I originally watched this clip over at Kotaku just to see some new footage of Gears 3, but what I discovered was that this clip was actually a very well produced segment on how the video game industry operates. It also goes into detail on where the major U.S. players reside, how much games really cost to produce as well as the manpower needed to produce a “AAA” title.
Not only is Japan very far away from the United States, their tastes are also quite different. In Japan, portable systems sell like hotcakes (which apparently sell very very quickly). Quite possibly the biggest gaming trend to hit Japan in recent years is Capcom’s Monster Hunter series. Monster Hunter has been released here in the U.S. in a variety of incarnations, but always failed to really click with western audiences. Oddly enough, the number one selling system in Japan this year was the Sony PSP. Does anyone in the United States still play their PSP? I did manage to fire mine up this year to play a bit of Valkyria II, but hastily turned it off and placed it back on the shelf to collect more delicious dust.
ASCII reports that the top selling games in Japan both involved monsters of various sizes: Pokemon Black and White and Monster Hunter Portable 3rd. Japan loves their monsters, damn it! Pokemon sold a whopping 4,734,064 units while Monster Hunter sold an impressive 3,163,750 units.
Here is a look at Japanese Hardware sales VIA ASCII (Because I sure didn’t compile this info!)
- PSP — 2,729,718
- DS — 2,719,544
- Wii — 1,592,563
- PS3 — 1,542,258
- Xbox 360 — 231,258
- PS2 — 83,030
Japanese software sales, 2010:
- Pokemon Black/Pokemon White — DS — 4,734,064
- Monster Hunter Portable 3rd — PSP — 3,163,750
- New Super Mario Bros. Wii — Wii — 1,692,401
- Wii Party — Wii — 1,385,541
- Dragon Quest VI — DS — 1,354,841
- Dragon Quest Monsters Joker 2 — DS — 1,305,750
- Tomodachi Collection — DS — 1,112,298
- Super Mario Galaxy 2 — Wii — 931,534
- Inazuma Eleven 3 Spark/Bomber — DS — 930,580
- Kingdom Hearts: Birth by Sleep — PSP — 844,980
As you can see Nintendo still rules over Japan, like an obese Shogun.
Questions I’d love to see our readers answer.
- Why do you feel Japan loves monsters, oh so much?
- Do you think Japanese players are less concerned with Graphics than western players?
- Why do Japanese players prefer portable systems?