Sammy's Pachinko Slot! Fist of the North Star title topped the Japanese charts once again last week as the market continued to decline into the start of summer - but software sales remain higher than the same period last year.
Although total sales for the top 100 titles dropped a further 15 per cent over last week, bringing the sales figure down to just over half a million units, this is still significantly up on the second week of June last year, when sales fell below 400,000 units.
Two new titles made it into the top ten this week - with Nintendo's GBA puzzle title Mario Vs. Donkey Kong at number two, while Irem's PS2 adventure game Sakurazaka Fire Department was at number seven.
Once again the chart divided evenly between Nintendo and Sony; there were five PS2 titles in the top ten (with the Pachinko Slot! game at number one being the top ranked), along with three GBA titles (Mario Vs. Donkey Kong being the top ranked) and two GameCube titles (Pikmin 2 at number four was top-ranked).
Capcom's Japanese release of Grand Theft Auto: Vice City slipped down the charts this week, dropping to number six from number three last week; the game has performed strongly in the Far East, by the standards of western-developed titles, although its chart performance looks better than the unit sale performance thanks to the depressed state of the overall marketplace.
In hardware terms, the launch of the new Mario Vs Donkey Kong game gave the GBA a small boost which lifted it to the top of the market share league table for the first week in a while - it achieved around 46.5 per cent market share, compared with just under 44 per cent for the PlayStation 2. The GameCube remained almost steady at around 8.5 per cent market share.