Etrian Odyssey IV Towers Over Persona 2, Plus Atlus USA Sales Data

By Spencer . October 22, 2012 . 4:30pm

imageIndex Holdings announced sales data for their major releases in Japan. As Siliconera reported earlier, Persona 4 Golden was their best selling title this quarter with 260,000 units sold. Persona 4 Arena wasn’t far behind with 220,000 units sold as of August.


Persona 2: Eternal Punishment for PSP didn’t sell as well in comparison with only 60,000 units. Etrian Odyssey IV: Legends of the Titan sold 150,000 units and Devil Summoner: Soul Hackers moved 90,000 units in August alone.


Atlus USA (aka Index Digital Media) reported 1.835 billion yen in sales ($23 million) for this fiscal year, that’s September 1, 2011 to August 31, 2012 and 164 million yen ($2.05 million) of operating profit. Growlanser: The Wayfarer of Time, Gungnir, The King of Fighters XIII, The Cursed Crusade, Game of Thrones, and Persona 4 Arena are some of the games Atlus released during this period.

  • Budgiecat

    hmm why can’t games in Japan crack past 1 million sales if they’re name isn’t Nintendo or FF or DQ?

    • Hraesvelgr

      Different market.

    • brian yep

      Monster Hunter?

      • Are they million sellers? I wouldn’t be surprised. They are pretty fun and work well for the way Japan is set up.

        • malek86

          You must be joking! Monster Hunter Portable 3rd PSP, with 5+ million copies, has become the highest-selling third party game on any platform ever in Japan. Yes, before you ask, it has surpassed Dragon Quest 9 which previously held the title. So yeah, I’d say they are pretty popular.

    • Because the Japanese market has been shrinking, as opposed to other parts of the world, where it has been growing.

      • Quinton Cunningham

        Hey Ishaan. I THINK you mis-typed the King of Fighters game. Isn’t XIII (13) the one that just came out and not XII (12)? Please correct me if I’m wrong.

        • I dropped Spence an e-mail to see if that’s what he meant! I haven’t had a chance to look at the report yet myself.

      • Tom_Phoenix

        That’s not entirely accurate. 

        It’s true that the Japanese market is shrinking and is being hit the hardest by demographic trends (an aging population and almost no immigration). That said, the North American and European markets haven’t been doing much better. The North American market in particular has seen some steep declines since the turn of the decade. And while the US enjoys a positive birth rate, they will still be hit hard by the mass retirement of the Baby Boom generation.

        As for the other parts of the world, they have some potential, but each also suffers from it’s own unique problems (high taxes in Brasil, a great degree of social stigma in Asian countries, low income and high piracy…).

        Things are bad in Japan, but the grass isn’t exactly all that much greener elsewhere.

  • Oh.. poor sales for P2EP… I still have hope it will come to PSN for the Vita (in the US)… I really wanna get it. Also EOIV didn’t do too badly… glad it is coming over. DS:SH also did did ok… I hope it too will come over. I love you Atlus so please show your love and allow me to show mine by throwing money at you.

  • I have a feeling I’m gonna have to start hunting down the PS1 version of Eternal Punishment.
    I hope Soul Hackers comes over still too.

    • I really hope that isn’t true (about the having to hunt EP). And I agree on SH.

  • Herok♞

    Atlus can you do me this one favor and bring over P2:EP, maybe you will make the sales back and more, after all my favorite Persona is P2:IS so I want to see the improved other half.

    • Yu_TheKing

      This! Needs more Maia and Tatsu :<

  • “Atlus USA ” Hm? shouldn’t this be Atlus Co.?

    • Index Digital Media, Inc. = Atlus USA

      Index Holdings = Index (and Atlus) in Japan

      • I always found this interesting. Do you happen to know why they are Index but use the name Atlus?

        • endaround

          Index bought out Atlus (well sort of)

          • Hmm… I see. Weird… .but ok.

        • The parent company has always been Index Holdings. Atlus were always part of Index, but the two were formally merged back in 2010, to allow both Index and Atlus developers to work together more closely. Now, “Atlus” isn’t a separate company owned by Index any more—it’s simply a studio brand. 

          • Hmm… makes sense… I don’t really know who Index is though… I guess it is because I know them as Atlus.

