Last week, Square Enix released Final Fantasy XIII-2 in Japan. A follow-up to the original Final Fantasy XIII, Square intended for XIII-2 to “right the wrongs” of its predecessor, so to speak. Less linear progression and more exploration were part of the new design.
Did the effort pay off? Maybe not. The original Final Fantasy XIII, released in Japan on December 17th, 2009, sold 1,501,964 copies (on PlayStation 3) in its first week on shelves. In comparison, XIII-2, released on December 15th, 2011, only sold 524,217 copies (also on PS3) in its first week. That’s about one-third of the original game’s sales.
To put things in perspective, the last major PlayStation 3 RPG released in Japan was Namco Bandai’s Tales of Xillia, released in September. That game sold 525,605 copies in its first week, beating out XIII-2 sales by a slight margin.
On the flip side, Final Fantasy XIII-2 also took far less time to develop than Final Fantasy XIII. Square Enix outsourced portions of the game to Tri-Ace, who helped with game design, art, and programming.
Data courtesy of Geimin.net.