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While the PS4 came close in 2017, selling 19.8 million, and Switch came close last year at 19.2 million, no dedicated system tracked at VGChartz has cracked that 20 million mark since the DS did it for the 5th and final time in 2010 (then the “cliff” happened =P). The Wii achieved the goal in 2008 and 2009. And only the PS2 did it prior to VGC in 2002 and 2003 (fiscal 03 and 04).

So apart from Switch’s 2020 Calendar year sales being the first in 10 years, it’s also only the 10th time in history sales of any dedicated console have broken that 20 million mark, and only the fourth system to have done it.

Gameboy came VERY close in fiscal 2001 shipping 19.93 million (and a little over 18 million in 2000). I find GB’s sales to be phenomenal considering it hit its peak a decade after launch. That makes it a bit of a sleeper hit: and perhaps the only dedicated video game system that can claim that title

Rant on why I don’t count the NES as a sleeper hit despite peaking late in its life: the late sales peak wasn’t because of any lack of demand until later, it was mostly because it was really hard to get! Nintendo took forever to get its distribution of the NES correct - and things aren’t like they are now where every little village in the world gets a console shipment - NES was only available in certain cities at regular retail price.

Last edited by Jumpin - on 17 October 2020

I describe myself as a little dose of toxic masculinity.