Animal Crossing couldn’t have come at a better time, for the company as well as gamers throughout the world. Games in general have seen a massive surge in popularity since the Coronavirus outbreak as people are stuck at home. But one game has standed out, topping all charts, and that’s none other than Nintendo’s wholesome life sim Animal Crossing: New Horizons.
In the six weeks of 2020, Animal Crossing: New Horizons sold 13.41 million copies. This is an increase of 1.71 million copies. It is to be noted that the game was released on March 20. Which means, the game sold 11.7 million units in just 11 days.
Nintendo writes, “Looking at software, Pokémon Sword and Pokémon Shield became big hits, posting sales of 17.37 million units, and Animal Crossing: New Horizons, released in March, sold 11.77 million units, which is now the best start ever for a Nintendo Switch title.”
Although being a Switch-exclusive, it has been smashing records since it came out in March. There’s a logical reason behind this. The game is one of the most relaxing games out there, taking the best elements from popular games such as Stardew Valley. Among the stressful situation of the current widespread panic, raging in competitive shooters isn’t the best thing you can do. Animal Crossing shapes up to be the perfect tranquil game for the time, letting you live the countryside life of your dreams.
The fact that the New Horizons itself has caused a shortage of Switch units says a lot about the game. The company continues to wrestle with component shortages for its console, but now expects disruptions to fade away over the summer, president Shuntaro Furukawa said.
“We expect the Covid-19 impact on our production to go away by summer, and our 19 million sales forecast is based on that. But we will revise the forecast if the virus impact is set to persist longer than we currently expect,” Furukawa told analysts on a call. “There’s a risk that we may need to delay releases of the games we plan for this fiscal year. But, at this point, we don’t expect any major delays.”
Nintendo sold 21 million units of the Switch in the year ended in March, higher than its own estimate of 19.5 million.
We’re still waiting for the official launch of the console in India. A report by The Mako Reactor last year detailed that the Nintendo Switch managed to sell more units in India via unofficial channels, than the Xbox One. “Industry estimates peg the Nintendo Switch lifetime to date sales to be above 50,000 eclipsing the Xbox One” the report said. Clearly, there’s a huge demand for the console in the country. Seeing such figures, it only makes one question Nintendo, “When?”
The company’s rivals, Sony and Microsoft, both are launching their next-gen consoles this Holiday season. Nintendo on the other hand, while launched its more affordable Switch Lite in September, said it has no plans to release any new hardware in 2020.