PS5 Sales In Japan Reach Their Biggest High Since 2004

Sony’s PlayStation 5 is selling pretty dang well in Japan, according to new data that shows it was the second best-selling console in the country last year, behind only Nintendo’s Switch. Even more impressive, the PS5 sold better than any PlayStation console has ever sold since the PS2 in 2004. That’s also an indication of just how much easier it is to find the machine in 2023 compared to past years.

According to sales data released by Famitsu on January 12, the top-selling console in Japan last year was the now six-year-old Switch, by a wide margin. Nintendo’s hybrid console sold just 4.06 million units in 2023 versus 4.8 million in 2022. So a bit of a dip, but still wild to see such an old console topping the chart with such a big number. As of now, lifetime sales for the Switch in Japan are nearing 32 million.

Following behind the Switch is Sony’s PS5, which sold 2.58 million units in 2023. While that might not be as big as the Switch’s, it’s still a huge increase over 2022’s total sales, which were only 1.15 million. It’s much easier to buy a PS5 than in previous years, and the data seems to be showing that.

Sony’s PS5 doing well, Microsoft’s Xbox…not so much

Interestingly, based on historical data, this is the best a PlayStation console has done in Japan since 2004. Back then, the PS2 was able to shift around 2.59 million units. Following that, the PS2, PS3, and PSP couldn’t quite match that high point.

As for Microsoft’s Xbox Series X/S consoles, well, they uh… I mean some people in Japan bought them. Not many though. The Xbox Series X/S was only able to sell 141,712 units in the country in 2023. And its total lifetime sales in Japan sit at an abysmal 540,107. Meanwhile, Sony’s older PS4 sold another 73,292 units, or about half of what the new Xbox was able to sell. Those numbers aren’t great for Microsoft, but they get even worse when you compare them to last year. In 2022, the Xbox Series consoles sold 269,737.

Here are the top 10 games sold in Japan in 2023 according to Famitsu’s data. And yes, they are all Switch games.

  1. The Legend of Zelda Tears of the Kingdom (Switch)- 1,929,603
  2. Super Mario Bros. Wonder (Switch) – 1,549,401
  3. Pikmin 4 – (Switch) 1,119,027
  4. Pokémon Scarlet & Violet (Switch) – 907,432 (5,246,363)
  5. Momotaro Dentetsu World (Switch) – 795,681
  6. Mario Kart 8 Deluxe – (Switch) 617,223 (5,631,598)
  7. Kirby’s Return to Dream Land Deluxe (Switch) – 514,581
  8. Dragon Quest Monsters 3: The Dark Prince (Switch) – 510,477
  9. Splatoon 3 (Switch) – 503,312 (4,191,126)
  10. Super Mario RPG (Switch) – 447,687


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