God Eater Off To Strong Start, Livly Garden Withers

By Ishaan . February 14, 2010 . 2:50pm

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As one would expect of a good Monster Hunter clone, Namco Bandai’s God Eater has gotten off to a strong start in its first three days in the Japanese market. According to Media Create numbers — Enterbrain’s, which we usually rely on, aren’t available yet — God Eater topped the weekly sales chart during the week of its release with 295,405 units.

 

Close behind it was Dragon Quest VI: Realms of Reverie for the DS at 189,802 in its second week. First week sales amounted to 906,458 units. Interestingly, Japanese game store Games Maya’s manager pointed out that God Eater seemed primarily aimed at middle and high schoolers, while Dragon Quest was selling mainly to adults early on.

 

Since their target markets are so different, and its closest competitor, Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker doesn’t release until April 29, God Eater has over two months to let word of mouth boost its sales. For reference, the demo got over 1 million downloads.

 

Two weeks ago, we wondered out loud if Star Ocean: The Last Hope would fare better on the Playstation 3 than it did on the Xbox 360. Judging by early numbers, it’s safe to say, no. Star Ocean: The Last Hope International sold 166,027 units during its first week on the 360. While on the PS3, it only managed around 72,026 units. Part of the reason for slow sales could be that most consumers who wanted to play the game played it on the Xbox 360 a year ago.

 

Meanwhile, Tri-Ace’s other RPG, Resonance of Fate sold 118,808 units in its first week on PS3 and 27,048 on the Xbox 360, debuting at the #2 and #8 positions respectively. A week later, the PS3 version dropped further down the charts to #7, while the Xbox version plummeted to #22.Of course, compared to Brownie Brown and Marvelous Entertainment’s Livly Garden for DS (6,200 first week, then vanished without a trace), which debuted alongside, that isn’t so bad…

 

The top-ten for the week of Feb 1 – 7 is as follows:

 

LW TW Title Tw sales Tot. sales Sys. Publisher
New 01. God Eater 295,405 New PSP Namco Bandai
01. 02. Dragon Quest VI 189,802 1,096,260 DS Square Enix
New 03. Star Ocean: The Last Hope Int. 72,026 New PS3 Square Enix
03. 04. New Super Mario Bros. Wii 62,174 3,263,191 Wii Nintendo
05. 05. Tomodachi Collection 27,104 1,610,154 DS Nintendo
06. 06. Wii Fit Plus 27,104 1,610,154 Wii Nintendo
02. 07. Resonance of Fate 25,460 143,548 PS3 Sega
New 08. Pop n’ Music Portable 19,138 New PSP Konami
07. 09. Kingdom Hearts: Birth by Sleep 14,780 727,938 PSP Square Enix
11. 10. Wii Sports Resort 13,314 1,735,000 Wii Nintendo

 

Dragon Quest IX, according to another source, sold another 2,500 (approx.) units last week. It’s well over 4 million at this point. Final Fantasy XIII clung on just a little higher in the chart at over 3,500 units as well. It’s still somewhere in the range of 1.8 – 1.9 million.

 

Compared to Dragon Quest IX and even Kingdom Hearts: Birth by Sleep, FFXIII seems like a terribly inefficient use of time and resources. How the game performs in the west will probably dictate whether or not the project was worth the time and effort spent on it.

 

Chart sourced from Media Create. Going forward, we’ll be referencing M-C charts and our other sources, rather than Enterbrain, who take far longer to publish their numbers.



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  • Aoshi00

    Personally I don’t think FFXIII was a waste of time and resources, if and only if they gave it a better story, and the game made just a tad less linear like a tunnel and w/ towns added in, I’m quite sure good word of mouth would travel fast and sell even more copies (right now the consensus in Jpn is this game is no good at all, not just from the usual haters who only liked “FF 1-6″). I don’t think this would affect sales in the West though, regardless how it turned out, fans will continue to stick w/ this 13th entry, it’s just a matter when S-E ruined the FF brand, but then they really kind of have since the Gooch left the helm.

    Personally I don’t want to play FF XV w/ Crisis Core PSP graphics.. w/ the game engine established now, maybe they could concentrate back on telling a better story next time, and give us those dang towns.

    • http://twitter.com/Golii Cristóbal Escalona

      I think what he means by waste of time and resources is that it has sold around 2 millions, yes, that’s a good number, but it would probably be even better if they had included what they cut out, and perhaps if all the canned content never existed maybe instead of 3 years it would have been 1.5 years of waiting too!

