Animal Crossing: New Horizons Debuts Higher Than Pokémon in Japan

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Animal Crossing: New Horizons has sold 1.88 million units in its first week in Japan. The number, reported by Famitsu, accounts for retail sales of the game (including Nintendo Switch hardware bundles and download cards).

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Actual sales (which include digital downloads) were even higher, but have yet to be reported by Nintendo.

Here’s a look at how New Horizon’s sales compare to prior Animal Crossing games:

As the chart indicates, New Horizons has seen the best debut of any Animal Crossing game in Japan so far, selling more than double the amount Animal Crossing: New Leaf did on the Nintendo 3DS when it launched in 2012. You’ll also notice that Animal Crossing games on handhelds have historically sold much more than their home console counterparts in Japan, but New Horizons—like a number of other Nintendo Switch games—is enjoying the best of both worlds.

Interestingly, New Horizons has also sold more than Pokémon Sword/Shield did at launch. (Those games debuted at 1.36 million units, which was the best debut for a Nintendo Switch game at the time.)

Meanwhile, the Nintendo Switch sold 392,576 units for the week of March 16th – 22nd, bringing total sales of the device to 12.8 million units in Japan. The Switch is expected to face shortages across the globe in the weeks ahead, but a new shipment of the Animal Crossing hardware bundle is expected in Japan next month.

Historical sales data sourced from Game Data Library.

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Ishaan Sahdev
Ishaan specializes in game design/sales analysis. He's the former managing editor of Siliconera and wrote the book "The Legend of Zelda - A Complete Development History". He also used to moonlight as a professional manga editor. These days, his day job has nothing to do with games, but the two inform each other nonetheless.