Nintendo 3DS

Puzzle & Dragons Z Ships 1 Million Copies In Japan


Well, that was quick. Last week, Gung Ho Online Entertainment released  Puzzle & Dragons Z, an RPG version of their popular smartphone game, for the Nintendo 3DS in Japan. The game sold 543,630 copies in its first week.


Meanwhile, a follow-up report from sales tracker Media-Create adds that Puzzle & Dragons Z sold through 79.02% of its first shipment, which means the game sold well relative to the number of copies released at launch, too.


Media-Create also mention that the game is selling mainly to consumers ranging from their late 30s to early 40s, speculating that these people are buying the game as a gift for children. They expect that, over the upcoming holidays, Puzzle & Dragons Z will continue to appeal a younger audience, which means that it, Pokémon X/Y and Monster Hunter 4 will compete with one another, as all three games are currently appealing to that younger demographic.


Alongside, Gung Ho themselves have announced that they have shipped additional copies of Puzzle & Dragons Z, following the game’s launch, bringing total shipments to 1 million copies as for December 20th. It should be very interesting to see how sales hold up in the coming up weeks, and how long it takes Puzzle & Dragons Z to sell through all 1 million copies out in the wild right now.


If Gung Ho play their cards right, we could see Puzzle & Dragons joining the ranks of Pokémon, Monster Hunter and Dragon Quest within the next few years, in terms of retail game sales.


Food for thought:

While there aren’t many smartphone games that are as popular as Puzzle & Dragons in Japan, it could be interesting to see if any other social game developers decide to bring their games to the retail market the way Gung Ho have with Puzzle & Dragons Z. The 3DS has a large enough audience to make this an opportunity worth exploring. The question, of course, is which games are popular enough to make the transition.

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.