Pokémon X And Y Sold 11.61 Million; Zelda: Link Between Worlds 2.2 Million

By Ishaan . January 28, 2014 . 11:31pm

Nintendo have released their financial results report for the third quarter of their ongoing fiscal year, and along with the report come a few sales highlights that should be of interest. Let’s start with Nintendo 3DS.


Nintendo 3DS has sold 42.74 million units worldwide as of December 31st, 2013. On the software front, here are a few recent releases for which we now know worldwide sales:


  • Pokémon X and Pokémon Y – 11.61 million
  • Zelda: A Link Between Worlds – 2.18 million (1.85 million in US/EU)
  • Mario and Luigi: Dream Team – 2 million (1.54 million in US/EU)


While Nintendo 3DS sales are going strong, the device experienced “limited growth” during the end-of-year holiday season in the west. Sales in Japan, too, were down year-over-year, and with some of the biggest Japanese games available on the platform to boot.


On the Wii U front, things aren’t quite as healthy. The Wii U has sold just 5.86 million units worldwide. In terms of software, Nintendo released The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker HD, Wii Party U and Super Mario 3D World, and say that each of these games has sold over 1 million copies worldwide, but that the Wii U business as a whole has yet to “recover fully”.


Tomorrow, Nintendo are expected to share their short and mid-term strategy to help improve the state of their console and portable business.

  • Warboss Aohd

    a new Paper Mario (a RPG like the first 2, not like Super Paper Mario (which was a fine game) and Sticker Star.), Super Mario RPG 2, More 3rd Party, new IPs, there are a few things that could be done to entice more users.

    • CozyAndWarm

      None of those would boost sales that much. Mario RPGs sell less than Mario platformers, third-party multiplats (Assassin’s Creed, Call of Duty, etc) don’t sell much on Wii U, and fantastic third-party new IP Wonderful 101 bombed.

      • sd28

        Wonderful 101 is first party

        • Frankie

          Platinum is third party.

          • sd28

            doesn’t matter in this case because Nintendo own the ip and fully funded it.

          • Frankie

            Except it does, because it is a third party studio, making the game third party.

          • J_Joestar

            Capcom made a few of the Handheld Zelda games, doesn’t mean those Zelda games are 3rd Party.

          • Frankie

            No it means Nintendo licensed Zelda to Capcom. Nintendo owns the IP and Capcom makes the game. In this case, Nintendo funded the game, but Platinum owns it. Same with Bungie and Halo, Epic and Gears of War. Microsoft had to buy those games from those companies. Microsoft went to Epic and asked for a game. That game turned out to be Gears of War. Microsoft just bought the IP from Epic.

        • Jero

          I think it’s second party? Does that exist?

          • Slayven19

            Yes second party exist and that’s what wonderful 101 is.

      • Warboss Aohd

        …….Buy Back Rare?

        other than actually advertising their new IPs, i can’t think of how else to fix it other than going back to the more obscure branches of their Properties.

      • KnifeAndFork

        Over a million or nothing huh

  • grayson gee

    Glad to see Mario and Luigi Dream Team did well. That series is what I use to get my Mario RPG fix properly. Sticker Star shouldn’t even be considered an RPG.

    • KnifeAndFork

      Be nice to play Super Mario RPG on VC for 3DS but apparently Nintendo doesn’t like good ideas

  • Tonton Ramos

    Does this mean there will be Nintendo Direct tomorrow? Pardon me plz…

  • malek86

    12.9 million 3DS units? That’s actually even a bit lower than the revised forecast?

    But those are some great sales for Pokemon at least. At this rate, it might even surpass some of the DS games.

  • Mike G. Moran

    Thank you, Japan, for being far less tolerant of the Zelda series’ stagnant use of remakes and safe sequels.

    At least some markets are willing to send a message that this series’ legacy deserves better.

    • Mike G. Moran

      Oooh, look at that. Zelda fans don’t like criticism. What a shock. Zelda used to be one of the biggest trendsetters of the entire gaming industry from the late 80’s to the early 2000’s. Whatever Zelda did, everyone else paid attention and imitated it.

      Seeing any of that lately? Nope?

      • leingod

        Oooh, look at that. Criticism guy doesn’t like downvotes. What a shock.

        • Mike G. Moran

          Downvote me from here until forever. I really don’t care if loyalists and apologists don’t agree with me.

          Here, I’ll even downvote myself for you. It’s inconsequential.

          I care about the opinion of someone who has something to actually say.

          • M’iau M’iaut

            What exactly are you saying? I think you will find more thread denizens, play testers and reviewers who have noted that this particular Zelda did move from the same old way of power ups and such. Other Zelda handheld games have been chastised by many for being too experimental.

