Nintendo sold 133 million games in Japan this century

Famitsu report dominated by Nintendo software, New Super Mario Bros. DS most popular game of all

Nintendo products account for eight of the ten best-selling games in Japan since the turn of the century.

To commemorate its 1300th issue, the Japanese magazine Famitsu has published a document of Japanese software sales on console and handheld since January, 2001. Somewhat predictably, Nintendo has dominated the market, selling a combined total of almost 133 million units - including Pokemon titles - in that period.

Square Enix came in a distant second, with around 30 million units sold.

Nintendo's most popular games - and therefore the most popular game of all - was New Super Mario Bros. on the DS, which sold 6.4 million copies in Japan. Indeed, Nintendo accounted for the remainder of the top five: Pokemon Diamond and Pearl, Pokemon Black and White, Pokemon Ruby and Sapphire, and Animal Crossing: Wild World in fifth.

Positions six to ten were, in order, Brain Age, New Super Mario Bros. Wii, Monster Hunter Freedom Unite, Dragon Quest IX and Mario Kart DS.

The DS was the leading platform, with 32.9 million sold - 39 of the top 100 games were for the DS - followed by Sony's PSP, with 20 million units sold.

Thanks, Polygon.

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Latest comments (8)

Bruce Everiss Marketing Consultant 6 years ago
And Angry Birds is approaching two thousand million downloads.
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Andy Samson QA Supervisor, Digital Media Exchange6 years ago
"And Angry Birds is approaching two thousand million downloads."

And each of those downloads costs what, zero dollars?
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Nicholas Pantazis Senior Editor, VGChartz Ltd6 years ago
Yeah, man, Rovio is so successful. They earned a whopping $200 million in revenue last year, which is a massive 1/40th what Nintendo earned on their worst year in half a decade. Boy, Rovio sure is catching up. Another 20 years and they may earn 1/10th what Nintendo does.
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Keldon Alleyne Strategic Keyboard Basher, Avasopht Development6 years ago
Who in their right mind would compare free download numbers with paid for product sales? It would be like comparing the number of total advert views to the number cinema ticket sales!

Besides, last I heard Solitaire was the most played video game of all time!

Edited 2 times. Last edit by Keldon Alleyne on 30th October 2013 1:10pm

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Thomas Dolby Project Manager / Lead Programmer, Ai Solve6 years ago
You do make me laugh sometimes, Bruce.

But anyway, congratulations to Nintendo, they have a legacy that the majority of game developers could only dream of, and they really have earnt it. They are responsible for so many hours of fun in my childhood and even to this day.
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Rick Lopez Illustrator, Graphic Designer 6 years ago
Ive played Angry Birds on my devices, my niece, my family, we enjoy playing angry birds. My nephew is nuts with it, however I dont recall anyone in my family paying a single penny for it. But I know alot of people who will go out and pay 50$ for a mario or pokemon game without a second thought. And at 50$ i dont think many people would buy angrybirds.

Edited 1 times. Last edit by Rick Lopez on 30th October 2013 3:01pm

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Dan Wood Visual Effects Artist 6 years ago
I know the Angry Birds comparison is pretty pointless, but it struck me that as impressive as "133 million" sounds with no context, it doesn't actually seem like that much to brag about in the grand scheme of things.

I know that mentioning GTA 5's recent 30 million sales would also be making a loaded comparison, being that it's a world-wide statistic and this story is regarding Japan sales exclusively... but still, when Japan is traditionally Nintendo's biggest market, and one of the biggest in the world generally, I would have thought 133 million would only account for 10-15 big hitters or so, over the span of the last 13 years. When we're talking a combination of all things Mario, Zelda, Pokemon, and all the other usual suspects, across all platforms including handheld, I'm surprised it's not higher.
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Jim Webb Executive Editor/Community Director, E-mpire Ltd. Co.6 years ago
Dan, that's a yearly average of 11 million in just Japan. A country of, incidentally, nearly 133 million people. 126 million to be more precise. Look at number two on that list: Square-Enix. Just 30 million sold. More than 100 million less and a yearly average of just 2.5 million. I don't see how anyone (except Bruce) can't see 133 million as anything short of monumental in its accomplishment.
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