- Oct 27, 2017
I felt this was worth its own thread, since so many of these "micro-discussions" get lost amidst all the other conversations in Media Create threads: The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild is officially the second-highest-selling Zelda game in its domestic market of Japan since Ocarina of Time (1998).
To rephrase: it has outsold every other Zelda game that has been released in the past 18 years.
Here are the facts:
- As of last week, the game has sold 957,752 units in Japan at retail
- This figure only accounts for retail sales, so the number is even higher when accounting for digital sales
- This figure also does not represent the latest sales figures for the Wii U version
- Ocarina of Time has sold approximately 1.25 million units in Japan
- The previous second-highest-selling Zelda was Phantom Hourglass (2007) at 907,821 units sold
How we got to this point:
At the risk of a little self-promotion, I'd like to highlight an article I recently wrote on the subject of Breath of the Wild's sales in Japan. You can find it here: Zelda: Breath of the Wild is Beating All Expectations in Japan
A forum post isn't really conducive to lengthier write-ups, but the article goes into fair detail about the development philosophy behind Skyward Sword, how that hurt the Zelda brand, and what corrective steps Nintendo took to rectify the situation. It also discusses the success of other open-world games in Japan such as GTA, pointing out that this sort of success isn't necessarily unheard of.
I want to keep highlighting more interesting Zelda stuff in the future this way. I actually maintain an enormous spreadsheet that basically tracks the development history of the entire series dating back to the early games using interviews with various development staff. It's a project that took me more than a year to compile and it's been incredibly educational.
If anybody would like to see the actual sheet itself, I'd be more than happy to share. In fact, I think it would give Zelda fans in here tons of material to create their own threads with (wait until you see some of the Miyamoto quotes over the years, heh), and help accurately inform people in the process as well.