So it turns out people really love the Nintendo Switch, or at least they love buying it. The system has now sold over 79 million units, according to a financial report covering the nine-month period that ended Dec. 31, 2020. This makes the Switch Nintendo’s fifth highest-selling console and puts it on track to dethrone some giants in the coming years.
Nintendo, who thankfully provide very easy-to-follow breakdowns of their numbers, is actually doing gangbusters right now. Animal Crossing: New Horizons, for example, has sold over 31 million copies since its release last March, mere weeks into the global pandemic that propelled it to such heights. These figures not only solidify Animal Crossing: New Horizons as the second highest selling Switch title, but puts it in the running to attack and dethrone Mario Kart 8 Deluxe, which is sitting only about 2 million copies higher. The title could easily succeed Mario Kart by the time its first birthday rolls around in April.
While Animal Crossing has long been a fan favorite series, these numbers blowout anything I think anyone expected the latest game to do in less than a year. This is due in large part to how the pandemic forced people indoors, which saw videogame sales across hardware and software spike. You can begin seeing exactly what these spikes amounted to in some of these figures.
Nintendo’s other software releases of 2020 have also done incredibly well. Some highlights include Paper Mario: The Origami King, which has sold over 3 million copies, and the limited release of Super Mario 3D All-Stars, which has sold over 8 million copies. Ring Fit Adventure, another game that specifically saw a pandemic spike and subsequent shortage, sold 5.95 million in this nine-month period, bringing its lifetime sales to 8.68 million copies sold.
According to a further breakdown on GamesIndustry.biz, Nintendo saw a rise in just about every sector it could. Their digital sales saw a drastic 105% increase in profit and even their mobile business generated a “still modest” profit of $401 million. Furthermore, Nintendo shipped 24.1 million units of their Switch console, making this nine-month period the console’s most successful in sales.
As of Dec. 31st 2020, Nintendo has already hit their annual net sales target of $13.4 billion and have raised it to $15.4 billion for the duration of their fiscal year, which will close out at the end of March.