    • http://www.siliconera.com/ Ishaan

      Well…by itself, sure, it wasn’t a waste of time and resources. But compare it to Dragon Quest IX and the investment that went into that project relative to its sales. Of course, from that point of view, a LOT of console games in Japan are an “inefficient use of of time and money.”

      Square Enix layed off what…200 or something people last year? That might not have had to happen either.

      • Aoshi00

        I think there’s a place for high budget and low budget games, Mega 9 & 10 are fine, and we have many fun indie and XBLA/PSN games, but some games I don’t want to see them regress, like we had DQ8 then regressed to DS9 on DS. Sure, Nintendo made money off of Wii and Sony/MS lost money on PS3/360, but that doesn’t mean I’m rooting for games going backwards or staying PS2 quality. As long as they break even why not, it’s Final Fantasy (but FF is gradually losing its fans w/ XI-XIV over the last decade, people are buying the new titles hoping to relive that old experience from 1-10).

        But I would have to say they need to get their priorities straight, FF was never just about the graphics, it was about the best in everything, music, graphics, story, chars, atmosphere, gameplay, replay value, most of all losing yourself in that unique and captivating fantasy world that is not in other games. For spinoffs being on handheld fine, or FFIV after, but I highly doubt FF XV should go back to 8 bit, 16 bit, 32 bit, or last gen. Essentially they pulled a Xenosaga w/ XIII and the storytelling suffered, because XIII is not told over a trilogy, for the most part, people just couldn’t get into the story and chars at all, nobody was complaining about the graphics, which was the only saving grace of this game. But I think they could do both w/o sacrificing one or the other.

        • http://www.siliconera.com/ Ishaan

          Agree completely. But the questions is, can they be smart enough to set a pipeline by which they don’t end up spending 4 years on a game?

          I like to joke about zippers and belts as much as the next guy, but Nomura is probably Square Enix’s best designer (gameplay-wise) at this point, and he’s taking his own sweet time with Versus XIII, too. That game, however, has a better chance of selling in the West on account of being more action-oriented, and yet it’s PS3-exclusive so far. We have no idea when it’ll release, no idea what’s going on with it…nothing at all. I just feel like their insistence to try and be this graphical powerhouse with these “event” games is holding them back.

          • Aoshi00

            I’m really not familiar w/ the details, but don’t they say every Pixar film takes about 4 years to make or something? but still they come up w/ one every year and it’s always successful because they have established a quality standard. I think the wait would be worth it if the end result is good. If you wait for years and still end up w/ a mediocre game, then that’s no good which is why fans are disappointed by XIII, I didn’t wait “10 yrs” for this, since I kind of put 11-12 out the window. I actually thought they would redeem themselves w/ this so to speak.

            Lost Odyssey was done well I thought (like a HD FF/Shadow Hearts hybrid to me), maybe it didn’t make much money since it was not multiplatform. I’m not sure about Nomura, he’s a great artist, but always about style over substance for the most part, Kingdom Hearts, Advent children, etc, so I’m not crazy about him being the director.

            I think S-E just needs to ask themselves one simple question, why did fans fall in love w/ FF in the first place, it seems that they lost sight of their passion and vision w/ Sakaguchi and Uematsu gone.

            I see your point though, but I just don’t see S-E making games, esp. FF that would look nothing by the best, as many Jpn developers seem to think they need to catch up these days, if Western games could look AND play good, why can’t Jpn games. I thought Kojima did well though w/ MGS4, I don’t know if that made money or not.

            W/ XIII, they just made some poor decision, who thought that no towns and depending on an encyclopedia to tell a complex story would ever be a good idea, hopefully this would teach them a lesson. One thing I’m sure though, FF fans are really running out of patience w/ the direction they’re taking the series, which is all over the place, MMO, MMO-like, weak story, and MMO again, etc.. that’s not counting Versus action spinoff and Agito PSP spinoff..

          • thebanditking

            IMO Versus needs to remain exclusive, at least until the initial release is completed. For a large scale RPG, focusing on one platfrom is the best way to go. Eternal Sonata, Tales of Vesperia, Lost Odyssey, even from a western perspective Mass Effect (PC versions not included) all seem to have benefitted from single platform development. The added pressure of a last min. platform or release change shifts focus from completing a project to getting it to run on another console. I don’t worry about versus XIII’s potential success as MGS4 did very well and Nomura’s games/design seem to resonate well with Japan and the West.

