DS outsells GBA, Wii sales near 35M

More than 84 million handhelds sold as console's popularity continues unabated; Nintendo snips annual income forecast by 16 percent--but still projects $3.5 billion profit.


For years, the Game Boy Advance had the distinction of being the best-selling portable game platform of all time. No longer. Today, Nintendo announced that its old-school handheld has been overtaken by its double-vision-stricken younger sibling, the DS. According to Nintendo, the handheld has sold 84.33 million units worldwide since being introduced in November 2004, generating a staggering 454.63 million in DS software sales. Since its debut in 2001, the Game Boy Advance has sold 81.36 million units.

Say hello to Nintendo's little friend.
Say hello to Nintendo's little friend.

Sales of Nintendo's Wii aren't exactly shabby either. Since its launch in November 2006, the plucky console has sold 34.55 million units. Of those, 10.1 million were bought during the first half of Nintendo's fiscal year, which ended on September 30. From January to the end of June, 81.41 million Wii games were purchased internationally, bringing the platform's cumulative software haul to a whopping 229.85 million units.

The DS and Wii sales figures were part of Nintendo's earnings report for the first half of its 2008 fiscal year. Income for that period totaled ¥836.9 billion ($8.85 billion), a 10.4 percent rise from the same period in 2007. Net income--otherwise known as "profit"--rose 9.4 percent year over year to hit ¥144.8 billion ($1.48 billion). The company called out such games as Wii Play, Mario Kart Wii, Wii Fit, Pokemon Platinum, and Pokemon Mystery Dungeon: Explorers of Darkness as best-sellers.

Unfortunately, Nintendo's cash-minting operation has been somewhat hamstrung by international exchange rates. So far this year, the Japanese yen has climbed 14 percent against the US dollar and 27 percent against the Euro, according to the Bloomberg news service. As a result, Nintendo is now cutting its full-year forecast by 16 percent, and now only--only--expects a annual net income of ¥345 billion ($3.5 billion) for its current fiscal year, which ends on March 31, 2009.

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Avatar image for HyruleanLink

The DS just had the makings for a winning handheld.

Avatar image for kejigoto

@ frazzle00 and CorruptGamerGX The Wii's games graphically may not compare to that of the 360 and PS3, but in terms of fun they definitely hold their own. Yes the end of this year is lacking Wii games, I'll admit that easily. However coming into next year I definitely think the Wii is really picking it up in terms of games and their over all quality. I myself own a Wii, 360, and a gaming PC and when my 360 died not too long ago I was just fine playing with the Wii only. You see here's the thing, PS3 and 360 mostly rely on multiplatform games at this stage in the game. Sure they are great games, I'll give you that, I can't wait to get my hands on Far Cry 2 right now as well as Fallout 3, however the Wii offers games that neither the PS3 or 360 will see, the Wii has its own unique line up of games and offers something completely different from the PS3 and 360. Only real difference between the 360 and PS3 is a name, either console you go with you are getting just about the same experience, just one you have pay more for. Also in case you haven't noticed, but both Sony and Microsoft are attempting to mimic Nintendo at this point with HOME and the new avatar system for the 360. Nintendo is a force this generation, whether you want to realize it or not, and as time goes on this will become more and more apparent as the quality of games picks up. Nintendo had Game of the Year last year, this year wasn't quite as good, but next year is definitely looking up. Also I could pull up a long list of garbage on the 360 and PS3 as well, all three consoles have their fair share of junk games, most jumped on the Wii though like everyone did last generation with the PS2.

Avatar image for RPG_Fan_I_Am

YAY DS. although the PSP is the best system since you can hack it and play PS-one games on it, the DS hs the best games. not to mention it can currently play GBA games, although the new one wont be able to.. so sad. Stop putting down the Wii, Wii has several decent games out. Mario Galaxy Metriod Super Smash Bros also have you ever played Need for Speed carbon on it? granted steering with the Wiimote stinks, you can turn the wiimote into a gas pedal and steer with the stick on the nunchuk. not many people know this cause thier to busy saying it sucks.

Avatar image for Rej72380

IIRC, didn't the N64 had a total of 32 Million units sold during it's five-year lifespan?

