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Pokémon is a media franchise owned by Nintendo, created in 1995 and debuted in 1996. It is the highest-grossing entertainment media franchise of all time, having grossed over $70 billion in revenue, surpassing Star Wars.

In terms of software sales, Pokemon is the second best-selling game franchise, having sold over 301.5 million units as of November 2017,[n 1] behind only Mario. In addition, Pokémon Go is the most-downloaded mobile game, with 800 million downloads.[3] The Pokémon video game series has shifted a total of over 1.102 billion units in retail sales and official downloads.

Beyond video games, the Pokémon Trading Card Game has also sold over 25.7 billion cards,[4] making it the second best-selling trading card game, after Yu-Gi-Oh![5] The Pokémon anime series is also very successful, with the films watched by more than 70 million million viewers at the box office, and the television series watched by more than 300 million viewers worldwide.

Video games

Main series

Releases with more than one million units. Sales figures based on Nintendo's official sales data. Gross revenue estimates based on official prices.

Year Platform Titles Sales
(millions)
Ref Gross
(million US$)
(no inflation)
Ref Gross
(million US$)
(with inflation)
1996 Pokémon Red/Green/Blue/Yellow 59.52 2384 3513
1996 GB Pokémon Red/Green/Blue 31.38 [6] 1271 [n 2] 1983
1998 GB Pokémon Yellow 14.64 [6] 454 [n 3] 682
2004 GBA Pokémon FireRed & LeafGreen 12 [6] 640 [n 4] 829
2016 3DS (VC) Pokémon Red/Green/Blue/Yellow 1.5 [7] 19 [n 5] 19
1999 Pokémon Gold/Silver/Crystal 42.21 1990 2663
1999 GBC Pokémon Gold & Silver 23.1 [6] 1016 [n 6] 1493
2000 GBC Pokémon Crystal 6.39 [6] 211 [n 7] 300
2009 DS Pokémon HeartGold & SoulSilver 12.72 [8] 763 [n 8] 870
2002 Pokémon Ruby/Sapphire/Emerald 36.6 1648 1996
2002 GBA Pokémon Ruby & Sapphire 16.22 [6] 689 [n 9] 937
2004 GBA Pokémon Emerald 6.32 [6] 256 [n 10] 332
2014 3DS Pokémon Omega Ruby & Alpha Sapphire 14.10 [9] 703 [n 11] 727
2006 Pokémon Diamond/Pearl/Platinum 25.27 1150 1368
2006 DS Pokémon Diamond & Pearl 17.67 [8] 778 [n 12] 945
2008 DS Pokémon Platinum 7.60 [6] 372 [n 13] 423
2010 Pokémon Black/White 24.16 1194 1316
2010 DS Pokémon Black & White 15.64 [8] 759 [n 14] 852
2012 DS Pokémon Black 2 & White 2 8.52 [6] 435 [n 15] 464
2013 Pokémon X/Y 16.29 953 1001
2013 3DS Pokémon X & Y 16.31 [9] 953 [n 16] 1001
2016 Pokémon Sun/Moon 23.61 1247.4 1265
2016 3DS Pokémon Sun & Moon 16.12 [9] 879.4 [n 17] 897
2017 3DS Pokémon Ultra Sun & Ultra Moon 7.72 [9] 368 [n 18] 368
Main series total 227.66 10,506.4 13,122

Spinoffs

Year Platform Title Sales
(millions)
Ref
1999 Pokémon Pinball series 6.68
1999 GB Pokémon Pinball 5.31 [6]
2003 GBA Pokémon Pinball: Ruby & Sapphire 1.37 [6]
1999 Pokémon Stadium series 9.95
1999 N64 Pokémon Stadium 5.46 [6]
2000 N64 Pokémon Stadium 2 2.54 [6]
2006 Wii Pokémon Battle Revolution 1.95 [6]
2003 Pokémon Colosseum series 3.78
2003 GC Pokémon Colosseum 2.41 [6]
2005 GC Pokémon XD: Gale of Darkness 1.37 [6]
2005 Pokémon Mystery Dungeon series 14.76
2005 GBA Pokémon Mystery Dungeon: Red Rescue Team 2.36 [6]
2005 DS Pokémon Mystery Dungeon: Blue Rescue Team 3.49 [6]
2007 DS Pokémon Mystery Dungeon: Explorers of Time
Pokémon Mystery Dungeon: Explorers of Darkness
4.88 [6]
2009 DS Pokémon Mystery Dungeon: Explorers of Sky 1.49 [6]
2013 3DS Pokémon Mystery Dungeon: Gates to Infinity 1.32 [6]
2015 3DS Super Pokémon Mystery Dungeon 1.22 [21]
2006 Pokémon Ranger series 6.81
2006 DS Pokémon Ranger 2.93 [6]
2008 DS Pokémon Ranger: Shadows of Almia 2.35 [6]
2010 DS Pokémon Ranger: Guardian Signs 1.53 [6]
Pokkén Tournament 2.41
2016 Wii U Pokkén Tournament 1 [22]
2017 Switch Pokkén Tournament DX 1.41 [n 19]
Other games
1998 GB Pokémon Trading Card Game 3.7 [6]
1999 N64 Pokémon Snap 3.63 [6]
2008 WiiWare My Pokemon Ranch 0.2 [24]
2009 WiiWare Pokémon Rumble 0.15 [24]
2010 Wii PokéPark Wii: Pikachu's Adventure 1.25 [6]
2011 3DS Pokémon Rumble Blast 1.38 [6]