        • Moriken

          “hoping to relive that old experience from 1-10″

          Make 4-10 out of this…honestly, playing 1-3 nowadays is just not very fun, but 4-10 still is. I still need to buy a PS3 and I know I will play FF13 then, and I know I will be disappointed because it’s no 6 or 10. And I know in the end I will have had some fun with it but not get the urge to replay it 5 years later, which is probably what you should expect, kinda like those big budget Hollywood blockbusters ^^

    • thebanditking

      I agree with you on this, I want and expect more from the Final Fantasy name so PSP level graphics are not goign to cut it (though I did love Crisis Core). I dont see FFXIII as a waste of time or resources, but rather a bit of a botched attempt. Of course this doesn’t surprise me as the FFX team which 13′s is mosly comprised of was hammered for the same thing with FFX. Too linear, not enough towns or traditional gameplay. Not to mention that without Sakaguchi Square is a bit lost, I blame Yoichi Wada (Gooch likely left because he did not get along with this guy). Still I am hopefull for Versus XIII as Nomura and the Kindom Hearts (and FF7) team members seem to understand good RPG design, not to mention they will benefit from the feedback 13 is getting.

      • Aoshi00

        I hope Versus would turn out well too and Noctis and the girl would be more interesting than just having nice hair :), but I’m keeping my expectations low after the last 3 FFs to avoid disappointment. I’m actually not a big fan of KH, the story lost me, gets too pretentious sometimes.The thing is I was really hyped for 13 precisely because the same people from X were behind it (well, maybe it was more of the X-2 team), from the trailers it looks like it could do no wrong. But I actually didn’t feel X was linear because I was so invested in the story and the chars, I was w/ them on every step of their journey and they grew on me, I didn’t want the game to end and felt sad parting w/ them, and I would go back to replay several times to relive those memories. Not to mention the locations on Spira were so exotic and left such an impression on me (and people playing Blitzball there and having Yevon as a religion, it was a breathing and living world), in contrast the world of Cocoon and Gran Pulse are as bland as you could get, w/ the history of its world being summed up in several paragraphs. W/ 13, it’s more like I couldn’t wait till the game is done and say good riddance. It’s sad because I really want to like them more, just bad narratives and the chars aren’t that fleshed out, by the end of the game you still feel like you don’t know them very well. They even have 3 short novels on the FFXIII official site as the prologue, if they were just somehow incorporated into the actual game in the forms of flashback and such, it would’ve been rather different. Now it’s like the game itself is a botched attempt like you said, and they expect you to rely on the supplementary novels to fully grasp and enjoy the story. I love Crisis Core too, but I think it works because we alrdy love those chars (other than Genesis/Gackt being like a deja vu of Sephiroth) and we were able to “feel” for them, like Zack’s last scene *sniff*

        p.s. while Hamauzu’s soundtrack is pretty good, I feel that w/ Uematsu’s absence, the game lacked a certain personal warmth or magical touch, maybe that’s why Sakaguchi and Uematsu get along w/ each other so well, they have a mutual understanding of each other’s styles.

  • malek86

    I thought SO would sell a bit more, especially after TOV PS3 outsold the 360 version in just one week. Maybe Squenix didn’t throw in enough extras. Or maybe people didn’t like the game after all.

    I’m also interested in seeing if God Eater can hold legs just like the MH games.

    Regarding FF13, well, there’s only so much you can do with a less than 5 millions userbase. I bet they’re really aiming for the western market on this one. Which is probably the reason why they went multiplatform. Japanese PS3 sales account for less than 10% of total western HD sales… if they market it well, it has at least a shot at reaching very big numbers, more than any other game in the series.

    • Dark_Sage

      I don’t think they know how to market… http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5ABsJgxZH-Q

      • malek86

        Yeah, well… I did say “if”.

        Squenix needs some lessons in western marketing.

    • Spekio

      I think in Star Ocean’s case it was that the only changes they made were game balancing and rearranging some of the item’s placement. They didn’t seem to add anything at all. Also anyone who got it for XBox, probably doesn’t want to beat it two more times just to get access to the highest difficulty again, let alone redo all of the Battle Trophies.

      I thought Sony had a policy that requires ports to have a significant amount of extras to be released on the PS3 long after the original? Wasn’t that the whole reason Namco added so much to ToV?

