News Article

Thriving 3DS Remains the Best Selling Video Game Platform for July in the US

Posted by Thomas Jones

Handheld remains top for third month straight

The Nintendo 3DS continued to sell well last month as it remained top of the charts for video game hardware sales in the US. But hardware sales across all platforms aren't looking quite so positive with a noticeable drop in sales for July.

Industry sales as a whole dropped by 19 percent to $443 million in the region, with hardware numbers dropping 34 percent to $99.4 million and software figures (including PC) falling to $222.3 million, a drop of 20 percent; as always, this is focused on physical retail markets.

Poor sales can perhaps be attributed to consumers waiting for new consoles such as the PS4 and Xbox One to hit the shelves in time for the Holiday season, or for a price drop on the systems currently available on the market.

But despite the bleak performance for the video game market overall, the Nintendo 3DS remains a hot seller, with sales of the handheld increasing 14 percent compared to the same period in 2012, causing it to retain the top spot for the third month in a row. The last handheld to do so was the Nintendo DS in 2010.

Software sales for the system were high too, thanks in part to the continued chart success of favourites like Animal Crossing: New Leaf, which sold a further 150,000 combined units (retail and download) last month to bring its overall US sales up to 660,000 units. Titles such as Luigi's Mansion: Dark Moon and Shin Megami Tensei IV also continued to sell well, helping the 3DS flourish in a less than admirable period for the wider market.

Nintendo did give a couple of Wii U snippets of information, with New Super Mario Bros. U passing 830,000 lifetime sales in the region, with the performance of EarthBound also being reserved for praise, though no firm figures were given.

There are plenty of games coming to the 3DS and Wii U to push the systems in the remainder of the year, and next months results should bring us news of Pikmin 3's performance. As is often the case right now, however, the 3DS is doing excellent business for Nintendo.


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User Comments (49)



Pachterkid said:

The 3DS has such an incredible library of games it's no wonder it's having the success that it is.



Polaris said:

If only mine hadn't been stolen, i'd be enjoying mine too. It was stolen probably by a non-wrestler at a match. If they aren't a wrestler and I find them, I'll tear them to pieces!



Peach64 said:

Brilliant news for the 3DS. The only minor negative is that Fire Emblem hasn't matched Luigi and New Leaf. It's done well but it's my favourite game on the 3DS and deserves sales that reflect that.

Wii U did 29k, which is pretty much the same as June, May and April. It should get a boost in August and September though. Still, it's no good pointing out that's normal for a new consoke because it's not. 360 sold 110k this month, which is its worst ever sales but it's 8 years old. The Gamecube (Nintendo's lowest selling home console) didn't sell under 30k a month until after the Wii came out.



MrMario02 said:

With Games like AC:NL, LM:DM, FE:A, LOZ:ALBW, M&L:DT, SSB4 and Pokemon X and Y, no wonder 2013 is so good for 3DS!



Cuddles said:

As much as I'm sick of Nintendo's same ol same ol software. I'm really happy to see the 3DS so well. It reminds me of these days with the Wii U. Something new and loads of people thinking it will fail. Come on WiiU!



DualWielding said:

its obvious the 3DS is going to be on top its the only thing with any momentum at the moment..... Wii U and Vita are both stalling, PS3 and 360 are winding down..... lets see how it does when PS4 and Xbone release...... I think in the U.S. the new consoles may knock it down but the strength of its japanese sales would secure for the 3DS the top spot in the worldwide chart.



blesslife said:

ps4 will bring the vita up. hopefully they do bundle the two packaged together highly likely

3ds sales will continue to rise as will xbox one and wii u once games get released



billychaos said:

A little more than a year ago, any article with the 3ds in it was accompanied by quotes such as 'Nintendo is going the way of Sega' or 'Nintendo is doomed!'. Many people don't know that the original 8bit nes flopped at launch. Nintendo reworked their brand then the nes hit us like a storm. We shouldn't underestimate a company that is capable of consistent bounce-backs.



Shambo said:

@sackferret If only this were as logical as it should be. If it were, Wii U would've sold so much ps4 and xboxone wouldn't bother being released anymore and we'd get every game on one platform, no console wars, no b.s., because Wii U is simply awesome as a gaming system.

Don't get me wrong, anyone can pick any console now that the choice is there, it's simply personal taste.

