“Software sells hardware” has been Nintendo’s mantra for nearly 30 years. And, when you consistently make fun, unique, exclusive games featuring the likes of Mario, Link, Donkey Kong and Pokémon, you can sell a lot of hardware! The most recent example of this phenomenon is Nintendo 3DS, which has become the eighth Nintendo system to sell at least 15 million units in the United States, according to Nintendo’s internal sales figures. Since its U.S. debut on March 27, 2011, Nintendo has supported the system with a massive lineup of AAA games such as Super Mario 3D Land, Pokémon X, Pokémon Y, Mario Kart 7 and Super Smash Bros. for Nintendo 3DS. Each of these titles has a Metascore of 85 or higher and has sold more than 2 million total units in the United States alone.
Despite being on the market for more than 50 months in the United States, the Nintendo 3DS system continues to resonate with gaming audiences and bring new players into the Nintendo hand-held experience. Through the first six months of 2015, sales of Nintendo 3DS hardware have increased by more than 50 percent over sales in the same period in 2014. Much of this growth can be attributed to New Nintendo 3DS XL, the latest addition to the Nintendo 3DS family, which launched on Feb. 13 and introduced several new features such as face-tracking 3D, new controls and amiibo support.
“While crossing 15 million units is certainly a significant milestone, we are equally excited about the new momentum we’ve created in 2015 thanks to new hardware and an unrivaled library of software,” said Scott Moffitt, Nintendo of America’s Executive Vice President of Sales & Marketing. “With more great games on the way and a hardware system for every type of gamer, 2015 is shaping up to be one of the stronger years yet for Nintendo 3DS in the United States.”
Since the Nintendo Entertainment System first debuted in the U.S. in the fall of 1985, nearly 270 million units of Nintendo hardware have been sold in the United States. This includes nearly 145 million units of hand-held hardware and nearly 125 million home console units. By surpassing 15 million units sold in the United States, Nintendo 3DS joins an elite list that includes some of the biggest names in the history of gaming, including Game Boy, Game Boy Advance and Nintendo DS, the best-selling video game system ever in the United States.