From live concerts to exclusive movie trailers to cross-branded character skins, Fortnite has risen up in its short lifetime to become a pillar of playable marketing, and now that influence is spreading to AMD hardware as well. The company first jumped on the trend back in September, when you could enter a special code to see a non-interactive render of an RX 6000 series GPU.
Now that Big Navi has officially been announced, though, AMD is expanding that render from September into a fully playable parkour map that takes place inside the GPU. Plus, it's also adding another map centered on dropping into a giant Ryzen 5000 series CPU sitting in the middle of a forest. And there’s also two new additional maps based on an “AMD Battle Arena” and what looks to be an “AMD City.” But most importantly, the company’s also running a contest where you can win the featured hardware yourself.
Announced today through AMD’s YouTube account and the Fortnite Creative Twitter account, Fortnite’s new AMD matchmaking hub is a Fortnite creative mode island that lets you sign up to play one of four new maps, including two that take place inside giant AMD hardware. That means you can step inside a giant Radeon 6000 series GPU to solve a parkour puzzle, drop into the innards of a Ryzen 5000 series chip to solve challenges that make it light up, shoot it out in a Tron-like battle arena stuffed with neon Ryzen and Radeon branding or explore a neon cityscape centered around an “AMD RDNA 2 skyscraper.”
Think of these maps as the next evolution of those Mario Kart courses where you would drive around on giant Nintendo consoles and handhelds. If you want to experience the AMD hub for yourself, you can follow the steps here and use the code 8651-9841-1639 to do just that.
If you’d rather not log into Fortnite, though, you can also see the maps by watching one of AMD’s partner streamers show them off, which is also how you can enter AMD's next-gen hardware giveaway. There’s 10 streamers on AMD's overall event schedule, which means you'll have options across multiple languages, regions, dates and timezones. And here’s the kicker- just commenting on any of their AMD livestreams while they're live will enter you into a contest to win either a Ryzen 5000 series CPU or a Radeon 6000 series GPU.
The full terms of the contest don’t specify which specific CPU or GPU you’d win, but the listed approximate retail value of each gives us an idea of what to expect. The CPU prize is listed at a $499 value, which is just $50 more than a Ryzen 7 5800X, while the GPU prize has an approximate retail value of $999, which matches the price tag for a Radeon 6900 XT.
Up to 20 people a piece can win each device, plus an additional 200 people can win AMD-branded hoodies.
I'd be more skeptical of these maps, but with the current state of 2020, a virtual trip to AMD island might be the closest thing some of us are going to get to a vacation this year.