that shit and get a card on recommendation from them

Technically, I'm something of a tech geek myself so there's no need to ask for others' opinions. Also no need to research every card released, since most cards are budget/midrange cards and I'm only interested in the high-end ones which are considerably less common.

 
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26. Re: Jerykk May 10, 2007, 02:44 Zephalephelah
 
I edited it to make more sense. I didn't expect you were online reading it right now.

 
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25. Re: Jerykk May 10, 2007, 02:42 Jerykk
 
Um, why was that post directed towards me? It had nothing to do with HD2900XT/X benchmarks or their comparisons to the 8800 series.

That said, I like my games to look pretty and move smoothly. I can't play at anything below 1280x1024 and even the aliasing in that is pretty terrible. And I have to have all the detail settings maxed out. Anything less and I'm not getting the optimal experience. Unfortunately, to get the optimal experience, you have to have the optimal hardware so I find myself upgrading after every couple of videocard generations.

This comment was edited on May 10, 02:44.
 
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24. Jerykk May 10, 2007, 02:33 Zephalephelah
 
I own a X800XL. I recently picked up a 512MB card and there wasn't much difference at all so I put the older card back in.

I've completely changed my Computer Hardware purchasing methodology. In the past, I would buy the 3rd best everything whenever something new came out. This saved me a lot of money, kept me in the know about new technology, but I was still spending way too much on computer gear.

Now, my method is that I'll wait until a game comes out which requires the use of higher end equipment, and then I'll buy that equipment. I haven't spent very much on my computer and I don't have any upgrade plans at all. I'm not ever stressed that I only have a X800XL because it plays the games I play just fine.

After Crysis is out and people think it is unbelievably awesome and nothing even compares; then I'll upgrade. Until then, I don't even have to read about what's new or what's going to be new. Frankly, I don't give a shit. It's a complete waste of my time to bother with such useless information.

When I see screenshots from a game that looks like a leap forward, I'll research what the players think. If they like it a lot, then I'll upgrade. Until then, when someone rattles off the spec numbers on their computer; I don't know what they're talking about, nor do I care.

It makes life so much more simple when you use an upgrade plan like mine. You become completely satisfied with your current system and there is no envy of anyone else's stuff at all. When you learn of a game that requires upgrading, then you can research and upgrade at that time. The end result is that I'll be happy with my computer all the time and spend far less money on it. Win-win situation.



Oh yeah: I wrote all that because you speak of this video card pwning that one except when it's in a shootout with the other one's brother which ends up being better.

To me, I read that as: the numbers of the ATI card are a little better than the one Nvidia card and not as good as the other Nvidia card. It certainly isn't pwning. It's not like you're talking about a card that has 1Gig on it versus a card that has 8Mb on it. That would be pwning. So I'm saying that you're idea of much better (pwning) is my idea of nearly identical and I'd be happy with either.

Once you stop looking at every single benchmark and just realize that buying a good video card will give you good results, then all that tedious research about 1.4% better here and 11% better there is all a bunch of marketing bullshit to get you to buy their product. The reality of it is that any consumer card is going to be replaced with a better card soon. And the card you can buy in 2009 *WILL* pwn the card you can buy now.

Having the best doesn't even mean having the best when you look at it that way. You can never ever have the best in technology because there will always be something better... soon. Instead of worrying about it and researching every damned card that comes out of those two companies, just stop bothering and wait for a game that you love enough to ask some of the tech-geeks that care about all that shit and get a card on recommendation from them. That way, you spend about 1 hour of research time every couple years instead of 100 hours. You also buy less cards. Not buying the computer hardware all the time means you can shift that money to other things, like a better car or a nicer stereo system. It just seems like a complete waste of time and money to keep up with the graphics card industry. Even Valve doesn't give a shit about it. Did you see the specs for their computers? It's a waste of time and money even if you have the time and money to waste. It's just plain stupid every and any way you look at it.


This comment was edited on May 10, 02:43.
 
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23. Re: ... May 10, 2007, 01:47 Jerykk
 
the benchmarks for the HD2900XT blow, with even the 8800GTS trouncing it in most tests.

Erm, from what I've seen, the 2900XT pwns the 8800 GTS. The big letdown is that the 2900XTX gets pwned by the 8800 GTX. Of course, all the benchmarks I've seen thus far have been rather dubious. I'll wait until the cards are actually released before passing judgment.

 
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22. Re: ... May 9, 2007, 22:42 Krovven
 
Well, I shall by getting Ep2 for TF2 but I won't be supporting Valve again until they come up with something new or something seriously worthwhile - they've been coasting off their current IP catalogue and haven't ventured something new in a long time.

From what I've seen and heard of Ep2, I think you will change your mind once you play it.

While Ep1 & 2 have both taken longer than expected (I just don't ever take their release dates serious anymore, it's out when its out) they have released more content and done engine updates faster than they had been doing before the release of HL2.

