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Forums - Nintendo Discussion - Bold Predition Achieved: Zelda has outsold Mario! (BotW vs. Odyssey)

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Zelda’s hold in sales is astounding. Even as Mario Odyssey’s sales slips away each year, Zelda’s decline is exceptionally minor. Actually it’s basically flat. I was again too pessimistic in my post from last year. I should learn to be more like tbone.



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The_Liquid_Laser said:

The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild quarterly sales (in millions)

2017 2018 2019 2020
March 31 2.76 1.78 1.09 1.07
June 30 1.16 0.84 0.84
Sept 30 0.78 0.96 0.93
Dec 31 2 1.4 1.8

Can we get a quarterly chart for Mario sales to compare?



Slownenberg said:
The_Liquid_Laser said:

The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild quarterly sales (in millions)

2017 2018 2019 2020
March 31 2.76 1.78 1.09 1.07
June 30 1.16 0.84 0.84
Sept 30 0.78 0.96 0.93
Dec 31 2 1.4 1.8

Can we get a quarterly chart for Mario sales to compare?

That's a reasonable request.  Here are both charts.  

Super Mario Odyssey quarterly sales (in millions)

2017 2018 2019 2020
March 31 1.34 0.68 0.82
June 30 0.76 0.5
Sept 30 1 0.44
Dec 31 9.07 1.59 1.21

The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild quarterly sales (in millions)

2017 2018 2019 2020
March 31 2.76 1.78 1.09 1.07
June 30 1.16 0.84 0.84
Sept 30 0.78 0.96 0.93
Dec 31 2 1.4 1.8

Looks like both games had good legs in 2018, but Zelda's legs kept going after that.  I've gotta say, even though I predicted Zelda would have better legs, both games are selling better than I expected.  It will be interesting to see how far both games go in the end.



Cant help but think theres a correlation between how well its doing and how its one of the few AAA titles that nintendo has incorporated modern gaming conventions into. Like maybe theres a decent demographic that the majority of their games dont tap into? Sacrolige i know but maybe we can get some more experimentation and 10do can finally catch up w the times. More vast open worlds would be cool. Party chat would be cool. Obviously if they wanna skip loot boxes thatd also be cool :)



CarcharodonKraz said:
Cant help but think theres a correlation between how well its doing and how its one of the few AAA titles that nintendo has incorporated modern gaming conventions into. Like maybe theres a decent demographic that the majority of their games dont tap into? Sacrolige i know but maybe we can get some more experimentation and 10do can finally catch up w the times. More vast open worlds would be cool. Party chat would be cool. Obviously if they wanna skip loot boxes thatd also be cool :)

BotW is one of the best, if not the best, open world game. However, I'm currently becoming fatigued by everything having to be open world.

Linear games can be great as well, not everything has to be open world!



tag:"reviews only matter for the real hardcore gamer"

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The_Liquid_Laser said:

Slownenberg said:

Can we get a quarterly chart for Mario sales to compare?

That's a reasonable request.  Here are both charts.  

Super Mario Odyssey quarterly sales (in millions)

2017 2018 2019 2020
March 31 1.34 0.68 0.82
June 30 0.76 0.5
Sept 30 1 0.44
Dec 31 9.07 1.59 1.21

The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild quarterly sales (in millions)

2017 2018 2019 2020
March 31 2.76 1.78 1.09 1.07
June 30 1.16 0.84 0.84
Sept 30 0.78 0.96 0.93
Dec 31 2 1.4 1.8

Looks like both games had good legs in 2018, but Zelda's legs kept going after that.  I've gotta say, even though I predicted Zelda would have better legs, both games are selling better than I expected.  It will be interesting to see how far both games go in the end.

Thanks for putting this together. Both games have had a fantastic start to 2020 so far.

BotW sold more but Mario Odyssey actually increase quite a bit from last year.



tag:"reviews only matter for the real hardcore gamer"

brute said:
CarcharodonKraz said:
Cant help but think theres a correlation between how well its doing and how its one of the few AAA titles that nintendo has incorporated modern gaming conventions into. Like maybe theres a decent demographic that the majority of their games dont tap into? Sacrolige i know but maybe we can get some more experimentation and 10do can finally catch up w the times. More vast open worlds would be cool. Party chat would be cool. Obviously if they wanna skip loot boxes thatd also be cool :)

BotW is one of the best, if not the best, open world game. However, I'm currently becoming fatigued by everything having to be open world.

Linear games can be great as well, not everything has to be open world!

