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Yo-kai Watch 2 Is Level 5’s Highest Opener Ever


This shouldn’t come as a surprise, but Yo-kai Watch 2 saw the highest debut sales of any game in Level 5’s recent history. As reported earlier in the week, the game sold 1.3 million copies in its first week, and that’s far higher than any other L5 game has done.


Parallel to the Yo-kai Watch series, Level 5 have three other ongoing franchises—Inazuma Eleven, Professor Layton and The Little Battlers. Below are the highest openings from each of those franchises, just to put Yo-kai Watch 2’s sales into perspective:


(2008) Professor Layton and the Unwound Future – 347,360

(2010) Inazuma Eleven 3: Lightning Bolt/Bomb Blast – 505,161

(2011) The Little Battlers – 166,187


Inazuma Eleven and Professor Layton are somewhat similar to Yo-kai Watch 2 in the sense that it took both those franchises a couple of games to really hit their stride in terms of opening sales. Meanwhile, The Little Battlers was distinctly different because the first game in the series saw the highest opening sales, following which sales declined with each subsequent release.


It should be interesting to see what lessons Level 5 have learnt from their past franchises and how they apply them to the Yo-kai Watch series going forward. For example, Inazuma Eleven, for example, isn’t what it once used to be. Franchise fatigue appears to have set in, with the latest set of games debuting at just 92,000 copies sold.


Franchise fatigue is something that’s difficult to avoid, so how Level 5 handles Yo-kai Watch in the future is of utmost importance, if the series hopes to retain its current popularity.


Note: Additional sales data for Inazuma games here, Professor Layton here and The Little Battlers here.

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.