New Nintendo 3DS Faceplates Sold 19,000 Units At Launch

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Last weekend, Nintendo released the New Nintendo 3DS and New Nintendo 3DS XL in Japan. The former sold 70,050 units while the latter sold a far greater amount at 164,756 units (partly because of a bundle with Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate).


The primary difference between the New 3DS and New 3DS XL is the customizable faceplates, which can be applied to the smaller device, allowing you to give it some personality. Japanese sales tracker Media Create reports that around 19,000 faceplates were sold at launch , across all 38 types that were made available.


Due to the release of Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate last week, the two Monster Hunter faceplates (#37 and #38) were particularly popular, but the Yoshi faceplate (#4) and the wood grain faceplate (#24)—despite its higher price—proved to be popular with users as well.


Going forward, it should be interesting to see how the faceplates continue to sell. They not only provide a smart and relatively easy way to customize the 3DS hardware itself, but are also a means for publishers to promote their 3DS games.

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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.