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Sales-Age Famitsu sales week 15

Woopah

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In other parts of the world mature games sell well along with games like Mario and Animal Crossing, something you can't really say for Japan generally speaking.

Sure those games come from Japan, but they sell better elsewhere. Monster Hunter is hardly a masculine game btw. MH is a teen game that has many characters looking like K-pop stars, hardly masculine stuff, lol.
Would Ghosts of Tsushima, Assains Creed: Valhalla and Call of Duty count as masculine? I can see them fitting your definition through the hints you've given.
The main reason for the PS5 and PS4's console and software's poorer performance in Japan is Sony themselves, they just realize the biggest market is the western one, and just like Microsoft have gotten into bed with all the major western development studios, even it's first party development teams are from these regions.

Japan has now become a mobile game market now and of course Nintendo and t'ts most successful consoles fit right into this template, also the Japanese like to support their own development studios and games, and even mega hits like Grand theft auto fail to sell massive numbers in the region, I don't thing it's down to the maturity of the title as Japanese studios do make more mature themed games as well, it's just he Japanese buying public just like to support Japanese consoles and games.

Nintendo are pretty much a perfect fit for this market as most of their top selling games are either first party or from Japanese developers.
Hmmmm yes and no. GTA isn't as successful in Japan as it is in the West but it is probably a million seller with digital so it's not like it didn't do well.

In general yes Nintendo is well suited to this market, but that's largely because it's games aren't targeting Japan or targeting the West but instead aiming to target all countries.
 

noshten

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Thanks ^^

Then, is Sony prioritizing shipping consoles to China?
US I get. But other than China what other market than the US is bigger than Japan? What other market would Sony prioritize?


Sony is the top selling console in bunch of European countries for the past two months, in North America they are in 2nd place with around 100K units per week for March based on outselling PS4 this month launch aligned in terms of units. In Spain we've seen that it's selling 10K per weeek - while in the UK it sold the most both February and March. So overall North America & Europe are being priortized for the shipments and the console continues to be sold out as soon as it hits the stores.

There are obvious reasons for that as the main goal is to ensure FIFA/COD/GTA audience migrates to the PS5 rather than the XSX, currently Sony is definitely in better position than Microsoft from this perspective, as both platforms are basically selling out but Sony having started scaling production well ahead of their competitor.

Sony hasn't launched PS5 in China officially it's expected to happen later in the year, this is the main reason I would personally be inclined to think a lot of the PS5 sold in Japan are actually selling on the gray market in China for a huge profit. There is a lot of very rich people in China that would pay a premium, so this is one of the reason I expect the audience in Japan to actually be smaller than the official shipment data. From my perspective possibly more than 15% of the units shipped to Japan thus far, end up being resold elsewhere. There is no other reason for PS5 software to perform so badly with over 500K audience. Also in terms of Software pushing hardware, maybe the PS5 update for Genshin Impact will be a relatively major thing for Asian markets, the issue is that Sony is probably not shipping more than 15% of WW stock of PS5's to the market, thus making it extremely difficult to compete with the Switch which is likely outselling it in most of Asia by ten to one so far this year.

The issue is something that we've talked a lot about in these threads, as Sony killed off the Vita, they made their ecosystem a lot less attractive to smaller Japanese third parties, when they scaled their marketing support for smaller Japanese games it made a lot more sense for these PSV supporters to fully focus on the Switch with the goal of being in the directs, mini-directs, cross game promotions etc. If Sony had invested the same type of effort into the Vita that it has into VR, it's possible that they could have maintained 20-30% market share in Japan competing with the Switch but the moment they exited it basically meant that PSV audience in large migrated to the Switch, now we are seeing also PS4 audience migrate towards the Switch as so far this year PlayStation ecosystem accounts for less than 5% of the physical software market. Even at the height of the DS/Wii days Nintendo platforms didn't manage more than 70% market share. So the current situation is unprecedented in the history of Japan since 1994 when PS1 launched.

If this ends up being an year where the Switch surpasses 6 million hardware sales in Japan - it will be no doubt also third party momentum that has made it possible - eBaseball(July), Hades(September), Age of Calamity, Momotaro, Sakuna(November), Among Us, Derby Stallion, Fitness Boxing 2(December), Little Nightmares 2(February), Monster Hunter Rise, Olive Town, Bravely Default 2, Apex Legends(March), Rune Factory 5(May), Baseball Spirits, SMT V, Shin Kun, Fall Guys, Monster Hunter Stories 2, Samurai Warriors 5(summer). In the past few years it was mostly first/second party & indies pushing the Switch forward, 2021 will be the first year where we really see consistent support from Japanese third parties.
And I honestly don't think it will slow down in 2022 which might end up as the Software Peak for the system. As we are only now seeing the impacts of having so many different publishers focused on your platform as the default choice.

