February 7th, 2006, 20:40 Posted By: wraggster
Software for Nintendo Co. Ltd.'s DS portable game device dominated the January best-sellers list in Japan on the back of strong demand for games such as Mario Kart, Animal Crossing and three games designed to test brain power, an industry survey said on Tuesday.
Enterbrain, which publishes weekly and monthly retail sales data for games and game devices, said overall software unit sales in January were flat from a year earlier, while hardware sales were down 6.2 percent.
It blamed the lower hardware sales on the scarcity of Nintendo DS, which it said was the most popular device in the market.
Enterbrain, the publisher of Japan's leading game magazine Famitsu, said in its monthly report that eight of the top 10 best-selling games in Japan were DS games. Seven were by Nintendo.
A sequel to "DS Training to Strengthen Your Brain", a popular brain-training game developed under the guidance of a brain imaging professor, topped the chart with sales of over a million units since it was launched on December 29.
Nintendo also sold 231,770 units of a new game that helps to develop English skills in its first four days of sales, indicating that games for adults are accelerating in popularity.
Among games for Sony Corp.'s Playstation 2 games, Square Enix Co. Ltd.'s "Final Fantasy VII Dirge of Cerberus" topped the list, coming in fifth overall with about 365,495 units sold.
The top-selling game for Microsoft Corp.'s Xbox 360 game console was Tecmo Inc.'s "Dead or Alive 4", at a distant 26th place with 74,782 units sold.
Nintendo DS as well as Sony's Playstation Portable and Playstation 2 were the top-selling game devices in January while Xbox 360 console sales continued to lag.
Microsoft sold 112,657 Xbox 360 units since launching in December, significantly less than January unit sales of each of the top three best-selling devices, Enterbrain found.
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