The ending months of 2020 have been rather grim, staying on-brand with the rest of the year. Tech industries have seen this rather strongly for certain, with there being multiple launches that both revolutionized the gaming standards and disappointed fans heavier than many thought possible.
AMD, it seems, has now cemented themselves in that position as well. Their launch of the AMD Radeon RX 6800 Series graphics cards – one of the most highly-anticipated releases of the year – was, to put it bluntly, absolutely pathetic.
Make no mistake, this isn’t an insult towards AMD. They’re working with one of the hottest products in one of the worst years while a pandemic continues to rage on globally – production issues are expected.
But given that Red Team spent the weeks between Nvidia‘s disastrous 3080/90 launch back in September to now talking about how much better they were going to do than Nvidia had, it’s a bit baffling to see not just that they underperformed, but that they arguably did worse than Nvidia’s awful launch.
At 6:00 AM PST, the cards were set to go on sale. Enthusiasts flocked to every usual platform – Newegg, Amazon, AMD, Best Buy, all the usual suspects were hit with the herd. Only customers arrived not to an empty shelf, but to no shelf.
Yes, somehow, AMD’s new graphics cards were a few minutes late to the party, not even being listed on most major retailers until three to five minutes after 6:00 AM. While this sounds minor, recall that the three other big launches – Nvidia GeForce 3070 and 3080/90 as well as AMD’s Ryzen 5000 series CPUs – sold out in under a minute.
Once they did appear, there was nothing to be found. Against all odds and logic, many of the listings didn’t even appear until they were already sold out, leaving players with empty listings.
Of course, it wouldn’t be a launch without technical difficulties, either. Most sites, Newegg and AMD especially, crashed rather quickly under the load of so many enthusiasts flooding the site – far from a surprise, and something that happens every time.
AMD’s website, many are claiming, never even listed the 6800 XT, the higher tier of the two cards released today and direct competitor to Nvidia’s 3080. The Red Team eventually delisted the cards entirely rather than listing them as sold out, telling anyone who had gotten one in their cart to remove it.
Many enthusiasts are wondering, perhaps they were also competing on who could have a worse launch? In this, AMD seems to have won, and considering that Nvidia left the bar so low that it was practically underground, it’s a bit flooring to see AMD’s launch go so terribly.
The main kick in the head is, again, the fact that AMD spent their time assuring enthusiasts that they wouldn’t do what Nvidia had done, and that they would definitely have a much better launch, with a focus on anti-bot/scalper measures. Considering that eBay is now filled with plenty of shiny new AMD GPUs selling for double and triple the price, it seems they couldn’t fulfill that promise.
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