Nintendo sold over 2m Switch consoles worldwide in its first month on shelves, according to its latest fiscal year earnings report, hitting 2.74m units as of March 31st. That beats recent analyst expectations from SuperData, which pegged the console’s global sales figures at just 2.4m.
As a result, Nintendo’s profits have soared 14 per cent year-on-year to 102bn (11.5m), beating its initial expectations of 90bn. Hardware shipments exceeded its initial forecast, the reports reads, and Nintendo said its expected advertising expenses were also lower than anticipated.
Perhaps more surprising, however, is the news that The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild has sold 2.76m units on Switch, seemingly confirming NPD’s latest assumption that gamers are buying one copy as a collector’s edition and buying another to play. Of course, another explanation is that gamers are buying copies of Zelda but hardware shortages are preventing them from buying the console itself. Either way, it points to a promising start for the Switch, with Nintendo stating that Zelda has "won immense popularity". Combined with the Wii U version, Zelda has sold a combined total of 3.84m as of March 31st.
Elsewhere in Nintendo’s financial report, Pokmon Sun and Moon have now hit a massive 15.44m units. Super Mario Maker for Nintendo 3DS has also continued to do well, reaching 2.34m units, while Kirby: Planet Robobot has sold 1.36m units.
As a result, 3DS sales grew 7 per cent year-on-year, with worldwide sales of 7.27m during the last year. Software sales, meanwhile, grew 14 per cent year-on-year, to 55.08m units.
Over on Wii U, hardware sales were down 77 per cent year-on-year to just 760,000 units. However, Nintendo said this was "in alignment with our expectations at the start of the fiscal year." In the next financial year, however, Nintendo expects zero Wii U hardware sales – after all, it’s now ceased production.
Meanwhile, digital sales were down "to a large extent on the same period last year," but Nintendo puts this down to less downloadable content being available during this time. Amiibo sales also remained at 9.1m units for the figurines, while Nintendo’s card-based amiibo hit 9.3m.
Over the next financial year, Nintendo expects to hit 10m Switch hardware sales, and 35m software sales.
"Regarding Nintendo Switch, we will maintain buzz about The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild and 1-2-Switch, which are off to a phenomenal start, and release Mario Kart 8 Deluxe in April and ARMS in June worldwide," the report says.
"We will release Splatoon 2 in July. Splatoon 2 exemplifies the concept of Nintendo Switch, enabling consumers to play anywhere, anytime, and with anyone, and will bring competition between consumers to new levels of excitement. In addition, we will maintain favorable conditions surrounding Nintendo Switch by providing a continuous stream of appealing third-party titles across varying genres. We aim to stimulate the platform and expand sales going into the holiday season this year."