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Forums - Nintendo Discussion - Best year for a Nintendo system?

2017 was a great year!

Pocky Lover Boy! 

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I'll go old school and say 1987 on the NES (in North America), which claims a number of great games and the debuts of many video game franchises:

Kid Icarus
Legend of Zelda
Mike Tyson's Punch-Out
Mega Man
Double Dribble
Rad Racer
Goonies II
Rush'n Attack
Ikari Warriors


Still 1998 because Ocarina of Time and Link’s Awakening DX came out. A year with a Zelda game is always a contender for me by default, let alone one where two of my all-time favorites released. Speaking more generally, 1998 is the year when many games released that wound up being favorites to this day.

But yeah, 2017 was pretty great, definitely the best in a very, very long time.

For me it's 2004

Pikmin 2
Metroid Prime 2
Paper Mario TTYD
Donkey Kong Jungle Beat (such an underrated game)
WarioWare Inc.
Tales of Symphonia
Mario Power Tennis (seriously the last good Mario Sports game)
Baten Kaitos

An underrated era of Nintendo for sure

I'll go for when the Switch came out. Nintendo reinvented itself in 2017 and they're having a bit of a renaissance right now.

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The correct answer is 2017 for the Switch. I'm also partial to 2013 for 3DS.

Nobody mentioning the DS's 2005 yet? Before 2005 everybody thought PSP was going to crush the DS. And then the flood of games came. So many of the DS's games from 2005 were girl friendly. Really helped push sales of that system through the roof. 

DS Mario Kart DS
Nintendo, 2005
74 Reviews
DS Castlevania: Dawn of Sorrow
Konami, 2005
71 Reviews
DS Advance Wars: Dual Strike
Intelligent Systems/Nintendo, 2005
61 Reviews
DS Meteos
Q Entertainment/Bandai, 2005
63 Reviews
DS Kirby: Canvas Curse
HAL Labs/Nintendo, 2005
61 Reviews
DS Animal Crossing: Wild World
Nintendo, 2005
66 Reviews
DS Mario & Luigi: Partners in Time
Alphadream Corporation/Nintendo, 2005
55 Reviews
DS Nintendogs: Lab & Friends
Nintendo, 2005
76 Reviews
DS Nintendogs: Dachshund & Friends
Nintendo, 2005
75 Reviews
DS Nintendogs: Chihuahua & Friends
Nintendo, 2005
75 Reviews
DS Tony Hawk's American Sk8land
Vicarious Visions/Activision, 2005
39 Reviews
DS Sonic Rush
Dimps Corporation/Sega, 2005
55 Reviews
DS Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney
Capcom, 2005
64 Reviews
DS WarioWare: Touched!
Intelligent Systems/Nintendo, 2005
63 Reviews
DS Trauma Center: Under the Knife
ITL/Atlus, 2005
60 Reviews

No love for the SNES's debut year of 1991? That year the SNES got Super Mario World, F-Zero, Gradius III, Pilotwings, SimCity, and Super R-Type at launch, as well as Final Fantasy IV, UN Squadron, Super Castlevania IV, Final Fight, Actraiser, and Super Ghouls & Ghosts. And that was in less than five months of availability. If we count the first 12 months from launch, the list would also include A Link to the Past, Contra III, Super Adventure Island, and Street Fighter II.


In accordance to the VGC forum rules, §8.5, I hereby exercise my right to demand to be left alone regarding the subject of the effects of the pandemic on video game sales (i.e., "COVID bump").

2017 for Switch is my #2, but where I bought 7 Switch games in 2017, I bought 12 Wii games in 2010, so while both have stellar quality, quantity gives 2010 the win for me. 

BOTW tops anything in 2010 granted, but Mario Galaxy 2 is no slouch, and I'll gladly pit the games I listed in the OP vs Mario Odyssey, Splatoon 2, Xenoblade 2, Kingdom Battle, Doom, and Yooka Laylee. (The games I bought in 2017)

Bet with Liquidlaser: I say PS5 and Xbox Series will sell more than 56 million combined by the end of 2023.

Objectively speaking: Fiscal Year 2009

This applies to both handheld and home console.

This is also a sales data website. While a year for new releases can be a good thing. Another good year is one of community building and effectively marketing a library for brand new gamers. Also, getting a wide variety of new experiences on top of those killer games.

Fiscal year 2009 was one such year for Nintendo on both home console and handheld front, when Nintendo sold 26 million Wiis, and 31 million DSs - 57 million units of hardware in a year, the most successful any hardware company has been ever, and it’s not even close.

This is when Nintendo auctioned change in their media strategy adding the Nintendo Channel to the Wii which would host Nintendo Direct-like content, treehouse content (interviews and such), as well as most of the sort of media you see on Nintendo’s youtube channel today. This is the year many were introduced to niche titles on this channel such as Little King Story and a number of others across both platforms.

Nintendo released monster hitters like Mario Kart 8, Smash Bros Brawl, Pokémon Platinum. Some heavies like Animal crossing City Folk, Super Sluggers, and Kirby Super Star Ultra. Some of your usual niche suspects like Advance Wars, Fire Emblem, Castlevania, Harvest Moon/Story of Seasons, and SimCity.

But then a ton of really interesting niche titles: World of Goo, Rune Factory Frontier, Disaster Day if Crisis, Rhythm Heaven, Fossil Fighters, My Life as a King, they also began expanding to non-gaming applications with eBooks BEFORE they became a popular thing on other platforms, cooking guides, and various other useful things.

The Virtual Console went nuts on RPGs with a Street Gangs/River City Ransoms, Secret of Mana, Mario RPG, Ogre Battle, all the original Phantasy Star games and continued that to 2011. Sega Master System, Commodore 64, and Arcade were all added to VC.

On further review.

Fiscal Year 2009 is the clear winner for best year on a Nintendo console, mostly on the Wii, but DS ties heavily into this too as Nintendo began to really synergize its marketing strategy between the two.

Not to mention Nintendo consoles sold 205 million retail software units on Wii, and 197 million on DS for a total of over 400 million sales of retail software that year.

Last edited by Jumpin - on 28 June 2019

I describe myself as a little dose of toxic masculinity.

2017 was a great year but how can I forget 1998?

In 1998 have seen the light:

- Half-Life
- Zelda: Ocarina of Time
- Banjo Kazooie
- F-Zero X
- Castlevania Symphony of the Night (or it was 1997?)
- Final Fantasy Tactics
- Resident Evil 2
- Tekken 3
- Panzer Dragoon Saga
- Radiant Silvergun
- Xenogears
- Parasite Eve
- Star Ocean 2nd Story
- Suikoden 2
- Metal Gear Solid
- Spyro the Dragon
- MediEvil
- Crash Bandicoot Warped
- Sonic Adventure
- Pokemon Yellow
- Wario Land 2