Big in Japan June 28 - July 4: Inazuma Eleven 3

New releases take the top three spots as DS role-playing game from Level 5 dominates sales charts, followed by latest DS Taiko no Tatsujin and BlazBlue: Continuum Shift for PS3.

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The Japanese sales charts, once dominated by Nintendo-published evergreen titles like Wii Fit Plus and Tomodachi Collection, is starting to look a little more current. For the second straight week, Media Create's Japanese sales chart featured new releases in four out of the top five spots.

The BlazBlue crew is looking for new recruits.
The BlazBlue crew is looking for new recruits.

Level 5's role-playing game Inazuma Eleven 3: Sekai e no Chousen led the charge, with its Spark and Bomber variants combining to sell just over half a million copies. The studio's previous Inazuma game was also a hit, launching in October of 2009 and appearing in the Japanese weekly top 10 through January. Level 5's experience with chart-topping hits isn't limited to the Inazuma Eleven franchise, as it has also developed Dragon Quest VIII and IX, as well as the Professor Layton series.

The remaining new releases were also continuations of established franchises, with the latest DS installment of Namco Bandai's drumming rhythm series Taiko no Tatsujin claiming second place, and Arc Systems Works' 2D fighter revamp BlazBlue: Continuum Shift for the PlayStation 3 taking the bronze. Another Namco Bandai follow-up--Digimon Story: Lost Evolution for the DS--took fifth place, with May release Super Mario Galaxy 2 coming in fourth, the highest ranking effort lacking "that new game smell."

Just as new releases held sway in the top half of the chart, Konami put its stamp on the bottom half. The Metal Gear Solid publisher accounted for four of the five games ranked sixth through 10th, led by the DS dating sim Love Plus +. Another DS effort from the publisher, Tokimeki Memorial: Girl's Side 3rd Story, took seventh place, with the PS3 and PSP editions of World Soccer Winning Eleven 2010: Aoki Samurai no Chousen claiming eighth and tenth, respectively.

The hardware charts were changed slightly from previous weeks, as the Wii and PS3 continued their back-and-forth jostling for third place behind the PSP and the DSi LL (DSi XL in the West). Even though the DSi LL topped the charts, Nintendo's latest handheld sold 9,000 fewer systems than the week before, a tumble matched only by the Xbox 360. After receiving a significant bump in the previous week from the release of Monster Hunter Frontier, Xbox 360 sales slipped more than 10,000 systems to 7,303 units.

JAPAN GAME SALES WEEK OF JUNE 28-JULY 4, 2010
Software:
Rank / Title / Publisher / Platform / Unit sales
1. Inazuma Eleven 3: Sekai e no Chousen!! Spark and Bomber/ Level Five / DS / 505,161
2. Taiko no Tatsujin DS: Dororon! Youkai Daikessen!! / Bandai Namco / DS / 69,767
3. BlazBlue: Continuum Shift / Arc System Works / PS3 / 49,871
4. Super Mario Galaxy 2 / Nintendo / Wii / 34,645
5. Digimon Story: Lost Evolution / Bandai Namco / DS / 34,409
6. Love Plus + / Konami / DS / 21,567
7. Tokimeki Memorial: Girl's Side 3rd Story / Konami / DS / 19,726
8. World Soccer Winning Eleven 2010: Aoki Samurai no Chousen / Konami / PS3 / 19,227
9. Eigokoro Kyoushitsu DS / Nintendo / DS / 18,759
10. World Soccer Winning Eleven 2010: Aoki Samurai no Chousen / Konami / PSP / 16,432

Hardware:
DSi LL - 32,661
PSP - 24,685
Wii - 21,964
PS3 - 20,077
DSi - 18,271
Xbox 360 - 7,303
DS Lite - 5,339
PS2 - 1,594
PSP Go - 1,024

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