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Nintendo Switch tops 52 million sales, surpasses SNES

Over 300 million software sales in less than three years
Nintendo Switch tops 52 million sales, surpasses SNES
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The Nintendo Switch has sold 52.48 million units in less than three years, now surpassing the Super Nintendo Entertainment System (SNES) at 49.1 million.

The figures were made public through the company’s financial results for the nine months ended on December 31st, 2019.

As a result, Nintendo has now raised its fiscal year forecast to 19.5 million hardware sales, which was previously stated at 18 million. Overall software sales have now climbed to 310.65 million units shipped. 

Nintendo's operating profit for the nine-month period closed at ¥262.9 billion ($2.41 billion), with total sales reaching ¥1,022.6 billion ($9.21 billion)

Hardware strong

Nintendo Switch hardware reached 17.74 million units in the first nine months of the financial year, representing an increase of 22.5 per cent year-on-year. Software sales continued to be strong for the same period at 123.13 million, a rise of 30.1 per cent year-on-year. This growth was put down to Nintendo partnering with Tencent to launch the console in China.

Mobile IP for the nine months ending December 31st reached 36.9 billion yen ($338.75 million), showing a 10.6 per cent increase on a year-on-year, with the launch of Mario Kart Tour highlighted as a reason for this.

On the other hand, the Nintendo 3DS decreased by 73 per cent year-on-year to 0.62 million in hardware sales and 4.10 million in software sales, which was a fall of 63 per cent compared to the previous year.

The handheld has now accumulated 75.71 million in sales and 382.22 in software sales, though that is unexpected to rise much higher with the Switch now taking its place.

Indeed, as pointed out by Niko Partners senior analyst Daniel Ahmad on Twitter, the Switch now accounts for 96 per cent of Nintendo's entire business. Its mobile arm accounts for just 3 per cent.

Mario Kart 8 Deluxe has now sold 22.96 million copies, keeping its place as the Switch's best-selling game as well as meaning that approximately 43 per cent of owners possess the game.

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate fought its way to second place at 17.68 million sales, continuing its run as the best- selling fighting game of all time, while Super Mario Odyssey rounded out the top three at 16.59 million units.

The Nintendo Switch top 10 selling games as of December 31st, 2019 are as follows:

  • Mario Kart 8 Deluxe - 22.96 million
  • Super Smash Bros. Ultimate - 17.68 million
  • Super Mario Odyssey - 16.59 million
  • The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild - 16.34 million
  • Pokemon Sword/Shield - 16.06 million
  • Pokemon Let's GO Pikachu/Eevee - 11.76 million
  • Splatoon 2 - 9.81 million
  • Super Mario Party - 9.12 million
  • New Super Mario Bros. U Deluxe - 5.85 million
  • Luigi's Mansion 3 - 5.37 million

Super Mario Maker 2 was also confirmed to have surpassed five million sales since releasing in June 2019. Third-party titles Marvel Ultimate Alliance 3 and Astral Chain also cleared one million sales since releasing in July and August 2019 respectively.

Nintendo's catalogue of games has now generated over $1 billion in revenue, however it's Fire Emblem Heroes that has been most profitable for the company, generating $656 million since launch.