            If you disagree and think things are still where they shouldn’t be, tell us where and why.

          • Mike G. Moran

            The Zelda series is pressed against a very low standard when it comes to what qualifies as a drastic or experimental change.

            The power ups are still there, you just can get them in any order and don’t need to look for them. This isn’t such a revolutionary concept for Zelda. Being able to complete the dungeons in different orders has been done more than once. Completely removing structure from how difficult the items are to obtain doesn’t improve or significantly change anything.

            Link Between Worlds takes the map from Link to the Past and took the defining aspect of it (traveling to an alternate “dark” world) and… just made a new dark world. The only genuinely new thing about the game is the ability to walk on walls, which is nice and all but in terms of its impact it’s no different than introducing a new power up or weapon.

            Even something like Wind Waker was nowhere near as experimental as it was made out to be. Its design and structure was extremely similar to Ocarina of Time, only with substitutes that were less engaging and contributed to padding. Ocarina vs Wind Waker, which was more useful? Boat vs Horse, which could change direction without entering a special command? Hyrule Field vs Ocean, which had a better ratio of activity versus idling?

            Any actual new design concepts they came up with like stealth and parrying were extremely half-hearted and sometimes even inconsequential. How many times did you genuinely need to do either, and despite the praise for how much more complex the battle system became can you genuinely say it changed how you fought?

            Aside from experimenting with control schemes on the DS and Wii, the Zelda series is not that experimental. I will give the series credit for those control schemes since I personally did like Phantom Hourglass, but if you took that away and made them playable with a controller you’d have something remarkably similar to previous entries.

          • PreyMantis

            Wait, wait, wait… So, basically, you’re saying that the Zelda series, even if obviously so different from each other, needs to be more different from each other? Let me ask you something, what games do you play?

          • Mike G. Moran

            No, I’m saying that people mistake cosmetic and superficial differences for drastic changes to the core experience. Zelda fans are so against change that they perceive small things to in fact be big things.

            And what do I play? 2D and 3D Platformers, JRPGs, 2D and 3D action, classic adventure and action adventure, 2D and 3D fighters, shoot ’em ups, arcade and simulation racers, RTS, puzzle, survival horror and FPS.

            I’m sure I’m missing something somewhere. What’s your point in asking me what I play?

          • PreyMantis

            Really? When do you ever go to the sea and traverse only on the sea instead of Hyrule’s field besides Wind Waker and its sequel? When do you ever only ride trains and have to cooperate with the princess throughout the game besides Spirit Tracks? Why is Link out on an island out of nowhere and not saving the princess in Link’s Awakening? Why is link saving Termina from a moon about to crash in three-day cycle instead of Hyrule in Majora’s Mask? Why is Link a wolf saving Twili with a chimp and so different from its predecessor, Wind Waker, in Twilight Princess? Why haven’t the Master Sword made and Link living in the sky riding a bird and not a horse in Skyward Sword, or even have to play the game only using motion controls? Why is A Link Between Worlds the first of the series to have renting and the first to have dungeons played not in chronological order or the fact that he can turn into a painting? Heck, where the hell is Dark World, and why are you saving another princess in alternate world called Lorule? Compare to many franchises out there, Zelda is one of the most experimental franchise out there. Give me another story driven franchise out there that, besides aesthetics and minimal changes, are so different from each other.

            I’m not asking what genre you play. Let me make that clear. Which video game franchises do you play?

          • Mike G. Moran

            As I stated and you ignore, the sea is a cosmetic facelift of the hub concept introduced with Hyrule Field. It is large, empty and less effective than its predecessor and the fact that visually you were on a big block of water does not change what it represents from a design perspective. It is the same thing more poorly designed.

            Link’s Awakening and Majora’s Mask are from the period where I still believe Nintendo was innovating and will refrain from comment. I have no objections to them whatsoever.

            Spirit Tracks was an awful idea and trying to manipulate Zelda while controlling Link with a touch screen was something actively criticized. It also just replaced a boat with a train while it effectively played out the same, only now on rails. It re-used the Phantom Hourglass graphics engine and assets, introduced nearly no new items and is regarded as perhaps the laziest Zelda game ever directly developed by Nintendo.

            I don’t care if you put Link in the sky, I don’t care if you put link in a Wolf skin (it’s just the horse all over again, the wolf is soley for travel), I don’t care if you create an alternate Princess Zelda and call her something different.

            These are all the same concepts with a different dressing. I will state again: Zelda fans mistake cosmetic differences for experimental broad strokes. Changing the story does not equal innovation.

            I will not humor you with all the franchises I play. I have been playing games for 20+ years and will not even begin to break down how many hundreds of games and franchises I’ve sampled unless you want to start making your own list.

            And ultimately you’re just asking for a schlong measuring contest.