With rest of Asia trending in a similar direction as we know that Tencent managed to sell well-over 1 million units in an year since officially launching the Switch in China. While from Media-Create we know that Taiwan/South Korea are basically mirroring Japan ever since New Horizon and Ring Fit started to dominate the charts there.
For last FY I expect that Nintendo sold between 27-30 million units. Around 11 million of the annual shipment going to North America, Japan 6 million, Europe 7 million while I estimate that at the moment East Asia represents around 4.5 million, RotW at around 1.5 million. We should find out in May but this is what I think we will see in their report.

This year they are officially launching in Thailand with a local partner and growing their presence in Taiwan. If they can hit close to 4.5 million for the last year a 100% increase YoY next year in East Asia will ensure the region overtakes Japan & Europe as the second most important market for Nintendo going forward. Obviously as a single country Japan will remain #2 but as a region Asia will become a crucial part of Nintendo's growth strategy. This will definitely positively impact third parties aligned with Nintendo and further incentives them to create more games for the system. I also think that unless some of the Chinese giants release a competing platform - we might see very strong support from Chinese developers in the future, as they eye both global and local growth.
 
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Mozza

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Would Ghosts of Tsushima, Assains Creed: Valhalla and Call of Duty count as masculine? I can see them fitting your definition through the hints you've given.

Hmmmm yes and no. GTA isn't as successful in Japan as it is in the West but it is probably a million seller with digital so it's not like it didn't do well.

In general yes Nintendo is well suited to this market, but that's largely because it's games aren't targeting Japan or targeting the West but instead aiming to target all countries.

On the whole Japanese consumers do not tend to support western consoles or games, it's always been like that.
 

Woopah

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On the whole Japanese consumers do not tend to support western consoles or games, it's always been like that.
yes that's true, but I think that's more to do with the styles of games made rather than where they are made (the Western developed Luigi's Mansion and Donkey Kong games did very well in Japan for instance, and Minecraft and Apex Legends are very popular there). If Western studios wanted to, they could make games that appealed to Japan.
 
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Mozza

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yes that's true, but I think that's more to do with the styles of games made rather than where they are made (the Western developed Luigi's Mansion and Donkey Kong games did very well in Japan for instance, and Minecraft and Apex Legends are very popular there). If Western studios wanted to, they could make games that appealed to Japan.
Of course western developers could make more Japanese orientated games, but I just do not see that happening when the western market is so lucrative for them, you do get software that appeals to all markets, but that tends to be mostly Nintendo content.
 
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KellyM

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Japanese gamers don't like mature games is what I have learned. This kinda makes sense with unmasculine culture that's taken over there.
A game being mature more a market tactic . I don't a game being Masculine or femanine has any relations to being Mature. Also, remember Japan's idea of masculinity is different the the west. I am not talking about the current generation but all the way to the beginning of the video game history. Japan's art style has always appeared more femanine to most western audience because they put different value's on it then the west's interpation. I would say the reason more games like COD or Uncharted don't do well in Japan is because they are considere the foreign games, While Nintendo's games are made by Japan and are less Gaijin and more for everyone.
 
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KellyM

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In other parts of the world mature games sell well along with games like Mario and Animal Crossing, something you can't really say for Japan generally speaking.

Sure those games come from Japan, but they sell better elsewhere. Monster Hunter is hardly a masculine game btw. MH is a teen game that has many characters looking like K-pop stars, hardly masculine stuff, lol.
His idea of masculinity and maturity is based on western interpation of the art style. FTI the Kpop look been in Japanese video games since the 16 bit days.
 

Woopah

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Of course western developers could make more Japanese orientated games, but I just do not see that happening when the western market is so lucrative for them, you do get software that appeals to all markets, but that tends to be mostly Nintendo content.
Agree with all of that. You would have thought by now that more companies would try and follow Nintendo's example and make serious investments in the "games for everyone" space.
 

Mozza

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Agree with all of that. You would have thought by now that more companies would try and follow Nintendo's example and make serious investments in the "games for everyone" space.

I do think Nintendo going for the much wider blue ocean market has paid off for them, occasionally you will get a Wii U, but on the whole it's been a good move for them.
 