Mobile

Year Platform Title Downloads
(millions)
Gross
(million US$)
Ref
2016 iOS
Android
Pokémon Go 800 2000 [3][25]

Franchise revenue

Table

Date Gross revenue Ref
Trillion JP¥
(no inflation)
Billion US$
(no inflation)
Billion US$
(with inflation)
1997 4 6 [n 20]
1998 7.28 11 [n 21]
1999 10.56 16 [n 22]
2000 14 20 [28]
2001 2 17 23 [n 23]
2002 3 26.1 35 [n 24]
March 2013 4 50 60 [n 25]
March 2015 4.4 54 65.1 [n 26]
September 2015 4.6 56 67.2 [n 27]
May 2016 4.8 63.4 74.6 [n 28]
March 2017 6 74.43 85.63 [n 29]

History

By June 1998, the Pokémon franchise was worth $4 billion in Japan.[26] By March 1999, Pokémon was generating revenues of nearly ¥400 billion ($3.28 billion) annually.[27] In Japan, the franchise earned ¥1 trillion by 2002, including ¥98 billion from Japanese software sales.[39]

Worldwide, the franchise earned ¥2 trillion by 2001.[29] By 2002, the franchise had earned ¥3 trillion,[31] including $15 billion from merchandise sales worldwide,[40] while the rest were earned from video games, anime, and trading cards. In 2005, a theme park was opened in Nagoya, Japan.[41] By 2013, the Pokemon franchise had earned ¥4 trillion in revenue.[33]

As of March 2017, the Pokémon franchise has grossed ¥6 trillion ($75 billion) in revenue. ¥78.87 billion ($988 million) was grossed from Pokémon films, which were seen by 74.33 million moviegoers, while the rest of the earnings were from the video games, trading card game, anime TV show, and licensed products.[4] This makes Pokémon the highest-grossing entertainment media franchise of all time, ahead of Star Wars ($42 billion), Harry Potter ($25 billion), James Bond ($6 billion), and The Lord of the Rings ($6 billion).[42]

Other media

Card game

Anime

Music

Merchandise

  • Food – 90 million sales (2 countries)
    • Pokémon Lunchables – 50 million packages (United States)[65]
    • Pokémon Curry – 40 million servings (Japan)[55]
  • Toys – 27.5 million sales (2 countries)
    • Burger King Pokéballs – 25 million (United States)[66]
    • Tenohira Pikachu – 2.2 million (Japan)[55]

Demographics

The regional breakdown of Pokemon franchise revenues:[4]

  • Japan: 35%
  • Overseas: 65%

The demographic breakdown of Pokemon Go users:[67]

  • Gender:
    • Female: 63%
    • Male: 37%
  • Age:
    • 13-17: 22%
    • 18-29: 46%
    • 30-50: 25%
    • Over 50: 6%
  • Income:
    • Under $50K: 45.8%
    • $50K to $100K: 19.6%
    • Over $100K: 34.6%
  • Region:
    • Urban: 90%
    • Rural: 10%

Awareness of Pokemon Go among the American population (325.7 million)[68] according to a survey in September 2017:[69]

  • Play it regularly – 13% – estimated 42,341,000 people
  • Play it from time to time – 17% – estimated 55,369,000 people
  • Know it, but never play it (not anymore) – 55% – estimated 179,135,000 people
  • Don't know Pokemon – 15% – estimated 48,855,000 people

Generations

First generation

The first generation of Pokemon consists of the worldwide Editions Pokemon Red, Blue and Yellow and Pokemon Green which was only sold in Japan. They sold 47.52 million units on the Game Boy and Virtual Console.

