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Forums - Nintendo Discussion - Prediction: The Switch will become the best selling console yet!

The Switch is going to outsell every console that has yet been released.  How can I make such a bold claim?  Because the Switch will dominate both the handheld and home console markets with one console.  

A console that can win both markets will clearly be the new winner of all time.    VGChartz has the PS2 listed with 158m lifetime sales.  What do you think the PS4 and 3DS final numbers will be?  Now add those two numbers together.  Even the most conservative estimate will easily be above 158m.  If my claim about the Switch seems bold, it is not because the numbers can't be theoretically worked out on paper.

No, the real question that people have is "Can the Switch really win both the handheld and home console markets?"  I say, "Yes, and it will do so for Generation 9".  Let me break this down more specifically:

Handheld Market
Nintendo has never lost the handheld market.  Nintendo has been making handhelds for 30 years now, and no other other company has even come close to besting them.  Many have tried.  Sony, Sega, Atari, SNK, etc... have all tried their best to take the handheld market, and they have all been clobbered by Nintendo EVERY SINGLE TIME.  Nintendo is ridiculously dominant in the handheld market.  So, who is their main handheld competition for Generation 9?  No one.

Now, I know there are people out there right now saying, "But the Switch is a Generation 8 console."  Really?  I thought the 3DS was Nintendo's Generation 8 handheld.  And isn't the Switch the successor to the 3DS?  Logically, the Switch is a Generation 9 handheld. 

Furthermore, console generations are based on time period and not console power.  The Wii was a Generation 7 console, even though it had the power of a Generation 6 console.  Time wise the Wii was contemporary to the other Generation 7 consoles, so it is Generation 7.  The Switch launched about 6 years after the 3DS, so it is the next generation, Generation 9.  And since it is both a home and handheld console, it is Generation 9 for both home and handheld markets.  History will not see the Switch as competition for the PS4, but for the PS5 instead.

So my point here is that the Switch will clearly win the handheld market for Generation 9 and with no handheld competition.  Even people who would otherwise get a Sony PSP/Vita type handheld will get a Switch in Generation 9 instead.

Home Market:
The Switch is also going to win the home market in Generation 9.  This claim is likely the biggest sticking point for many people reading this.  How can I claim this?  Because Nintendo's strategy for Generation 9 is to use their prowess in the handheld market to invade the home market.  

And what is it that Nintendo does that always makes it's handhelds so successful?  Every generation they do the same thing.  During the first 2 - 3 years they release the majority of their best first party titles.  Then when third party companies see that the handheld is selling well, they decide to make their games for it.  The third party games keep the console's momentum going, and the handheld keeps selling well for years 3+.  This is the strategy they have used with the 3DS and it is still selling well 7 years after release. 

Nintendo also used this strategy with the NES, SNES and Wii and it worked fairly well with those consoles too (although less so with the Wii than the other two).  On the other hand Nintendo tried this strategy with the N64, Gamecube and Wii U, and it didn't work because third party companies didn't give those consoles much support.

Switch is definitely going to get good third party support.  And there is a huge positive feedback loop between games and gamers on a console.  More games leads to more gamers.  Then the higher console base means more third parties come on board.  So then, more gamers also leads to more games.  The number of titles and the console base snowball together.  "What about Western Developers?  What about AAA?"  These questions are somewhat irrelevant.  Switch is going to get so much support that it won't matter if it loses certain big companies.  The games will be there and the games will lead to more gamers.

The Switch is going to win Generation 9 by being dominant in both the home and handheld markets.  For the handheld market this is a foregone conclusion since it has no competitors.  The Switch will also sell to most gamers in the home market because it will have a huge library of games.  Once you add up the numbers from these two markets, the Switch will have unprecedented hardware sales.  In fact, it will be the best selling console yet.

One last thing I want to say is that I ironically expect 2018 to be a disappointing year for Nintendo.  Kimishima projects 20m Switches for fiscal year 2018.  I think they are going to fall short of that by several million.  So I don't know if this thread is going to be bumped in 2018 or not, but I very much expect the Doomsayers to come out in full force in 2018.  The Switch isn't really going to rocket up in sales until 2019.  That is when Switch is going to get Pokemon and some significant third party support.  (1/23/2018)

EDIT 2 (5/4/2018):
As of Mar 31, 2018 Switch has sold 17.19m units total, which means they are doing fairly well right now.  Nintendo is projecting 20m units for the next fiscal year.  I don't expect them to make this goal for their next fiscal year, but that is ok, since the Switch sales are going to come back with a vengeance in years 2019 and beyond.

Last edited by The_Liquid_Laser - on 04 May 2018

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Those are bold numbers alright


Ok a lot of thought went to this thread. I can definitely see your point. I too see this as the upper limit as well. However it would assume that Nintendo does everything right as far as 6 years from now. Which is unlikely but possible.

Anyway the Switch having a monopoly on the handheld market its a big deal since that mean monopolized 3rd party support. If you want to make a handheld game you must make the game for the Switch. Nintendo handhelds usually sell amazing and the Switch seems to follow that trend.

Home Console wise is a bit tougher. The Switch seems to be focused on lapsed gamers right now. However I expect that Nintendo will slowly add other gamers. I can see them grab gamers who do not value AAA gamin. (Which there are a lot of.) With great 3rd party support it can help grab more non-nintendo folks.

Anyway I give the prediction a 10% chance. I think it depends if Nintendo makes any mistakes. Also the Switch winning 9th generation has a chance of happening above 50%. Unless Microsoft decides to give up on console gaming or something like that.

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It can but only if Nintendo hits all the right spots (Labo becoming a big success, Pokémon being the game people wanted, new and compelling IPs being brought into the game like Splatoon, 2nd version of games already released like Zelda and Mario Kart, new casual experiences, etc.). They also need to support it as their main system for at least 6 years for this to happen and then for another 3 years as a companion console.

Last edited by LipeJJ - on 23 January 2018

Bet with Teeqoz for 2 weeks of avatar and sig control that Super Mario Odyssey would ship more than 7m on its first 2 months. The game shipped 9.07m, so I won

Unlikely. The Switch is a basically just a WiiU that has been revised to also work in portable mode.

That was a clever move, because as a portable console it is very attractive, and as such I can very well see it reaching 3DS level sales.

But as a home console, it still suffers from more or less the same disadvantages that the WiiU did (like being severely underpowered in comparison to its competitors PS4, Xbone, PC, which will for example lead to many AAA-titles simply not being ported over to Switch).

So if anything, I think you should rather add WiiU sales + 3DS sales, not PS2 sales + 3DS sales.

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Bet with PeH: 

I win if Arms sells over 700 000 units worldwide by the end of 2017.

Bet with WagnerPaiva:


I win if Emmanuel Macron wins the french presidential election May 7th 2017.

Bold prediction. You add PS4 and 3ds owners together. However how many people owned both consoles. My guess would be 15 million. They won't be buying 2 switches. So you'd need to take that number off the final tally. I agree with killeryoshi. Handheld is pretty easy for Nintendo. Home console will be the sticking point.

I don’t agree. I think it will sell well, but I can’t imagine it being the best selling console ever.

I bet the Wii U would sell more than 15M LTD by the end of 2015. He bet it would sell less. I lost.

Now, this is some bold stuff!

If this is the winning predition in the end, then someone will have to necro this thread for a good laugh.

Not to laugh at the boldness, but for how worlds apart this prediction is from the Doom-a-thon of preditions that were thrown around here in 2017.

At this point, I am just glad Nintendo Switch is going to have a phenomenal library of games when it is all said and done.

I don't think so but hey in 6 years someone will quote me and maybe laugh how wrong I was.