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Forums - Sales Discussion - Sony prioritizing US audience for PS5 reveal because Japan is losing interest

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What do you think

people already know this 36 47.37%
 
I don't believe what he said 8 10.53%
 
There is still hope for Japanese market 13 17.11%
 
It's not relevant does no... 14 18.42%
 
Banzai Nippon 5 6.58%
 
Total:76
padib said:
hinch said:

Well since they don't have PSVita competing for the lions share as well. Sales for Switch will be up as it is a combination device (home console and portable). I would just say it will be a small decline from last gen as it seems to be trending.

Also don't forget that we might have more SE games which can push console numbers up since they've mostly switched to UE4/5 for game development.

Could be, but gamers found a home for DQ in Nintendo consoles. In general, I haven't seen FF really make a big difference in the success of PS in japan like it once did.

I personally wouldn't bet too much on SE. Rather if I were Sony, I would get MH exclusive again, among other franchises that are popular in Japan.

Hmm I don't think MH did that well on home PS3, there was one exclusive on there iirc that did okay.

FF and Kingdom Hearts seem to do decently there and Resident Evil. KHIII/XV did 1 million LTD, which is very good for a non Nintendo game. Monster Hunter World of PS4 did 0.84 which is decent as well.

There is a market for home consoles in Japan its just smaller than before.



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hinch said:

Hmm I don't think MH did that well on home PS3, there was one exclusive on there iirc that did okay.

FF and Kingdom Hearts seem to do decently there and Resident Evil. KHIII/XV did 1 million LTD, which is very good for a non Nintendo game. Monster Hunter World of PS4 did 0.84 which is decent as well.

There is a market for home consoles in Japan its just smaller than before.

You have a point about MH on consoles. What about Souls-like, they seem quite popular. Do we know how fared the follow-ups to those on the top 10 list posted earlier?

@noshten. Do you by any chance have an updated chart of 3rd party sales (non-switch), basically an update to the first chart you posted?



The only thing I can find is Dark Souls 3 - 313k from Aug 2016. Sold 500k according to Wiki - in Japan and Asia.

Apparently supposed to be quite popular there. Call of Duty and Battlefield series pulls in respectable numbers as well. Like 300k+



Interesting. noshten's post puts it at 400k, I just would've liked to see a more up to date version of the chart.



Well, it is true that the home console market isn't what it used to be in Japan, for reasons that are not entirely clear (probably a combination of social & economic factors and an increased focus on Western audiences for AAA software development). It had actually peaked in Gen 5, with Gen 6 being down slightly (though that was almost entirely on Sega's end). The last "pure" home console to sell over 15M units was the PS2. While the Wii was Nintendo's best-selling home console ever in the U.S. and Europe, in Japan it fell well short of both the NES and SNES.

PlayStation has also suffered a lot. As we can see, the PS3 didn't even sell half of what the PS2 did. The PS4 is tracking to sell slightly less than the PS3, even though nearly everywhere else the PS4 has already far outsold the PS3.

Only three games have sold over a million copies on the PS4 to date: Monster Hunter World, Dragon Quest XI, and Final Fantasy XV (FF7R is next behind them at 919k sold so far, and it is followed by Kingdom Hearts III at 861k). Outside of a few big-name Japanese franchises, many of which have declined in popularity in their home country, there aren't that many big draws on PlayStation anymore for Japanese audiences. And almost all the most popular games on the PS4 are third-party titles. The best selling first-party PS4 title in Japan is Knack(!), with only 400k copies sold, which puts it at #16 among all PS4 games.

But the Switch is different. It's not a pure home console. It's a hybrid. That handheld aspect is almost certainly the reason why it's been doing well. While it's been selling more slowly than the 3DS, that's almost certainly attributable to being more expensive than the 3DS, and FWIW the gap between the two is shrinking (the 3DS was relatively front-loaded, while the Switch is much less so). Its games have been selling very well. It already has ten million-sellers. The new Animal Crossing is already one of the best-selling games ever in Japan, and has already outsold every home console title except Super Mario Bros. And the Switch's best-selling games are almost all first-party titles. The only million-seller that isn't a Nintendo title is Minecraft at 1.4M sold, and it's followed by the Switch port of Dragon Quest XI, which has so far sold about 523k copies.

