Big in Japan Feb. 23-Mar. 2: Yakuza 3 bloodies PS3 rivals

Sega's gangster drama lifts Sony console sales past Wii on Japan charts; 360 sinks wtih Star Ocean.

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Riding high on the release of Square Enix's Star Ocean: The Last Hope, Microsoft's Xbox 360 made a rare appearance atop the Japanese console sales charts, according to sales figures released last week by Media Create. For the week of February 23-March 2, it was Sony's turn to bask in the light of a popular exclusive. Sega's PlayStation 3-only Yakuza 3 secured opening-week sales of 372,000, which helped vault Sony's console past the competition with 36,513 systems sold.

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Sony's PSP also saw a healthy sales bounce, thanks to the debut of Koei's Dynasty Warriors: Strikeforce. With the beat-'em-up taking the second slot in Media Create's weekly accounting with 219,000 units, the PSP shifted 35,588 machines. Nintendo's DSi outpaced that figure by a scant few hundred units, selling 35,827 on the week, while the DS Lite sold an additional 11,774 units. The Wii sold 17,876 units during the period, while just 11,795 Xbox 360s were moved.

Continuing its strong sales run, Mario & Luigi RPG 3!! for the DS sold 52,000 units, slightly more than the 45,000 units for Namco Bandai's Wii newcomer One Piece Unlimited Cruise: Episode 2. Also new from Namco Bandai, Game Center CX: Arino no Chousenjou 2 sold 44,000 units, while Konami's Sunday x Magazine Nettou! Dream Nine debuted in the sixth slot with 23,000 copies. The final new entrant for the week, SNK Playmore's The King of Fighters 2002 Unlimited Match sold 19,000 units.

Rounding out the chart, the aforementioned Star Ocean: The Last Hope saw a significant sales drop-off, slipping to the eighth position with 17,000 copies sold. Namco Bandai's Taiko no Tatsujin followed with 16,000 units, slightly edging out Wii Fit.

Week of February 23 - March 2, 2009
Software:
1) Yakuza 3 (PS3) - 372,000
2) Dynasty Warriors: Strikeforce (PSP) - 219,000
3) Mario & Luigi RPG 3!! (NDS) - 52,000
4) One Piece Unlimited Cruise: Episode 2 (Wii) - 45,000
5) Game Center CX: Arino no Chousenjou 2 (NDS) - 44,000
6) Sunday x Magazine Nettou! Dream Nine (NDS) - 23,000
7) The King of Fighters 2002 Unlimited Match (PS2) - 19,000
8) Star Ocean: The Last Hope (X360) - 17,000
9) Taiko no Tatsujin (Wii) - 16,000
10) Wii Fit (Wii) - 16,000

Hardware:
PS3 36,513
DSi 35,827
PSP 35,588
Wii 17,876
Xbox 360 11,795
DS Lite 11,774
PS2 5,099

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