Splatoon 3 sales outpace Animal Crossing and Pokemon after three days in Japan

Splatoon 3
(Image credit: Nintendo)

Splatoon 3's Japanese sales after three days are outpacing Animal Crossing: New Horizons, Pokemon Legends: Arceus, and more.

Earlier today on September 12, Nintendo announced Splatoon 3 had surpassed 3.45 million sales throughout Japan after just three days on the domestic market. For comparison in the series, the sequel has already outsold Splatoon 2's sales in the first three months (opens in new tab) of launch in Japan.

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Looking elsewhere at Nintendo's other big launches in Japan, Splatoon 3 is well ahead of the pack. Animal Crossing: New Horizons, an absolute blockbuster release for Nintendo and one of the best-selling Switch to date games ever, only managed to sell 1.88 million copies over three days in Japan (opens in new tab), for comparison.

At the time of New Horizons' launch in 2020, it was the single biggest launch for a Switch game ever in Japan, beating out Pokemon Sword and Shield's combined figures of 1.3 million after three days in Japan (opens in new tab). Now, Splatoon 3 has easily outstripped both those launches by quite some stretch, actually outselling all three games combined in the first three days in Japan.

This means Splatoon 3 is ultimately the Nintendo Switch's biggest-ever game launch in Japan since the console first launched over five years ago in March 2017. We're yet to hear any launch figures from Nintendo for other regions throughout the world, but it's clear that after just a few days on the market, Splatoon 3 is a certified hit for Nintendo. 

Check out our full Splatoon 3 review to see what we made of the latest offerings from Nintendo's colorful shooter saga. 

Hirun Cryer is a freelance reporter and writer with Gamesradar+ based out of U.K. After earning a degree in American History specializing in journalism, cinema, literature, and history, he stepped into the games writing world, with a focus on shooters, indie games, and RPGs, and has since been the recipient of the MCV 30 Under 30 award for 2021. In his spare time he freelances with other outlets around the industry, practices Japanese, and enjoys contemporary manga and anime.