Kudos to the PC Perspective crew for tracking this one down. It looks like Newegg is running a very unusual set of video game bundles with AMD’s higher-end Radeon cards.

Having apparently launched in parts over the last couple of weeks, Newegg is now bundling multiple video games with many of the Radeon R9 cards the e-tailer carries. A “base” offer involves the recently launched DIRT Rally, Codemasters’ latest off-road rally driving game, which is being offered with most of the R9 cards. Meanwhile the also recently launched Grand Theft Auto V is also being offered as a bundled game in a more limited fashion, being included with many of the R9 290 and 290X cards.

What makes this bundle so unusual however is its simultaneous official and unofficial nature. Officially AMD is running a DIRT Rally bundle – though having never released an announcement about it – and according to the terms & conditions this bundle has been going on as recently as April 27th, DIRT Rally’s launch day. Meanwhile Grand Theft Auto just recently begun showing up at Newegg, and unlike the DIRT bundle, AMD is disavowing all knowledge of this, stating that they are not involved in the GTA bundle.

Newegg Radeon R9 Game Bundles
Video Card Bundle
Radeon R9 295X2 DIRT Rally
Radeon R9 290 Series DIRT Rally +
Grand Theft Auto V
Radeon R9 285
Radeon R9 280 Series
Radeon R9 270 Series
DIRT Rally

As a result the cards covered by these various bundles are a bit more inconsistent than in official AMD bundles. 7 of the 9 R9 290 cards include DIRT, and only 5 of those 7 include GTA V. For the R9 290X, 15 of the 17 cards include DIRT, and 10 of those 17 cards include GTA V. Consequently while we typically always say to double-check cards for bundles before purchasing, this time we really mean it, as more cards than usual are being excluded.

Overall, although retailer-specific offers are not unprecedented, these days it’s very rare to have retailers run their own video game bundle promotions. Typically such promotions are backed by the manufacturer, if only to take advantage of the buying power of such a large order. So for Newegg to offer their own GTA V bundle is quite a surprise, and if it were not for the fact that Newegg is the only retailer doing this it would be hard to believe, especially given the high-profile nature of GTA V. Meanwhile the availability of the DIRT bundle is similarly odd; along with Newegg it’s available at NCIX, but surprisingly not Amazon or Best Buy. For the moment at least, it looks like it’s just Newegg that gets all the goods.

In any case, given the unofficial nature of these bundles, there isn’t a published end date for either bundle. The AMD DIRT Rally codes are valid until the end of 2015, however we would expect the promotion to end much sooner than that. Consequently very little of this makes any sense, but for prospective Radeon R9 buyers, enjoy it while it lasts.

Update - 5/15/2015: Well that didn't last for very long. As of this morning all of the GTA V bundles are gone, and now only a handful of cards quality for the DIRT bundle; 2 of the R9 290s and 5 of the R9 290Xs. The entire situation gets curiouser and curiouser, and for the time being it looks like the bundles have tapered off almost as quickly as they appeared.

Source: PC Perspective

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  • silverblue - Friday, May 15, 2015 - link

    I don't think it's naïve to assume monitor manufacturers could have developed a power-saving function of reducing framerate to match graphics card output. Doesn't that sound like it would reduce power usage? Yeah, it would've probably meant extra expense, but then we wouldn't end up with a vendor lock-in as we are starting to experience now.

    Be careful here - I only said AMD were being dishonest about their intentions, not about the resulting monitors that came out. FreeSync needs a killer panel to come out to silence the critics. In a perfect world, the software would've been ready for launch, and the monitor manufacturers less eager to throw any old kit out. Having said that, there seems to be a split in the media between those who are mildly critical of FreeSync, and those who are mildly enthusiastic about it, so from somebody's point of view, it's not a bad start. Doesn't make them AMD fanboys. Personally, I have no opinion on the matter, but you do, so...

    The difference between 980 SLI and 290X CF isn't night and day, but far closer at points than I think you're prepared to accept. You can throw in an extra 980 to match the power usage of the 290X CF, sure, but you hit diminishing returns with three cards.

    Bundles come and go. NVIDIA's have been better for a year or so. They weren't as good before.

    I'd be surprised if FreeSync CrossFire wasn't fixed within the next month or two. As for WHQL... AMD did stop monthly driver updates a while back and this seems to have taken a back seat.
    Reply
  • chizow - Friday, May 15, 2015 - link

    Sorry, to sit here and think the monitor mfgs would've just developed this on their own volition is incredibly naive. Why was it never invented in the decade+ of LCD technology since this became a problem compared to CRTs? What benefit would they have derived in providing the tech, it would have carried very little premium and value as just a power saving technique, ask Intel that drove the original power saving tech how much money they've made on eDP V-Blank tech. We can cry all we like about vendor lock-in but that is certainly better than vendor vaporware, sorry. Bottomline is if it comes to proprietary innovation and invention vs. hopes and dreams of someone coming along with an open standard solution years, decades later, I am going with the proprietary solutions every time even if it comes at a premium.

    Again, what difference is it here when both their intentions and the resulting monitors were deceptive, falling short of what they claimed? FreeSync needs a killer panel sure, but let's not get ahead of ourselves, FreeSync needs ANY of the monitors to do the very BASIC claims AMD made when they said FreeSync would not only be as good as G-Sync, but BETTER. Why dream about perfect worlds and launches when you already have a company that provides solutions that just work as they advertise from the outset? Honestly, why should you have to consider something like this a perfect world instead of just demanding better and buying better from a company that delivers the product they promise you from the outset? And last bit about the Fanboys, yes anyone who is willing to perpetuate the lies and myths AMD set out about FreeSync, months before they even had product, and even now after they've launched products that fall short of those claims, is indeed an AMD fanboy.

