Blizzard, AMD forge graphics-card deal

GPU maker teams with so-cold-it's-hot outfit on development partnership; unspecified catalog games bundled with all new ATI products.

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The graphics-chip wars have always raged hotter than a fully charged silicon wafer, and today AMD launched its latest volley to combat the growing dominance of Nvidia's GTX 280 top-end card. That bombshell took the form of the ATI Radeon HD 4870 X2, a $549 top-of-the-line card that packs 2.4 teraflops of processing power and communicates with memory at 230GB per second.

However, that isn't the only measure that AMD is taking to gain ground on graphics-chip rival Nvidia. The semiconductor company also said today that it has entered into a partnership with Blizzard Entertainment, purveyor of arguably the most popular PC game in the world, World of Warcraft. As part of the development-partnership deal, AMD will also begin bundling unspecified Blizzard Entertainment games with all ATI Radeon graphics cards.

"Our collaboration with AMD is especially important to us because it provides us with early access to some of the latest graphics technology," commented Paul Sams, chief operating officer of Blizzard Entertainment. "Delivering a polished game experience is one of our top priorities, and this relationship helps us achieve that goal for Blizzard gamers who choose AMD graphics cards."

For a more comprehensive look at the goings-on of the gaming-hardware sector, check out GameSpot's Hardware Insider blog.

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