Yeah I feel ya. Or I would if I played my ps4 more. The best AAA games I play tend to be open world, but by all means if we could get a linear game as good as, say, the last of us or final fantasy 7 remake or the resident evil 2 remake id be pumped. But I cant think of a linear game on the switch of that caliber cept maybe doom and mortal kombat and u have to download those which is means u buy a license instead of a game.  I hope overwatch 2 has a full meaty on cartridge campaign. Not holding my breath though.



This would have been inconceivable a decade ago and was even more inconceivable when Odyssey became the sales beast it is.

Nintendo's brands are mostly reaching new highs on Switch. But this leap is pretty jaw dropping.



Nuvendil said:

This would have been inconceivable a decade ago and was even more inconceivable when Odyssey became the sales beast it is.

Nintendo's brands are mostly reaching new highs on Switch. But this leap is pretty jaw dropping.

Is not. It's because of franchise roots. What's Legend of Zelda's roots? It's not puzzling elements and anime lore. All Aonuma misdirection, began when he is charged, is turned The Legend of Zelda more puzzled and story-driven and less the original recipe: one mix of arcade and PC games. The first Zelda game is a prototype of the modern open-world: You could do dungeons out of order and explore all world without guidance ( you can forget the sword in fist cavern). All the illusion of freedom was reinserted in the Breath of the Wild, because of the director: Hidemaro Fujibayashi.  Aonuma never finished the first game, but Fujibayashi is a fan of the first game. The prototype for Breath of the Wild resembles the original Zelda. It's a correction and a modernization: take back all keystone of the old Zeldas(the majority of the first Zelda) mixed with the good takes of new PC games( Terraria, Minecraft, for instance). The result of this correction: sales increased sharply. The sales of the series were in decline until Breath of the Wild.

Last edited by Agente42 - on 11 May 2020

Agente42 said:
Nuvendil said:

This would have been inconceivable a decade ago and was even more inconceivable when Odyssey became the sales beast it is.

Nintendo's brands are mostly reaching new highs on Switch. But this leap is pretty jaw dropping.

Is not. It's because of franchise roots. What's Legend of Zelda's roots? It's not puzzling elements and anime lore. All Aonuma misdirection, began when he is charged, is turned The Legend of Zelda more puzzled and story-driven and less the original recipe: one mix of arcade and PC games. The first Zelda game is a prototype of the modern open-world: You could do dungeons out of order and explore all world without guidance ( you can forget the sword in fist cavern). All the illusion of freedom was reinserted in the Breath of the Wild, because of the director: Hidemaro Fujibayashi.  Aonuma never finished the first game, but Fujibayashi is a fan of the first game. The prototype for Breath of the Wild resembles the original Zelda. It's a correction and a modernization: take back all keystone of the old Zeldas(the majority of the first Zelda) mixed with the good takes of modern PC open worlds. The result of this correction: sales increased sharply. The sales of the series were in decline until Breath of the Wild.

You do realize the previous record holder was Twilight Princess, directed by Aonuma?  And this transition towards more puzzle elements and a less open world design predated his time.  Ocarina of Time was the template for every Zelda that came after.  Changes to the formula made to facilitate the transition to 3D during an era of extremely limited 3D hardware are the foundations of the 3D Zelda formula from OoT to SS.  Not Aonuma's insidious influence.  

Also, you are aware that Zelda as a series was a 4 to 7 mil series more or less from day one.  The decline you speak of was not much of one.  Wind Waker out sold Majora's Mask and near matched Link to the Past, for example.  

Also the whole "going back to its roots thing" is an interesting perspective but there's far, FAR more to it than that, design wise.  And the heavy puzzle element is still there but in a very different way.  

Also, all that aside, even if we go with your "Zelda needed to be fixed!" mantra and give credit nearly entirely to this "return to its roots" explanation, this is still incredibly shocking.  The original Zelda couldn't even outsell Super Mario Bros 2, much less Super Mario Bros 1 or 3.  And no other Zelda came close to matching contemporaneous Mario games either.  For Zelda to beat the best selling 3D Mario game of all time and blow past 15 mil, more than doubling the sales of previous top sellers in the series, is an incredible leap.  The Zelda brand is far stronger than it has ever been, far eclipsing Twilight Princess, Ocarina of Time, or even the original Legend of Zelda.  There's no comparison.

So no, can't agree with much of anything you posted as it is mostly demonstrably inaccurate or oversimplified.

Last edited by Nuvendil - on 11 May 2020