AMD’s Big Navi tease in Fortnite hints that next-gen GPUs could be imminent

(Image credit: AMD)

AMD’s Big Navi graphics card might be just around the corner, or at least we spotted a hint of that being a possibility, courtesy of a teaser in Fortnite.

Streamer GinaDarling found an Easter egg in the battle royale which proclaims: “Something big is coming to the AMD battle arena.”

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So, that would appear to be a direct reference to Big Navi, and the other interesting point here, as Tom’s Hardware notes, is that she had to enter a passcode into the in-game terminal to receive the message – and that code was ‘6000’. So again, this appears to be a reference to AMD’s range of incoming GPUs, or more specifically the likelihood that Big Navi will be Radeon 6000 series cards.

Scott Herkelman, VP and general manager of AMD Radeon, chipped in to reply to Gina on Twitter saying “Nice job finding the easter egg!” confirming its legitimacy as a teaser, but of course, this very much has the vibe of a staged event.

Naturally, it’s prompted some excitement given that this could indicate AMD is starting to ramp up to the big launch of its next-gen graphics cards, which is expected to happen before the end of 2020.

Grabbing back some hype?

Then again, given the major impact Nvidia has just made with its RTX 3000 GPU launch – these graphics cards look seriously tasty, with the RTX 3080 easily coping with 4K gaming at max details – perhaps this stunt is simply AMD’s way of grabbing back some hype and attention for itself at a difficult time.

However, given that there are only a few months left in this year anyway, you would hope the launch of Big Navi graphics cards is coming sooner rather than later. Indeed, previous rumors have pointed to October or even September, so who knows, the GPUs could be revealed sooner than you think – although we haven’t heard anything from the grapevine on the launch lately.

Whatever the case, as we discussed earlier today, there are various reasons why it may be prudent to wait for AMD to make its Big Navi move before you buy the GeForce RTX 3080 – which will be the first GPU to be unleashed on the world by Nvidia come September 17.

Then again, you may have no choice but to sit tight and wait, considering all the speculation contending that stock of Nvidia’s RTX 3080 (and 3090) will be very thin on the ground at launch (and inventory levels may not pick up until 2021, or that’s the pessimistic rumor anyway).

Darren is a freelancer writing news and features for TechRadar (and occasionally T3) across a broad range of computing topics including CPUs, GPUs, various other hardware, VPNs, antivirus and more. He has written about tech for the best part of three decades, and writes books in his spare time (his debut novel - 'I Know What You Did Last Supper' - was published by Hachette UK in 2013).