Paper Mario: The Origami King Enjoys Franchise’s Best Debut

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Paper Mario: The Origami King has enjoyed the franchise's best-selling debut ever and was the third best-selling game of July 2020. It more than doubled the launch sales of Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door and broke the record of previous title holder Super Paper Mario.

How well has Paper Mario: The Origami King sold?

Industry analyst Mat Piscatella posted a Twitter thread comprising lots of NPD analysis of the gaming industry both in July 2020 and on a year-to-date basis. According to NPD data, Paper Mario: The Origami King was the third best-selling game of July 2020 and is the fastest-selling Paper Mario title in history. Its physical launch month dollar sales have more than doubled those of Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door (as well as surpassing second place seller, Super Paper Mario, as Thousand-Year Door is now the third best premiering Paper Mario game).

Unsurprisingly, July 2020's best-selling game is Sucker Punch's Ghost of Tsushima, which has had the best launch ever for a Sucker Punch game and has become the fifth best-selling game of 2020. Sucker Punch's open-world samurai game also achieved the fourth highest launch month dollar sales for a Sony-published title in US history. That includes all previous Sony consoles as well as major first-party and second-party titles.

Ghost of Tsushima is one of 2020's best-selling games
Open-world PS4 exclusive Ghost of Tsushima is July 2020's best-selling game.

Gaming spending this year in general is up significantly on last year's figures. Piscatella says that year-to-date content spending – that's between January and August – reached $23 billion this year, up 21% compared to the same period last year. Content in this instance is defined as both physical and digital software, as well as subscription spending, DLC, and microtransactions across all platforms. In July alone, gaming content spending hit $3.3 billion, a 34% increase on a year ago, with digital spending in particular increasing 41%.

Here are the top ten best-selling games of 2020 on a year-to-date basis according to Piscatella and the NPD's analysis:

  1. Call of Duty: Modern Warfare
  2. Animal Crossing: New Horizons (doesn't include Nintendo eShop sales)
  3. The Last of Us: Part II
  4. Final Fantasy VII Remake
  5. Ghost of Tsushima
  6. Dragon Ball Z: Kakarot
  7. MLB: The Show 20
  8. Resident Evil 3
  9. Mario Kart 8 Deluxe (doesn't include Nintendo eShop sales)
  10. Mortal Kombat 11

Interestingly, 6 of the top 10 best selling games of the year are all platform exclusives (Animal Crossing, Last of Us, Final Fantasy VII Remake, Ghost of Tsushima, MLB: The Show 20, Mario Kart 8 Deluxe) highlighting the importance of exclusives as we head into the new console launch cycle. If you'd like to read Piscatella's full thread with more in-depth analysis, you can do so right here.

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How do you feel about Paper Mario: The Origami King's success? Are you playing Ghost of Tsushima? Let us know in the comments below!



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Joseph Allen

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Dark Souls changed my life, and I'm here to spread the good news. I like pretty much all sorts of games, but I judge everything by its proximity to our Lord and saviour, Dark Souls.

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