So far, we haven't heard back from Valve and we wouldn't expect ATI to comment. But sources close to Nvidia suggest that the bidding could have reached as much as $8 million before it withdrew from the auction.
Valve made an unprecedented attack on Nvidia and the performance of its technology last week at an ATI sponsored day.
Half Life 2 is being hyped as a super game, and is, as the saying goes, "eagerly awaited". A kind of pearl beyond price. But according to our information, Nvidia withdrew as the bidding rose to ever more crazy heights and the price of this possible jewel in the crown spiralled.
According to our sources, who stand by the auction story, Nvidia felt, that as graphics market leader, it would find itself compromised with other games companies and with its graphics card partners.
If the reports of this auction and these allegations are true, this would certainly put a different colour on Valve's statements about Nvidia's benchmarks.
We wonder that if such an auction did take place, and if Nvidia had ended up with a Half Life bundling deal, whether Valve would still have the same view about its benchmarks.
We've contacted Nvidia about the allegations but the company refuses to comment. µ