          • PreyMantis

            Wow, really? Okay, how do you propose to change the franchise without changing the genre and everything that makes the Zelda franchise?

            But, then again, where are the story-driven franchises I asked for that, besides aesthetics and minimal changes, are so different from each other?

            Also, as for your own personal games, I’m not asking you to list a hundred franchises; just list ten. I’m just curious of what kind of games you play. I mean, if you think the Zelda series are pretty much all the same, your games should at least be so different from each other that you can’t tell they’re from the same franchise. Come on, list me just ten. I’ll list mine, too, if you want to know them that much.

          • Mike G. Moran

            I honestly don’t care about a dick measuring contest. If you want to know how I’d change Zelda I actually wouldn’t be worried about the genre. In fact I’d probably let the Zelda franchise rest so that Nintendo isn’t strictly bound by its conventions. It’s only in videogames that a franchise can last 25+ years and not be questioned if it should still be going or not.

            If they could come up with a revolutionary concept for the series like when Link to the Past debuted and evolved nearly every single concept from the original Zelda into something resembling its true potential, then sure. Go wild. Take the traditional Zelda formula and use new mechanics, concepts and technology to make something that genuinely could not be possible before.

            Take your time. I’m not so desperately bored that I need a new Zelda game every few years.

            If they can’t think of a true evolution Nintendo can make other Action Adventure series that aren’t Zelda. You can create something more interesting when you stop restricting yourself to fit something within a pre-set mold. Fans will not have the ability to be overly sensitive to change and cry foul going “That’s not Zelda!”. Look at what happened for Square. They’ve been tied to the Final Fantasy name for so long that they needed to come up with excuses or why a game still deserved to be called Final Fantasy.

            They finally cut the umbilican cord and produced Bravely Default and it may not be the second coming of Christ but it’s a step in the right direction. You think Resident Evil 4 stopped to care about what people thought? Persona 3? Nope, they’re very drastically different and used new genres and concepts to make something genuinely fresh.

            What kind of concept is it that you need to keep a franchise going forever? Why do you think we play different genres and series in the first place? To get more of the same?

          • PreyMantis

            Okay, your opinions aside, where are the story-driven franchises I’ve been asking for the third time that, besides aesthetics and minimal changes, are so different from each other?

            Again, as for your own personal games, I’m not asking you to list a hundred franchises; just list ten. I’m just curious of what kind of games you play. I mean, if you think the Zelda series are pretty much all the same, your games should at least be so different from each other that you can’t tell they’re from the same franchise. Come on, list me just ten. I’ll list mine, too, if you want to know them that much.

          • Mike G. Moran

            You’re not interesting in what games I play. You’re interested in discrediting my opinions by sneering at what I play. Not interested.

            Go play JRPGs if you want story driven franchises. Zelda has a very minimal focus on plot. It’s always been good at producing fantasy worlds, but not plot. It’s gotten moreso over the years, but it’s never become something genuinely compelling and you know what would have helped?

            Not making it a Zelda game so your protagonist can actually use words.

          • PreyMantis

            No, I am genuinely interested, but you’re also right in that I will tackle whatever games you list because, I don’t know, it’s fun and you listing those games that have the least difference in comparison to the Zelda franchise will add to that. I guess I’ll scrap with the irony of how you listed Persona 3 and Resident Evil 4 “different” from their prequels when they have the least changes in comparison to the Zelda series.

            “Zelda has a very minimal focus on plot.” “Not making it a Zelda game so your protagonist can actually use words.” No wonder you don’t like Zelda, you don’t know jack about them.

          • Mike G. Moran

            Just like I thought, you’re trying to use games completely removed from Zelda and having almost nothing in common to discredit me.

            You’re just interested in trash talk.

            I might list games I play if I felt a hint of friendliness in the air, but I don’t so I won’t have fun.

            I do happen to like Zelda. I just also happen to have the capacity to be critical. It’s ironic but people with Mega Man avatars tend to come at me the most aggressively even though Mega Man is my single favorite franchise

            That’s all you get.

            “You don’t know jack” isn’t an argument.

          • PreyMantis

            No, I’m just trying to prove a point. Moreover, since you can’t list a single franchise that outdoes the Zelda franchises’ changes in any fashion, I’m pretty much just gave up on you creating any type of counterargument to mine; thus, my fun.

          • Mike G. Moran

            Your point is pointless. You have two examples already that are accepted by the gaming community as drastic departures from their original source material, but you just shout out “They’re not that different” and think that’s an argument.

            Sorry, but watching someone cross his shoulders and “hmph!” is not an argument and you can sit in the corner and do that yourself.

            You have no legitimate counter to the Zelda series itself being similar. You cited the stories and not the gameplay. This argument ended a while ago and you’ve just been trying to use unrelated material to disqualify your initial lack of a counter.

