Big in Japan: Xbox 360 outsells PS3

Microsoft scores a rare win on Sony's home turf; Dragon Quest IX back on top of charts in a light week of new releases.

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Usually, Microsoft and its Xbox 360 don't bear much mention in write-ups of the Japanese sales charts. The system typically jostles for the penultimate spot in the hardware charts with the aging PlayStation 2 and is represented in the top 10 software sales charts rarely.

Xbox 360 hardware sales jumped 68 percent week-over-week.
Xbox 360 hardware sales jumped 68 percent week-over-week.

The week of August 10-16 is a little different, as Microsoft sold 9,162 Xbox 360s in Japan, according to tracking firm Media Create. While not nearly enough to put the console in the same sales echelon as the DSi (87,936 sold), the Wii (47,732 sold), or the PSP (39,882 sold), the performance was substantially better than that of its closest rival, Sony's PlayStation 3 (5,944 sold).

Interestingly, the sales spike wasn't sparked by new software. The biggest Xbox 360 game of the week--the 21st best-selling placed Magna Carta 2--was released the previous week and failed to make the top 10 then. New releases were actually rare on any platform for the week. Full Metal Alchemist: Prince of the Dawn for the Wii had the best debut, and even that only pushed the anime-based game to the 25th spot.

With a light week of launches, the top 10 was taken over by established heavy hitters, the heaviest of which was Square Enix's Dragon Quest IX, which retook the top spot after spending two weeks looking up at the competition. It was a close shave, as Dragon Quest IX's 126,682 sold edged out Nintendo's DS Tomodachi Collection and its 126,136 sold.

Wii Sports Resort placed third with 104,972 sold, followed by Capcom's Monster Hunter Tri, which moved 92,865 copies in its third week of release. The previous week's champ, SD Gundam G Generation Wars for the PS2, slipped to fifth place, chalking up 57,427 more copies to push its two week total above the 200,000 mark.

Week of August 10-August 16, 2009
Software:
1) Dragon Quest IX (DS) - 126,682
2) Tomodachi Collection (DS) - 126,136
3) Wii Sports Resort (Wii) - 104,972
4) Monster Hunter Tri (Wii) - 92,865
5) SD Gundam G Generation Wars (PS2) - 57,427
6) Tales of Vs. (PSP) - 34,909
7) PuyoPuyo 7 (DS) - 28,965
8) Monster Hunter Freedom Unite (PSP) - 26,955
9) Irodzuki Tincle no Koi no Balloon Trip (DS) - 17,956
10) Penguin no Mondai: Tenkuu no Senshi (DS) - 17,559

Hardware:
DSi - 87,936
Wii - 47,732
PSP - 39,882
Xbox 360 - 9,162
DS Lite - 7,921
PS3 - 5,944
PS2 - 4,907

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