Avatar image for blob1118

yay DS

Avatar image for da_chub

And over the next few months, we get Bond, COD5, COnduit, Madworld, TOS 2, and more...so much for you guys saying crap bout the wii

Avatar image for CorruptGamerGX

@kejigoto The Wii has nothing to offer and you know it. Maybe about 3 games have my interest at the moment, but the rest will be easily forgotten compared to the upcoming 360/PS3 titles unless you only own a Wii. Also, I never said Hula Wii was developed by Nintendo. I said Wii Music and Hula Wii make the Wii look more pathetic than it already is. Nintendo is guilty just as much as 3rd paty developers are for releasing shovelware, the last good game they released was Mario Kart Wii.

Avatar image for fightingfish18

having owned a gba a psp and a ds i have to say i have mixed feelings about this. as far as fun factor goes i'd have to say the gba is probably the best of the 3. back when i got it i'd have to say i had the most fun playing it while it was the thing to own. the ds is alrite and i like my psp alot. but the gba wins as far as fun factor goes. (thats my opnion)

Avatar image for Toro_Nev

I agree with teknicz, they should use the money to good use.

Avatar image for teknicz

They better put all that profit to good use. Like a Wii2!

Avatar image for irongutvi

wii doesnt have good third party support... not counting any ports either like RE4

Avatar image for frazzle00

@kejigoto None of the upcoming Wii titles can compare to the stuff the 360 and PS3 is seeing/will see this holiday season: Mirror's Edge Gears of War 2 Fallout 3 Far Cry 2 Fable 2 Saints Row 2 Resistance 2 Little Big Planet Prince of Persia Banjo-Kazooie: N & B Left 4 Dead to name a few, and lets not forget the multi-platform titles that will look and play better on the 360/PS3. As much as I love Super Mario Galaxy, 1 game a year just isn't enough for me.

Avatar image for NightRain

Wow, the DS is truly THE handheld system. I'm proud of having a DS. It's really great, really fun. I didn't thought the DS would outsell the great GBA but it did... congrats! :)

Avatar image for Tremblay343

Still haven't bought a game for my wii since brawl, because none of them have been good or have better versions on PS3/360. GIVE ME MORE GAMES. Like a real paper mario, new star fox (please not like the gamecube version), or maybe an announcement for a new luigi game. He never gets any love, and I actually enjoyed luigi's mansion.

Avatar image for frazzle00

@enoslives7 The DS is a prime example of the fact that it's the games that count the most, not the specs of the console. Which once again begs the question why is the Wii doing so well :S.

Avatar image for kejigoto

@ CorruptGamerGX Actually there is a fair amount to play on the Wii and even more coming up, why don't you go head over to the Wii forums or check out this link (<< LINK REMOVED >>) to see just what all the Wii has going on. Also Wii Hula isn't even developed or published by Nintendo, so you can't really foul them for that. Also despite Nintendo bringing out Wii Music and Wii Fit, it STILL managed to get all its major franchises out the door and onto the console. Quit faulting a console because third party developers are putting out garbage, plenty of third party companies are getting serious and working on some really great games which you can see from the link I posted.

Avatar image for Marcster1994

The DSi will be beast

Avatar image for redboxa

yeah ! they haven't made starfox yet for wi.. or a bunch of other games they had on gamecube havent had a sequel yet... Donkey konga!

Avatar image for Blockie123

What we need now are some more Mario and Zelda games, maybe a StarFox Game (With online).

Avatar image for householdman

haha take that cows and lemmings, where is your god now?

Avatar image for Incetardis

How does Miyamoto sleep at night? On top of a pile of money with many beautiful ladies. I love Nintendo.

Avatar image for ArchonBasic

It must be nice to lose a ton of money on exchange rates and still post a ridiculous net profit.

Avatar image for CorruptGamerGX

DS= Godlike Wii= Trash That's because there isn't anything to play on that gimmicky console. With all the cash Ninty makes, they could at least make some decent software. Wii Music and Hula Wii make the Wii look even more pathetic.

Avatar image for nestea_king

@enoslives7 Inferior only in specs. The success of the DS is not only from Castlevania games. Even if the PSP had as much or more Castlevania games as the DS it still wouldn't have sold even close to as much or as fast as the DS. The DS is just an amazing piece of hardware with many unique and good games. And while the PSP is an amazing piece of hardware, even more amazing than the DS in some aspects, it lacks in good software. Badly.

Avatar image for enoslives7

Thats an impressive feat for the DS. Its vastly inferior to the PSP, but still outsells it. Its amazing what a few good Castlevania games can do for a system.

Avatar image for JetLag123

now if we can just get more games for each platform I'd be a happy camper. Im thinkin NSMB2 or maybe even a starfox wii

Avatar image for Great_Ragnarok

now hopefully we'll see some of that money put in to some new ip's. kind of tired of wii's game library so far.