            You don’t get to use something other than Zelda to argue that Zelda is different from itself. That is a paradox.

          • PreyMantis

            So does yours.

            “You have no legitimate argument to the Zelda series itself being similar. You cited the stories and not the gameplay.” Have you ever even played Four Swords Adventure, Skyward Sword, Wind Waker, or the DS games at all? Try telling me they all play the same.

            Alright, tell me what’s so different about Persona 3 and RE4 from their predecessors.

          • Mike G. Moran

            What did I just say about using something other than Zelda to prove Zelda it different from itself? You don’t get to use other series here.


            Four Swords is legitimately different and also not that enjoyable. It was a very shallow take on co-op just like most of Nintendo’s recent co-op efforts. It did indeed need fleshing out from the low-budget affair that it was and does have potential that Nintendo has never followed up.

            I had Four Swords Adventure complete with 4 GBAs and 4 link cables. I’ve experienced it in full as well as the other games you’re using.

            I’ve discussed Wind Waker in length. Go back and read that. Phantom Hourglass does not introduce anything new to the formula other than its controls as I mentioned, which would have worked without touch. As I already mentioned I liked Phantom Hourglass but it wasn’t anything substantial.

            The most significantly unique thing about Phantom Hourglass was the Temple of the Ocean King, which was a shortcut oriented speed-run temple. It was a complex rather well designed maze that could be approached in dozens of different ways. Was it a huge game changer? No, but it was something.

            Of course the one actually new thing about the game other than writing notes was hated by everyone, further proving the fans’ sensitivity to actual gameplay changes. The multiplayer was also decent. It was basically Pac-Man Versus.

            Spirit Tracks has already been covered as an incredibly lazy followup and again, go read what I already wrote up. Skyward Sword added a couple things like stamina and arguably the motion controls were the first time Zelda made a significant change to the way the series is played, but again, you could have made it work with a controller. We’ll need to see if any of that manages to actually stick, as similar conventions like stealth in Wind Waker were abandoned very quickly and for good reason.

            As almost every serious critic has mentioned. The motion and touch controls should have been optional, not mandatory. I liked the touch controls and motion stuff even though I knew they weren’t anything special. I happen to be open to change, though. Anyone else was shit out of luck for no good reason.

            I notice you didn’t even try to play the Twilight Princess card.

          • PreyMantis

            “What did I just say about using something other than Zelda to prove
            Zelda it different from itself? You don’t get to use other series here.”

            What? You’re contradicting yourself now.

            Whatever happened to “you have two examples already that are accepted by the gaming community
            as drastic departures from their original source material?”

            You’re not making any sense.

          • Mike G. Moran

            I used those two examples in a different context and never compared them to Zelda. You’re the one who decided to use them for your own purposes. Since you were so adamant about using other series I just let you take it since I couldn’t force you to not.

          • PreyMantis

            So, why are you so keen to believe that the Zelda series has not had any drastic or experimental changes when the series had more extreme changes than both Persona 3 and Resident Evil 4? Whatever your opinion on the game mechanics, you can’t deny they’re different, drastic, and experimental approaches on the series.

          • Mike G. Moran

            Nintendo is constantly worried about what their fans think as evident by their playing it safe with remakes and direct sequels in the past couple years. Skyward Sword is as close to experimental as they’ve gotten and as I covered in detail with my comparisons to Wind Waker the changes they’re making to the core Ocarina of Time formula are fluffy. Lacking in focus. Basically the same thing with a different story and more padding, and a story that probably could have been better if it didn’t have to be related to Zelda.

            Skyward Sword actually got a pretty horrible response from actual fans. You can go on the internet and listen to Nintendo fanatics rant about it all you want. Their opinion doesn’t mean anything. They’re robots with an inferiority complex that can’t admit to any faults. Walk in to an actual game store and talk to people who played the game who have no agenda. They hated that game. My personal friends are calling it the worst one they’ve played in 10 years.

            When Skyward Sword came out I was a manager at GameStop. I heard the actual feedback. They didn’t even know why they hated it. They just did.

            The experimentation has been superficial. There is no evolutionary leap. Nintendo’s playing it safe and pretending they aren’t. Zelda can do better and it needs to because sales are way down.

            The genre could go dead at this rate because nobody can handle any criticism. If you’re lucky it won’t, but people aren’t even sure if Nintendo can make the Wii U a success so cross your fingers.

          • PreyMantis

            You think Skyward Sword had fan outraging; Wind Waker topped that with the most controversial and most fan outrage on any Zelda game to date when it was first revealed.

            The DS games also had their fair share of criticisms because of the controls and game mechanics unlike any other games from the series.