    The difference between the 980 SLI and 290X CF isn't night and day in terms of raw performance, no, I've already acknowledged this numerous times, but there is a massive difference in heat and power consumption, and that's of course, before we start getting into additional features. For example, 980 SLI is going to be a huge difference once you start tacking on additional Nvidia-only features, like G-Sync, or DSR, or GameWorks or PhysX. Especially in the case of G-Sync where SLI is supported, while Crossfire implementation of FreeSync is still broken!

    As for bundles, Nvidia bundles have always been better except for a brief period where the Never Settle Bundles were clearly better in early 2013. But that marketing money clearly dried up when AMD went full in on Mantle and BF4, which clearly backfired on them as their Never Settle bundle is and has been pretty mediocre. Can't fault them for trying though, but it is obvious their current financial situation isn't allowing them much flexiblity, while Nvidia is "making it rain" PC gaming nerd-style with their recent bundles.

    And the AMD driver fix? Don't hold your breath, you do realize they still haven't fixed CF framepacing or SSAA/VSR for DX9 yet, right? If it was as simple as AMD and their apologists claimed it was, they would've fixed it pre-launch, and they would've certainly fixed it in the 2 months (yes its already been that long!) since they "launched" FreeSync.

    And now what? In typical AMD fashion, guns ablazing! Half-assed solution! Lots of promises! MONTHS of quiet and no solution, no updates, nothing. As I said the day those FreeSync reviews came out, if you CF FreeSync performance is important to you, wait for a fix before you buy, with AMD who fk'ing knows if/when they get around to fixing this. Because in the end, you get what you pay for.
    Reply
  • D. Lister - Saturday, May 16, 2015 - link

    FreeSync needs a killer panel to come out to silence the critics.

    I doubt that many premium products will be made available for a demographic (AMD customers) that traditionally values performance/dollar over premium features.
    Reply
  • D. Lister - Saturday, May 16, 2015 - link

    what Nvidia does by just unapologetically innovating and inventing new tech, and bringing it to market.

    lol, for a moment there, I thought Chizow was going to break into a song. Seriously though, I do agree with the points he makes.
    Reply
  • chizow - Monday, May 18, 2015 - link

    Heheh thanks man, I know there are those that consider themselves "tech enthusiasts" out there that overwhelmingly agree with this mentality, but it seems like the "tech bottomfeeders" that advocate the converse of this are just overly noisy about their needs and criteria. Reply
  • D. Lister - Saturday, May 16, 2015 - link

    "the treatment AMD gets from OEMs when they throw APUs into trash laptops and then wonder why they don't sell."

    Budget parts end up in budget builds. Secondly IMHO, APUs target a very niche segment anyway, y‘know that kid who's still in highschool, can't afford a proper gaming build with at least an i3 and a dGPU, and hasn't heard of consoles.
    Reply
  • Manch - Friday, May 15, 2015 - link

    These were the XFX 290X 8GB cards. They have XFX custom coolers on them. they don't get terribly hot and they do not get loud at all. For $550 total it was a great deal. Much better deal than a GTX980. I also have a GTX980 in another box and would have bought another one of those but the price/performance was too good to pass up. To return from APO is a huge PITA. I would have had to pay for return shipping, lost out on the discounts I got to get them at that price just to try and get the bundled games. It was less of a loss to just not fight with New Egg anymore.

    I spoke with AMD and they said that each retailer gets allotted XX number of bundle codes to package with their cards. The codes aren't packaged within the manufacturers box. New Egg told me that it was XFX's responsibility, then they said to contact AMD. After going full circle and endless excuses, I've decided that Ill just purchase elsewhere.

    Chizow hits up every AMD article and trolls. Its annoying. Just read thru his comments where anyone that buys an AMD product must be an uber fan bc why would you buy anything other than NVIDIA or Intel?
    Reply
  • chizow - Friday, May 15, 2015 - link

    Cool yeah that is a great deal! Enjoy the cards, I think more likely than not though, you will see my assessment was spot-on, and that Nvidia cards are worth the premium if you do have a 980 to compare against. ;)

    As for Newegg it sounds like AMD didn't give them enough codes, which is too bad. I guess its certainly case by case basis but I've also read of people getting ~$20 credits for similar instances. Bottomline is if the promotion was advertised when you purchased, you should get some credit or the code one way or another.

    And again, who said I am trolling? I'm holding AMD and their fanboys accountable for the stupid things they say. If AMD fans actually held AMD to this standard, I highly doubt they would continue to engage in the types of tactics they continually get away with. Demand better and you will get better, that is how you let your wallet speak, imo. :)
    Reply
  • Manch - Saturday, May 16, 2015 - link

    It's always the same theme in your posts and its tiring. The article is about New Eggs promotions which I commented on and you've posted a dozen rants against AMD. Reply
  • chizow - Saturday, May 16, 2015 - link

    Yawn, again, it was the AMD Butthurt Patrol that took issue with my innocuous compliment that you have done what thousands of AMD fans before you have failed to do: Put your money where your mouth is, buy, and support the products you claim are better for your needs. Again, I've complimented you on doing so multiple times.

    I took issue however, with your complaints regarding Newegg because as I have personally seen, and as have thousands of other games across the US have seen, Newegg has done them right far more consistently than other retailers regarding game codes. But, as usual, AMD who is responsible for providing the codes to vendors isn't at fault right?
    Reply

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