      • malek86

        It could be that Squenix, being a more important publisher, has more decision power than Namco, and so was able to “force” Sony into just accepting the game without extras.

    • thebanditking

      Could just be a slow seller. Also it’s worth mentioning that SO a year old port had to compete with End of Eternity a new game from the same company, so I think the market was a bit torn. Still it could be like Eternal Sonata, which did not do so well despite a PS3 release in Japan. Though I have got to say ouch, to the End of Eternity numbers on 360.

      • malek86

        Could be, but I believe the difference is that TOV was already hauled as a very good game on the 360, and with a lot of extras added in, people were willing to double-dip. Whereas, not many liked SO4, and Squenix didn’t even give that much reason to upgrade.

        As for EOE numbers, well, that just goes to show that people bought RPGs on 360 only because there was no other way to get them. If they are available to PS3 too, they’ll get that version. Makes sense. By the way, isn’t it the first true multi-platform RPG of the generation? I’m not counting FF13 because that didn’t come out for 360 in Japan.

  • http://thrust-the-sky.deviantart.com/ WildArms

    Waiting for god eater!

  • JeremyR

    Ah, but you aren’t factoring in the sales of FF13 merchandise. Soda, keyrings, etc. Plus, 15 years from now, they’ll put it up on PSN and it will sell gazillions on the PSP3 (like FF7 and FF8 have).

    • http://www.siliconera.com/ Ishaan

      This is true, and it’s a great point. I also didn’t make any mention of a potential PSP port, which I’m sure is something they’ve got to be considering. My point was that in comparison to some of their other high-profile projects, XIII seems the weakest.

  • Ereek

    Didn’t Ar tonelico 3 debut at #5 or so? It seems to have completely disappeared as well, but that tends to happen with these GUST titles.

    • http://www.siliconera.com/ Ishaan

      That’s a good point! I completely forgot about Ar Tonelico III. According to another source, it did less than 10k units last week. This puts it somewhere around 90k.

  • bobhoskins

    I will never understand this Monster Hunter craze, and with all of its clones. That series is downright god-awful.

    • http://twitter.com/Golii Cristóbal Escalona

      Agreed!
      I bought MHFU after seeing everyone talking about it, and after playing a while, all I wanted to do was stop!
      I hated the controls, the premise, the characters, the font, and for me at least, killing all those monsters kind of made me feel bad for some reason…
      I guess that’s what I get for not trying the demo.

  • http://twitter.com/Golii Cristóbal Escalona

    Oh that’s too bad about Livly Garden!
    I love that kind of games, I guess there’s no hope for a western release now…
    Not that there ever was a huge chance though…

    • http://www.siliconera.com/ Ishaan

      On the flip side, perhaps the game’s abysmal performance in Japan means MMV could use a few extra sales from the West. Perhaps if a publisher tried to promote it in the West as a casual Nintendogs-style game, it could move a reasonable amount of copies.

      The problem is, that casual / pet space on the DS is saturated with Ubisoft’s games, so you’d need some creative marketing to make this one stand out. Xseed are probably out of the equation.

  • http://www.siliconera.com/ Ishaan

    I wanted to throw this in to help highlight the difference between FFXIII and DQIX that I keep bringing up, since there seems to be some confusion as to what I’m getting at:

    http://www.siliconera.com/2009/12/06/the-secret-of-dragon-quest-ixs-success/

    Basically, it seems like a lot more thought and planning went into DQIX’s design, despite the fact that it’s a portable game. They had a focus…a realistic goal that they wanted to achieve, and they executed on it. This an example of great, responsible game design. In fact, it’s a trait that I find a lot of Level-5′s recent games bear.

    • malek86

      Wait, does that mean DQ9 is easier than the previous games?

      • http://www.siliconera.com/ Ishaan

        I don’t believe so, no. In fact, if I remember correctly, the difficulty even scales depending on how many players you’re playing with, which is nice. Don’t quote me on that though…

    • thebanditking

      Though your last point should be your only point. Level-5 crafts fantastic games and all of their titles have a focused goal. Personally I think Level-5 could out do S-E in terms of game design and production value if given S-E’s financial resources, perhaps Square will have them do FF15. ;p

      White Knight haters be damned, from what I played its a lot of fun, its actually quite good (so far). I actually can’t wait to play their other PSP titles.

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