            Nintendo can handle criticism, and they get them all the time. Just look what they have plan on Zelda– a Dynasty Warrior-type game. I think you’re pointing the wrong opinion on the wrong crowd. Point it at the fanboys for their immaturity and close-mindedness.

          • Mike G. Moran

            Fanboys are idiots. Nobody would ever argue that. Regardless it’s short sighted to say that Nintendo can handle this criticism so easily. Sales are down. Big time. They have been consistently doing so. Twilight Princess and Phantom Hourglass were spikes in the trend. It’s clear that the variable there is that the Wii was a runaway success and Twilight Princess was a launch game. Likewise, as everyone said, the DS printed money.

            Subsequent releases on the same platform dropped in numbers. In Skyward Sword’s case by half, which is incredibly bad. 50% sales drop is beyond abysmal. Nintendo doesn’t have that easy handicap anymore and they’re losing money.

            Dynasty Warriors is actually a brilliantly cynical move for the Japanese market. The ultimate low-brow fanservice move. They love those games, and have you ever played one? Not a single series out there comes to my mind that has evolved less over time. That series has somewhat brilliantly been surviving by using licensing. Hey, this game is really shallow and repetitive. What do we do? Let’s put One Piece characters in it. Kaaaaa-ching.

            Guaranteed money? Almost, in Japan at least. Will it work more than once? Probably not. Hell with how poorly everything on Wii U sells it’s not even an absolute certainty that this will work.

          • PreyMantis

            Yes, I have played various Dynasty Warrior games, and I do agree that they had little evolution over time.

            As for Hyrule Warriors, time will tell.

          • leingod

            I didn’t downvote you. But clearly you do care, or else you wouldn’t have replied TO YOURSELF ranting about it.

          • Mike G. Moran

            Good on you, then. I was having some fun poking the bear.

      • ronin4life

        In an industry focused on Following CoD, even when its advances are unfitting to the game in question?

        No one is following any design trends at all anymore save those from the massive money makers: Bad DLC policy, Mindless run and gunning(and there is a difference between a good shooter and this tired forced trend) and a myraid of hideous non game design focuses are the trends now being followed.

        Zelda could set an all new metric for design and devs would ignore it in this day an age, so that is not a very good metric for success anymore.

        • Mike G. Moran

          It’s hardly an argument that “Even if Zelda did revolutionize game design again nobody would care.” So because it would be perceived to POTENTIALLY be inconsequential it just shouldn’t be done?

          A defeatist attitude like that is just going to guarantee that the games industry keeps going down the road it’s going. If you don’t instigate change then how exactly are all those bad trends and policies you mentioned ever going to go away?

      • Yan Zhao

        Maybe people are downvoting you because you’re trying to damn hard to criticize one of the best Zelda games released in the past decades with no real argument or proof other than “Zelda is stagnant” or “Its not setting any trends”. The former being just your opinion, the later being a stupidly unrealistic expectation.

        Or maybe it’s just the fact people dont care for your negative opinion thats out of place, when it applies to some of the best sellers today like CoD.

        • Mike G. Moran

          I’m sorry to inform you but Zelda fans have an outstanding reputation for being sensitive. You can cry foul on me “trying too hard” but that’s not a real argument. If you’d read you’d see I’m saying more than that and nobody has actually directly challenged any of my points.

          Also, how is CoD relevant to this conversation? Did I mention CoD? Did I say CoD has committed no sins?

          I’ll ask you this: If Zelda isn’t stagnant then what gameplay mechanics have been incorporated by other game developers? If they do have new, good ideas why has nobody paid attention? CoD did in fact become a trend setter in the industry with Modern Warfare. Just because Activision is riding their free meal ticket right now doesn’t change the fact that not too long ago they did innovate and they are selling so well because they are the standard.

          They’re stagnant, sure. It’s unusual that another franchise hasn’t managed to come in and outdate them considering how little effort Activision is putting in to the series. Still, Call of Duty 4 only just came out in the last/current console generation and they did make a splash for a reason.

          • Yan Zhao

            CoD was merely an example of one out of many multi-million selling games thats more guilty of “stagnant” and “not setting trends” that you’re moaning about. Yet here you are crying about Zelda.

            This may come as a surprise to you but people like Zelda because its FUN and ENJOYABLE as a VIDEO GAME. No one cares if the series is not “setting trends” so you’re honestly bitching over nothing and your assinine remarks are the reason you are being downvoted, because I’m willing to bet half, if not most of the people doing so arent even big Zelda fans. And looking at how much you’re responding in this post, its pretty clear you do care about the downvotes.

          • Mike G. Moran

            Bzzt. Your example did set trends and that is the source of its success. And I respond because it’s something to do on a slow day while I watch TV.

