Big in Japan Dec. 19-25: Mario Kart 7

Nintendo racer's sales accelerating as the PlayStation Vita experiences steep drop-off in hardware, software sales for second week of release.

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Mario Kart 7 got its second wind at Japanese retailers for the week of December 19-25, as sales tracking firm Media Create reports that Nintendo's latest kart racer surged ahead of the pack in its fourth week of release to finish atop the charts.

Mario Kart 7 sales hit the nitro boosters this week.
Mario Kart 7 sales hit the nitro boosters this week.

Mario Kart 7 sold 260,836 copies, up 43 percent over the prior week and its best outing since its launch week of November 28 to December 4. Nintendo's other new 3DS game featuring the mustachioed mascot also placed in the top 10, as Super Mario 3D Land finished the week with 174,566 copies sold.

Sandwiched in between the plumber's one-two punch was the week's best-selling new release, Koei Tecmo's Musou Orochi 2. Other new releases to make the charts included Namco Bandai's super-deformed 3DS mech game SD Gundam G Generation 3D in eighth place with 90,873 copies sold, and Level-5's Wii launch of Inazuma Eleven Strikers Xtreme.

Conspicuous by their absence from the top 10 list were games for Sony's PlayStation Vita, which launched the week before in Japan. After debuting on the charts in the seventh and eighth spot, the PS Vita duo of Hot Shots Golf: World Invitational and Uncharted: Golden Abyss dropped to 37th place and 40th place, respectively.

PS Vita hardware suffered a slide as well. The handheld debuted the previous week in second place with nearly 325,000 systems sold. However, for the week ended December 25, the portable only posted sales of 72,479 systems and finished fifth among hardware platforms. Its predecessor the PSP fared better, taking second place by selling 101,121 systems. Despite that, the 3DS handily took home the hardware crown for the week, more than quadrupling the next best-selling system with 482,200 handhelds sold.

JAPAN GAME SALES WEEK OF DECEMBER 19-25
Software
Rank/Title/Publisher/Platform/Unit sales
1. Mario Kart 7 / Nintendo / 3DS / 260,836
2. Musou Orochi 2 / Koei Tecmo / PS3 / 200,526
3. Super Mario 3D Land / Nintendo / 3DS / 174,566
4. Monster Hunter 3G / Capcom / 3DS / 155,069
5. Final Fantasy XIII-2 / Square Enix / PS3 / 118,816
6. Kirby's Return to Dream Land / Nintendo / Wii / 114,545
7. Just Dance Wii / Nintendo / Wii / 96,771
8. SD Gundam G Generation 3D / Namco Bandai / 3DS / 90,873
9. Inazuma Eleven Go / Level-5 / 3DS / 86,026
10. Inazuma Eleven Strikers Xtreme / Level-5 / Wii / 85,117

Hardware
3DS - 482,200
PSP - 101,121
Wii - 91,176
PS3 - 75,943
PS Vita - 72,479
DSi XL - 8,470
DSi - 5,894
Xbox 360 - 4,245
PS2 - 1,052
DS Lite - 32

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