Second generation

The second generation consists of Pokemon Gold, Silver and Crystal. They sold 29.49 million units on the Game Boy Color.

Third generation

The third generation consists of Pokemon Ruby, Sapphire, and Emerald. They sold 22.54 million units on the Game Boy Advance.

FireRed and LeafGreen are first generation remakes. They sold 12 million units on the Game Boy Advance.

Fourth generation

The fourth generation consists of Pokemon Diamond, Pearl and Platinum, with 25.24 million sold units.

HeartGold and SoulSilver are second generation remakes. They sold 12.72 million units on the Nintendo DS.

Fifth generation

The fifth generation consists of two versions of each Pokemon Black and White, with 24.14 million sold units.

Sixth generation

The sixth generation consists of Pokemon X and Y, with 16.06 million sold units. In Japan, it has sold about 4.5 million.

Omega Ruby & Alpha Sapphire, a remake of the third generation for the Nintendo 3DS, was successful. Pre-orders were ahead of X & Y and launch sales have been good. In America, the game has sold 2.6 million with versions combined as of the end of December and 2.9 million by the end of February. It sold 476,000 in France by the end of December 2014.[70]. In Japan, it sold 2.5 million by the end of 2014. They exceeded 10 million by September 2015. In May 2016, the game exceeded 3 million in Europe. They sold 13.68 million units in total.

Pokemon Go is based off this generation and has broken most records in relation to mobile charts, including being #1 in top grossing in the most countries as well as the fastest to hit $600 million in revenue.[71]

Seventh generation

The seventh generation consists of Pokemon Sun and Moon. Due to the preceding hype built by a Superbowl Commercial, re-releases of the original games on digital storefronts, and Pokemon Go, it surpassed Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire as Nintendo's most preordered game. In November 2016, the games have sold 3.7 million in the Americas and 1.5 million in Europe, becoming Nintendo's fastest seller titles ever. With Japanese numbers, the games sold about 7.5 million copies in 2 weeks. In the United States, by December 2016, the game had sold 4.5 million copies, making it the fastest Nintendo game to reach 4 million. As of December 31, 2016, the game has shipped 14.69 million copies, already outselling Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire.

Notes

  1. Pokemon series software sales:
    • As of November 2017 – 300 million[1]
    • January-March 2018 – 8.67 million (April 2017–March 2018)[2] - 7.17 million (April-December 2017) = 1.5 million
  2. Average Pokémon Red/Green/Blue price: $40.50
  3. Average Pokémon Yellow price: $31
  4. Average Pokémon FireRed & LeafGreen price: $53.33
  5. Average Pokémon Red/Green/Blue/Yellow (Virtual Console) price: $12.50
  6. Average Pokémon Gold & Silver price: $44
  7. Average Pokémon Gold & Silver price: $33.05
  8. Average Pokémon HeartGold & SoulSilver price: $60
  9. Average Pokémon Ruby & Sapphire price: $42.50
  10. Average Pokémon Emerald price: $40.50
  11. Average Pokémon Omega Ruby & Alpha Sapphire price: $51
  12. Pokémon Diamond & Pearl:
    • Japan: 5.827 million units[10] at ¥4566 ($39.30) = $229.0011 million
    • United States: 4.33 million units[11] at $39.99 = $173.2 million
    • Elsewhere: 7.513 million units at £24.99 ($50) = $376 million
  13. Average Pokémon Platinum price: $49
  14. Average Pokémon Black & White price: $48.50
  15. Average Pokémon Black 2 & White 2 price: $51
  16. Average Pokémon X & Y price: $59
  17. Average Pokémon Sun & Moon price: $53.50
    • Japan: 6.2 million units[12][13] at ¥5378 ($48) = $415.4 million
    • Overseas: 9.85 million units at $47.10 average price = $464 million
  18. Pokémon Ultra Sun / Ultra Moon [2]
    • Japan – 2,440,000 units at ¥5378[15] = ¥13,122,320,000 ($123,708,666)[16]
    • Overseas – 5,070,000 units at $48.16 average = $244,171,200
  19. Pokkén Tournament DX
    • Japan – 250,000[23]
    • Overseas – 1.16 million[2]
  20. Japan gross up until 1997[26]
  21. Worldwide gross in 1998: $3.28 billion[27]
  22. Worldwide gross in 1999: $3.28 billion[27]
  23. Worldwide gross up until 2001: ¥2 trillion[29]
    • Currency conversion: $17 billion[30]
  24. Worldwide gross up until 2002: ¥3 trillion[31]
    • Currency conversion: $26.1 billion[32]
  25. Worldwide gross up until March 2013: ¥4 trillion[33] ($50 billion, or $61 billion with inflation)
    • Gross up until 2002: ¥3 trillion ($26.1 billion, or $36 billion with inflation)
    • Additional gross up until March 2013: ¥1 trillion ($23.9 billion, or $25 billion with inflation)
  26. Worldwide gross up until March 2015: ¥4.4 trillion[34] ($54 billion, or $65.1 billion with inflation)
    • Gross up until March 2013: ¥4 trillion ($50 billion, or $61 billion with inflation)
    • Gross from April 2013 to March 2015: ¥400 billion ($4 billion, or $4.1 billion with inflation)
  27. Worldwide gross up until September 2015: ¥4.6 trillion[35] ($56 billion, or $67.2 billion with inflation)
    • Gross up until March 2015: ¥4.4 trillion ($54 billion, or $65.1 billion with inflation)
    • Gross during April-September 2015: ¥200 billion ($2 billion,[36] or $2.1 billion with inflation)
  28. Worldwide gross up until May 2016: ¥4.8 trillion[37] ($63.4 billion, or $74.6 billion with inflation)
    • Gross up until September 2015: ¥4.6 trillion ($56 billion, or $67.2 billion with inflation)
    • Gross from April 2015 to May 2016: ¥800 billion ($7.4 billion)[38]
  29. Worldwide gross up until March 2017: ¥6 trillion[4] ($74.43 billion, or $85.63 billion with inflation)
    • Gross up until May 2016: ¥4.8 trillion ($63.4 billion, or $74.6 billion with inflation)
    • Gross from June 2016 to March 2017: ¥1.2 trillion ($11.03 billion)[38]
  30. Pokémon television series in United States (2000) – 8.1/29 rating/share,[47] out of 282.2 million population[48] = 22.8582 million viewers
  31. Pokémon television series in the Philippines (2015) – 9.3% share,[49] out of 101.7 million population[50] = 9.4581 million viewers