          • Yeah, the average Atlus fan probably wasn’t aware of Index until the news hit. Index were/are primarily a mobile games developer.

          • Exkaiser

            Actually, Atlus wasn’t owned by Index until 2006, 20 years after it was formed. Index also owns some other things, like Madhouse.

  • Ethan_Twain

    Okay, what can we take away from this?  Fist, Persona 4 is Atlus’ biggest brand.  They’ve done stage shows, they’ve done a movie, they’ve done a TV show, they’ve done a fighting game spinoff, and they’ve done a remake.  The most significant thing to take away from the top two sellers is that there were serious marketing dollars invested into the Persona 4 brand, and those dollars brought back dividends.

    The next three data points are a little more interesting.  Although they’re not really similar products, one would have thought that all the exposure going to Persona 4 could only help other Persona titles like Persona 2.  But that doesn’t seem to have happened.  However, two first person dungeon crawlers (which is a niche genre) from smaller brand names (SMT (which is not the same brand name as Persona in Japan) and Etrian Odyssey) on the 3DS have performed much better.

    So what can we take away from this?  One, I would expect to see plenty more development on the 3DS from Atlus.  They’re doing plenty well for themselves on that hardware, and with SMT IV coming too it’s clear that they believe in the hardware’s long term potential.  Second, I think it’s safe to say that the PSP is finally done.  Yeah, games are still coming out, but Atlus’ biggest sellers were all on the 3DS or the Vita.  Atlus is often the last to abandon old hardware, and these numbers indicate that even for them it’s become more profitable to move on.

    Do we have any numbers past August for SMT: Soul Hackers?  If that game makes it up to 150,000 units sold (which it seemed on track to do) then I would consider that a lock for localization.

    • I can agree to them probably sticking to the 3DS. It is indeed doing well for them, and I am completely ok with this… so long as we get them localized. I do hope they still stay with the PSP for at least P2EP to come to PSN in the west. And about SH coming… I can’t remember if we ever got the original. Surprisingly enough we have gotten a relative few (S)MT titles here. But if 1) it did come out previously here, and 2) did sell well enough, I think that while not “locked” there could be a good chance of it coming west.

    • I don’t think there’s any particular need to be worried about Soul Hackers! That game is probably coming over even with its current sales. Unlike Japan, we’ve never gotten Soul Hackers before, so it’s effectively a “new” game for the west.

      Also, the last known Media Create numbers for Soul Hackers are here:

      In addition to the points you brought up, the one thing on my mind is whether or not we see any more Persona RPGs (ports or new ones) before Persona 5’s release. 

      As you’ve said before, a P4A port on Vita is almost guaranteed, just because it would take close to no effort, so it would likely be worth the time/resources. The question is whether Atlus are done with Persona for now until P5 comes out, or if we’ll see a spin-off title of some sort, to tide people over.

      • I don’t know why you are so sure of SH. I would certainly be very glad for it. But I honestly don’t see it as concrete. And when did he bring up the idea of a P4A port to Vita? O_o I would be happy for that. I don’t have a PS3 or Xbox and would love to play it. Maybe with online interactions with PS3? I am not much into fighting games but I am a sucker for Persona. And the only thing I see coming out before P5 if anything would be a sequel to P4A, which I suspect you were thinking as well?

        • Because Atlus USA have published games that far less people cared about than Soul Hackers in less favourable software environments.

          I don’t know about an update to P4A. It probably will happen at some point. But a port to Vita is almost certainly going to happen, regardless of how terribly Vita is doing. It would require close to no effort and Persona is a strong enough brand to sell a few copies.

          • I see… well as I said I am not unhappy to have it come. I am really excited for it actually. And I suppose it does make sense… I would get it simply due to not having it myself already.

        • Ethan_Twain

          I brought up the idea of P4A coming to the Vita here:

          I think it’s a solid bet :)

          • Oh… I see. lol I didn’t realize he was referring to a different article. And while I have no idea of it, I wouldn’t be disappointed.

      • Ethan_Twain

        Thank you!  I’m a little surprised to see Etrian Odyssey outperforming Soul Hackers to such a degree, but maybe I’m just biased.  I play SMT games, and I’ve never tried Etrian Odyssey.  I guess it was a port though, so the investment to make the game was probably lower than EO which you ran a few stories about the all new 3D enemies and things.

