It’s a dog-eat-dog world in the gaming market with huge titles constantly going head to head. Surprisingly, it seems a stylized and focused shooter has toppled an HD epic. Both Elden Ring and Splatoon 3 were released this year to a grand reception, but the latter has officially sold more units in Japan. Both FromSoftware and Nintendo are Japanese-based companies with successful track records, which technically makes them business rivals. Nintendo has been around a lot longer, however, which may have contributed Splatoon 3 overtaking Elden Ring.
Splatoon 3 Outsells Elden Ring in Japan
The Soulslike genre came to be in 2009 with Demon’s Souls. Splatoon, meanwhile, arguably helped keep the Wii U afloat in 2015. Both generated popular series down the line, with Elden Ring and Splatoon 3 gathering a crowd before releasing in 2022. Still, Even though the FromSoftware title had a several-month head start, the Nintendo IP has already surpassed it in terms of units sold in Japan — despite having just come out in September.
This is can be seen as both surprising and understandable. Nintendo has a much wider player base and the Splatoon series quickly developed popularity among casual and competitive players. Elden Ring is still pulling in numbers but will struggle to compete against a fast-paced, colorful, multiplayer title.
It’s interesting that these two titles are being compared since they could not be more different. Like other Soulslike games, Elden Ring prides itself on stunning visuals, rich lore, and a high level of difficulty. It’s definitely not a game that the average player would take up unless they were prepared to fight and fail multiple times. Meanwhile, Splatoon 3 is the sequel to a series of games revolving around teams of energetic beings that spray ink, use various gadgets, and swim around as squids. Splatoon 2 has an ongoing eSports tournament with a large following, and it’s likely that Splatoon 3 will follow.
Even though FromSoftware and Nintendo may not share the same playing field, they are two of Japan’s biggest gaming companies. Both their 2022 release have sold incredibly well, but Splatoon 3 ended up having a wider reach than Elden Ring.
Will Quick is a freelance media wizard living in Spain. When he's not gaming or writing, he's doodling comics or whatever else pops in his head.