Analysts estimate 750,000 3DS sales in US

Homefront, Crysis 2 should be biggest home console titles for March

US market watchers are expecting the Nintendo 3DS console to have sold up to 750,000 units during its 5 days on sale in the region during March.

Doug Creutz of Cowen and Company predicted the highest number during the month, suggesting the console will be a "stabilising factor" for the handheld market which continues to decline.

Wedbush Morgan's Michael Pachter put the sales figure at a lower 500,000 units - at the cost of the previous DS models which are likely to be "cut in half" by the new handheld release.

Creutz expects Pokemon Black & White to be the biggest seller for March in the US, shifting 3 million units combined, but Pachter estimates a more modest 1.4 million across both titles.

THQ's Homefront and EA's Crysis 2 are likely to be the biggest home console games of the month, with 800,000 and 500,000 units sold respectively, according to Creutz. Pachter's guess comes in at 100,000 less for both titles.

EA's Dragon Age II, Activision's Call of Duty: Black Ops and Ubisoft's Just Dance 2 are also likely to show success in March, when the NPD Group reveals sales data this Thursday, April 14.

Overall video games sales for March are expected to be down again for North America, between 6-8 per cent year-on-year.

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Latest comments (9)

Jim Webb Executive Editor/Community Director, E-mpire Ltd. Co.6 years ago
At 750,000, that would make it the biggest console launch in US history (both in total units and financial impact).
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Yiannis Koumoutzelis Founder & Creative Director, Neriad Games6 years ago
I seriously don't see why all these people are worried and spread doom theories for this one week overtake of 3DS from PSP (which was quite obvious why) while it has clearly sold more than all consoles out there and is growing quite fast!
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Haven Tso Web-based Game Reviewer 6 years ago
3DS hasn't been a sold out in Australia at the moment. There seems to be still quite a number of stock in shops. Compared to Wii, basically you can't find a single Wii for months in shops and you have to pre-order new stock and wait a month or so to get one, 3DS can't be said as great a success so far. And the fact that it is more expensive than a Wii or PSP doesn't help either.

Edited 1 times. Last edit by Haven Tso on 12th April 2011 10:01pm

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David Blosser Game Designer, n-Space6 years ago
@Haven Tso - I believe I read that Nintendo was planning to account for higher demand so the same situation that happened to the Wii (leaving customers waiting) wouldn't occur. So I don't think saying it isn't as great a success, based on that factor alone, is an accurate assessment.
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Jim Webb Executive Editor/Community Director, E-mpire Ltd. Co.6 years ago
David is correct. The 3DS launch volumes were far higher than they've ever had for any previous home or portable console.

The purpose behind it (and to a lessor extent - the price) is to prevent massive gray market price gouging. Gray market pricing for a product in ample supply will not reach above MSRP. This enures better profits for Nintendo (and shareholders who weren't pleased with Wii gray market prices), fewer consumer rip offs and better overall demand satisfaction.
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Steve Peterson Marketing Consultant 6 years ago
Wordlwide 3DS sales were about half of what Nintendo was forecasting last year (they forecast 4 million units by the end of the fiscal year, and they actually sold about 2 million units). Hitting 50% of your sales goal is not usually seen as a good thing. Nintendo has their work cut out for them to bring 3DS sales up to where they predicted they would be.
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Jim Webb Executive Editor/Community Director, E-mpire Ltd. Co.6 years ago
Steve, are you mixing shipped figures with sell through figures? The 4 million figure is units shipped. Nintendo (and Sony and MS for that matter) never give sell through projections. Only shipments.
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Steve Peterson Marketing Consultant 6 years ago
Nintendo did say they hoped to sell 4 million units worldwide by March 31... of course, they probably meant sell-in, not sell-thru. But certainly they were hoping to achieve more than a 50% sell-thru in that time. Perception is very important at retail, and channel-stuffing may help your quarterly sales figures look good but it leads to a perception that your product isn't moving very fast. Which is exactly where Nintendo is right now.

You're right that companies mostly avoid sell-thru predictions. But sell-thru numbers are indeed touted by big companies, when they look good. Which they sure don't right now. This is not a good situation for Nintendo.
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Jim Webb Executive Editor/Community Director, E-mpire Ltd. Co.6 years ago
Sell through in Japan is low thanks to a rough economy for a big new console.
Sell through in Europe is low and I can only guess that the high currency exchange rates are harming it.
Sell through in the US showed it was the best selling launch of any video game console in history.

So sell through is a mix of best ever, OK, and not quite so OK. There is also the missed fact that Nintendo intentionally shipped a lot of product to avoid the sell outs like it had with Wii. You think investors don't like short sell through? Let me tell you what they really don't like. Money left on the table. Every time the Wii was sold out, that was money left on the table. Every time the gray market prices exceeded the MSRP, that was money left on the table. The whole purpose of the high shipment levels (and partially the reason for the high MSRP) is to prevent having money left on the table.
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