It’s a well-known fact that when the Playstation Vita launched in Japan last year, sales dropped off after an impressive start. 325,000 units were shipping in it’s opening weekend on sale, before plummeting to just 72,000 the following week and have been falling further each week until then. Thankfully, according to figures released by Sony today, the Western launch seems to be more successful, at least at this point.
Sony has announced that 1.2 million Vita’s have been sold so far worldwide. Allowing for the 579,000 that have been purchased so far in Japan, that leaves a not unimpressive 621,000 sold in its first half-week throughout the other territories. Around 79% of all Vita units sold have been the Wi-Fi only model, which is pretty much what was expected with the more expensive 3G model something of an un-needed luxury at present.
If you take the first week sales of the 3DS across Japan, Europe and the US a more or less identical number of 1.21 million is reached, although that is based on a full week and also doesn’t include the other minor territories like Australia and other Asian countries. At this stage then, both consoles seem to have sold in fairly similar numbers, which is heartening to those of us scared that the Vita might become an expensive (and lovely!) white elephant.
In addition to these hardware figures, Sony also announced that 2 million games have been sold, giving an attachment rate of just under 2 games per Vita. It is unknown whether this refers to all games purchased, or just retail versions. Speaking of which, the UK games charts have shown Uncharted: Golden Abyss and FIFA Soccer 12 riding high, obtaining the first and second spots for most sold game at retail last week, with Wipeout: 2048 coming in at number 11.
It will also be interesting to see the information on PSN sales, to determine whether Vita owners prefer to own the cartridge copies of their favorite games. The price difference on some titles is significant, whereas other games like FIFA are more expensive to purchase digitally, and also within the UK some games like Ninja Gaiden Sigma Plus and the Ubisoft titles are more difficult to find on the high street and so might have significantly higher download figures.
All in all these numbers are fairly impressive, if not earth shattering. Allowing for the relatively high price of the hardware and the state of the economy at the moment things seem to have started on a positive note for the newest member of the PlayStation family, though the real test will come in the weeks and months ahead.