        As for further Persona RPGs, I’m gonna guess no.  Definitely no new ones.  Maybe a 3DS port, but we’ve discussed that before so I know you don’t think that one will happen.  Didn’t the Persona 3 social game do quite well for itself though?  That seems to be the way to leverage this Persona 4 brand to me.  If there isn’t a Persona 4 social game already, that’s what I’m betting we’ll see next.

        Thanks again for just providing sales data upon request like that!  You’re awesome!

        • Spencer and I had our bi-monthly Persona 3DS debate just last week, haha. He thinks it’s totally happening. I’m not so convinced, but we’ll see! Someone will eat a shoe, eventually…

          No worries about the sales data! I love having these discussions, and I appreciate that you take the time to participate. :)

          • Hinataharem

            I agree. Persona on 3DS seems unlikely.

          • I just want to point out, my argument isn’t based on some silly “Persona is a Sony franchise” mentality, in case that’s the idea people get. It’s very likely that we’ll see a Persona on 3DS, but there’s also a possibility that it won’t happen. I’m just going with the latter for now, until we see further evidence of the former.

  • Tales_of_Master

    Can we get Persona 2 EP and Soul Hackers here in the west Atlus ? Please……pretty please ? Hell, I’d settle for Soul Hackers only, just get the game here already -_- Glad to see Atlus doing good with there recent games. Not surprised at P2EP’s (kinda) low sales since it’s a port and not a brand new game. Hopefully, Atlus will get bigger in the future and manage to do simultaneous releases……..and maybe open a European branch :P

    • I would really like both of them myself… but if I had to settle for one I could. I guess. and yah becoming bigger would be awesome. More games (hopefully localized).

    • Juan Manuel M. Suárez

      Pretty sure Soul Hackers is a given considering the 3DS is a new system. But the chances of EP are pretty slim unless it’s digital only. All that said, I really hope we can get the latter, that’d complete my Persona collection~.

      • I wouldn’t say SH is certain. I want it but you never know. And EP would be better as DD-only for me personally. Since I want it for my Vita.

  • Mrgrgr and Unacceptable World

    Nice that Etrian Odyssey and Soul hackers is doing well there.^_^

    Hope that the low sell there for PSP will gives the signs to more company that they need to start investing on newer handheld like 3DS and Vita there.^_^

    After all, by releasing them on newer system, there will be higher chance the game to come here.^_^ And of course it is a less risky choice as both the new handheld have not been damaged by piracy problem.

    • I do hope that they still bring P2EP over though. And I don’t think either of them will have to worry about piracy at least for a while. They are being very cautious this time around.

    • LynxAmali

      -Hope that the low sell there for PSP will gives the signs to more
      company that they need to start investing on newer handheld like 3DS and
      Vita there.^_^

      You do realize that it is a port (I’d go as far to say direct port, only with minor things added or changed) of an old PS1 game, right? And EP isn’t really that great. Innocent Sin was the better half of P2 IMO.

      Most people who really wanted to play would’ve already played the PS1 version.

      • Mrgrgr and Unacceptable World

        Even if you mention that here, Soul Hackers is also a port with minor things added too.

        And it does better than EP which sold longer than SH there.

        I mean this is surely just my opinion but this is how i view PSP condition there. While they do keep getting game there, not all the game does really well except if the game already had a very strong brand power there like SRT or SD Gundam series there.

        • LynxAmali

          Soul Hackers also had the benefit of being bundled with the SMT IV trailer which would make the fanboys run wild.

          • Mrgrgr and Unacceptable World

            I am not sure here but does people really goes to buy a game only for a trailer? Which can pop up on Youtube anytime soon?

          • I’ve heard of stories of people buying games just for a demo(MGS2, unfortunately for ZoE. In fact, Konami’s repeating this stunt with Revengence and ZoE HD), people buying movie tickets just to watch previews and walk out of the ACTUAL movie they bought a ticket for and many others.
            Buying a game for a trailer? Wont be that surprising or new.

          • You’re grasping at straws. Whatever tiny bump the SMTIV, trailer might have given Soul Hackers is negligible and not why it outsold P2.

          • LynxAmali

            Is grasping at straws now considered using personal experiences? 

            The original Zone of the Enders had the MGS2 demo included, which is why it got fairly decent sales compared to the second in places other than Japan.

