Intel Arc Battlemage GPUs are likely delayed and nerfed

PC builders holding out for next generation Intel Arc graphics cards may have to wait a while longer, as rumors suggest Battlemage is in dire straits.

An Intel Arc graphics card floats against an orange background

Things aren’t looking good for Intel Arc Battlemage GPUs right now, and their future doesn’t seem much better either. While Intel remains mostly silent on the future of its graphics cards, rumors are filling the void with whispers of delays and spec nerfs.

Just over a year since the first Intel Arc card emerged on the scene, the A380, team blue is still struggling to properly follow through on its announced Alchemist lineup. While the company did manage to finally get the A770 and A750 out the door after missing their initial summer launch window, the A580 is still MIA. Now, it looks as though Intel won’t release a new graphics card every year, as it initially aimed to do so.

According to Moore’s Law Is Dead, their sources indicate that Battlemage is having “tons of issues to the point that its future is very uncertain.” While it does appear that Intel still plans to release new Arc cards, they’ll neither be timely nor particularly powerful.

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The flagship Battlemage pixel pusher was apparently slated to take on the Nvidia GeForce RTX 4080 in its initial configuration, but it’s since been “nerfed multiple times” to the point that it’s now “less ambitious than Alchemist.”

Now, if the graphics card ever sees the light of day, it looks as though it’ll rock 448 Execution Units (EU), a 256-bit memory bus, and 16GB of GDDR6X VRAM. For context, that’s fewer EUs than the Arc A770, with the same bus width, and slightly more advanced VRAM.

A potential Intel Arc Battlemage release date now looks set for some time “late Q2 2024”, as a best case scenario. That said, if problems continue behind the scenes, a launch in “2H seems likely.”

Here’s hoping that Intel Arc Battlemage GPUs can come back swinging, as we can only benefit from more viable competition in the graphics card market. Perhaps the upcoming Raptor Lake refresh will see team blue take the gaming CPU crown from AMD, offering it a second wind, but I could just be optimistic here.