          • Yan Zhao

            You mentioned yourself CoD4 was the last one that did so. How many sequels did CoD get after that?

            Yet here you are complaining over the same thing on Zelda. So let me use your own response on you: Zelda did set trend and thats the source of its success.

          • Mike G. Moran

            I’ve already covered CoD in length so read at your own leisure. A trend set in 1998 versus 2007 is quite the difference.

            And mind you the original source of this conversation was how badly Link Between Worlds in tanking in its homeland, so your statement doesn’t hold true. None of the 3DS entries have been as successful as their DS counterparts either.

            Even Ocarina of Time 3D (a game that is riding off that legacy from 1998) barely inches toward the success Spirit Tracks had, and Spirit Tracks was a game very poorly received in the long term.

            Skyward Sword sold a bit better than Ocarina 3D but also tanked in Japan. Wind Waker HD couldn’t even break a million worldwide.

            Zelda sales are down. Way down.

          • kthanxyousuck

            Well of course Zelda sales are down. Console sales for which those games are on are down?

          • Mike G. Moran

            There are 42 million 3DS handhelds and sales are 2 million.

            That’s less than a 5% penetration.

            Skyward Sword literally sold less than half as much as Twilight Princess, and obviously there are plenty of Wii owners.

          • kthanxyousuck

            Twilight Princess sold 5.8 million to 65 million Wii Owners in 5 years (Roughly 8%)

            Spirit Tracks I believe sold around 3.5 million to 110 million DS owners in 4 years. (Roughly 3%)

            Skyward Sword sold 3.69 million to 100 million Wii owners in 2 years (Roughly 3%)

            Ocarina of Time 3DS sold 2.95 million to 31 million 3DS in 2 years (Roughly 9%)

            ALBW sold 2 million to 42 million 3DS in 9 weeks (Roughly 4%)

            This is in order of the years the games came out. As you can see, the amount that each sold has been fairly the same, regardless of console. With the exception of twilight princess but that was at the very beginning of the Wii’s life and had plenty of time to sell throughout it.

          • Mike G. Moran

            Interesting to see the penetration laid out, but Phantom Hourglass is a really critical missing piece because it was one of the most successful.

            And with how big the numbers are that we’re dealing with, something like 8% vs 3% is very big. From a business standpoint percentages are very critical to determining your success. The more potential customers you have, the more your investors will question how you could not capture a larger share of them.

            It’s not always fair, but it’s the way anyone in charge looks at it.

          • kthanxyousuck

            The 8% versus the 3% are on two different consoles. Twilight princess, as I said was at the beginning of the Wii’s life. Spirit tracks was a game that came out in 2009 for the DS after the system had already been on the market for 4 years and was only out for 2 years before the 3DS came out.

            Looking at the last two 3DS exclusive games. Unless ALBW completely drops it’s bottom out, it’ll easily overtake OoT since it hasn’t even been out 3 months, and in Japan it’s only been out 1 month.

            Phantom Hourglass sold 4.13 million to 70 million DS owners in 9 months (Roughly 5%) I couldn’t really find definite sales beyond the 9 month mark. So even though it sold almost double than what spirit tracks sold, look at the jump in DS ownership between those two years. Penetration was relatively the same.

            And BTW I’m not a diehard Zelda fan. ALBW is the only Zelda game in my life I’ve ever played.

          • Mike G. Moran

            Ahh, no. When I said 8% and 3% I was looking at Twilight vs Skyward on the same console. When you consider the hardware the numbers do become a bit more predictable. Penetration trends tend to be roughly the same, so if nothing else Nintendo’s customers are loyal within a predictable range. The ones that actually purchase the hardware that is. When you compare raw numbers things still look pretty bad.

            It will be difficult to say if Link Between Worlds will really have legs. Considering how poor the numbers in Japan are. We have to consider that there’s .45 million floating around unaccounted for, but that’s for the entire rest of the world and not just the homeland.

            Historically with Zelda, Japan and the rest of the world are split down the middle. More than likely we’re seeing that Link Between Worlds has sold 0.22 million within the first few months.

            With numbers that low it’s very difficult to say with confidence that market is going to make a comeback at all, so my bet is that the US and Euro markets will be all that matters. Likewise Link Between Worlds has already gone through the holiday rush and further sales will likely not pick up until Summer, which is one of Nintendo’s busier timeframes.

            There will likely be some time until Link Between Worlds genuinely reveals if it has the sort of staying power as one of Nintendo’s flagship titles like New Super Mario Brothers on the original DS. However in that time something like Bravely Default may end up taking the focus away from Zelda, as they will share vaguely similar demographics.

