Microsoft has had a tough time in Japan on the video game front. The latest iteration of its Xbox system shifts a handful of units per week within the region and the company's first-party offerings often struggle to appeal to Japanese players.
While it's not going so well for the Xbox or its library of games, one Microsoft-owned IP that is performing quite well in Japan (on other systems) is Minecraft. In particular, the Switch version of the game, which was released in store on 21st June 2018 and published by Xbox Game Studios in this location. As revealed in this week's Japanese charts, the physical edition of Minecraft on Switch has now shifted 1,003,160 units.
This makes it Xbox Game Studios' first retail game to reach one million sales within Japan and apparently the first third-party retail game on Switch to shift more than one million units within this region. Obviously, this figure does not include the number of digital game sales on Switch, which is believed to be just under half a million sales so far since its release on 12th May 2017.
"Congratulations Microsoft" Now there's something you wouldn't expect to read on a Nintendo site. Good for them though.
Considering Minecraft has to compete with Dragon Quest Builders in Japan, this is an achievement. DQ is a pretty big franchise over there.
Oh my god this is hilarious, they only achieved this because of their competitor XD
Nice job, hope to see more games from microsoft on the switch.
I know they will do well (Killer instinct, banjo kazooi, Conker, Perfect dark)
Good for it. Rare Replay pls.
Maybe its because Nintendo and Playstation are the only ones with good exclusives
I can't stand vanilla minecraft. I have to play with mods on the computer. If I remember right, I have 182 mods. Hehe
@gamer89 Haha yeah that's actually pretty funny when you think of it. They did make a good business decision to buy minecraft though.
Are we sure about this?
Minecraft has been around for years and is available in Japan on PC, PS3, PS4, Wii U, 3DS and Switch selling over 176 million copies worldwide.
The article only mentions Switch sales so maybe adding the others up would give us a bigger picture?
I can’t imagine only 1 million having sold in Japan out of that number. The game suits the Japanese market very well.
So Microsofts only success in Japan is a game they didn't make on a console they didn't make? Well done them
@Kienda yeah there's a bit of a catch here: Minecraft on PSVita did pass one million in Japan, but was published by SIE, not Microsoft/XBox.
@m8e3point1415 Will put my hand up and say I'm Xbox and Nintendo. Sold my PS4 as I didn't use it. Got fed up of waiting for Last Of Us 2 and wasn't as hyped as much as everyone else about Spiderman (the last game I bought before I sold it.) I use my One X on regular basis in performance mode on games and have game pass till December 2022. The console I use the most is the switch due to pure fun and convenience. I am however looking forward to what Sony and Microsoft have in store for next gen. Microsoft have made some good studio purchases and if Sony can deliver on PS5 it's going to be great for everyone... Apart from my wallet...
I'm all for physical releases, in fact there are many games I wouldn't want to pay for UNLESS they got a physical release. But I wonder why anyone would want a physical version of Minecraft? The second. you buy it, it's obsolete already cause it's a constantly evolving game with refular updates to content. I'd expect such a game to be the perfect fit for digital only. The world really doesn't make sense sometimes XD.
Well, now those "Game Pass on Switch" rumours won't sound so far-fetched anymore.
I'd like you to meet my Xbox-loving friend, FairyEmpire. We meet kinda regularly in person. He's a bit of a vocal fellow when it comes to Nintendo's flaws, but the Switch really DID do a number on the naysayers. He even admitted as much.
Xbox enthusiasts do exist, they're just slightly less common to come across... as much as the console itself, ironically.
@clvr oh, well that explains it then.
It shows Nintendo is good for Microsoft.
It might explain how we got Cup Head and Super Lucky’s Tale and hopefully more games.
They can crack the Japanese market through Nintendo and hopefully we benefit from some of the exclusives.
And yet they won't release Golden Eye. Makes you wonder whom is really thinking inside the box.
I'm shocked 1 million people in Japan still buy physical games but even more shocked they would buy Minecraft physical b/c thats a game you would always want on your system, it's not something you're going to play for 20 hours then forget about or trade in.
10 million Switch sold in Japan, so thats a solid 10% physical. Pretty good I think for a 3rd party game.
Microsoft may not have made it's $2.5B back yet, but between the game, the 2022 movie keeping the name alive, the new game, the merchandise, it's not looking like a bad purchase.
@m8e3point1415 I think the XBox fans are just a lot quieter, but tend to be more dedicated gamers than PS4 fans (PS4 sold a boatload of consoles but a lot of that was for people that play a game or two a year, where XBox and Nintendo tend to get people more like us.)
Personally I'm a fan of all 3. Nintendo will always be "home". I do like Playstation's exclusives and enjoy their ecosystem to a point, but I've found I'm moving pretty much everything except exclusives from Sony to XBox these days. We're out there. Maybe not in the UK, but we're out there
@rjejr It doesn't hurt that Minecraft appears on the default start menu even on Windows Server 2019 Enterprise Editions...... I'm sure every Fortune 500 bank and defense contractor loves the Minecraft launcher being the first thing seen on their systems....
@m8e3point1415 Here I am!! I already had all 3, currently I am only with the Xbox One, because it was the one I was playing the most. Game Pass is a huge reason why I was playing on Xbox more, but in the end, their games appeal more to me than the games on PS4 and Switch nowadays.
Sooo.. Xbox made it to 1M through a competitors console, with a game they didn't make. Well done.
@Jeaz since minecraft was purchased is Microsoft that develop all the updates. So every new thing that come to minecraft is all on microsoft team. Including this achievement, that not only require the game to be good, but also have a good support through its lifetime.
@Kienda exactly, it's a win-win for everyone 😄
@NEStalgia "on the default start menu even on Windows Server 2019 Enterprise Editions"
Microsoft is SJW central, just like Disney and Sony.
@duhsoares21 Microsoft fully owns Mojang, but afaik they still develop the game. Microsoft support as publisher.
Wow 1 million sales, that's crazy! It's almost like Minecraft should be represented in smash somehow
@clvr @Kienda The Wii U edition of Minecraft was the second best-selling Microsoft game in Japan at around 340k units sold. Would be be third if we counted the PS Vita Edition Sony takes credit for. Minecraft is really holding it down over there for Microsoft.
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