But I'm tired of seemingly the entire gaming 'community' scolding each other over it. Comparing fps 9 to fps 4. And that sports game 2014 on console x to console y over 2 frames per second at that one point...

'Hardcore' vs. casual vs. mature vs. 'babies' vs. 'pc master race' vs. consoles. The Limited Ultimate Extra-Wow Super Hyper Special Easy Operation Arcade Remix
X-over Space Edition
Millennium Classic Version

That should be about as silly as the gaming community makes itself seem.



aaallenbrah said:

Nintendo giving praise to Earthbound is promising, perhaps we'll see the other entries in the franchise on VC soon or gasps a new Earthbound/Mother title!?



Nintenjoe64 said:

@Peach64 I still think the WiiU's saving grace is that Nintendo have not been supporting it with software or marketing yet. It must be part of their plan to not spend on marketing or else their plan is to let the thing die! If they don't advertise this xmas then we'll all know that Nintendo are letting the console go silently into the night. The worrying part is that they did the same thing with the GC in Europe (I never saw a single TV advert for it) but it still did relatively well.



Subie98 said:

I really want a 3ds xl but not for its current price and even used is sold for 10-15 dollars cheaper than new. And over half of them arent even mint to ask that much. Come on thats ridiculous!



Mk_II said:

@Nintenjoe64 a big marketing push only makes sense when you've got something to push, ie. later this year when there is more software. Timing is also crucial and the summer period is not a good time. So i'm pretty sure Nintendo will spend a lot of money and effort to market the Wii U in the last three months of the year.



rjejr said:

Wii U will show a bump in Aug as Pikmin 3 came out Aug 4th in the US.

Iwata will then talk about how games sell consoles, not a price cut, but he'll leave out the part where both Target and Best Buy were offering $50 GC when you bought a Wii U and TRU was offering a $25 GC when buying both a Wii U and Pikmin 3. Judging from all the posts on CAG a lot of those Wii Us would not have sold w/o the $50 GC so Pikmin 3 selling console sis only half true. I bought my Wii U b/c of Pikmin 3, Pokemon Rumble U and the W101 demo but it would not have happened w/o the $50 GC (which I spent yesterday on $83 worth of groceries.)

And you can't compare 3DS "doom and gloom" w/ Wii U "doom and gloom" and just say the Wii U will be ok. The 3DS had a huge price cut, great games and no competition (see Vita sales). The Wii U will get great games next year, but the competition is MUCH stronger w/ PS4 and X1 and Iwata keeps saying no price cut. I think and hope the Wii U will be ok, but it isn't a given. OK still means Gamecube like sales though, not Wii. 3rd place all the way.



goldenlander said:

I like Vita's game library more than 3DS because Vita is JRPG heaven already. Quality may vary and both have great titles (of JRPGs), but selection of JRPGs on Vita is way greater than 3DS. And so I won't buy a 3DS.

But, I don't like Vita. 3DS is more appealing than Vita. And so I won't buy a Vita. Aaaaargh! I'm in dilemma!



Nintenjoe64 said:

it's not the lack of summer marketing I worry about, it's the period before. It's almost as though they released it without any games beyond the day 1 stuff, 3rd parties pulled the plug on nearly every possible 'filler' title until Pikmin 3 and Nintendo's answer to that was silence. The actual schedule isn't so different to that of the Wii's infancy so I shouldn't be so surprised but they must have had the opportunity to grease a few more palms and get some of the major releases ported. Maybe they did and Aliens scared them off putting any more money into 3rd party hands!

Also, they should be marketing Nintendoland more. It offers gameplay that the other consoles simply cannot replicate. The AR shooting, chasing games and motionplus are all fantastic examples of what Nintendo does that MS and Sony can't. I wish they'd had DLC so we could get a Starfox and some Wii Sports stuff but it's still the best example of what the Wii U can do.



Rafie said:

@MrSRArter I'm not. The 3DS robust library and 3D technology continues to soar with more promising titles. It's only natural that the 360 sales are taking a hit to accommodate for the newer system. The 3DS is killing it right now. I hope the Wii U gets up there as well.



Windy said:

The 3DS has been so much fun over the last year I don't see this changing for a very longtime. I hope we do see more Online Multiplayer games over the next year on 3DS and Wii-U. If they will ever announce Dragon Quest X on Wii-U I would buy myself a Wii-U. Maybe when Xenoblade comes out I will finally pick up Wii-U. I was not happy about the release of Monster Hunter on 3DS with no online play unless you own a Wii-U. What a dirty trick! Sorry but that's all it was.



unrandomsam said:

These sort of results are not interesting.

