Last Updated on September 12, 2022 by

It’s outperformed Animal Crossing and even Pokémon (pic: Nintendo)

While it continues to be only a modest success over here, Splatoon 3 is doing phenomenally well in Japan and shattering all records.

It may have played things too safe for Western tastes, but Splatoon 3 is another major success for Nintendo, especially in Japan.

Nintendo has revealed that Splatoon 3 has already sold over 3.45 million copies. This includes both physical and digital sales.

This not only makes it the ‘highest domestic sales level for any Nintendo Switch software within the first three days,’ but it’s the biggest launch of a video game ever in Japan.

That mean seem surprising but Splatoon is incredibly popular in Japan and clearly the third entry has done nothing to diminish that.

There is a lot of Japanese-only merchandise, and there have even been multiple live concerts featuring the in-game pop duos – the Squid Sisters and Off the Hook – as virtual, holographic, idols.

As analyst Daniel Ahmad points out, this means Splatoon 3 has outperformed Animal Crossing: New Horizons (the previous fastest selling Switch game in Japan) and Pokémon Black & White, which originally was the fastest selling game ever in Japan.

In other words, the game sold more in 3 days than Animal Crossing New Horizons for Switch, the previous fastest selling Switch game in Japan, and Pokémon Black & White, the previous fastest selling game of all time in Japan.

— Daniel Ahmad (@ZhugeEX) September 12, 2022

Here in the UK, it’s taken the number one spot in the launch sales charts, which is itself a first for the series (the last two games only debuted at number two).

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So far, however, it appears to still only be a minor hit, since it’s merely the 21st best debut of a new Switch game in the UK – behind Splatoon 2.

If digital sales are included, which aren’t in the UK, then it’s very likely that Splatoon 3 has surpassed its predecessor but it’s still not anywhere near the level of success seen in Japan.

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Splatoon 2 sold more than 13.30 million copies in its lifetime, which Splatoon 3 now seems very likely to surpass – not least because the last game was released early in the Switch’s lifetime, when the userbase was much smaller.

Unlike Splatoon 2, there is not yet a hardware bundle for Splatoon 3 but there is a special OLED model console – although it doesn’t come with a copy of the game.

Splatoon 3 is available now for Nintendo Switch.

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