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Capcom launches Grand Theft Auto in Japan

Grand Theft Auto 3 has rolled out in Japan for the first time this week, with unconfirmed figures for its first days on sale indicating that the title is performing relatively well for a Western-developed game, but certainly isn't in danger of breaking any sales records.

Although no official figures are yet available - we'll be waiting for an independent body such as Media Create to provide those in the coming weeks - several sources on the Internet are reporting that the game has sold through roughly 75 per cent of its first 100,000 unit shipment in its first day on sale.

If accurate, this would put it at the low- to mid-range of new releases in Japan - major new titles such as Final Fantasy games can sell well over a million units there, while lower-key releases (such as Square Enix' number one title from two weeks ago, Drakengard) generally sell about 150,000 to 250,000 units in their first week on sale.

No major upset for the Japanese market, then, with the game performing much as most pundits had expected - albeit more poorly than some other recent Western-developed titles such as Ratchet & Clank. However, the performance is certainly good enough that regional publisher Capcom seems likely to roll out the sequel, Grand Theft Auto: Vice City, in Japan at some point in the future.

We'll be able to see how the game stacked up against other current releases when Media Create releases its software sales chart covering this period in approximately two weeks time.

Rob Fahey avatar

Rob Fahey

Contributing Editor

Rob Fahey is a former editor of who spent several years living in Japan and probably still has a mint condition Dreamcast Samba de Amigo set.