The website VGChartz is a sales tracker for gaming hardware and software. Their numbers are partly based on historical numerics as well as estimations. I won’t say that the numbers are therefore completely accurate, but they’re close enough to have some fun with. Plus, historical data is accurate, and that’s what we’ll focus on here anyway.
Here are the top 10 most interesting facts we can learn from VGChartz.
10. Of the Top Five Games Sold in Europe, Three Are FIFA ’15
While the biggest selling games in America tend to be First-Person Shooters, in Europe soccer is king. Of the top five games sold in 2014, three of them are FIFA ’15. What do I mean by three of them? I mean the distinct versions made for PS4, PS3, and XBox 360.
Think about that for a second. Even if you divide up this game amongst all the various platforms it was built for, it’s still at the top of the charts! Not even Nintendo cracked it. Heck, FIFA ’15 for XBox One is hanging in at #14, too!
9. Nintendo DS is the Top Selling Portable Ever at 155M Sold
When you think of top selling portable, it’s easy to assume that would be the original Game Boy. However, it’s the Nintendo DS and its multitude of colors and styles that takes the title as biggest seller.
At 154M sold, Nintendo pulled the plug on it just 3M short from it becoming the biggest selling console period next to…
8. Playstation 2 is the Top Selling Console Ever at 158M Sold
The PS2 was huuuuge and everybody knew it. It was a fantastic system that started its life with the Dual Shock controller and its games were much better looking than the competition. The XBox was still a year away as was the Gamecube. In fact, the Sega Dreamcast was discontinued in the same month. Given all that, only the Nintendo 64 was competing with it and it’s last-gen graphics capabilities stood no chance against the PS2’s huge upgrade.
Spring-boarding off its well-timed debut, the PS2 eclipsed sales of every other console ever made, holding on most recently against the Nintendo DS. Heck, the next next biggest selling home console is the original Platstation which it beat by about 50M!
7. The Top Selling Game of All Time is Wii Sports at 82M
No game is owned by more people than Wii Sports. In fact, if you took half of those copies and threw them in a landfill along with E.T., it would still be the top selling game ever. And yes, it was bundled with the Wii for basically the entire lifetime of the console, but it’s still mind-numbing to think that more people have owned and played that game than any other game…ever…by more than double!
6. The Top 15 Games Ever Sold Are All Nintendo
Wii Sports aside, if you look at the software sales charts, you see quite the pattern.
That’s right, the top 15 game sales totals belong to just one developer: Nintendo! Now, we also see that this is a bit unfair because many of these games were bundled with systems and it’s reasonable to argue that they shouldn’t even be counted. But mixed in are many titles that were either never bundled or bundled only briefly. Perhaps most impressive is Wii Fit which dragged along the balance board accessory in its pricetag and still sold 23M.
The top selling game not created by Nintendo is, perhaps equally surprisingly, Kinect Adventures! which was also a bundled game with the Kinect.
5. The Top Selling Game of 2014 was Pokemon Omega Ruby/Alpha Sapphire
The best selling game in 2014 was a remake of games originally made many years ago for the Game Boy Advance. Then again, the Pokemon series has always put up huge global sales numbers, so perhaps this isn’t so surprising.
And look at that, FIFA ’15 makes the list thanks to Europe!
4. The PlayStation Vita is Outselling the Wii U
The big storyline when the Nintendo 3DS and Playstation Vita launched in 2011 and 2012 was if they could survive in a world newly dominated by smartphones. Not only were they in the hands of many more millions of people, but they were offering games that were generally just a couple bucks to even free. Could a new handheld with $35-$40 games compete?
That answer is, unsurprisingly, yes. But, what may actually be surprising is that while the Vita hasn’t been a huge success, it’s still outselling the Wii U. Yes, it’s had a bit of a head start, but we’re comparing a Sony handheld versus Nintendo’s current-gen home console!
As of today, the difference is very small and it’s anticipated the Wii U will soon pass it if it hasn’t already. Still, it shouldn’t be this close. But it is.
3. Only 2 Million XBox’s Have Ever Sold in Japan
Microsoft is known as one of the Big 3 competitors in the console market, but their success hasn’t been as great as most people think and that’s especially true in Japan.
At 24M in sales, the original XBox didn’t perform all that well when compared to the XBox 360’s 85M. Even today, the XBox One is struggling big time versus the PS4 at only 12M in sales. Combined, 120M XBox machines have sold worldwide between the three models.
Of that 120M, only 2M have ever sold in Japan. Wow! That’s an incredibly pathetic figure, and that includes Microsoft making specific efforts in the east. Clearly, the Japanese favor the Japan-native Sony and Nintendo, but Microsoft is a competent game company…how on Earth can sales be so bad?
2. The Best Selling 3rd-Party Game Ever is GTA: San Andreas for PS2
If you look at the top selling games ever made, most are either from Nintendo and/or were games bundled with systems. If you strip all of that away, the top selling 3rd party game is Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas for the PS2 with 21M in sales.
Take-Two Interactive, be proud!
1. The 3DS Has Outsold Every Current Console…COMBINED!
The 3DS had an innovative concept with its glasses-free 3D, but was released when the world was having newfound iPhone and Android fever. There was fear that it would be deemed gimmicky and flop and, early on, it seemed that the forecasters would be right. In fact, sales were so bad that Nintendo was forced to slash the 3DS’s price and their President, Satoru Iwata, took a self-imposed pay cut.
In October of 2011, the Game Sack boys were discussing the 3DS (among other portable systems) when Sega fanboy Joe Redifer dared relate it to the abysmal Virtual Boy. That’s when David White said something eerily prescient:
Boy was he right!
Today, the 3DS’s total sales have beaten the Wii U, the XBox One, the Vita, and even the successful PS4…COMBINED. An astounding 52M have been sold an it’s still in its prime! The 3DS has allowed Nintendo to survive disappointing sales by the Wii U console without skipping a beat because selling portable hardware and games nets just as much profit as the consoles!
Truly, the 3DS was a sleeping giant indeed.