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Forums - Sales Discussion - Consoles That You Felt Like Sold More or Less Than They Actually did

I'm wondering based on your guys life experiences and perspectives, which consoles did you feel like were more popular than they actually were or less popular than they actually were?

When it comes to consoles that I felt like were more popular than they actually were:

Gamecube:I felt like the Gamecube felt way more popular than it actually was, I see many people around my circle and even the internet talk about the Gamecube and how much they loved it but at the time it was considered a pretty big sales failures. I think a big reason why I probably felt like this was cause I was 5 years old when I first got the GC in 2005, so naturally my social group would be the extremely younger audience the Gamecube was appealing to the most that gen so amongst by social circle closest to me, the Gamecube was probably relatively popular, but I'm sure if I were to be with the older crowd of teenagers and adults at the time, the Gamecube would've felt very unpopular and a joke of a console to that demographic, which was the biggest demographic in gaming at the time.

Also Idk if this is true or not and it's hard to tell with no real numbers, but I felt like the GC over the years as of recent well after it discontinued has sort of seen a bit of a resurgance in interest again, as I think many adults who missed out on the Gamecube are looking back at the console more fondly and has been getting more hype within the retro community, and I'm sure the resurgance of Nintendo gamers coming out of the Wii/Switch generation is really generating more interest in the GC well after its discontinuation, which is probably why I felt like the console was more popular than it actually was.

Wii: Even by how popular the Wii was selling 101 Million, it surprised me that it's only the 7th bestselling console in history when the Wii in its prime felt like a hype phenomenom like I've never seen with a console. It truly felt like everyone had one, and so may non-gamers too like grandmoms which makes me surprised that 6 other consoles still managed to outsell it. Even today nearly 2 decades after its launch everyone still talks about the Wii, post memes about it.

I guess it probably was sold less than I pictured because while the Wii in its prime was huge, it had a relatively short prime. By 2010 Microsoft & Sony already had their answers with the Wii with the PS Move & Kinect which at the time may have been seen as more impressive tech, so 360/PS3 owners had no reason to buy a Wii now and neither did more casual consumers since the main selling point of the Wii was already replicated. I felt like the Wii later in its life also began to look more and more like a passing fad and once you got over the motion controls it wasn't that impressive of a system, it was underpowered, 3rd party support was mediocre and Nintendo after 2010 had very little impressive software for it to keep people engaged and excited about the Wii which is why sales fell off a cliff quickly after its prime. With the other consoles ahead of the Wii, they kept getting compelling software for years longer and they weren't carried as much by a gimmick considered a fad.

Also, I probably felt like the Wii sold more than it did because in I live in the U.S where the Wii was a huge success where it was the 4th bestselling console in U.S history & 3rd among home consoles (Until the Switch). However, the Wii wasn't as strong in other regions. The Wii did successful in Europe but no where close to the other top consoles in that region while in Japan it wasn't even big over there, mainly cause Japan has moved away from dedicated home consoles for the most part, so the Wii doesn't have that same advantage like other handhelds ahead of the Wii had.

I'll expand on this list a little bit later...

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Xbox outselling the GC and the Saturn only selling 10m don't sit right with me.

The Wii is another case where it *should* have been bigger (and almost everyone in this forum expected it to be except for a few 'fad' flame posts) but it just inexplicably died after 2010.






Xbox felt like it sold more than it did due to the impact that Halo had.

PSP felt like it sold less, because of how much more the DS sold and its lack of many really industry-shaking games.

Everyone at my small elementary school had the N64, I didn't know anyone at my school or on my block that had the PS1.

Funnily enough, when I was in elementary or middle school, I would've thought the N64/PS1 and the GameCube/PS2 were much more nearer in terms of results because most of my friends were playing on Nintendo systems, even teenagers and such.

Utterly surprised at the OG Xbox numbers since I only witnessed it's existence once around my circles.

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I'm always surprised to hear the GBA sold 80+ million units. It felt like it was only out for 2 years before being discontinued in favor of the DS.

The world belongs to you-Pan America

It’ll never not blow me away knowing that N64 only sold 36mil. And the Xbox 360 outsold the Wii in the United States???

It’ll always be surprising how little Sega actually sold while they were in the console business.

Sega Master System - 13 million
Sega Genesis - 30 million
Sega Saturn - 9 million
Sega Dreamcast - 9 million

So many speak so fondly of Sega’s time in the console space, and for good reason, but it’s surprising to see how many consoles they actually sold during that time.

Genesis: It blows my mind that it didn't crack 40 million units.
SNES: It feels like it hit 55-60 million.
N64: It seemed popular enough to where it should've cracked 40 million.
GameCube: I knew plenty of people growing up who had one. I would've figured 30 million or more globally.
Xbox: Again, Halo's popularity and knowing several people who had one I would've thought 30 million or more.
PSP: It feels like it couldn't have gotten over 65-70 million. I only ever met 2 people who I knew had one.
Wii: It felt like it was everywhere, I would've guessed 110 million or more instead of finishing around 101 million.
Xbox 360: USA bias here, where it was super successful. I wouldn't've have been surprised if the console cracked 100 million worldwide, but it obviously fell well short of that.
Wii U: Even with the reports online of it flopping, I didn't have to look far to know people who had one.

Lifetime Sales Predictions 

Switch: 161 million (was 73 million, then 96 million, then 113 million, then 125 million, then 144 million, then 151 million, then 156 million)

PS5: 115 million (was 105 million) Xbox Series S/X: 48 million (was 60 million, then 67 million, then 57 million)

PS4: 120 mil (was 100 then 130 million, then 122 million) Xbox One: 51 mil (was 50 then 55 mil)

3DS: 75.5 mil (was 73, then 77 million)

"Let go your earthly tether, enter the void, empty and become wind." - Guru Laghima

In school there was a pretty good balance between N64 owners and PS1 owners. So I didn't really realize how much more the PS1 sold.

After that generation, we had the internet, so I had a better idea of what things were selling how much.