Multiple Nintendo Games Set New Sales Records

The Switch is down slightly but still looks to be one of the best-selling consoles of all time soon.

Last night was Nintendo’s latest investor relations release, where they give updated sales numbers for hardware and software over the last quarter and overall. This has, in different generations, been both a day of joy for Nintendo and a day of absolute pain as the company hasn’t always had great news to report. Since 2017 with the Switch release, however, those bad fortunes have not only reversed, they’ve pendulum swung in the complete opposite direction to some of Nintendo’s best quarterly reports ever. With this latest report marking the end of Nintendo’s last financial year and beginning of their current one, the company had a lot to talk about.

All numbers are through March 31, 2022.

  • The Switch has shipped 107.65 million units, which means 4.11 million units in the first three months of 2022 and 23.06 million for the financial year. This puts the Switch within spitting distance — 10 million units or so — of the PlayStation 4. The next obstacle over that is the Gameboy & Gameboy Color, which would only require another million over the PS4 milestone. This would place the Switch as the third best-selling console of all time.
  • On that note, Nintendo predicts 21 million Switch units to be sold in the financial year ending March 31 2023. So if it hits that number, which it has every year so far, then it should easily make it to third place in the overall lifetime charts.
  • There’s very, very little chance that Switch will hit either the Nintendo DS (154 million) or the PlayStation 2 (155 million), but who knows. Weirder things have happened. I suppose it might depend heavily on what a successor looks like and what software can keep the system alive another two years.
  • Nearly half of the console’s lifetime sales have happened in the last two years, but are overall down in 2022 from a monstrous 2021 number.
  • Once again, Nintendo President Shuntaro Furukawa was asked about the Switch successor and declined to comment, according to Bloomberg. Takashi Mochizuki points out that he was asked this same question two years ago, when there was not new Switch hardware, and he outright said no.
  • In the last financial year, 39 games sold one million units or more. That’s the best software year for a Nintendo console in terms of number of million sellers ever.
  • Nintendo says that’s 26 of their own titles and 13 titles from other publishers.
  • Mario Kart 8 Deluxe sold just under 2 million copies in the last quarter, likely spurred by both ridiculous momentum and the announced DLC. It currently sits at 45.33 million units.
  • Considering the DLC is planning to continue through the end of 2023, it’s likely that the game should hit 50 million units this year. Just speculation, but we could see it end up at 60 or maybe even 70 million units before it’s done and dusted.
  • The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild continues to sell well, having hit 26.55 million on Switch and 1.69 million on Wii U, for a total of 28.24 million.
  • For those curious, if you add up the original releases of every other 3D Zelda (Ocarina of Time, Majora’s Mask, Wind Waker, Twilight Princess Gamecube and Wii, and Skyward Sword), you get roughly 27.9 million units sold. If you add in the ports, re-releases, and remakes, though, you far exceed Breath of the Wild.
  • On that note, Skyward Sword — while it sold a respectable 3.8 million units before this quarter — has all but stopped selling with only 60,000 units sold this past quarter. Still good for a re-release, but perhaps indicates there’s a ceiling for a Zelda game that previously existed on a console that sold 100 million units and isn’t particularly universally well-liked.
  • Inexplicably, both Super Mario Party and Mario Party Superstars are selling well concurrently, with the latter being a newer release that is understandably selling better. Combined, the series has sold roughly 24 million units on Switch alone.
  • As a series, Splatoon has sold more than 18 million units. The release of Splatoon 3 later this year should push the games to outselling the entirety of the Watch_Dogs series.
  • Metroid Dread is officially the best-selling Metroid game ever, overcoming Metroid Prime with 2.9 million units sold.
  • At 9.43 million units, Super Mario 3D World + Bowser’s Fury is very close to selling double what the original release on Wii U did (5.8 million).
  • In just a few days of sales, Kirby and the Forgotten Lands sold 2.65 million units. It is likely that it will overcome Kirby: Star Allies’ 3.42 million units to become the best-selling Kirby title before too long.
  • Pokemon Legends: Arceus sold 12.64 million copies since its release in late January. To put that into perspective, megahit Elden Ring sold roughly that same amount with the last numbers we were given.
  • Game Builder Garage, a game that no one has ever talked about anywhere, has sold 1.06 million copies.

In non-sales news, Nintendo also released an image of previously announced titles planned for the next financial year. It includes what we already know about, including Pokemon Scarlet & Violet and reiterating Bayonetta 3 for 2022. What’s most interesting, however, is how Advance Wars 1+2: Re-Boot Camp has completely fallen off the schedule and isn’t even listed this year anymore, despite the fact that it’s done and people have played the final game. This is likely more of an indicator that Nintendo doesn’t know when it’s going to release versus it having fallen out of this year, but still, notable.