Big in Japan Apr. 12-18: No More Heroes: Paradise

PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 versions of Grasshopper action game the only new releases to crack the top 10, New Super Mario Bros. takes top spot as sales slipped across the board.

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Media Create has reported the Japanese sales figures for the week of April 12-18, and the numbers are not impressive. To put the week in perspective, last month Koei topped the charts with the PlayStation 3 version of Fist of the North Star Warriors, which sold more than 385,000 copies in its debut week. That's more than double the cumulative sales for the top 10 best sellers of April 12-18.

The gory Xbox 360 edition of Travis Touchdown's original adventure nearly outsold its tamer PS3 counterpart in Japan.
The gory Xbox 360 edition of Travis Touchdown's original adventure nearly outsold its tamer PS3 counterpart in Japan.

There was little turnover in titles for the week, with New Super Mario Bros. Wii defaulting to the top spot on the charts with 32,108 copies sold. The only new releases--Grasshopper's PS3 and Xbox 360 ports of the original No More Heroes--landed in seventh and eighth place, with sales of 15,763 and 15,153, respectively.

While Xbox 360 releases are usually far outsold by their PS3 counterparts in Japan, the sales for No More Heroes: Paradise were likely neck-and-neck due to different ratings for each version. The PS3 edition received a D (17 and older) from the Computer Entertainment Ratings Organization (the Japanese equivalent of the ESRB), while the gorier Xbox 360 one received a Z, the most restrictive rating the group issues. Under CERO guidelines, games rated Z are not supposed to be sold to anyone under 18, and retailers are asked to verify the ages of those who want to purchase them.

Of the other eight titles in the top 10, all of them saw week-over-week sales declines. Konami's Pro Baseball Spirits 2010 for the PSP and PS3 held its ground for the week, taking up the third and fourth positions on the chart, while Nintendo's perennial DS best seller Tomodachi Collection slipped past the sports games to take the silver medal behind New Super Mario Bros. Wii. The PS3 version of Fist of the North Star Warriors sold 18,866 copies to secure fifth place on the charts, with Pokemon Ranger: Hikari no Kiseki, Wii Fit Plus, and Yakuza 4 shifting their order but maintaining spots in the bottom half of the top 10.

Times were tough on the hardware front as well. There was no fluctuation in the finishing order of the platforms, and almost every system's sales were down week-over-week. The only two systems to actually increase sales during the week were the two worst-selling ones on the list. PSP Go sales jumped from 1,826 to 1,915, while the PS2 went from 1,425 systems sold to 1,531.

JAPAN GAME SALES WEEK OF APRIL 12-18, 2010
Software:
Rank / Title / Publisher / Platform / Unit sales
1. New Super Mario Bros. Wii / Nintendo / Wii / 32,108
2. Tomodachi Collection / Nintendo / DS / 20,883
3. Pro Baseball Spirits 2010 / Konami / PSP / 20,880
4. Pro Baseball Spirits 2010 / Konami / PS3 / 19,104
5. Fist of the North Star Warriors / Koei / PS3 / 18,866
6. Pokemon Ranger: Hikari no Kiseki / Nintendo / DS / 15,961
7. No More Heroes: Paradise / Marvelous / PS3 / 15,763
8. No More Heroes: Paradise / Marvelous / 360 / 15,153
9. Wii Fit Plus / Nintendo / Wii / 14,685
10. Yakuza 4: Densetsu o Tsugumono / Sega / PS3 / 11,094

Hardware:
PSP - 28,635
PS3 - 25,590
Wii - 24,344
DSi LL - 17,146
DSi - 11,240
DS Lite - 2,869
Xbox 360 - 2,442
PSP Go - 1,915
PS2 - 1,531

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