Nintendo has announced that Pokémon Legends: Arceus has sold 6.5 million copies in its first week of release – meaning the somewhat experimental new title is selling faster than the recent mainline Pokémon games.
Announced on Twitter (below), Nintendo thanked fans a week after the game arrived, announcing the huge sales figure. We’re waiting for official word from Nintendo, but this likely puts Arceus among the upper echelons of the fastest-selling games on Switch.
Thank you to the more than 6.5 million explorers worldwide who have already embarked on an exciting new adventure in #PokemonLegendsArceus!
We hope you’re loading up on more potato mochi before your next research mission! pic.twitter.com/u1MKRHkhhD
— Nintendo of America (@NintendoAmerica) February 4, 2022
It looks as though The Pokémon Company’s experiment in a new kind of RPG is paying off, given that Arceus has outpaced both Pokémon Sword and Shield and Pokémon Brilliant Diamond and Shining Pearl’s first weeks on sale. Both the last mainline games, and the DS remakes, managed to sell 6 million copies in the same time on sale.
The next test for Arceus is whether it can continue that trajectory – Brilliant Diamond and Shining Pearl are currently 9th on the all-time Switch best-sellers list, Pokémon: Let’s Go, Pikachu! and Let’s Go, Eevee! are at 8th, and Sword and Shield sit at 5th. If Arceus can manage to beat any or all of them, it will be testament to fans’ interest in a new kind of Pokémon game.
While not confirmed, it seems likely that Arceus is now the second fastest-selling Switch game of all time. Animal Crossing: New Horizons became the fastest-seller when it hit 11.77 million copies in 11 days on sale. It seems unlikely that Arceus will surpass that number, but with the previous fastest-seller being Sword and Shield, that puts Arceus in a strong position.
Given that the story leaves itself open for DLC, it’s quite possible that Arceus will see further sales spikes down the line, too.
We gave the game a 7/10 review, calling it “an ambitious revamp that successfully revolutionizes the defining Pokemon experiences of catching and battling, but is unfortunately set in a drab, empty, and at times tedious world.”