Modern games are constantly pushing the bar on what they can offer graphically. AMD with its Gaming Evolved program is working with developers to ensure they can get the best results to ensure gamers have the most exciting experience. We at CGM where lucky enough to get some face time with Peter Ross, Senior Marketing Manager for AMD Gaming Evolved at the annual ExtravaLANza tournament in Toronto. He was nice enough to discuss what AMD is doing in the gaming space and how they are pushing what games can do visually.
Comics Gaming Magazine: What sort of partnerships do you work with game developers like Square-Enix, and EA?
Peter Ross: We have a great program called Gaming Evolved, and it’s most basic level, we are ensuring that the gameplay experience that their customers have is the best it can be with our hardware. It’s more than marketing; there’s technical integration, game testing to ensure compatibility, we help them to create and implement features to bring to their customers. We’ll also work together on marketing programs, so we’re able to use our large audience to market the game. Some very large publishers like EA, Ubisoft and Square-Enix have the ability to reach the gamer quite easily. With other smaller titles and indie developers we can help create a larger awareness for their technologies and game titles.
CGM: What kind of feature sets have you done in the past that helped gamers who have an AMD card?
PR: One of the more interesting single technologies would have been Tress FX, which is a very cool hair rendering technology and it was used in Tomb Raider. It’s also coming out in a game called Lichdom by Xaviant, which is currently on Early Access. It’s really about the hair technology; Crystal Dynamics had this vision of having the best hair you’ve ever seen in a game before. We worked with them for quite a while to make sure that we had a tech that could deliver that experience and was playable on virtually all products.
CGM: Did they come to you asking if you could make this happen, or did you go to them saying we can do stuff and they suggested hair effects?
PR: It’s a bit of both. We have this really close relationship with developers and we talk to them on a regular basis. They help us look forward many years to what they want to bring, and it helps us engineer new products that can deliver those experiences. In this case they wanted that one unique and really cool feature to set Lara Croft apart from past characters. Her hair was one of the most obvious ones is because it’s a third person game and players would be seeing it constantly.
CGM: How is it important to work with the game company to ensure that they know that need to buy an AMD card to achieve these results?
PR: Though our marketing, press outreach though reviews, working though our game developers with their marketing collateral and our own talking about these great features. AMD is very much in the gaming space, and very supportive of the gaming eco system.
CGM: For gamers today, there is always the move to build the high end gaming PC or the console, but now you’re in both spaces, so how important is the PC market still for you guys, compared to the fact that you are in the console space?
PR: It’s absolutely critical, the ramp from PC has been incredible.
CGM: For someone who’s just getting into PC gaming, which graphics card would you suggest to them?
PR: It’s absolutely predicated on your budget, you have to keep that in mind. It’s more important to get yourself a better graphics card then it is to get the best processor. You can spend a thousand dollars on a processor and you’d be wasting five to seven hundred dollars of that money. If you have five hundred dollars to spend, then an R9 product is where you want to be.