References

  1. http://www.pokemon.co.jp/corporate/en/services/
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 https://www.nintendo.co.jp/ir/pdf/2018/180426_4e.pdf
  3. 3.0 3.1 http://dc.cn.ubm-us.com/i/962166-license-global-april-2018
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 4.4 4.5 4.6 Pokémon in Figures (March 2017).
  5. https://web.archive.org/web/20110620054031/www.konami-digital-entertainment.co.jp/en/news/topics/2011/0614/
  6. 6.00 6.01 6.02 6.03 6.04 6.05 6.06 6.07 6.08 6.09 6.10 6.11 6.12 6.13 6.14 6.15 6.16 6.17 6.18 6.19 6.20 6.21 6.22 6.23 6.24 6.25 6.26 6.27 Nintendo software and hardware sales data from 1983 to present, December 2014
  7. Financial Results Briefing for Fiscal Year Ended March 2016. Nintendo (April 28, 2016). Retrieved on May 1, 2016.
  8. 8.0 8.1 8.2 IR Information : Sales Data - Top Selling Software Sales Units - Nintendo DS Software
  9. 9.0 9.1 9.2 9.3 http://www.nintendo.co.jp/ir/en/sales/software/3ds.html
  10. Famitsu: Japan's 21st Century Top 100 Selling Games
  11. http://www.the-magicbox.com/Chart-USPlatinum.shtml
  12. https://www.nintendo.co.jp/ir/pdf/2017/170427_6e.pdf
  13. https://www.nintendo.co.jp/ir/pdf/2018/180131_3e.pdf
  14. https://www.nintendo.co.uk/Games/Nintendo-3DS/Pokemon-Sun-1092368.html
  15. https://www.famitsu.com/cominy/?m=pc&a=page_h_title&title_id=34785
  16. Pokémon Ultra Sun / Ultra MoonJPY-USD currency conversion
  17. https://www.bullring.co.uk/shoponline/product/658762a93229/pokemon-ultra-moon-fan-edition
  18. http://fxtop.com/en/historical-exchange-rates.php?A=39.99&C1=GBP&C2=USD&DD1=31&MM1=03&YYYY1=2018&B=1&P=&I=1&DD2=31&MM2=03&YYYY2=2018
  19. https://www.nintendo.com/games/detail/pokemon-ultra-sun-3ds
  20. https://www.nintendo.com/games/detail/pokemon-ultra-moon-3ds
  21. https://www.nintendo.co.jp/ir/pdf/2016/160427_4e.pdf
  22. http://www.siliconera.com/2016/08/18/pokkn-tournament-surpasses-one-million-worldwide-shipments
  23. https://gamingbolt.com/pokken-tournament-dx-sales-hit-1-3-million-units-worldwide
  24. 24.0 24.1 http://ign.com/articles/2010/02/23/wiiware-virtual-console-sales-exposed
  25. https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2017-09-05/pokemon-s-ceo-hints-at-big-plans-for-games-on-smartphone-switch
  26. 26.0 26.1 http://cjonline.com/stories/082798/com_pokemon0827.shtml
  27. 27.0 27.1 27.2 http://thegia.com/archive/news/n990603a.html
  28. 28.0 28.1 Billboard (January 27, 2001)
  29. 29.0 29.1 http://www.iist.or.jp/wf/magazine/0196/0196_E.html
  30. 121 JPY per USD in 2001
  31. 31.0 31.1 Japanese Pop Industry (MIT)
  32. 115 JPY per USD in 2003
  33. 33.0 33.1 "Pokemon X · Y" is released on October 12, 2013, Famitsu
  34. https://web.archive.org/web/20151205162239/www.pokemon.co.jp/corporate/en/data/
  35. https://web.archive.org/web/20160628041935/www.pokemon.co.jp/corporate/en/data/
