With more than 4.8 million units sold in the US or the last 10 months, Nintendo has stated that the Switch is the fastest selling console in that region. The record was previously held by the Wii, which sold 4 million units over the same 10 month launch period. As of early December 2017, the Switch had hit 10 million sales worldwide, and Nintendo is projecting that number to grow to 14 million by the end of March.
High sales can largely be attributed to two games: The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild and Super Mario Odyssey. Nintendo has no illusions about how key these two titles were. “In the U.S., more than 60 percent of Nintendo Switch owners have Super Mario Odyssey, and over 55 percent own The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild. Not only are these games system-sellers, but they’re also two of the highest-rated games in history,” Nintendo said.
It will be interesting to see if Nintendo can maintain the hot streak and break more records with the Switch. The best selling game console of all time is currently the PS2, with more than 155 million lifetime sales worldwide. Second and third are held by the PlayStation and Wii respectively, with with 102.5 million and 101.6 million sales worldwide over their lifetime.
If it keeps up strong software releases, it’s likely we’ll see Nintendo Switch sales success continue into 2018. Even if there aren’t any system-seller games that release this year, the platform can still coast on the release of Zelda and Mario from last year to pick up any stragglers that have yet to be the console. The success also has the attention of third-party developers who may have previously been wary of the Switch following the WiiU’s flop, which has only sold 13.5 million since its release in 2012. For comparison, the PlayStation 4 currently sits at more than 70 million consoles sold worldwide since its release in 2013.
I see the competition as invigorating for both Sony and Microsoft, who will now be forced to innovate rather than coast on any previously held successes of their own. 2018 looks to be a stellar year for Sony and PlayStation though, and I’m excited to see where the year takes all games and consoles.
All numbers are from the latest sales reports as of the time of this writing.