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3DS About to Cross Three Million Mark, Mario Kart Sells 420,000 Units

Return to profitability for Nintendo, and to smiles for Satoru Iwata.

3DS will soon cross the three million sales mark, Nintendo CEO Satoru Iwata told Nikkei in an interview yesterday. This will be two weeks ahead of the DS.

Iwata told the paper that the 3DS has regained its vigor following the August price drop and release of major titles. He also explained the phenomenon of high hardware sales and low software sales that we saw in October, saying that players were preparing for the release of upcoming titles.

Nintendo expects the system to reach the four million mark before its one year anniversary, Iwata said.

Iwata also gave an indication of how well Mario Kart is performing. Released on December 1, the game sold around 420,000 units in its first week. This is around double that of the DS version. We should be getting specific figures tomorrow when Media Create releases its weekly sales report.

While the above figures are all for the Japanese market, Iwata also briefly mentioned international markets. In North America and Europe, the holiday sales rush started about two weeks later than usual, Iwata believes. However, he said that Nintendo can look forward to performance from these markets. He also noted that the Mario titles are off to a better start internationally compared to Japan.

On the financial front, while Nintendo is still expected to post an overall loss for the current fiscal year, Iwata said to expect a recovery of profits in the next fiscal term.

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