For whatever reason, Japanese gamers just don't care as much for conventional consoles as they used to (they still like handhelds, though), and as long at that remains the case, PlayStation will not be as relevant in Japan as they once were. That will likely further encourage Sony to focus more on North America and Europe, leaving third parties to provide games that still do decently in Japan.



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Shadow1980 said:

Well, it is true that the home console market isn't what it used to be in Japan, for reasons that are not entirely clear (probably a combination of social & economic factors and an increased focus on Western audiences for AAA software development). It had actually peaked in Gen 5, with Gen 6 being down slightly (though that was almost entirely on Sega's end). The last "pure" home console to sell over 15M units was the PS2. While the Wii was Nintendo's best-selling home console ever in the U.S. and Europe, in Japan it fell well short of both the NES and SNES.

PlayStation has also suffered a lot. As we can see, the PS3 didn't even sell half of what the PS2 did. The PS4 is tracking to sell slightly less than the PS3, even though nearly everywhere else the PS4 has already far outsold the PS3.

Only three games have sold over a million copies on the PS4 to date: Monster Hunter World, Dragon Quest XI, and Final Fantasy XV (FF7R is next behind them at 919k sold so far, and it is followed by Kingdom Hearts III at 861k). Outside of a few big-name Japanese franchises, many of which have declined in popularity in their home country, there aren't that many big draws on PlayStation anymore for Japanese audiences. And almost all the most popular games on the PS4 are third-party titles. The best selling first-party PS4 title in Japan is Knack(!), with only 400k copies sold, which puts it at #16 among all PS4 games.

But the Switch is different. It's not a pure home console. It's a hybrid. That handheld aspect is almost certainly the reason why it's been doing well. While it's been selling more slowly than the 3DS, that's almost certainly attributable to being more expensive than the 3DS, and FWIW the gap between the two is shrinking (the 3DS was relatively front-loaded, while the Switch is much less so). Its games have been selling very well. It already has ten million-sellers. The new Animal Crossing is already one of the best-selling games ever in Japan, and has already outsold every home console title except Super Mario Bros. And the Switch's best-selling games are almost all first-party titles. The only million-seller that isn't a Nintendo title is Minecraft at 1.4M sold, and it's followed by the Switch port of Dragon Quest XI, which has so far sold about 523k copies.

For whatever reason, Japanese gamers just don't care as much for conventional consoles as they used to (they still like handhelds, though), and as long at that remains the case, PlayStation will not be as relevant in Japan as they once were. That will likely further encourage Sony to focus more on North America and Europe, leaving third parties to provide games that still do decently in Japan.

I knew we could count on you to bring good data to support the discussion. And as we said, there isn't a definitive conclusion on why it is declining, but traditional/table consoles have been in decline in Japan for a long time.



duduspace11 "Well, since we are estimating costs, Pokemon Red/Blue did cost Nintendo about $50m to make back in 1996"

http://gamrconnect.vgchartz.com/post.php?id=8808363

Mr Puggsly: "Hehe, I said good profit. You said big profit. Frankly, not losing money is what I meant by good. Don't get hung up on semantics"

http://gamrconnect.vgchartz.com/post.php?id=9008994

Azzanation: "PS5 wouldn't sold out at launch without scalpers."

padib said:
hinch said:

Hmm I don't think MH did that well on home PS3, there was one exclusive on there iirc that did okay.

FF and Kingdom Hearts seem to do decently there and Resident Evil. KHIII/XV did 1 million LTD, which is very good for a non Nintendo game. Monster Hunter World of PS4 did 0.84 which is decent as well.

There is a market for home consoles in Japan its just smaller than before.