(Plus did Nintendo claim that it was not profitable to get that fine reduced ?)

Sell at a loss make it up in volume.

There is still far more stuff I actually like on the DS than 3DS. (Obviously the system was around for longer but it was getting stuff that I now have throughout its lifecycle.)

Megaman ZX
Dragon Quest 4-6
Metal Slug 7
Contra 4
Commando: Steel Disaster
Warioware Touched
Warioware DIY
Kirby Super Star Ultra
Tetris DS
Radiant Historia
Space Invaders Extreme
Ketsui Death Labe
Nanostray 2
Final Fantasy III
Final Fantasy IV
Bangai-O Spirits
Castlevania Portrait of Ruin
Castlevania Dawn of Sorrow
Chrono Trigger
Phantasy Star 0
Dragon Quest IX
Mario Kart DS (I prefer it to the 3DS version incidently).

3DS has (For me).

Nano Assaut EX
What I want is "game-like games" (Exactly like what G-Rev referred to in the interview on here).

(Nintendo say they don't compromise but they do. If the 3D is disabled then the Mario games should be able to run at 60hz not really a technical issue at all if they could do it for the new Zelda they could do it for 3D Land and NSMB2).

and some VC games that I actually care about so far. (To be fair I think I probably bought into it too early but at the time it was only a tiny amount cheaper to get a Dsi XL which is what I would have got otherwise).

(Think I might just get a Dsi XL to enjoy the rest of my games more - I hate the scaling. Using exactly double pixels is something the Vita did right).

Dunno whether the Vita is for me or not either. (I want Star Soldier and Ultimate Ghosts and Goblins but they are both PSP games) and I really hate Sony. (For many reasons I won't support them unless I feel like it is the last available options. Rather get an ios7 ipad with the Apple Controller presuming the support is added to the stuff I want on there.)



rmeyer said:

Nintendo needs to sell plush Pikmin dolls. They have a ton of toys for their other games. I don't know why they miss these opportunities



unrandomsam said:

@aaallenbrah Best we could hope for is the prototype NES version (Which exists and is already translated). And mother 3 properly translated and released it won't happen unless it is a full priced one though be too expensive. (Cannot see them using the unofficial translation patch).

I hope we get Dragon Quest VII (The Japan and everywhere else parts of Square Enix seem to be fairly independent.)



Peach64 said:

@NintenJoe64 A good marketing push at Christmas should turn all this around. I just hope they focus on the games, and not how you can play local multiplayer or have a map on the gamepad. I think it's obvious from the hands on play throughs that no first party games really make great use of the gamepad yet, so instead of trying to push it to the front of their marketing, just tell people they should buy a Wii U because it has Mario 3D World and Donkey Kong.



Relias said:

It seems.. Nintendo has all 4 ranges from the Best.. to the Good.. The Bad.. and The Ugly these days.. Well done 3DS.. oh and Subie.. the 3DS is one of the few systems.. (Even the XL version) That I would say is well worth the current asking price.. so going 200.00 for all the games and everything it has to offer.. it's a steal.. actually.. after all what is 200 bucks or whatever.. for a system that will probably get well over 1000 hours plus of game time.on.. (And the bigger screens help) it is well worth it.. now if we were talking Neo Geo prices.. ole lordy.. it would actually take more.. to justify that purchase..



Xjarnold said:

Hurr durr the only good games on 3ds are Mario hurr durr... My friend told me that, we didn't speak for six weeks.



Relias said:

@Xtremetdifan That's okay.. Hurr Durr.. after all the only good games on the others is First Person Shooters.. Hurr Durr.. LOL.. you supposed friend is a maroon not worth thinking about.. keep him for what he does well.. everything he says about Video Games.. take with a grain of salt.. that is all..



unrandomsam said:

@Shambo 60fps on my PC vs 30fps on a console makes a difference to me. (I am indifferent as long as it is full 60fps on a console as long as it is rock solid and never lags - don't like it when anyone states a 30fps version is the definitive version though like has happened with Trine 2). And I like having some games I like on all my systems.



unrandomsam said:

@Relias Neo Geo MVS is not all that bad in terms of cost (Board for £65 / Supergun (Between £40 and £200) / Joystick for £20-£50 / Games are not that bad (Or you can get one of those bootleg carts 150 in one or whatever and then buy on the VC the stuff you want to play. At least SNK gets something that way).

