Palits decision to come straight out of the gate with an overclocked model is good news as it helps compete against the HD 4850 at stock clocks a bit better. It is very often we see it right on the tail of the HD 4850, or even passing it.
While the cooler Palit are using these days is probably becoming a bit dated, it still does an excellent job of keeping the card at a reasonable temperature, be it a bit louder than a lot of other aftermarket coolers.
It's also nice to see that Palit have chosen to include a game in the package, which is good news for people who want to install the card and get into something that doesn't look too bad straight off the bat.
Like we've already said, while the 9800 GT might be nothing more than an 8800 GT, the aggressive pricing of the card, the overclocking capability and the availability of the product make it a very strong competitor against the HD 4850. Then you add in the fact that out of the box the card is able to pass the performance of the HD 4850 in a lot of situations and it does become quite appealing.
Palit have done a good job with the 9800 GT and there's no doubt it's going to quickly become a popular card thanks to the aforementioned pros.