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Retail

3DS game sales up 89% in September

3DS game sales up 89% in September

Thu 11 Oct 2012 10:05pm GMT / 6:05pm EDT / 3:05pm PDT
Retail

New Super Mario Bros. 2 sells 295,000, helps give system year-over-year software boost

The industry-tracking NPD Group is reporting its September software sales later today, but Nintendo beat the research firm to the punch with a few stats of its own. According to Nintendo, September saw a significant boost in 3DS software sales, up 89 percent year-over-year.

The jump was led by New Super Mario Bros. 2, which topped 295,000 copies sold in its second month on shelves. Nintendo also namechecked first-party titles Mario Kart 7, Star Fox 64 3D, Kid Icarus: Uprising, and The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time 3D, saying each one increased its sales figures over August.

Stretching back a bit further, the original DS launch game Super Mario 64 has now hit the 5 million sold mark in the US. That makes it the third DS game to do so, joining New Super Mario Bros. (10.6 million sold to date) and Mario Kart DS (8.5 million sold).

According to Wedbush analyst Michael Pachter, the news wasn't all good for Nintendo. Pachter noted on his Twitter account that declines in DS software sales more than offset the gains for the 3DS. According to the analyst, combined 3DS and DS software sales were down 18 percent for the month.

9 Comments

Daniel Hughes Studying PhD Literary Modernism, Bangor University

436 496 1.1
Pachter strikes again. Honestly, who pays that guy? An increase in software sales of 89% on a single format year over year isn't just great news for Nintendo, it's great news for the industry. With new machines and new games, the traditional industry can rebound successfully into another vibrant cycle.

Does Pachter have the knives out for Nintendo this week? First the Wii U doom and gloom, and now 89% software growth on 3DS isn't good news? Perhaps he could spend some time pointing out the real issue: that growth spurt was driven largely by first party software. Then again, given Kingdom Hearts apparent success in North America on 3DS, that may not be entirely true.

Posted:2 years ago

#1

Jim Webb Executive Editor/Community Director, E-mpire Ltd. Co.

2,270 2,439 1.1
Does Pachter take to Twitter to denounce the PR from the other consoles when they talk about their NPD numbers?

Posted:2 years ago

#2

Fan-Yi Lam

3 1 0.3
Why is everyone citing this Pachter guy? He is biased, uninformed and annoying.

Posted:2 years ago

#3

Bruce Everiss Marketing Consultant

1,692 594 0.4
"combined 3DS and DS software sales were down 18 percent for the month"
This is the reality.

With Nintendo the platform doesn't matter. It is always the property that comes first. When their total software sales go down by nearly a fifth despite NSMB2 then they really are in trouble. As is anyone else relying on physically distributed content.

Posted:2 years ago

#4

Daniel Hughes Studying PhD Literary Modernism, Bangor University

436 496 1.1
Console transition Bruce. We're moving from the enormous, active, 50 million plus (in NA alone) DS install base to the new 3DS install base. Do you and Pachter really expect 3DS growth to offset the differences in purchasing so quickly?? I'd also point out NSMB2 is Nintendo's first full game available for digital download, that it so far accounts for 10% of NSMB2 sales in Japan, and that digital sales of NSMB2 and other Nintendo (and eShop) titles are utterly absent in this assessment of the 3DS software market. As with elsewhere, you are drawing the same old conclusions from incomplete data.

Wherever you go to spout your doom and gloom, I'll pop up to fight you!! Either that or I'll go get my lunch. I expect we'll have to agree to disagree, as it is.

Posted:2 years ago

#5
Bruce, Daniel is right. Additionally, its likely the drop-off in DS sales relates more to 3rd-party (casual?) games - which has been offset by increases in 1st-party 3DS sales. Even though sales are down 20% (assuming the figure is right), its likely Nintendo's profit is significantly higher.

Of more interest, will be actual 3DS hardware sales - Nintendo needs a hardware sales boost in the US.

Posted:2 years ago

#6

Jim Webb Executive Editor/Community Director, E-mpire Ltd. Co.

2,270 2,439 1.1
I find it ironic that Bruce constantly touts the digital download market yet is fully ready to ignore it when it suits his debate.

Bruce, if the total combined in down this month but the individual 3DS is up this month, what does that say about the trend leading into the next few months? Is not the 3DS poised to move into a position to fully retain the boxed sales volumes of the previous year? If 3DS were flat or down, you'd have a platform for debate.

Posted:2 years ago

#7

Daniel Hughes Studying PhD Literary Modernism, Bangor University

436 496 1.1
"The jump was led by New Super Mario Bros. 2, which topped 295,000 copies sold in its second month on shelves. Nintendo also namechecked first-party titles Mario Kart 7, Star Fox 64 3D, Kid Icarus: Uprising, and The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time 3D, saying each one increased its sales figures over August."

I'd also like to point out that bar Kid Icarus, the titles recently released digitally are the ones that are increasing their total sales from August to September. It'd be fascinating to know what role eShop and digital sales are playing right now in the 3DS software market, and to what extent this is going to grow over the next months and complement success at physical retail.

Posted:2 years ago

#8

Keldon Alleyne Handheld Developer, Avasopht Ltd

448 419 0.9
"combined 3DS and DS software sales were down 18 percent for the month"
This is the reality.

With Nintendo the platform doesn't matter. It is always the property that comes first. When their total software sales go down by nearly a fifth despite NSMB2 then they really are in trouble. As is anyone else relying on physically distributed content.
Nintendo handhelds have previously seen a 15% decline in annual software sales (far more significant than a September) during the generational transition, and I can assure you it was no sign of impending doom.

And to add, anyone should know that if the market went down 24% in September, that that means that the DS/3DS line increased it's share of revenue for that month so nobody with an ounce of skill would see that as a sign of Nintendo struggling to sell them.

With the Nintendo handhelds, the previous generation seems to accumulate a considerable amount of software sales for up to three years after the newest model is released.

Only when a Nintendo handheld struggles to outperform the GBA can we start talking about bad circumstances.

For more information on interpreting Nintendo sales data, please visit http://www.nintendo.co.jp/ir/en/sales/index.html

Perhaps the iPhone 5 had an impact on the rest of the industry and the DS software sales.

Edited 2 times. Last edit by Keldon Alleyne on 13th October 2012 10:05am

Posted:2 years ago

#9

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