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Japan goes bonkers for Halo, Lair and PSP

Oct 3, 2007

It'sa bit early to start proclaiming that "Microsoft wins Japan!" or the like (though that was our knee-jerk headline of choice) but we're still gobsmacked at the news that Halo 3 has taken first place in last week's Japanese sales charts, beating a Pokemon DS game into the bargain.

Bungie's 360-powered threequel managed to shift 59,000 copies in Japan, four thousand more than Pokemon's Mysterious Dungeon: Toki on Nintendo DS. And this in a landwhereFPS games traditionally fail to even dent theRPG-focused software charts. But there's more madness ahoy...

Famitsu, the oft-quoted (but actually fairly humdrum) Japanese gaming mag has been having a Sony love-in. It handed out a positively barmy 34/40 to PS3's "deeply flawed" Lair - a game that suffered a mauling from most reviewers, and boasts a pitiful Metacritic rating of 55/100. Comparison note: The exact same mark was given to Project Gotham Racing 4. But there's more...

Because, thanks to a slim redesign, Metal Gear Solid: Portable Ops + and Final Fantasy VII: Crisis Core, sales of PlayStation Portable in Japan nearly tripled last week. More than 270,000 PSPs were sold in a week, putting the handheld firmly at the top of the hardware charts, a full 200,000 ahead of Nintendo DS figures of 70,523. We'll spell that out for you - PSP is outselling DS! Will the wonders never cease?