News Article

3DS and Animal Crossing: New Leaf Drive Strong U.S. Sales in June

Posted by Thomas Whitehead

Over 500,000 copies of New Leaf sold last month

Today is NPD results day, where physical retail sales for the U.S. are combined with select information that manufacturers decide to provide. In the case of Nintendo, the company has been more than happy to outline its successes in June, largely driven by the 3DS and Animal Crossing: New Leaf.

For the second month running the 3DS has been the highest selling dedicated games system in the U.S., selling nearly 225,000 units, which is a 40% increase over the equivalent period last year. Software performed well, too, with New Leaf being the second biggest overall seller (behind The Last of Us on PS3), while Luigi's Mansion: Dark Moon and Donkey Kong Country Returns 3D secured top 10 spots. Nintendo's given sales figures for those three titles based on NPD's physical retail numbers and internal eShop results; New Leaf sold an exceptional 505,000 copies, with more than 20% of those sales on the eShop, and "sales of the game continue to be strong in July". Luigi's Mansion: Dark Moon accumulated around 115,000 sales in its fourth month (lifetime sales 750,000), while Donkey Kong's 3D re-make shifted around 108,000 copies.

In terms of big headline figures, Nintendo states that around 3.6 million physical and download retail first-party titles have been sold on the 3DS in the first six months of the year, an 85% increase over the equivalent period in 2012; as stated above, these are all figures for the U.S.

Of course, there are no Wii U figures highlighted, a reflection of the limited data provided by NPC and Nintendo not being keen to highlight the numbers. As is already commonly known, the company hopes for a significant revival of its home console in the second half of the year, with the press release stressing the extensive lineup coming to both 3DS and Wii U over the rest of the year. Whether Nintendo will share key figures after the launch of Pikmin 3 and other major Wii U releases will be interesting to see, even if we have to wait for the August results (to be issued in mid-September) to find out.

But still, June was clearly the month of the 3DS. Games sell systems, once again.

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User Comments (29)

Esoj

#1

Esoj said:

Well... that's good news for Nintendo, hope that with Pikmin 3 sooner release we'll see better figures for the Wii U.

Gioku

#2

Gioku said:

Amazing how well Animal Crossing's been doing! ...If they made a Wii U Animal Crossing...

DaveC

#3

DaveC said:

@Esoj

I wouldn't get your hopes up, I really don't think Pikmin is a big system seller.

Spoony_Tech

#4

Spoony_Tech said:

I've only had about 10-15 AC streetpasses. That's not a lot is it?! :-P

I'm happy for Nintendo and the 3ds. Should be even more streetpasses in the future!

rjejr

#6

rjejr said:

3DS gets Dream Team in Aug so that should help keep things moving along until X+Y in Oct. And then Zelda. And Sonic. Any Mario games this Xmas, seems weird that there wouldn't be something with is name in the title?

I don't recall who it was (I don't think it was Pachter) but I don't know how anybody can say the 3DS isn't doing well. It looks fine to me, especially considering all of the iOS/Android competition.

Is 3DS due a new version in the spring or is that too soon? I know DS had phat, lite, DSi and XL so there has to be a new one eventually, right. Twin thumbsticks maybe?

WinterWarm

#8

WinterWarm said:

@DaveC

Pikmin3's a system seller.

This is good news! The 3DS stats over the last year were really impressive!

Glad to know New Leaf did so well, although I've finally reached the verdict New Leaf's not for me. Fire Emblem Awakening has claimed over 200 hours of my life. Screw destiny.

Ralizah

#9

Ralizah said:

Just wait until Pokemon X and Y come out. It'll be an even bigger deal in terms of selling the hardware than New Leaf. This is a great year for 3DS owners.

RR529

#10

RR529 said:

@rjejr, Mario Party 3DS was announced for a November release during the direct today. (answering your question about their Christmas time Mario release)

sc100

#11

sc100 said:

This really is the year that the 3DS has come into its own, as many predicted at the beginning of the year. The 3DS is already one of my favorite consoles of all time. I always have a lot of fun with this system.

Csaw

#12

Csaw said:

@rjejr i feel like if they added a second stick they may as well make a new system all together. Besides its not there's been a massive flood of games on the 3ds that would be vastly improved with a second circle pad.

@WhoBeThat Pikmin has it's audience but it's not a system seller. It'll probably do decently but I doubt very many people are gonna buy the console for it.

HandheldGuru97

#15

HandheldGuru97 said:

This past 6 month period has made the 3DS my favorite handheld and favorite system of all of time. So many high quality releases one after another, I can barely keep up!!!!!! I hope the Wii U will do well in the future, but as a dominantly handheld gamer I'm more than happy right now.