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silpheed-mcd

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ComG! Orders, april 12 - 18, 2021



NSW: 15
PS4: 4
PS5: 1


ComG! / Famitsu

First week
MHW: 2410 pt / 1.350.412
MHR: 1843 pt / 1.302.132

Second week:
MHW: 332 pt / 223.274
MHR: 265 pt / 277.604

Third week:
MHW: 219 pt / 125.527
MHR: 185 pt / 194.327

Fourth week:
MHW: 84 pt / 85.322
MHR: 83 pt / ?
 
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silpheed-mcd

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RAKUTEN Hardware Orders, april 12 - 18, 2021

01/04 NSW Red/blue
02/03 NSW Lite turquoise
03/00 PS5 digital
04/01 PS5
05/07 NSW grey
06/05 NSW Lite coral
07/02 NSW Lite grey
08/06 NSW Lite yellow
09/00 Xbox Series S
10/00 PS4 black 500 g






 
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Dec 2, 2018
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The issue is something that we've talked a lot about in these threads, as Sony killed off the Vita, they made their ecosystem a lot less attractive to smaller Japanese third parties, when they scaled their marketing support for smaller Japanese games it made a lot more sense for these PSV supporters to fully focus on the Switch with the goal of being in the directs, mini-directs, cross game promotions etc. If Sony had invested the same type of effort into the Vita that it has into VR, it's possible that they could have maintained 20-30% market share in Japan competing with the Switch but the moment they exited it basically meant that PSV audience in large migrated to the Switch, now we are seeing also PS4 audience migrate towards the Switch as so far this year PlayStation ecosystem accounts for less than 5% of the physical software market. Even at the height of the DS/Wii days Nintendo platforms didn't manage more than 70% market share. So the current situation is unprecedented in the history of Japan since 1994 when PS1 launched.

If this ends up being an year where the Switch surpasses 6 million hardware sales in Japan - it will be no doubt also third party momentum that has made it possible - eBaseball(July), Hades(September), Age of Calamity, Momotaro, Sakuna(November), Among Us, Derby Stallion, Fitness Boxing 2(December), Little Nightmares 2(February), Monster Hunter Rise, Olive Town, Bravely Default 2, Apex Legends(March), Rune Factory 5(May), Baseball Spirits, SMT V, Shin Kun, Fall Guys, Monster Hunter Stories 2, Samurai Warriors 5(summer). In the past few years it was mostly first/second party & indies pushing the Switch forward, 2021 will be the first year where we really see consistent support from Japanese third parties.
And I honestly don't think it will slow down in 2022 which might end up as the Software Peak for the system. As we are only now seeing the impacts of having so many different publishers focused on your platform as the default choice.

With rest of Asia trending in a similar direction as we know that Tencent managed to sell well-over 1 million units in an year since officially launching the Switch in China. While from Media-Create we know that Taiwan/South Korea are basically mirroring Japan ever since New Horizon and Ring Fit started to dominate the charts there.
For last FY I expect that Nintendo sold between 27-30 million units. Around 11 million of the annual shipment going to North America, Japan 6 million, Europe 7 million while I estimate that at the moment East Asia represents around 4.5 million, RotW at around 1.5 million. We should find out in May but this is what I think we will see in their report.

This year they are officially launching in Thailand with a local partner and growing their presence in Taiwan. If they can hit close to 4.5 million for the last year a 100% increase YoY next year in East Asia will ensure the region overtakes Japan & Europe as the second most important market for Nintendo going forward. Obviously as a single country Japan will remain #2 but as a region Asia will become a crucial part of Nintendo's growth strategy. This will definitely positively impact third parties aligned with Nintendo and further incentives them to create more games for the system. I also think that unless some of the Chinese giants release a competing platform - we might see very strong support from Chinese developers in the future, as they eye both global and local growth.
Astute analysis. The more I read the more it seems that Sony's current leadership is severely mismanaging the East Asian market and potentially the entire developing world. If this were just about Japan that would be one thing, but as you say the shifts operative in Japan have begun to occur in the other major East Asian markets as well. Given that China is likely to see explosive growth in console penetration in coming years, Sony really can't afford to fall so far behind Nintendo there.

I think the major question is how much of this is due to portability and how much of this is due to cost. If it's the former, we might reasonably expect this phenomenon to remain unique to East Asia, which has extremely high rates of public transit usage and in particular long commutes by metro and commuter rail by middle class salarymen and students with disposable income. Perhaps you might see a shift towards the Switch in other high-transit middle income countries like Russia, but I'm not sure about poorer countries: public transit in East Asia is extremely safe from pickpockets, whereas this is not the case in high-transit developing countries like India or Egypt (or, indeed, Thailand, which also doesn't have much public transit use). I'm also curious as to why high-transit European countries don't seem to be taking to the Switch quite as readily as East Asia - it might have to do with shorter workdays and shorter commutes generally causing people to view gaming as primarily a home activity.

