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Salnax said:

Honorable Mentions and Near Misses

  • Tetris was originally developed in Russia, but I feel that the versions of Tetris are too different to be considered a single game. Furthermore, the best-selling versions of Tetris in Japan are all developed by Japanese companies. Still, if you feel that an IP's country of origin is what really matters, Tetris on the Game Boy is #2 on the list above with 4.23 million sales.
  • Super Mario Maker for Nintendo 3DS was ported by the American-based Nintendo Software Technology Corporation. I didn't count the porting of a game as developing it, but if this game is treated as a seperate entity, then it makes it on the list with 1.19 million retail and digital sales.
  • SimCity on the Super Famicom sold a whopping 900,000 copies in Japan alone. However, it is hard to consider it a western game when the port was developed and published by Nintendo under a license from Maxis. Similarly, if we combine the Saturn and Super Famicom versions of SimCity 2000, we end up with about 470,000 sales, an impressive number.
  • A number of entries in series represented in the list above narrowly missed the cut. These include Grand Theft Auto III, Grand Theft Auto IV and Liberty City Stories, Call of Duty: Black Ops III, Call of Duty: WWII, and Call of Duty: Ghosts, Battlefield 1,
  • The Elder Scrolls: Skyrim is the biggest western RPG in Japanese history, with over 400,000 sales.
  • Although FIFA pales in comparison to the Winning Eleven (PES) series in Japan, the 1998 entry for PlayStation, FIFA World Championship, sold about 400,000 copies.


  • Of the 24 games with at least 500,000 sales, 11 are from the United States, 8 are from the United Kingdom, 2 are from Canada, 2 are from Sweden, 1 is from France.
  • The games on this list mostly come from two time periods: the first wave, which includes 8 of these games, lasted from 1994 to 1999. Then from 2000 to 2008, only 3 games on this list were released. Then the second wave of 11 games came from 2009 to 2013. We are currently in another relative quiet period for Western games, as the only big games from 2014 to 2020 have been Luigi's Mansion 3 and Black Ops 4.

If you don't count Sim City and Tetris for that reason, then you would need to remove all the Donkey Kong and Luigi games since those are IPs from Japanese developer, and probably Nintendo EAD did have some hand in the development, like some overview or even gameplay/engine (Nintendo has an entire division just for those)

Last edited by Bofferbrauer2 - on 17 November 2020