Welcome to this week’s edition of “A Sales History.” This week we will be taking a look at the sales history of the Super Smash Bros. franchise. Last week we looked at sales history of Battlefield and the week before that Call of Duty. If there is a particular franchise (no matter how obscure) you want to see the sales history for, requests are always welcome.
The Super Smash Bros. franchise is a fighting game that features characters from Nintendo franchises. The first game was released for the Nintendo 64 in 1999 and featured 12 playable characters including Mario, Link, Donkey Kong, and Pikachu. The sequels have had 25 and 35 playable characters, including non-Nintendo characters such as Snake and Sonic.
In the chart above, the Super Smash Bros. franchise has achieved lifetime to date sales of 23.64 million for its three releases. Super Smash Bros. for the Nintendo 64 has sold 5.55 million units. Super Smash Bros. Melee for the GameCube has sold 7.07 million units. Super Smash Bros. Brawl for the Wii has sold 11.02 million units.
Looking at the bar graph above, it is easy to see that sales have increased in each successive release. Melee outsold the original by 1.52 million units or by nearly a quarter. Brawl outsold Melee by 3.95 million units or by more than 50 percent. Brawl has 47 percent of the sales for the franchise, Melee 30 percent and the original 23 percent.
Looking at the weekly sales of Super Smash Bros. Brawl shows that the game has had strong legs. The game was first released in Japan on January 31, 2008 which explains the two jumps in sales at week seven and 22. At week seven the game was released in North America and at week 22 in Europe. The game has sold 2.39 million units in Japan, 2.22 million in Europe and 5.53 million in North America. Worldwide the game sold 8.07 million units at the one year mark and has sold 11.02 million to date. That is sales of nearly four million in three years, which shows pretty strong legs.
Predictions for Future Releases
There are currently two new Super Smash Bros. games being developed. One for the Nintendo 3DS and the other for the Wii U. They were first announced at E3 2011, but were no shows at E3 2012. The 3DS version will be the first game in the franchise to be released on a handheld and it will also be cross-compatible with the Wii U version. That could mean a same day release for both versions, but that is not definite.
Sales can range wildly especially for the Wii U since we don’t know how well the system will sell. The 3DS has taken off so is a little bit easier, but it will be the first in the franchise to be released on a handheld. Both versions should sell at a minimum 5 million units, but more than likely closer to 10 million. The franchise has only gotten more popular since the release of the original.
The Wii U version could top Brawl only if the Wii U sells similar to the Wii. The game could become as big as Mario Kart has in recent years and sell 20 million or more. But that is a big if. It will most likely top out in the 12 to 15 million unit range, with the highest probability if selling in the nine to 12 million unit range lifetime.
The 3DS version could be similar to what Mario Kart DS sold compared to Mario Kart Wii, roughly one third less. That would put sales in the six to nine million unit range lifetime.
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