Japan, South Korea, and Taiwan are rich countries and cost is not particularly likely to be the main reason the Switch is selling so well there. China is poorer, though, and we might expect the Switch's lower price to play a significant role in its popularity there once the console market expands beyond the urban middle class. This means Nintendo could start to fill the "PS2 niche" that Sony filled in developing countries for a very long time - not just in China, but potentially in Latin America, the Middle East, and the Indian subcontinent a well.

If this is just an East Asian public transit phenomenon, Sony might not have many options. It could compete adequately with Nintendo if it were somehow able to create a portable PS4, but from what everyone has told me that will be very difficult to do barring some revolutionary advance in battery technology. Maybe the PS6 will switch to ARM in order to have a portable option, but that would be a major gamble for Sony since it would mean cutting off PS4/PS5 backwards compatibility and potentially ceding lots of pissed off customers in North America and Europe to Microsoft - and by then Nintendo will already be unassailably dominant in East Asian markets.

If this is a developing world issue more generally, though, who comes out on top is going to depend on which company is willing to release a budget-priced home console. Both the PS4 and the Switch are way too expensive to corner the PS2's old market in the third world. Once the chip shortage abates, though, Sony or Nintendo is going to have to make a move. For Sony the game plan is simple: release a PS4 super slim (with a disc drive!) for $100-150. Nintendo will face a hard choice, though: the only way they're going to get the Switch's price down that low is by releasing a non-portable version, since the screen and battery comprise a significant chunk of its bill of materials. But if they do that a ton of North American and European customers who aren't interested in portability will buy it instead of the hybrid Switch, tanking their profit margins.

Overall I think it's unlikely Sony will be willing to do what it takes to contest the portable market, so the Switch will continue to dominate Japan, South Korea, Taiwan, and the middle class Chinese market. On the other hand, I don't think Nintendo is willing to do what it takes to contest the budget market, so I think it's likely that Sony's eventual PS4 super slim will dominate the rest of the third world. I think they're likely to split the lower class Chinese market between them. The upper class market throughout the third world (including China) will go PlayStation.
 

noshten

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I'd be more worried about Tencent or AliBaba deciding to launch their own platforms , because that would disrupt Nintendo & Sony more in the region than Google, Microsoft, AWS ever could. Sony's current philosophy is simply misaligned from what consumers want in Asia - so unless they change this it's difficult to envision anything beyond 10% market share in the region.


There is some additional reveals that have been long speculated, Ace Attorney drops at the end of July, meaning that Capcom will have launched Rise, Village, Stories 2 and Ace Attorney in less than 6 months.


Bandai also revealed the launch date for Tales of Arise for September

 

Woopah

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Astute analysis. The more I read the more it seems that Sony's current leadership is severely mismanaging the East Asian market and potentially the entire developing world. If this were just about Japan that would be one thing, but as you say the shifts operative in Japan have begun to occur in the other major East Asian markets as well. Given that China is likely to see explosive growth in console penetration in coming years, Sony really can't afford to fall so far behind Nintendo there.

I think the major question is how much of this is due to portability and how much of this is due to cost. If it's the former, we might reasonably expect this phenomenon to remain unique to East Asia, which has extremely high rates of public transit usage and in particular long commutes by metro and commuter rail by middle class salarymen and students with disposable income. Perhaps you might see a shift towards the Switch in other high-transit middle income countries like Russia, but I'm not sure about poorer countries: public transit in East Asia is extremely safe from pickpockets, whereas this is not the case in high-transit developing countries like India or Egypt (or, indeed, Thailand, which also doesn't have much public transit use). I'm also curious as to why high-transit European countries don't seem to be taking to the Switch quite as readily as East Asia - it might have to do with shorter workdays and shorter commutes generally causing people to view gaming as primarily a home activity.

Japan, South Korea, and Taiwan are rich countries and cost is not particularly likely to be the main reason the Switch is selling so well there. China is poorer, though, and we might expect the Switch's lower price to play a significant role in its popularity there once the console market expands beyond the urban middle class. This means Nintendo could start to fill the "PS2 niche" that Sony filled in developing countries for a very long time - not just in China, but potentially in Latin America, the Middle East, and the Indian subcontinent a well.

