Sunday, July 21, 2024

A new AMD GPU bags you 2 of my favorite games from last year, including Starfield


AMD's RX 7700 XT in a test bench.Jacob Roach / Digital Trends

No one can argue with free games, and that’s exactly what AMD is offering with the purchase of a new RX 7800 XT or RX 7700 XT. You’ll have to spend hundreds of dollars on a GPU, sure, but at least you’re getting some free games to try it out with — as well as one of the best graphics cards available right now.

It’s a choose-your-own-adventure style of promotion. AMD has four games available, and you get to choose two to keep. The list includes Starfield, Lies of P, Avatar: Frontiers of Pandora, and Company of Heroes 3, all four of which have seen promotions from AMD in the past. I’m partial to Lies of P, which catapulted to the top of my list of favorite games last year with its tight, Bloodborne-style combat and dark fantasy take on the classic tale of Pinocchio.

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Avatar: Frontiers of Pandora dares to ask, “what if you put the Na’vi into Far Cry?” It’s the typical Ubisoft release, though a decent romp through the beautiful world of Pandora as you can read in our Avatar: Frontiers of Pandora review. Company of Heroes 3 is another take on real-time strategy set in World War II, and Starfield is, well, Starfield. You’ve heard of it before.

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Although no one would buy a bad graphics card for a couple of free games, it’s a nice bonus with the reasonably-priced RX 7800 XT and RX 7700 XT. The RX 7800 XT is the go-to option if you have around $500 to spend on a graphics card, and it was the default choice when AMD launched these two GPUs. As you can see from the chart below, the RX 7700 XT is around 15% slower than the RX 7800 XT. And when these two cards released, only $50 separated them.

Jacob Roach / Digital Trends

That’s not the case any longer — the RX 7700 XT is commonly available for $400 and sometimes even less. The ASRock Challenger model I have linked below is available for $380 right now. That’s a great price, especially with the two included games. After a little napkin math — and a bit of squinting — you could reason that you’re only spending $260 on the GPU. Assuming you wanted to buy two of the four games AMD has up for offer in the first place, that is.

The RX 7800 XT is a little more unpredictable in price, with some cards reaching up to $550. You should have no issue finding the GPU at $500, though. In fact, I spotted the Asus Dual model below for $480. It’s tough to beat that price for 1440p gamers considering the RX 7800 XT handily beats Nvidia’s RTX 4070 — though it falls short of the more expensive RTX 4070 Super.

Both cards are suitable for 1440p gaming, especially if you dabble in AMD’s FSR 3 or its driver-based Fluid Motion Frames. The RX 7800 XT is certainly the more capable of the two, but it’s also anywhere from $100 to $170 more expensive depending on the model you buy. Stretch your budget if you can manage it, but don’t feel like you’re missing out with the RX 7700 XT. It was recieved poorly at release, but recent price drops have made it much more attractive.

AMD is running the promotion until July 20, and you’ll be able to redeem your game codes until August 17. You’ll need to buy one of these cards from one of AMD’s qualifying retailers, however — nope, a secondhand GPU on eBay won’t get you free games. The promotion doesn’t apply to other AMD graphics cards, which is a shame when GPUs like the RX 7900 GRE are so competitively priced.

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