Pokémon Go is a mobile game. It did not come out for the 3DS handheld console. Even still, Nintendo is giving it credit for its handheld’s strong U.S. performance in July.
Nintendo said that the sales numbers for the month from the market research firm The NPD Group have the 3DS on top of hardware and software sales numbers. The 3DS is an aging system. It originally released in 2011. However, a new wave of Pokémon fans are flocking to the device as they look for more games to play (Nintendo releases the majority of Pokémon titles for its handheld systems). This is thanks to the location-based Pokémon Go, which is breaking mobile records and reinvigorating the whole brand.
Nintendo noted that 3DS sales were 80 percent higher this July than they were during the same month last year. Pokémon X and Y sales were 200 percent higher than they were in July 2015 … and those games came out in 2013. The Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire versions, which released in 2014, were up 80 percent. Sales for the 3DS could increase even more when Pokémon Sun and Moon, which are actually coming out for the 3DS, release on November 18.
The Japanese company also gives some credit to Monster Hunter Generations, a new release for the portable in July. It was No. 1 on the month’s best-sellers list. Many consider Monster Hunter more of a Japanese franchise, but this shows that the series has developed a strong U.S. following. Pokémon Omega Ruby was the highest-ranking Pokémon at No. 8. Another new 3DS release, Kirby: Planet Robobot, was at No. 11.
We have asked Microsoft and Sony for comment on its hardware sales for July.