AES is stupid I agree.



unrandomsam said:

Can likely get a full Neo Geo MVS Cabinet with a game or two monitor and joysticks for £250 from here - (Not really many commercial sellers trying to scam you). They all cost about the same its mainly enthusiasts there.



Shambo said:

@unrandomsam If there was only one system, and it'd be the Wii U, it'd be the only option for developers too, so there'd be no problem, just an easier time getting to play online, borrowing games from friends, all the controller options, all the games... Just saying though
Sure, 60fps is better than 30, but the comparisons I've seen and mocked are x360 vs ps3 where fanboys attack each others console for being inferior whenever the counter for something you almost cannot see with the naked eye drops from 30 to 28 for two seconds. They try to prove their system is better by pointing out technical things you could take away without any of them noticing. They end up attacking the version they don't play instead of enjoying the almost exact same game they do play. Gaming is about having a good time, not about specs and giving others a bad time...



crobatman said:

I can't imagine how many consoles Nintendo will sell when X&Y comes out, so many of my friends are already buying 3DS' in preparation for its release and I know many people who are waiting until october. I can't wait until ALBTW and X&Y comes out!



JaxonH said:

No, you're right. the Wii U is definitely below par saleswise. I've pondered the reasons which could be behind this, and I think it's a cumulative effect of several factors.

For one, the anti-Nintendo hatred is at an all-time high. Teenage fanboys think it's "uncool" to like Nintendo, and unfortunately I think that's taking a toll on the core market.

For two, The Wii U has seen virtually no must-have 1st party exclusives this year (up until Pikmin 3 anyways), which definitely hurts Wii U because Nintendo consoles are sold by Nintendo games.

For three, Nintendo has only just begun marketing the console- they didn't even make a splash at launch. Without games, there's nothing to advertise. Hopefully that will be changing soon.

For four, the Wii lost the interest of many gamers. The Wii had many excellent exclusives, but they were disguised by a truckload of shovelware and party games. Most consumers' Wii's started collecting dust, because they thought Guitar Hero and 30 Great Party Games were the best on offer for the system, and as a result haven't paid much attention to the Wii's successor. Many consumers wrote the Wii U off as more of the same. We know this not to be true, as can be seen by Pikmin 3, Wonderful 101, and the myriad of must-have exclusives blanket-bombing the system this fall and early 2014, but Nintendo must convince the masses of this through advertising and communication.

And finally, the economy isn't what it was in previous generations. There's a worldwide recession- economies are on the verge of collapsing, unemployment is at an all-time high... people don't have the net cash flow they used to. I think that's why budget gaming devices such as 3DS are doing so well right now (well that, and it's got the best gaming library in the market right now- but price DOES factor in). I actually believe the launch of PS4 and Xbox One will HELP the Wii U. It will bring attention to the masses that there is a new generation, and naturally, people will be curious as to what Nintendo is bringing to the table. Upon further investigation, they will see the plethora of amazing exclusives on store shelves, and coupled with the lowest price tag, many could be persuaded to go with the Wii U this gen.



Gamer83 said:

This is bad. Hopefully later this year the new consoles and Nintendo's first party Wii U games can bring life back to the dying console market over here.



IceClimbers said:

Glad to see the 3DS doing so well. I want to see the numbers for just October 12th. Pokemon X/Y are going to make system sales skyrocket.



ollietaro said:

@goldenlander I agree with you, the Vita may have a lot more JRPG options, especially with the access to the PSP library of games. However, you may want to play more kinds of games. I was a strategy-rpg-only player for a while until I picked up Monster Hunter and now I'm so addicted, clocking in 464+ hours on it!



ollietaro said:

@koopakid Right! And its success is not even due to the fact games are in 3D for gosh sakes. It's madness how this type of gaming flies under the radar. You'd think people would want the most futuristic devices, but no. We flock to the 3DS because the games are great and the 3D effect is secondary to us.



pukka-pie said:

@koopakid I agree completely, I never ever though I would buy a handheld again but the sheer number of games I have to play on this console beggars belief. I mean this is a proper handheld, with dedicated games; it isn't meant to be a home console squeezed down. I don't have any games yet, Ocarina of Time is coming tomorrow, I cannot wait! Feels good to be playing a Nintendo system again!

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