            If you do enjoy Link Between Worlds I’d probably say take advantage of the hardware and try out Ocarina of Time 3D. It’s a classic. Potentially it’s going to feel dated after all these years, but I’m betting it won’t be an issue. When I worked retail I sold it to quite a few younger kids who didn’t realize at all it was an old game. They’re the only test subjects available considering the majority of gaming adults have played it before.

          • Aaron K Stone

            Skyward Sword required an add on to play that affected its potential for better sales that and it was released at a time when the Wii was a walking corpse.

          • Zonder88

            Holy shit this guy is still going at it. Theres so much wrong and contradiction among your 100+ posts you made over this one subject in the course of 1 day. Give it a rest already.

    • Göran Isacson

      But on the other hand, they didn’t really buy Mario and Luigi in droves either, and that game is quality-gaming. Not to mention how A Link Between Worlds is pretty much a breath of fresh air for the franchise in terms of gamedesign choices, even if it is a sequel.

      • Mike G. Moran

        I can’t comment on Mario and Luigi. I’ve only played the original two in the series and I didn’t see what else they could really do with the formula. Partners in Time was if nothing else, a little harder using four buttons. That was nice, but I still lost interest in the series after that point.

        After Sticker Star and New Super Mario Brothers 2 I just don’t have enough faith in Mario on handhelds to spend money on it. 3D Land was quite good, that was about it of everything I tried.

        • Göran Isacson

          Haha, fair enough point re NSMB2 and Sticker Star. Ten latter dissapointed me too, and while I only played NSMB2 sporadically I can’t say it got my attention. The Partners RPg’s tend to keep a higher quality than then rest though, although I guess that depends on what you consider do be “new things with the formula”. Like are you okay with a game retaining it’s core gameplay over the years and mostly just writing new stories, perhaps polish the existing mechanics, or do you want to see at least one drastic change in the concept over the years? Kinda curious as to what you would find to be unacceptable stagnation, versus actual innovation.

          • Mike G. Moran

            It depends on a few things for me. How often the games are made is a big factor. How similar the game plays isn’t always a problem. Sometimes a sequel is just way better than what came before it because of all the little details, like F-Zero GX and Smash Brothers Melee on Gamecube.

            If you’re releasing a game every few years then you’re going to lose my interest, though. Partners in Time was fun and all, but you couldn’t say without a doubt that it was better than the original. It was more of the same with changes, but not necessarily improvements.

            The changes you make have really gotta stick if you’re going to go that way. If you’re just taking the original template and mixing it up a little, that gets stale because what you come up with is never going to stray too far away from the original you’re basing it on. You’re going to notice more and more each time that something like Castlevania: Portrait of Ruin feels realllllly absurdly similar to Symphony of the Night.

            If you abandon all your changes and ideas after you finish the game, then jump back to square one and make another game that plays like Symphony of the Night, you will always have games that are just Symphony of the Night with a new gimmick attached. The only one that comes to mind that genuinely did something good with the formula was Aria of Sorrow, which did get a sequel, which didn’t do much new. Portrait of Ruin’s idea to add co-op would have been a great addition to Castlevania, but you could only play with an actual human against bosses and then they abandoned the idea too. Back to square one.

            New Super Mario Brothers 2 was a great example of that. The original game, okay sure, it’s been like a decade since we got a 2D Mario and they added 3D physics, new items, a really fun multiplayer and just in general made something pretty good.

            Did it completely rock the boat like Mario 3 or Mario 64 did? Nah, but the changes they did make were a genuine improvement to Mario. Every game since has been using ideas from it because it really does feel a lot more natural to play.

            Then New Super Mario Brothers 2 hit and, damn… just damn. You added a coin gimmick that adds nothing to the formula. How many people are seriously going to want to collect a million coins to get… nothing.

            Sweeeet. I already played the original game quite a few times, I have enough other games that I don’t need to play the exact same thing over and over again.

            You need to either really, really improve the game even if it feels similar or come up with something that changes how the game is played. Otherwise I’m going to get bored because if I wanted to play New Super Mario Brothers I’ll just play my original copy and it won’t be much different.

            If I’m really bored, I might buy a game like that cheap, but I definitely won’t keep it and I’d never touch it if money’s tight. But all you need to do to get me seriously interested in a game is convince me that what you’re changing isn’t just some gimmick, but actually really important to the rest of the game.

          • Göran Isacson

            Mmm, I see. that’s a pretty reasonable attitude, even if it’s one that I do not share. For reference, let’s just say that I own EVERY Metroidvania made for the GBA and DS: the concept of “gather up a whole BUNCH of powers and then use them to demolish your foes in real-time” was a concept that really gelled with me… though I will say that I also go them when I was pretty young, mostly as annual birthday presents, so I guess that my mentality when going into them wasn’t that of a critical consumer, mostly just that of the “annual ritual”, so to speak. So as long as each game didn’t have SEVERE flaws but kept a consistent quality, I was generally content.