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21. Re: ... May 9, 2007, 20:10 Animals for Crackers
 


The 9800 Pro completely smoked HL2 on full settings for me too

I'm actually still using the 9800 Pro 256-meg(currently in the market for a new card) and for the most part "newer" high-end games still run fine at 1078...any higher than that and things start to fall apart fast. Surprised at the longevity of this card. Probably going to switch to Nvidia this time around though...only reason I got an ATI card originally is because it was a deal. Normally an Nvidia kinda guy

 
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20. Re: ... May 9, 2007, 18:22 4D-Boxing
 
I totally agree with you but didn't creative try to hype up something about game voice for the X-FI..

In a game like HL2:EP2 when using the voice option to chat it would make it sound like the sound came from inside the game. By this I mean if you where trapped in a cave taking enemy fire & called for help you would here the gunshots in the background & echo from the cave your footsteps in the dirt etc..

Knowing creative that stuff will never be seen in a game. Cretive driver support is probably the worst I've ever experienced so I do not expect any creative sound card feature to worth Cr@p.

 
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19. Re: No subject May 9, 2007, 17:22 Tango
 
The 9800 Pro completely smoked HL2 on full settings for me too
Yeah me too, though I think it bust one of the shader units on it after a bit too much overplaying

 
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18. ... May 9, 2007, 17:10 theyarecomingforyou
 
I always wonder how Creative manages to find new features to put into sound cards.
They don't. With the X-Fi they just slapped on some RAM and the 24bit crystalizer (which is just a shit EQ)... it doesn't even support PCIe FFS(!) and don't even get me started on their shit driver support.

NEway, it's time Valve stopped supporting AMD/ATi... the benchmarks for the HD2900XT blow, with even the 8800GTS trouncing it in most tests. So, we've had to wait 6 months for something that performs worse and costs more than the competition... woo-hoo. I love AMD (have been using their processors since the K5) but I refuse to support them when they have shit products. Their processor lineup is equally pathetic and they have nothing to compete with Core 2 Duo / Core 2 Quad.

Well, I shall by getting Ep2 for TF2 but I won't be supporting Valve again until they come up with something new or something seriously worthwhile - they've been coasting off their current IP catalogue and haven't ventured something new in a long time.

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17. Sound Cards... May 9, 2007, 16:47 Wilson
 
I always wonder how Creative manages to find new features to put into sound cards.

 
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16. Re: No subject May 9, 2007, 15:30 Jerykk
 
Didn't they just charge extra because of the bundled games?

 
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15. Re: No subject May 9, 2007, 14:39 Ecthelion
 
Nothing to do with the video card, can tell you that much. Probably something with the rest of your system. I had a 9800 Pro when HL2 came out and I ran it full settings at 1280x960 perfectly.
Exactly. The 9800 Pro completely smoked HL2 on full settings for me too (although I only ran at 1024x768 at the time).

Well it is cool to see the return of cool games given out with video cards.
Yeah, what happened to that trend? It's not happening with sound cards anymore, either. I remember most of the SoundBlaster cards used to come with like 3 games, but last time I was at Best Buy I didn't see a single SoundBlaster with even one game. How the hell can you make an "XtremeGamer" card that doesn't even come with a game? I just checked SoundBlaster's page, and none of the X-Fi's come with games - not even the Fatality (I refuse to spell his name the retarded way - besides, I'm too lazy to look the actual spelling up) cards. They may have always included crappy games (although, didn't one package include UT back in the day?), but at least we were getting a bonus for paying for the card. No more.

This comment was edited on May 9, 14:47.
 
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14. Re: Whatever May 9, 2007, 14:21 L0cky
 
why is it so hard to understand a company of Valve's size will not have the developers personally running back and forth between their HQ and that of AMD instead of writing their code?

Yet it's perfectly feasible to hire another coder instead of a Publicity Rep. He did say Vavle, not Valve's developers.

 
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13. Re: Whatever May 9, 2007, 14:02 General Ego
 
I wish Valve would take the time, energy and money they've spent in whoring to AMD/ATI and put it into the game and finish the damn thing ...

why is it so hard to understand a company of Valve's size will not have the developers personally running back and forth between their HQ and that of AMD instead of writing their code?
 
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12. Re: Whatever May 9, 2007, 13:56 HardCore
 
Well it is cool to see the return of cool games given out with video cards.

 
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11. Re: Whatever May 9, 2007, 13:38 banddirector
 

I wish Valve would take the time, energy and money they've spent in whoring to AMD/ATI and put it into the game and finish the damn thing ...


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10. Re: No subject May 9, 2007, 13:25 Krovven
 
Did Half Life 2 even run on a 9600? I can't say it was particularly smooth on a 9800 Pro.

Nothing to do with the video card, can tell you that much. Probably something with the rest of your system. I had a 9800 Pro when HL2 came out and I ran it full settings at 1280x960 perfectly.

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9. No subject May 9, 2007, 13:14 Nameless Again
 
Woody said it best. I don't have the time or patience to wait months between episodes of a story (and it's universe) that I don't care about anymore. Never understood the hoopla around HL2 anyway; HL1 was by far superior. They should have stayed with and expanded on that formula.

This comment was edited on May 9, 13:15.
 
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28 Replies. 2 pages. Viewing page 1.
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