News Article

Japanese 3DS Lifetime Sales Overtake PlayStation 3

Posted by Andy Green

Nintendo consoles dominating on home soil

Recently we learnt that the 3DS was dominating sales in Japan with the portable console shifting 2.5 times more units than all other platforms combined. It seems this momentum isn’t showing any signs of slowing down either, as this week’s impressive sales have seen it leapfrog a big rival in total sales.

According to Media Create, the 3DS sold 211,499 units between 3rd December and 9th December, bringing its lifetime total in Japan to a staggering 8,799,378 consoles – overtaking the Playstation 3 which has sold 8,716,260 systems in its homeland.

The success of the 3DS isn't being mirrored by its biggest rival the PlayStation Vita however, which only managed to shift 11,039 units, 8,598 less than its predecessor the PSP. The only console that managed to outsell the 3DS this week in Japan was newly-launched Wii U, which shifted 308,142 units - we’re sure Nintendo won’t mind that too much.

The full hardware chart is below (numbers in brackets are lifetime figures):

Nintendo Wii U - 308,142 (308,142)
Nintendo 3DS – 211,499 (8,799,378)
PlayStation 3 – 36,994 (8,716,260)
PSP – 19,637 (19,488,236)
PlayStation Vita – 11,039 (1,074,621)
Nintendo Wii – 6,714 (12,608,700)
Xbox 360 – 1,216 (1,608,399)
PlayStation 2 – 904 (21,829,112)
Nintendo DS – 424 (32,875,469)


From the web

User Comments (50)



Void said:

Woo! Stay classy, Nintendo.
It also leaves you to wonder...
Will the PS Vita ever surpass the Xbox 360 in life-time sales?!?



SuperCharlie78 said:

So they launched a brand new system and the handheld just sold MORE units than the previous week.
Seems legit Nintendo.



PinkSpider said:

It's a shame the 3DS isn't that popular in the uk, too many people playing really bad mobile phone games hurts its sales. Which means we won't get as many cool games released outside of japan. I really wany ex troopers to be released but it probably never will



kyuubikid213 said: can get those sweet sweet sales over in NA if you'd send over Monster Hunter now...



Bulbousaur said:

That's extremely impressive from Nintendo. Sure, nothing will probably ever beat the PSP in Japan because of all the Squre Enix titles and Monster Hunter, but to beat the PS3 in less than two years of being out?!? That's a massive success.



idork99 said:

The 3DS is an amazing system and Japan knows it! I bet everyone with a 3DS in Japan gets a StreetPass everytime they go out. Besides the popularity in smart phones and mobile gaming, I feel that the US doesn't give the 3DS the respect it deserves simply because they think it's just like the old DS with a 3D screen and has the stigma of being a system perfectly suitable for children only. To the people that think this way, I say "grow up, get with the times, get a 3DS, and thank me later."



Xjarnold said:

Awesome, this is great 4 the Big-N and 3ds owners, with all that popularity, maybe we get, monster hunter over here in North America?



Sun said:

Oh my, Vita is selling poorly in Japan, 20 times less than 3DS.



Lin1876 said:

That's pretty insane considering how long the PS3 has had to reach that point. Unfortunately, I don't see any games which would give the system a similar boost over here.



GameLord08 said:

PinkSpider wrote:

It's a shame the 3DS isn't that popular in the uk, too many people playing really bad mobile phone games hurts its sales.

Can we just not, please? Just... please, no.



XCWarrior said:

Great to see. Though why Nintendo won't bring over Monster Hunter, Animal Crossing, Bravely Default, Fire Emblem, Luigi's Mansion or heck a true 3DS only Pokemon main game out in the US is staggering. Once they do that, the 3DS sales will explode.

As for Vita, can we just declare it DOA? It's not like it's shifting units in the US either.



RetrogamerFan said:

About 32.8 million lifetime sales of NDS' thats about 1DS for every 4 people in Japan, that's pretty amazing.



Pikachupwnage said:

@XCWarrior Have you been living under a rock?