You have a point about MH on consoles. What about Souls-like, they seem quite popular. Do we know how fared the follow-ups to those on the top 10 list posted earlier?

@noshten. Do you by any chance have an updated chart of 3rd party sales (non-switch), basically an update to the first chart you posted?

For the PS4, I think I posted it in the Famitsu thread broken down by publisher

Most Japanese 3rd Party publishers are down more than 30% in terms of physical sales during the transition from PS3/PSV -> PS4.

The transition hurt companies that had AA titles, most of those saw decline going to PS4 only. So digital isn't really making up the difference in total numbers but it's more profitable for the likes of Capcom and Square who saw growth during this period. 

Lifetime sales of Switch in Japan will be at 25-35M. Nintendo hasn't even lowered the price of the base Switch 3 years into its life... the 3DS they had to slash 30% off to save it during it's the first year... People forget that 3DS wasnt off to a great start when it retailed at 25,000 yen and Nintendo cut the price to 17,000 during its first year. Switch is still 29,000 yen in Japan, right now you are again paying premium from scalpers if you don't want to rely on lotteries. 

Japan continues to be a price-sensitive market - so as soon as they do, once again they will have supply problems. This is the same reason why PS5 will struggle if it's 40,000 yen.

At the moment Nintendo could ship 100K per week at the same price as launch. And this is happening in the summer when generally we haven't seen such sales since forever.. What happens if they announce a big DLC for Animal Crossing to coincide with Obon. 

During 2012 when Animal Crossing New Leaf launched, 3DS achieved 5.5M units, at this point of the year the 3DS was at 1.8M units, right now the Switch is at 2.3M and demand isn't slowing down. That was 3DS's best year on the market. Right now with 6 Months to go:

Animal Crossing: New Horizon = Animal Crossing: New Leaf + New Super Mario Bros. 2 + 600K

Top 10 3DS 2012:

  1. Animal Crossing: New Leaf - 2.286.977
  2. New Super Mario Bros. 2 - 1.780.493
  3. Dragon Quest Monsters: Terry no Wonderland 3D - 899.410
  4. Mario Kart 7 - 822.542
  5. Monster Hunter 3 Ultimate - 776.171 
  6. Super Mario 3D Land - 738.109
  7. Fire Emblem: Awakening - 453.672
  8. Paper Mario: Sticker Star - 391.078
  9. Taiko no Tatsujin - 352.023
  10. Run For Money Tousouchuu - 351.523

TOTAL: 8.851.998

TOP 10 Switch Famitsu 2020:

  1. Animal Crossing: New Horizons(2020) - 4.685.419 
  2. Pokemon Sword / Shield - 619.825
  3. Ring Fit Adventure - 460.920
  4. Mario Kart 8 Deluxe - 306.835
  5. Smash Ultimate - 258.020
  6. Pokemon Mystery Dungeon: Rescue Team DX(2020) - 255.177
  7. Minecraft - 253.911
  8. Dr. Kawashima's Brain Training for Nintendo Switch - 205.003
  9. Super Mario Party - 193.210
  10. Splatoon 2 - 184.664

TOTAL: 7.422.984

New Horizon's domination is unprecedented, by the end of the year the game could very well be at 7M physical sales minimum. No company in Japan can compete with this. When Nintendo release a Christmas themed Animal Crossing Bundle to go with their Winter Themed expansion they'd sell out even without lowering the price... This year is probably heading for 6M in Japan if Nintendo can supply that much. 



Shadow1980 said:

Good post :) I agree

For Nintendo concentrating all their franchises into one device has helped, that device also being good is the underplayed aspect. The Switch is used by the majority of users both portably and docked that proves that this was the correct concept. But the main thing that sold the 3DS and now Switch is Nintendo's output. You cannot play Animal Crossing, Splatoon, Smash, Mario Kart, Zelda, Pokemon, Mario, Ring Fit on anything else... and that for Japanese audience at this price is enough to stop the decline. 