If this is just an East Asian public transit phenomenon, Sony might not have many options. It could compete adequately with Nintendo if it were somehow able to create a portable PS4, but from what everyone has told me that will be very difficult to do barring some revolutionary advance in battery technology. Maybe the PS6 will switch to ARM in order to have a portable option, but that would be a major gamble for Sony since it would mean cutting off PS4/PS5 backwards compatibility and potentially ceding lots of pissed off customers in North America and Europe to Microsoft - and by then Nintendo will already be unassailably dominant in East Asian markets.

If this is a developing world issue more generally, though, who comes out on top is going to depend on which company is willing to release a budget-priced home console. Both the PS4 and the Switch are way too expensive to corner the PS2's old market in the third world. Once the chip shortage abates, though, Sony or Nintendo is going to have to make a move. For Sony the game plan is simple: release a PS4 super slim (with a disc drive!) for $100-150. Nintendo will face a hard choice, though: the only way they're going to get the Switch's price down that low is by releasing a non-portable version, since the screen and battery comprise a significant chunk of its bill of materials. But if they do that a ton of North American and European customers who aren't interested in portability will buy it instead of the hybrid Switch, tanking their profit margins.

Overall I think it's unlikely Sony will be willing to do what it takes to contest the portable market, so the Switch will continue to dominate Japan, South Korea, Taiwan, and the middle class Chinese market. On the other hand, I don't think Nintendo is willing to do what it takes to contest the budget market, so I think it's likely that Sony's eventual PS4 super slim will dominate the rest of the third world. I think they're likely to split the lower class Chinese market between them. The upper class market throughout the third world (including China) will go PlayStation.
I would say the one key thing you're missing in your analysis is software. In East Asia I think Nintendo can do very well in emerging markets because their first party games are very popular in the region and they'll also be getting a lot of good third party support from Japan.

Whereas I got the impression ( and I could be wrong here) that in the Middle East, North Africa and Latin America Nintendo and Japanese third parties are not that strong. Instead Western third party franchises like FIFA and COD were more important and PlayStation is the home for those franchises (FIFA is on Switch but it sucks).

So both Sony and Nintendo can do well in emerging markets, but their success will be different depending on which franchises are most important in each country.

Its the same story in continental Europe, which may explain why high-transit countries here don't take to Switch as much as you thought they might. In countries where Nintendo IP is strong (France) Switch does really well. In countries where Nintendo IP isn't that strong (Italy) PlayStation does way better.
 
Dec 2, 2018
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I would say the one key thing you're missing in your analysis is software. In East Asia I think Nintendo can do very well in emerging markets because their first party games are very popular in the region and they'll also be getting a lot of good third party support from Japan.

Whereas I got the impression ( and I could be wrong here) that in the Middle East, North Africa and Latin America Nintendo and Japanese third parties are not that strong. Instead Western third party franchises like FIFA and COD were more important and PlayStation is the home for those franchises (FIFA is on Switch but it sucks).

So both Sony and Nintendo can do well in emerging markets, but their success will be different depending on which franchises are most important in each country.

Its the same story in continental Europe, which may explain why high-transit countries here don't take to Switch as much as you thought they might. In countries where Nintendo IP is strong (France) Switch does really well. In countries where Nintendo IP isn't that strong (Italy) PlayStation does way better.
Yeah the question of software taste is a very interesting one. I think over the short term people buy the console that has the games they want to play, but over the long term people want to play the games that are on the console that they've purchased. So if you can give a market a good reason to buy your console that has nothing to do with games (i.e. portability or price), that market will gradually begin to play the games that are available on your console whether they were originally interested in them or not. This has clearly happened in Japan, which used to be Sony country but where a significant portion of Switch gamers logically have to be lapsed FF/MGS/RE fans who have started to play Zelda and Mario instead (with Monster Hunter being the franchise that bridges the gap).

You're always going to have oddball exceptions like France, which is Nintendo country for seemingly no reason amidst Sony-dominated neighbors (I personally think the French love Nintendo for the same reason they love Hayao Miyazaki), but I think at the moment the developing world outside of China is pretty close to Italy in terms of its latent gaming preferences. Competitive multiplayer games like FIFA (!!!!!!), CoD, Gran Turismo and other driving games, and in a lot of places Tekken are the major franchises (the latter is an interesting case - look up what's been happening in competitive Tekken now that the scene has discovered how popular the game is in Pakistan). But if Sony doesn't release a budget PS4 for the developing market and Nintendo does release a budget Switch you might see these countries gradually defect to Nintendo franchises.
 
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