Dragon Quest is an enormously popular series in Japan, even if its popularity is often overlooked in the west. It’s been eight year since the launch of a mainline game of the franchise (not counting Dragon Quest X, which is a MMORPG), and Japanese gamers appear to be more than ready to pounce.
Like every branch of Amazon, Amazon Japan holds a best sellers chart that includes pre-orders and is weighed by time, meaning that older purchases and pre-orders weigh less than more recent ones. When a game stays consistently at the top for a while, it’s a good indication that it’ll sell very well.
Since Dragon Quest XI received its local release date of July 29th for PS4 and 3DS on April 11th, which also marked the availability of pre-orders, the game remained almost consistently at the very top of the Amazon chart for the whole time.
There have been a few fluctuations, the most relevant of which has been with the launch of Mario Kart 8 Deluxe, which briefly shot at the top only to be overtaken again shortly after, Yet, the PS4 and 3DS versions of Dragon Quest XI have occupied the two top spots for the vast majority of the time since they were made available.
Another interesting point, is that the PS4 version of the game has always been ahead of its 3DS counterpart, indicating that the home console version with much better visuals is more popular among Amazon Japan customers than the more nostalgic portable version, despite the enormous difference in installed base.
August 2nd will certainly be an interesting day, as we’ll get precise debut sales data from Media Create, but every element at our disposal appears to indicate that the new chapter of the Dragon Quest franchise will launch with massive numbers. What remains to be seen is just how massive they will be, and which platform will ultimately be on top.
The previously announced Nintendo Switch version also remains a mystery, with both Square Enix and Nintendo keeping it closely under wraps, going as far as avoiding any mention of it in any kind of promotional material. It’ll be interesting to see if the release window will be announced before or after the launch of the PS4 and 3DS versions, and whether Nintendo fans will be willing to possibly double dip or not.