Avatar image for frazzle00

The DS is a great console; it has so many great games. The Wii on the other hand has an embarrassingly poor library that doesn't look like it will be improving anytime soon. The fact that it's so successful is mystifying to say the least.

Avatar image for Dualmask

faceman420, from what I've seen, the opposite is true. Even one of my MS-faithful friends who hasn't bought Nintendo since the SNES went out and bought a Wii, and now it's all he talks about. Don't let the low scores various review sites give to Wii games fool you into thinking people aren't buying and enjoying their Wii consoles. I know I am.

Avatar image for teknic1200

2 years later, I still have had no trouble finding a steady stream of great games for my wii. check my profile. wii has many great games. there are awful games on all platforms.

Avatar image for OfficialBed

i kinda want a dsi

Avatar image for DarthVillainous

@ mertron1 I used to think the Wii was just a fad, and maybe it is. However, it's a fad that's lasted a lot longer than most fads do. This would suggest it's got longer legs than many (myself included) anticipated. Personally I dislike the machine due to the nature of the controller; however, to each his own.

Avatar image for motang

GBA had a good run, but it has been bested by it's cousin.

Avatar image for DarthVillainous

@ mariokart64fan Half the games you list are either VC or gamecube titles. It's not a legitimate argument.

Avatar image for DarthVillainous

@ wiifan001 The lack of good games on the Wii is a legitimate complaint. You can't include VC/Wiiware titles in the Wii's library; otherwise you could count PS1/2, & XBox titles in the 360 & PS3 libraries (well, older PS3s, anyway), which would pretty much make the whole issue a wash. Also, you're complaining about fanboyism yet your own name would seem to suggest that you are in fact one. A bit hypocritical, no?

Avatar image for mertron1

i dont even include the wii when it comes to game consoles...the machine may have fooled millions of people out there but probably 34 million hardly use their wii's anymore...just a fad that once goes will be remebered for being cool at the time...i'm waiting on nintendo's next console..that's if is even going to be on.

Avatar image for silent_h3ro

I just bought a DS today.

Avatar image for DPhunkT

Don't worry...Nintendo has a secret weapon... Wii Music!! ... HAHAHAHA!

Avatar image for faceman420

@murlow12, From wut I've seen, most Wii owners do regret their purchase...

Avatar image for 7_armageddon_7

I think that the DS is a great handheld system and is worthy of the honour of bestselling handheld platform. The Wii, while it has a few good games, is generally lackluster otherwise; it's motion sensing controls are great, but its lack of graphical quality compared to the 360 or ps3 definitely hinders the enjoyability of playing on the system after a while.

Avatar image for hawaiiinsomniac

I still have the first iteration of the DS. Can't wait to try out the new DSi. Kudos Nintendo for thinking outside the box.

Avatar image for DiscGuru101

I love my Wii and my DS. Although I rarely play them. I bought Wii for Wii Sports and Trauma Center. Still my favorite exclusives on the system.

Avatar image for wiifan001

Nintnendo has triumphed its DS over the PSP, and it is triumphing over the XBOX 360 and PS3 despite its not as supportive 3rd party support. *checks below posts* Yep, fanboys refusing to believing that there isn't just barely anything to play on Wii. I guess those couple hundred VC titles, the Wiiware titles AND retail games that Nintendo and 3rd party titles are developing aren't hardly anything. I'll say it again, Nintendo will this gen: DS > PSP, and Wii>360 and Ps3.

Avatar image for zaku101

Yay for DS! Wii on the other hand idk, where are the games?

Avatar image for murlow12

I guess leaving hardcore gamers out in the cold was the best move Nintendo could make. I regret buying my Wii (not my DS, though), but maybe 30 million others disagree with me.

Avatar image for Timbydude

I love my DS, and my Wii is just kinda meh.

Avatar image for REVOLUTIONfreak

Although I can't say that the Wii deserves every bit of success it's gotten (the design deserves credit, but the games pretty much suck overall), the DS more than deserves the honor of being the best selling portable of all time. It's the ultimate portable in the sense that it's innovative, fresh, and appeals to both hardcore and casual.

Avatar image for spikepigeo

Gj Nintendo, you deserve it. You are the master at appealing to casual gamers, keep it up.

Avatar image for motorola29

35 million wii's yet theres nothing to play on it and nobody even talks about it anymore. the wii is the epitome of a fad that dies out.