Nintendo may be poised to release the DSi XL on Sunday, but that didn't stop it from announcing the 3D "successor" to the DS series yesterday. According to Japanese reports, one reason for Nintendo's timing was to divert attention away from slipping software sales for the current-generation DS, which fell by some 42 million units during the first nine months of the publisher's in-progress fiscal year.
Still, the DS remains a potent portable. Japanese publisher and game-industry tracker Enterbrain reports this week that Nintendo's DS series has combined to sell more than 30 million units in Japan alone. Famitsu reports that Nintendo achieved the milestone on March 21, 2010, having launched the system's original iteration in December 2004. Nintendo rolled out the DS Lite in Japan in March 2006, with the DSi following in November 2008 and the DSi XL (known as LL in Japan) in November 2009.
Enterbrain also revealed the top-selling games for the DS in Japan. Leading the way is New Super Mario Bros., which has sold 5,767,262 units in Japan since its May 2006 release. Pokemon Diamond/Pearl, which landed in Japan in September 2006, nipped closely at Mario's heels in second with 5,766,571 units sold. Animal Crossing: Wild World slipped into third with 5,133,862 units sold since November 2005.
Through December 2009, Nintendo had sold more than 125 million DS units worldwide. Software sales stood at 688.29 million globally through the end of the year.