JaxonH

#18

JaxonH said:

@rjejr I've been wondering the same thing actually, and here's what I think I've concluded: The DS had so many iterations because it was the first dual screen handheld, and as they perfected the tech and slimmed it down, added screen size etc, they continued releasing iterations. Plus DS sold like 150 million units, so by releasing a new iteration every year or so it kept the system fresh. However, since the 3DS is standing on the shoulders of the DS, and all its accomplishments and perfections, I don't think there's much left to iterate. I was hoping for a new model 3DS soon, but I can't imagine what they'd change? Everything's perfect, with the exception of a 2nd analogue. But 3DS will never get a 2nd analogue. They purposely omitted it so as not to intimidate the masses and the handheld's prospective base. Nintendo feels, through studies, focus groups, etc, that a 2nd analogue will alienate potential customers- they feel that the flare of the 3DS is in its simplicity, and a 2nd analogue could ruin that. I actually happen to agree with that assertion, TO AN EXTENT, but in any case hardly any games use dual analogue on 3DS anyways, so it's not really a "necessary" feature. True, it's a pain to attach CPP to play MGS3 Snake Eater or RE Revelations, but those games are far and few between (and also have alternate control schemes for single analogue play). I could totally be wrong- time will tell as they say- but I wouldn't count on a new model 3DS.

ReaperX30

#19

ReaperX30 said:

It's not surprising that Animal Crossing is doing well. You could buy only this game and you'd be good for the year and maybe more. There's so much stuff you can do and it's so addictive. Apart from playing Black Ops 2 with my inlaws on Xbox live Friday and Saturday nights every other games have been left behind. Gotta get back to Monster Hunter and Etrian Odyssey IV though.....eventually.

Peach64

#21

Peach64 said:

Really glad to see the 3DS doing well. Fire Emblem: Awakening is in my top 3 games of the year alongside Bioshock Infinite and Last of Us, while Luigi's Mansion and Animal Crossing are both great games too. Hopefully by the end of the year I'll actually be seeing StreetPass hits!

RevolverLink

#23

RevolverLink said:

I'm not terribly surprised with how well Animal Crossing is performing, but that Luigi's Mansion: Dark Moon was able to move 115K copies in its fourth month is kind of amazing.

Ernest_The_Crab

#24

Ernest_The_Crab said:

@Csaw It depends on the audience. In Japan it sold a ton of copies in a single weekend (sales listed were only for a weekend unlike its predecessors).

rjejr

#25

rjejr said:

@JaxonH @Csaw - I'm not saying it NEEDS a 2nd stick, only that Nintendo has a history of upgrading handhelds - GB, GBC, GBA, DS, DS Lite, DSi, DSXL - so I thought the 3DS might be due an upgrade in the spring and the 2nd stick was all that popped into my head. Want I really want is HDMI out so I can play Kid Icarus, Fire Emblem, Luigi's Mansion and Dream Team on my 52" tv but I know that isn't going to happen.

@RR529 - Thanks for the info. Party isn't my type of game but it really did seem weird w/o a Mario game. Kinda surprised no Olympic game to match the WiiU.

Haywired

#26

Haywired said:

@Gioku
I'm sure there will be a Wii U Animal Crossing, but I don't think Wii AC did especially well (in comparison to DS and 3DS games). I think New Leaf has nearly already outsold it. It's looking like the franchise's sales strength is very much on handhelds.

WindWakerLink

#27

WindWakerLink said:

"Over 500,000 copies in just June alone??? OH SNAP!!!" That just shows HOW BAD we all been wanting Animal Crossing since they announced it creation for the 3DS way back 2011... That figure over 500,000 copies sold for AC:NL in just June is "kinda of a mind blower to me."

Lobster

#28

Lobster said:

Games certainly do sell systems. As does not having any real competing systems around (most people don't think much about the Vita). So, when are all the Wii U games coming out? Holiday season? ... Welp.

(I don't think it's as bad as all that, but they've definitely dug themselves into a hole this year that they didn't have any reason to dig.)

distantwolfx44

#29

distantwolfx44 said:

@rjejr If Nintendo does make a new 3DS with another thumb-stick, then it will be different from the 3DS franchise itself and thus will need a new name, maybe 3DS Pro or something like that, and yeah I agree with you about Nintendo making new consoles, but if they made a new handheld now they will surely fall, why? Because the 3DS is finally gaining it's popularity and status in the gaming market even with new consoles and android/iOs competition is on. If Nintendo made a new handheld now then all their fans will be displeased. But Nintendo will surely make one in the near future, wait for about 2 or more years on the 3DS "era" and Nintendo will probably make a 3DS Pro or something soon.

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