Shuntaro Furukawa, President of Nintendo, addressed the investors in their investor meeting that is held every 6 months. The fiscal year of Nintendo ends on March 31, so it was time to look back on their year in business. And what was super interesting: do we have a release date for Animal Crossing?
The Switch sold 16,95 million units
They showed that the Nintendo Switch is still doing well: they sold 16,95 million units from April 1 2018 until March 31 2019 and just missed its annual sales target of 17 million (a figure that the company had revised down from 20 million last quarter). Still, an impressive number and it means they have surpassed the Nintendo 64 in lifetime sales. There are some differences in region sales, but combined, the sales graph looks like this.
For what game did people buy the Switch?
What I thought was a fun peek was this: these are the titles people play on the first day after buying their Switch during the period of January/ March 2019. So, the game they most likely bought the device for in the first quarter of the year. This is what Shuntaro told the investors:
When Super Smash Bros. Ultimate was first released, it was played by people within a wide age range, and particularly by men in their 20s to early 30s. As time has passed, however, the range of consumers playing this game has widened even further. Our data shows that the range of consumers showing interest in this game is also increasing, which means the title draws such a broad range of people.
Digital sales are soaring
It’s interesting to see how the Indie titles that are flocking to the Switch influence both the digital sales of games, and the number of games people have on their console. In the past, you really thought long and hard before splurging for a game. Games on the DS tended to cost anywhere between € 19,99 and € 39,99 over here in the Netherlands. So it was hardly ever an impulse buy. Now, Indie games range anywhere between let’s say € 2,99 and € 29,99 with an emphasis on the price range between € 10 and € 20. Very tempting to add more titles to your library with the digital download easily done.
As you can see in the graph above, the digital sales have soared in the past year. I know it’s an ongoing debate among gamers: buy physical or digital. In the past we have discussed the pro’s and cons on here, but I think there is no denying anymore. ( Physical all the way or Let’s go Digital! )
With so many game only available as digital games and the ease of downloading it seems a battle that physical distribution is losing.
Do we have a release date for Animal Crossing Switch?
Of course, the upcoming titles by Nintendo themselves were highlighted too. What I was eager to learn was: do we have a date for Animal Crossing Switch? I know, a lot of sites have the rumour mill going constantly about our most awaited game. But the truth of the matter is that it has been very, very quiet.
So I was relieved that they still mention 2019 as release window. But I also note with trepidation that the game still hasn’t got a more definite period mentioned. This may all change during the upcoming E3 in June 2019 though. Pokémon Sword and Shield have a Winter 2019 date, and I can’t believe they would release two major titles in the same months. Let’s just hope Animal Crossing will arrive sooner instead of later. After all, notice the title of the slide? Fiscal Year? Heaven forbid that they mean release in the Fiscal Year 2019 because that could also mean Q1-2020!