Vita sales slip to new low in Japan

The numbers have been disappointing since it’s launch nigh on two months ago, but now, the sales figures are starting to become somewhat concerning for the PlayStation Vita.

Last week (ending Feb 12th), the Vita sold just shy of 14,000 units – almost 2000 behind it’s predecessor, the PSP. It’s main rival, the Nintendo 3DS, sold almost 5x what the Vita did. In brighter news, the PS2 nearly tripled in sales from the previous week.

Here is the full list: (parenthesised numbers are previous week)

1) 3DS: 67,558 (75,018)
2) PS3: 22,002 (23,293)
3) PSP: 15,860 (15,847)
4) PSV: 13,939 (17,141)
5) Wii: 8,206 (8,814)
6) PS2: 1,239 (481)
7) XBOX 360: 1,139 (1,382)
8 ) DSi XL: 957 (1,090)
9) DSi: 651 (669)

Software sales were more encouraging for Sony, with games on its portable systems securing the top two spots:

1) Genso Suikoden Tsumugareshi Hyakunen no Toki (PSP – Konami) 61,784
2) Gravity Daze (Vita – Sony) 43,462
3) Resident Evil Revelations (3DS – Capcom) 26,106
4) Mario Kart 7 (3DS – Nintendo) 23,758
5) Monster Hunter 3G (3DS – Capcom) 21,318
6) Super Mario 3D Land (3DS – Nintendo) 19,673
7) Gran Turismo 5 Spec II (PS3 – Sony) 12,613
8 ) Armored Core V (PS3 – From) 11,673
9) Ragnarok Odyssey (Vita – Gung-Ho) 8,117
10) Just Dance (Wii – Nintendo) 7,896

Another piece of Vita-related scaremongering in Japan came from newspaper Nikkei. They claimed it was basically the end of the road for Vita already, with all the developers jumping ship to the 3DS. Yes, you read that correctly – a Japanese paper telling people that after only a few weeks, “major Japanese companies are cancelling all projects intended for the Vita and are changing development to the 3DS.”

This is obviously utter lies and Sony Worldwide Studios were keen to point that out – Scott Rhode telling Gamasutra:

“I did not see that quote, but you see extremist quotes like that all the time. I mean, obviously, there is no way anyone could stand in front of a camera and say that all developers are changing focus from one platform to another, no matter what it is. It’s largely exaggerated. I know many, many, many third party developers and publishers are feverishly working on Vita titles, not just for now, but for the foreseeable future.”

It perplexes me how anybody could read the original Nikkei story and actually believe it. To think a developer would abandon a console before it’s even launched worldwide would be absolutely unthinkable; such a ridiculous notion.

Written by Raj Mahil

Game collector. Journalism graduate. Batman addict. Movie goer. WWE nut. Sports obsessive. Arsenal fan. Sub-Editor.

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  • A soon as Monster Hunter or something else that’s huge in Japan, sales will rise sharply.

    • I agree with you, everyone was freaking out with the 3DS sales a year ago… now the same song with the Vita (Is like I’ve been listening the same song for 20 years). Seriously, since when teenagers became so interested on sales and marketing strategies?
      Vita just need a less Western looking title in Japan to increase the sales. I just don’t think the title is going to be a Monster Hunter title because Monster Hunter Tri-G (remake of the Wii title) and Monster Hunter 4 (new title) are 3DS exclusives (so far). I don’t think the Vita is going to do that great the first year in Japan (specially with Monster Hunter, Kingdom Hearts and Dragon Quest coming the 3DS) but the same thing happened with the psp in Japan during the first year and ended up selling more units than the DS (and still does). Personally I think the title that will hit Japan will be something like an JRPG or Pokemon like game using the augmented reality cards. Something like Shin Megami Tensei with cards or something like that. 
      Anyway I’m getting my Vita this Tuesday and I don’t care if Sony drops the price in less than year… I know I’m going to enjoy it.

    • Anonymous

      I thought it was announced a while ago that Monster Hunter was now exclusive to 3DS and Wii

    • I agree. Sony needs to tell the developers to make another Monster Hunter for the Vita.

  • Anonymous

    I have been playing vita all day!  if they dont want to play an awesome system like this then its their loss.  if a monster hunter came out on the original gameboy next week then you would see gameboy shoot to the top of the sales charts!  they crazy.

    • I think the success of Monster Hunter in Japan is more a cultural thing. I don’t think Japanese people like the idea of playing with strangers online. That’s why Ad-Hoc Mode on the psp was so successful there because it was perfect for them; they like the idea of playing with their friends face to face. Another example could be the last Dragon Quest for the DS, with huge sales in Japan and the same concept that Monster Hunter, you can play with friends but you need to be close to them (no online mode). They even had meetings to play together and interchange maps. If Sony wants to sell more Vita units in Japan they need to:
      1) Make a JRPG, there is a White Knight Chronicles for the psp, just make one for the Vita!
      2) Take advantage of the AR features. Japanese love collectibles! make a game for the Vita that forces you to collect cards and get more enemies or monsters. A Shin Megami Tensei type of game with AR features will sell like crazy in Japan.
      3) Make Near features more popular. The favorite feature of the 3DS in Japan is not the 3D is the StreetPass, they love to interchange items with strangers on the subway for example, without having to talk to them. Make more features for near, again collectibles, more Japanese looking games that give you special items for your characters.

  • eric tingler

    I got my vita the 15Th, and I am loving it! The system is amazing, the games are great, and near is really cool. I went to the store the other day, and wile I was there I left A gift for anyone with A vita to pick up. I mean come on, how cool is that lol?! I just can not wait to see what they do with the vita in the long run. Also the whole “handheld gaming is dead because of smart phones.”. I just don’t get that, because the vita has A touch screen, and has all of the features of A smart phone. So all you would have to do is port all of those games over to the vita, and why wouldn’t they. That’s just more money for the developers, and lets face it we are suckers for anything 99 cents lol. I don’t care what anyone thinks I love my vita, and its just the start of its life. Look how far the PS3 has come? 

  • guys…they need to put invisimals onto the vita…that is a simple answer to the pokemon solution that pablo suggested.

    • I wish they sold the PSP camera in the US by itself as an accessory.

  • It is just plain dumb for someone to say that the Vita is not worth it or it’s terrible. The Vita has everything a smartphone has, plus more. @killerseyton:disqus says the same thing.

  • CaptHowdy666

    I don’t live in Japan so tell someone who cares 🙂

    Does Japan still sellout of Alyssa Milano CD’s?

  • Not worried about it. Just needs a game that will reel them in, will not take too long.