          • malek86

            @LynxAmali:disqus there’s quite a difference between a trailer and a demo. Namely, you can actually play a demo yourself. Also, I’m pretty sure every fan knew the trailer would have been uploaded within hours of release. ZOE was too many years ago to still be a relevant example today, what with the advancement in streaming and sharing sites like Youtube.

            Honestly I doubt that trailer had much of an effect on sales.

  • It’s good to see Atlus USA pulling in profit, at least. Hopefully Growlanser was a winning proposition for them!

    • Somehow… I doubt this.

      • MrTyrant

         Did the game sell bad or was impopular? Im going to buy more then so I can revert something :P

      • Man, can you not let a man hope. ;.;

        In seriousness, though, that two million in cool profit has to have come from somewhere, and I’d be curious to know which of their titles for this period were winners.

        • I haven’t had a chance to look at the report yet myself, but I would imagine that the giant merchandising machine that is Persona played some role. They’ve been doing a hell of a lot of Persona-related merchandise (and shows) of late. Then there’s also the fact that Index operate a few social games…

      • Ladius

        I think it did fine for a niche PSP jrpg released in mid 2012, it was sold out soon after day one in many retailers while Gungnir is still easy to find, not to mention Growlanser was Vita-compatible almost from the get go. Of course that doesn’t mean it did big numbers, but Atlus USA probably knew that since the announcement.

      • malek86

        It looks like the Growlanser artbook is coming too, so I guess it was at least mildly successful with the fans, if nothing else. Granted, I severely doubt it particularly helped their bottom line or anything, but I get the feeling it didn’t lose them money.

        Of course, the full fiscal report might still say different things. I’d like to take a look at it.

  • LightZero

    I’m mad that EP didn’t do that well while P4 got all the love. Sigh but P4 brings the money even though I easily prefer EP over it. I do hope they localize EP to the west even if it’s DD only. I’m very confident that SH will be localize. It’s not on a dead system plus it was never localize in the west just like IS before it. 

    •  Weird how we got EP in the past but no IS but now we got IS for Psp but not EP (well not yet)and hopefully we get Soul Hackers, i don’t it being a port seeing how its from a game not that many have played

  • Man I wish Ep did better

    now that I think about it woulden’t it be Ironic if they don’t Localize it?

    I mean they Switched them lol.

  • Very Happy EO4 is doing well, same with Soul Hackers.
    Also a little error (if not said though i don’t think so) you mean King of Fighters “XIII” not XII/12

  • Nameless App 1989

    And yet no word of localizing Soul hackers?


    • Ethan_Twain

      This is normal, we’re still fine.  Think about the time lapse between the Japanese release and localization announcements for other Atlus titles lately?  Etrian Odyssey IV, Persona 4 Golden… they like to keep their cards close to the chest until six months or so before release.  Right now, nothing to worry about.

  • Raze

    So…Does this mean we will no get EP??
    C’mon Fuuka use your Oracle now and make a Miracle…

  • Hinataharem

    Persona 2 and Atlus USA in the same tile. No localization announcement.


  • Strain42

    If anyone is interested, this is a thread we’ve got going on the Atlus forums to showcase our support for Eternal Punishment. We’ve already seen that a few Atlus employees are at least occasionally reading it, so maybe there’s still some hope.

    Feel free to drop by and showcase your support. The more people we have posting, the better.

  • Philip Irwin

    I do feel bad for the Persona fans not getting Eternal Punishment, but I am so happy we’re getting EOIV localized.  I really enjoyed Drowned City and I’m quite excited for IV with all the various improvements and additions.

  • Ladius

    It would really be a shame to miss the upgraded port of P2EP, especially with all the other Persona games available in English on PSP or Vita. Maybe Atlus USA is working on it and will announce its translation after Persona 4 Golden’s release?

    Then again, the Atlus-published PSP game I really wanted to see translated was Growlanser WoT, and I’m still too happy about that localization to clamor for more. P2EP is already available in English, at least.

  • good for atlus, and who says you can’t be successful middle tier developer…

  • Göran Isacson

    Essh, 60 000… wonder if people were just not interested in an old title and would much rather play something more recent, or if EP has a bad rep back in Japan… or if games just aren’t selling as much as they used to on PSP, what do I know.

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