            It’s pretty much the same with me and the Megaman Zero series: I bought all those games, even though the core gameplay honestly didn’t change THAT much between titles: they usually added a new weapon, and even then only 4 gave us a new weapon that REALLY changed things around and added some new features to the levels. But if you were to ask me which game I honestly think is the BEST, I dunno if I would be able to give you a straight answer. In MMZ’s defense, I can at least say that the plot in that series actually built up towards a climax in game nr 4, that actually finished that series off and felt like it was built up to. One can almost consider it an episodic game franchise, just that each “episode” took a year to develop.

            So from that perspective, I dunno if you would find Bowsers Inside Story, game three in the “Mario & Luigi” story, interesting. The battles where you play as Bowser are pretty neat, and they do continue on to Dream Team which also has the dream puzzles. But as you say, the Dream Puzzles are pretty situational and mostly there to give the game it’s own flavor, like the puzzles of the Mario bros inside Bowsers body in “Bowsers Inside Story”. They weren’t something that fundamentally altered the gameplay or gave you some whole new way to interact with the game, they were just some welldesigned puzzles in a game with a well-written, charming story. I can handle repetition in games with a denser release schedule than Smash Bros, as long as each game has a charming story. That’s part of why I disliked Sticker Star Story since story was so downplayed, and regular NSMB 2 was…. well, you don’t play those games for story, really.

            Still, I wouldn’t be too quick to praise Japan just yet. They bought over 2 million copies of NSMB2, after all…

          • Mike G. Moran

            Like I said, I might play a game even if it’s getting repetitive if it’s a favorite of mine. Mega Man Zero I did play all of them, but I only kept the first 2 to play more than one time. I didn’t think 3 or 4 did anything especially better than 1 and 2, even if 1’s difficulty was too much for most people.

            But then again, I didn’t actually own a copy of 3 and 4 until the Mega Man Zero Collection came out so it wasn’t enough to make me pay full price or anything.

            And considering NSMB1 sold 40 million copies if nothing else, sales are going down and that’s pretty deserved with NSMB2.

  • ManSizeSextet

    What’s interesting is that even though the dedicated handheld business is significantly down from the DS glory days, Nintendo’s tent-pole franchises haven’t taken much of a hit, if at all (minus the touch generations software of course) sales wise. I can see why they’d be reluctant to go full on mobile given how well their premium priced software continues to do on 3DS. I mean they sold over 3m copies of Ocarina of Time 3D, an enhanced port, at full price. That’s a lot of $$$ and brand value right there.

  • Morningstar

    I wonder how the games do well but their consoles are in a age of mediocre sales?

    • kthanxyousuck

      Selling games to people that already own the console is a lot easier than getting new console owners. It’s like that question on the club nintendo survey. Did the purchase a console to play the game, already had one or was already planning to buy one.

      I didn’t want to buy a 3DS until I knew it had at least 5-6 games I knew I wanted to play already out or coming out soon. Because I had a PSP a couple of years ago that I didn’t play much and I wanted to make sure that if I was going to buy something that was $180 I would need to want to play it almost as much as my PS3 and not a spur of the moment purchase that I got for one game and then it goes into the corner collecting dust. I finally got my XL in October and have 6 games right now, 3 games on my to buy list and about 5 games announced to come out this year. I actually haven’t touched my PS3 since getting it.

      I think with the economy tight and most gamers having a home console, they want to make sure that if they are going to get a second system, like a 3DS it’s actually going to get used enough to warrant the purchase. I’m not someone that played my PS3 every week, so the next gen wasn’t someone I was rushing to get. I’ll get a PS4 eventually. But if I was someone who played the PS3 a lot, I would have been more concerned with saving up money for that than buy a 3DS last year.

  • BaoZakeruga

    Pokemon remains the king.

  • Elliott Moon

    im kinda upset that link between worlds didn’t do as good as pokemon its an equally awesome game and in my opinion probable better

  • Mental

    There’s certainly much room for improvement in the Wii U’s area. Nintendo has a number of games for the Wii U’s 2014 lineup (Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze, X, Bayonetta 2, Hyrule Warriors, Super Smash Bros.), but I feel that they could do more.

    The 3DS’ 2013 lineup had a lot of big name titles and there are still some on the way, but I think that, for the most part, Nintendo should shift more of their focus to the Wii U this year, namely seeing if they can strengthen the first party lineup even further, as well as third party support if possible.

  • RegReach

    If they would release xpansions, the pokebank, and other goodies for pokemon x and y it would sell evenmore, it was so limited

  • Lemski07

    I bought 1 in that 11M

  • Jelly

    Breakthrough the limited growth by removing region lock? =x

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