Since Nintendo President Satoru Iwata announced an $80 price cut on the Nintendo 3DS–a handheld gaming system only four months old–he has continually apologized to gamers and promised to give free games to early adopters of the system. We’re beginning to understand why. Japanese sales of the 3DS in the week following the price cut dropped by about 50 percent, from 31,826 to 16,415.
According to Gamasutra, this marks the first time the 3DS has fallen below sales of the Wii and PS3 in Japan. The fall has also corresponded with a small surge in PSP sales. The PSP rose from 26,868 units from July 11-17 to 36,666 units in the July 18-24 time period. Sales of the Nintendo DS seem to remain unaffected by the controversy. The system sold about 10,000 units both weeks. The only 3DS game to make the top 20 for the week was Ocarina of Time 3D.
So is this sales decline a blip of anger or the start of much bigger problems for the 3DS. One thing’s for certain: people buying 3DS systems are definitely reading the news.
Below are Japanese hardware sales for July 18-24 (via NeoGAF):
- PSP: 36,659 (LW: 26,854)
- PS3: 20,704 (LW: 23,343)
- Wii: 18,232 (LW: 17,114)
- 3DS: 16,415 (LW: 31,826)
- DSi LL: 5,267 (LW: 5,258)
- DSi: 4,625 (LW: 4,921)
- 360 1,616 (LW: 1,546)
- PS2 1,594 (LW: 1,475)
- DS Lite 138 (LW: 155)
- PSP Go 7 (LW: 14)
On a side note, somebody really should stop the 7-14 people buying PSP Go’s each week. They’re only hurting themselves.