  36. 121 JPY per USD in 2015
  37. https://web.archive.org/web/20160721223226/www.pokemon.co.jp/corporate/en/data/
  38. 38.0 38.1 108.8 JPY per USD in 2016
  39. http://academic.csuohio.edu/makelaa/history/courses/his373/The%20Japan%20Times%20Online.htm
  40. http://archive.wired.com/wired/archive/9.09/topten_pr.html
  41. http://archive.li/4d5Jq
  42. Chew, Jonathan (December 24, 2015). Star Wars Franchise Worth More Than Harry Potter and James Bond, Combined. Fortune. Retrieved on November 29, 2016.
  43. https://v.qq.com/x/cover/tyeqdw6rof7t5ow.html
  44. 精灵宝可梦 第一季:第1集. Retrieved on May 29, 2018.
  45. http://www.indiantelevision.com/television/tv-channels/kids/pokemon-resonates-with-hungama-s-audiences-vijay-subramaniam-141126
  46. https://www.historychannel.com.au/this-day-in-history/pokemon-causes-seizures-throughout-japan/
  47. http://www.americanradiohistory.com/Archive-BC/BC-2000/BC-2000-04-03.pdf
  48. https://www.google.com/search?q=us+population+2000
  49. http://abscbnpr.com/national-tv-ratings-19-30-december-2015/
  50. https://www.google.com/search?q=philippines+population+2015
  51. SMTV Live
  52. Digital Play: The Interaction of Technology, Culture, and Marketing
  53. List of highest-grossing anime films
  54. Billboard (February 3, 2001)
  55. 55.0 55.1 55.2 Uchida, Mariko (2007). "The Content Business and Its Externalities: A Ripple Effect Model". Keio Communication Review (Keio University) 29. http://www.mediacom.keio.ac.jp/publication/pdf2007/pdf/Mariko%20UCHIDA.pdf.
  56. http://www.generasia.com/wiki/Mezase_Pokemon_Master
  57. Pokémon 2.B.A. Master
  58. Billboard (May 10, 2003)
  59. https://www.billboard.com/articles/news/7453639/true-story-behind-pokemon-theme-song
  60. Pokémon: The First Movie (soundtrack)
  61. Billboard (April 21, 2001)
  62. Don't Wanna Know
  63. http://kworb.net/youtube/video/ANS9sSJA9Yc.html
  64. http://kworb.net/spotify/artist/04gDigrS5kc9YWfZHwBETP.html
  65. https://www.nytimes.com/1999/04/26/business/mania-for-pocket-monsters-yields-billions-for-nintendo.html
  66. http://articles.latimes.com/2000/may/05/local/me-26913
  67. https://www.forbes.com/sites/ryanmac/2016/07/26/more-women-than-men-are-playing-pokemon-go-by-a-lot/
  68. https://www.google.com/search?q=us+population+2017
  69. https://www.statista.com/forecasts/790475/pokemon-go-awareness-in-the-us
  70. http://www.lefigaro.fr/secteur/high-tech/2015/01/22/01007-20150122ARTFIG00382-nintendo-premier-vendeur-de-jeux-video-en-france.php
  71. http://venturebeat.com/2016/10/20/pokemon-go-is-the-fastest-mobile-game-to-hit-600-million-in-revenues/


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See also: Best selling games · Best selling games worldwide
Pokemon-mainline-LTDs-100-1-

Famitsu Japan sales through October 2008 (courtesy Chart Get!)