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New report confirms success of Nintendo DS in Japan

A new report has confirmed that the Nintendo DS dominated the Japanese games market during the 2005 financial year, with more than 4 million units sold and four of the five top-selling games identified as DS titles.

A new report has confirmed that the Nintendo DS dominated the Japanese games market during the 2005 financial year, with more than 4 million units sold and four of the five top-selling games identified as DS titles.

According to the Famitsu magazine report, which was partially translated by Gamasutra, Japanese consumers purchased 4.32 million Nintendo DS units in total - more than double the figure for the Sony PSP of 2.07 million units.

The PlayStation 2 is still going strong in Japan and ranked in third place, with 1.77 million consoles sold last year. The Xbox 360, which was launched in the territory last December, has failed to set the market alight - sales figures stand at 120,000 units.

Animal Crossing: Wild World was the best-selling game of the year, with 2.34 million units shifted. PS2 title Final Fantasy XII, which sold 2.05 million units, was in second place, followed by brain exercise games Nou o Kitaeru Otona DS Training and Motto Nou o Kitaeru Otona DS Training - selling 1.85 million and 1.7 million units respectively. And finally, Mario Kart DS sold 1.21 million copies, placing it in fifth position.

It comes as no surprise that the Nintendo DS has performed so well - it's widely known that the handheld was a hit with Japanese consumers from day one, and the redesigned DS Lite, which launched on March 2nd, has also proved to be hugely popular.

However, it seems likely that some of the DS's thunder will be stolen later this year with the release of the PlayStation 3 and Nintendo Revolution. Microsoft will have a tough fight on its hands, since the original Xbox performed extremely poorly in Japan - and Xbox 360 sales have been disappointing so far. A recent report claimed MS plans to relaunch the console this June in a bid to boost sales and secure a stronger foothold in the market before the rival machines launch.

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Ellie Gibson

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Ellie spent nearly a decade working at Eurogamer, specialising in hard-hitting executive interviews and nob jokes. These days she does a comedy show and podcast. She pops back now and again to write the odd article and steal our biscuits.

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