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Top 10 Best-Selling Pokemon Games

Top 10 Best-Selling Pokemon Games - Sales

by William D'Angelo , posted on 01 January 2020 / 13,203 Views

The latest game in the hugely popular Pokémon franchise, Pokémon Sword / Shield, released last month. The franchise itself is over 20 years old as the first game launched in Japan in February 1996. The mainline RPG games are developed by Game Freak and published by Nintendo and The Pokémon Company.

The top 10 best-selling games in the franchise have nearly sold 180 million units worldwide. The franchise itself has sold around 300 million units and release after release of the mainline RPG games sells over 10 million units.

In total 2 games for the franchise have sold over 20 million units, 12 have sold over 10 million units and 19 have sold over 5 million units. 

The original mainline RPG in the series, Pokémon Red / Green / Blue (GB), is by far the best-selling game in the franchise as the only one to sell over 30 million units. The game sold 31.38 million units lifetime. The second generation game mainline RPG, Pokémon Gold / Silver (GB), is the only other game in the franchise to sell over 20 million units, with lifetime sales of 23.1 million units. 

Pokémon Diamond Pearl (DS) is the third best-selling game in the franchise with 17.67 million units, followed by Pokémon X/ Y (3DS) with 16.42 million units sold. Pokémon Ruby / Sapphire (GBA) rounds out the top five with 16.22 millionunits.

Pokémon: Let's Go, Pikachu / Eevee, the first major Pokémon game on the Nintendo Switch just missed the top 10 with sales of 11.28 million units. The game should enter the top 10 list before it stops selling. 


A life-long and avid gamer, William D'Angelo was first introduced to VGChartz in 2007. After years of supporting the site, he was brought on in 2010 as a junior analyst, working his way up to lead analyst in 2012. He has expanded his involvement in the gaming community by producing content on his own YouTube channel and Twitch channel dedicated to gaming Let's Plays and tutorials. You can contact the author at wdangelo@vgchartz.com or on Twitter @TrunksWD.


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18 Comments
Doctor_MG (on 13 November 2019)

If Pokemon Let's Go can get around 11.8M copies sold I'm sure that Sword and Shield will get above 12.72M copies sold. Personally, I think it will stop at 15-17M putting it between Black/White and Diamond/Pearl

  • +6
trunkswd Doctor_MG (on 13 November 2019)

We will see first week sales in Japan on Wednesday. That will be a good indicator if it will have stronger sales than Let's Go.

  • +3
NextGen_Gamer Doctor_MG (on 13 November 2019)

I could be way off on this, but the amount of buzz I am hearing from online & from friends of mine who don't even PLAY Pokemon make me think that Sword/Shield will be a MASSIVE hit. I am predicting 10 million WEEK ONE - and 15+ million by years end, with lifetime sales getting close to the all-time champ Red/Green/Blue.

  • -1
trunkswd (on 13 November 2019)

What is everyone's favorite Pokemon game?

  • +5
Luke888 trunkswd (on 13 November 2019)

Emerald, one of the worst selling in the series, of course.

  • +2
Flilix trunkswd (on 13 November 2019)

Emerald, although that's mostly because of nostalgia. I'd say X&Y are the best ones.

  • +2
SecondWar trunkswd (on 13 November 2019)

My personal favourite is Diamond/Pearl. I think this is partly down to timing, as its when I first started to understand the more in-depth battle mechanics. It was also one of the stronger Gens for new Pokemon. This would be followed by Sun and Moon.

  • 0
RetroGamer94 trunkswd (on 13 November 2019)

Gen 2! I love gold and silver. I really enjoyed X and Y as well but they were missing a good post game, a good rival and a bit more difficulty.

  • +2
trunkswd trunkswd (on 13 November 2019)

Pokemon Sword / Shield is my first Pokemon game that isn't gen 1. I played Blue and Yellow and bought Let's Go Eevee when that came out. I'm interested to see how much the franchise has changed and all the new Pokemon. A shame so many of them are missing.

  • +1
Keybladewielder trunkswd (on 14 November 2019)

Mine is Pokémon Platinum

  • 0
Marth (on 13 November 2019)

Yellow really was something special. By far the best selling "third version"
Felt revolutionary at the time. Like the anime becoming a thing that you can experience.

  • +2
ARamdomGamer (on 13 November 2019)

Excluding Gen 1, my 3 least favorite gens are at the top, while my favorite 3 are in the middle point, all 6 are close in sales as a whole but the order is funny to me, Black/White are my favorite games overall from the series.

  • +2
SecondWar (on 13 November 2019)

I get the feeling Sword and Shield may end up at the lower end of this sales chart. There just seems to be a lot of bad blood for the game with the Pokedex issue.

  • +2
trunkswd SecondWar (on 13 November 2019)

First week sales will be a good indicator. #GameFreakLied was trending today on Twitter.

  • +2
deskpro2k3 (on 14 November 2019)

of course, Red is the best.

  • +1
RetroGamer94 (on 13 November 2019)

What’s everyone’s least favourite Pokémon Game?

  • +1
shikamaru317 RetroGamer94 (on 14 November 2019)

Currently that would have to be Let's Go.

  • +1
ARamdomGamer RetroGamer94 (on 14 November 2019)

X/Y for me.

  • 0