Sony has the pulse of Western Market with its output but Spiderman or God of War will never sell over 1M physical in Japan because they are not on the Switch.  In the end of the day Sony hasn't really been a Japanese managed company for a while and their gaming output and global strategy is focused on what has made it the dominant platform in the West and that's just outplaying Microsoft for the past few years.  

I'm sure when streaming becomes profitable for Sony they will reenter the portable space with their AAA efforts in Japan but they would still be a niche, because they are Western focus by design. 

hinch said:

The only thing I can find is Dark Souls 3 - 313k from Aug 2016. Sold 500k according to Wiki - in Japan and Asia.

Apparently supposed to be quite popular there. Call of Duty and Battlefield series pulls in respectable numbers as well. Like 300k+

What I'm quoting is Physical Sales, Wiki could mention official shipped+digital numbers from official news, which is different. When discussing such numbers I'm looking at Famitsu numbers, since those are the most complete numbers we have for the vast majority of titles. 

Japan is slower to adopt digital and for the most Japanese 3rd Party titles post-launch also competes with 2nd hand sales. This is one of the reasons most Nintendo games never go on sale, while an over-shipped game like FFXV never sells any additional copies in Japan(you can buy it 2nd hand for Y500). Nintendo rarely over ships games, while some publishers do but it's retailers that actually eat the loss. 

While in the West over 50% of people are buying games digitally in Japan even for the PS4 that percent is at 30% max for most titles. 

Last edited by noshten - on 10 June 2020

noshten said:
Shadow1980 said:

Good post :) I agree

For Nintendo concentrating all their franchises into one device has helped, that device also being good is the underplayed aspect. The Switch is used by the majority of users both portably and docked that proves that this was the correct concept. But the main thing that sold the 3DS and now Switch is Nintendo's output. You cannot play Animal Crossing, Splatoon, Smash, Mario Kart, Zelda, Pokemon, Mario, Ring Fit on anything else... and that for Japanese audience at this price is enough to stop the decline. 

Sony has the pulse of Western Market with its output but Spiderman or God of War will never sell over 1M physical in Japan because they are not on the Switch.  In the end of the day Sony hasn't really been a Japanese managed company for a while and their gaming output and global strategy is focused on what has made it the dominant platform in the West and that's just outplaying Microsoft for the past few years.  

I'm sure when streaming becomes profitable for Sony they will reenter the portable space with their AAA efforts in Japan but they would still be a niche, because they are Western focus by design. 

Do we have any idea on how well the streaming RE7 and couple other games done in Switch in Japan?



duduspace11 "Well, since we are estimating costs, Pokemon Red/Blue did cost Nintendo about $50m to make back in 1996"

http://gamrconnect.vgchartz.com/post.php?id=8808363

Mr Puggsly: "Hehe, I said good profit. You said big profit. Frankly, not losing money is what I meant by good. Don't get hung up on semantics"

http://gamrconnect.vgchartz.com/post.php?id=9008994

Azzanation: "PS5 wouldn't sold out at launch without scalpers."

hinch said:
Pyro as Bill said:
The narrative over the past few years of 'Sony abandoned HH and Nintendo abandoned home consoles which brought balance to the Force and made everyone happy' is powerful but false.

The OG/Lite split proves that Japanese gamers would rather have the model that hooks up to the TV and if they were the same price, the split would favour the OG even more.

Until now, it's generally been accepted that nothing could beat a Nintendo handheld, especially in Japan. And yet even though it's $100 cheaper, more portable with longer battery life and has the exact same games, the Lite is getting it's arse kicked.

Uh Wii U sales were like 3.3m in 2016 and they stopped tracking.

Other strictly home consoles were/and are in a decline in Japan.

Look at sales figures before calling out people for nonsense.

Dude,.... Mate,...... Where did the Wii u sell well? If you wanna sound credible, don't use Wii u as a standard for sales. It just wasn't appealing while switch is so damn appealing



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