Fire emblem, monster hunter, Luigis mansion, and animal crossing are all coming overseas in the first half of 2013. Bravely default is third party(and there was a trademark that hints at localization under a new name) and they just released black/white 2 a few months ago. The next main series entry which is probably going it be on 3DS is almost certainly in early stages of development.



HandheldGuru97 said:

Wow. If you think about it that is pretty crazy. The PS3 has been out for SIX years! Six years, and the 3DS is doomed? It isn't even been out fore TWO years! Way to go Nintendo. Oh and Sony never ever name any of your future handhelds/consoles "life" in some fancy foreign language as you can see it is well what ever death means in Latin .



Jellitoe said:

Wait, this is impossible, PachTer said the 3DS was doomed to be a failure!!!!!



TheRavingTimes said:

I see all of the Nintendo Life readers are referencing everyone who thought the 3DS was doomed. Guess Iwata will be replacing the $50 bill toilet paper with $100 bill toilet paper.



hendie001 said:

It drives me wild that people still talk like the 3ds is a failure. What does nintendo have to do to change peoples opinons. So many nintendo haters out there makes me sick.



ritsuka666 said:

Crazy numbers for the 3DS. Passed PS3 LTD in japan lol. Vita still dead in japan..I can't imagine how much longer the Vita can survive without system seller games like Nintendo.



SuperMario85 said:

Great job Nintendo! Hope we get a lot more games in 2013. Maybe even some SNES games on the eShop?



Lalivero said:

@Pikachupwnage They don't only work on one set of games you know; one can expect that they started on the next (3ds) games once b&w were done, while the other part of the team was working with b2w2.

I doubt they are ready, yeah, but I also doubt that they had just started.



Zach777 said:

Not trying to troll, just trying to keep a right perspective... The prices of the systems 3DS and PS3 are respectively different. 3DS is average 200.00 dollars and PS3 is 350.00 to about 600.00? If that is a solid reasoning then Sony would potentially be making more money depending on the costs of production. Again, not trying to troll... I only buy Nintendo stuff... Just trying to keep a right perspective.



NintyMan said:

Even though it shouldn't be that surprising, I still get surprised over so many consoles in such a little time. It's not just that Japan is into handheld gaming more than other regions, but the 3DS's potential is truly seen over there.



Jamouse said:

It's a shame though that the software sales (especially for the third party titles) aren't as positive.



krunchykhaos said:

The only game on other consoles i saw being majority japanese player base was lost planet 2's multiplayer. Im not surprised by this.



Hokori said:

@Square-enixFan That's what I was thinking, back when I heard its name, I thought.... It would be ironic if it didn't sell... Looks like I was right.... Well for now



FyreeTSG said:

TWO times in the same week, Nintendo WHOOPS Sony!! SUCK IT!!





FyreeTSG said:

this is PAYBACK for the 1995 "Console War" attack of the PSX, taking the world by surprise, knocking Nintendo and Sega out of the water--and nearly toppling BOTH companies...
Nintendo's BACK---#1 in Consoles, #1 in Handhelds, #1 in Game Sales, and #1 of ALL Time....don't f*ck w/ the BIG N Sony....enjoy mediocre Vita and PS3 sales, try bundling the two overpriced systems--and maybe you can offer a remotely "similar" gamestyle to the Wii U---for twice the cost, and with no REAL 1st Party games...



Kage_88 said:

Now, where are all those people that said 3DS was doomed? Pachter? You there?



SheldonRandoms said:

@FyreeTSG A good turn of event's for Nintendo, it might have took a while, but Nintendo's back on top, also who has a Vita anyways, I've never seen anybody near where I live have a vita, but they have a 3DS.



Hokori said:

@Kage_88 Don't you know, sales in your homeland don't count
That's why apple and Microsoft try to cater to foreign lands and why Sonys doing so good, because Sony caters to Japan ohh wait....



kurtasbestos said:

I see a ridiculous amount of people with 3DSes on the trains here in Japanaland. I see PSPs occasionally, too, but Vitas... not so much. Then I occasionally see someone holding an iPad and I can't help but giggle at how stupid people look when they're holding an iPad.



Henmii said:

"Japanese 3DS Lifetime Sales Overtake PlayStation 3"

Very impressive!!

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