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NPD Reveals Final Fantasy 15 Had the Best Launch of the Franchise

by Jose Belmonte

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The NPD Group released today its report on the software sold in December 2016 in North America, revealing that Final Fantasy 15 had the best launch in the history of the long-running franchise. Square Enix’s production improves on the physical sales of the previous main entry by 19%, and the total revenue in dollars including digital sales by 54%.

This was enough to make the title the second best selling game of the month, after Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare, in the overall software chart, while it is actually the top selling title for PlayStation 4. The game also performed well on Xbox One, being the third best selling title. It is a very interesting performance for the Microsoft platform, considering that Japanese role playing games don’t have a strong record there. The game was also able to reach the top 10 of best selling games of the year just with its first month sales.

This is a crucial achievement for the project lead by Hajime Tabata, since it solidifies his personal triumph at completing which is now known as one of the most tumultuous game developments in history. The game was officially unveiled under the name of Final Fantasy Versus 13 in 2006, with Kingdom Hearts’ creator Tetsuya Nomura acting as director. By 2013 it had been re-introduced as Final Fantasy 15, Tabata had replaced Nomura as the lead developer, the project had shifted from being a PlayStation 3 exclusive to a multiplatform release for PlayStation 4 and Xbox One, and the original story presented now served as a mere inspiration for what the final script would be.

It also serves to ease the concern about the game’s underperformance in the Japanese market, where first week sales could barely reach half the numbers of Final Fantasy 13.

Elsewhere in the charts, Battlefield 1 improved 10% on the revenue generated by last year’s Star Wars Battlefront, while Pokémon Sun and Moon were the best selling portable games, making the best numbers combined of the franchise since 2007.

Best selling games in December 2016 by revenue:

  1. Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare
  2. Final Fantasy XV
  3. Battlefield 1
  4. Madden NFL 17
  5. NBA 2K17
  6. Watch Dogs 2
  7. Grand Theft Auto V
  8. Pokémon Sun
  9. FIFA 17
  10. Pokémon Moon

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