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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 earned $60 billion in revenue, surpassing Star Wars.

In terms of software sales, Pokemon is the second best-selling game franchise, having sold over 295.44 million software units as of 2017,[n 1] behind only Mario. In addition, Pokemon Go is the most-downloaded mobile game, with more than 600 million downloads.[3] Pokémon Trading Card Game has also sold over 21.5 billion cards,[1] making it the second best-selling trading card game, after Yu-Gi-Oh![4]

Sales figures

Releases with more than one million sold units:

Main series

Year Titles Platforms Sales
(millions)
Notes
1996 First generation 59.52
1996 Pokémon Red/Green/Blue/Yellow 47.52
  • Red/Green/Blue (GB) - 31.38 million[5]
  • Yellow (GB) - 14.64 million[5]
  • Red/Green/Blue/Yellow (VC) - 1.5 million[6]
2004 Pokémon FireRed & LeafGreen GBA 12 [5]
1999 Second generation 23.1
1999 Pokémon Gold/Silver GBC 23.10 [5]
2000 Pokémon Crystal GBC 6.39 [5]
2009 Pokémon HeartGold & SoulSilver DS 12.72 [7]
2002 Third generation 36.28
2002 Pokémon Ruby/Sapphire GBA 16.22 [5]
2004 Pokémon Emerald GBA 6.32 [5]
2014 Pokémon Omega Ruby & Alpha Sapphire 3DS 13.74 [2]
2006 Fourth generation 25.27
2006 Pokémon Diamond & Pearl DS 17.67 [7]
2008 Pokémon Platinum DS 7.60 [5]
2010 Fifth generation 24.16
2010 Pokémon Black and White DS 15.64 [7]
2012 Pokémon Black 2 and White 2 DS 8.52 [5]
2013 Sixth generation 16.11
2013 Pokémon X and Y 3DS 16.11 [2]
2016 Seventh generation 15.44
2016 Pokémon Sun and Moon 3DS 15.44 [2]
1999 Console series 13.73
1999 Pokémon Stadium N64 5.46 [5]
2000 Pokémon Stadium 2 N64 2.54 [5]
2003 Pokémon Colosseum GC 2.41 [5]
2005 Pokémon XD: Gale of Darkness GC 1.37 [5]
2006 Pokémon Battle Revolution Wii 1.95 [5]
Main series total 231.81

Spinoffs

Year Platform Title Sales
(millions)
Reference
1999 Pinball 6.68
1999 GB Pokémon Pinball 5.31 [5]
2003 GBA Pokémon Pinball: Ruby & Sapphire 1.37 [5]
2005 Mystery Dungeon 14.76
2005 GBA Pokémon Mystery Dungeon: Red Rescue Team 2.36 [5]
2005 DS Pokémon Mystery Dungeon: Blue Rescue Team 3.49 [5]
2007 DS Pokémon Mystery Dungeon: Explorers of Time and Explorers of Darkness 4.88 [5]
2009 DS Pokémon Mystery Dungeon: Explorers of Sky 1.49 [5]
2013 3DS Pokémon Mystery Dungeon: Gates to Infinity 1.32 [5]
2015 3DS Super Pokémon Mystery Dungeon 1.22 [8]
2006 Ranger 6.81
2006 DS Pokémon Ranger 2.93 [5]
2008 DS Pokémon Ranger: Shadows of Almia 2.35 [5]
2010 DS Pokémon Ranger: Guardian Signs 1.53 [5]
Other 10.96
1998 GB Pokémon Trading Card Game 3.7 [5]
1999 N64 Pokémon Snap 3.63 [5]
2010 Wii PokéPark Wii: Pikachu's Adventure 1.25 [5]
2011 3DS Pokémon Rumble Blast 1.38 [5]
2016 Wii U Pokkén Tournament 1 [9]

Mobile

Year Platform Title Downloads
(millions)
Revenue
(million US$)
References
2016
  • iOS
  • Android
Pokémon Go 600 1000 [3][10][11]

Gross revenue

By 1998, the Pokémon franchise was worth $4 billion in Japan.[12] By 1999, Pokémon was generating revenues of nearly ¥400 billion ($3.28 billion) annually.[13] In Japan, the franchise earned ¥1 trillion ($13 billion) by 2002, including ¥98 billion ($1.23 billion) from Japanese software sales.[14]

Worldwide, the franchise earned ¥2 trillion ($25 billion) by 2001.[15] By 2002, the franchise had earned ¥3 trillion ($38 billion),[16] including $15 billion from merchandise sales worldwide,[17] while the rest were earned from video games, anime, and trading cards. In 2005, a theme park was opened in Nagoya, Japan.[18] By 2013, the Pokemon franchise had earned ¥4 trillion ($50 billion) in revenue.[19]

As of May 2016, the Pokémon franchise has grossed ¥4.8 trillion ($60 billion) in revenue. ¥76.72 billion ($962 million) was grossed from the Pokémon films, while the rest of the earnings were from the video games, trading card game, anime TV show, and licensed products.[1] This makes Pokémon the highest-grossing entertainment media franchise of all time, surpassing Star Wars ($42 billion), Harry Potter ($25 billion), James Bond ($6 billion), and The Lord of the Rings ($6 billion).[20]

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.

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

Second generation

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

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

Third generation

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

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.[21]. 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.

Fourth generation

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

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.

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.[22]

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. If 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. Pokémon:
    • 1996 to May 2016 - Over 280 million[1]
    • Pokémon Sun and Moon (November-December 2016) - 15.44 million[2]


References

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 Pokémon in Figures (May 2016).
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 http://www.nintendo.co.jp/ir/en/sales/software/3ds.html
  3. 3.0 3.1 http://www.kotaku.com.au/2016/11/pokemon-go-hits-600-million-downloads/
  4. https://www.konami-digital-entertainment.co.jp/en/news/topics/2011/0614/
  5. 5.00 5.01 5.02 5.03 5.04 5.05 5.06 5.07 5.08 5.09 5.10 5.11 5.12 5.13 5.14 5.15 5.16 5.17 5.18 5.19 5.20 5.21 5.22 5.23 5.24 5.25 5.26 5.27 Nintendo software and hardware sales data from 1983 to present, December 2014
  6. Financial Results Briefing for Fiscal Year Ended March 2016. Nintendo (April 28, 2016). Retrieved on May 1, 2016.
  7. 7.0 7.1 7.2 IR Information : Sales Data - Top Selling Software Sales Units - Nintendo DS Software
  8. https://www.nintendo.co.jp/ir/pdf/2016/160427_4e.pdf
  9. http://www.siliconera.com/2016/08/18/pokkn-tournament-surpasses-one-million-worldwide-shipments
  10. https://techcrunch.com/2017/02/01/report-pokemon-go-has-now-crossed-1-billion-in-revenue/
  11. http://venturebeat.com/2017/01/17/pokemon-go-generated-revenues-of-950-million-in-2016/
  12. http://cjonline.com/stories/082798/com_pokemon0827.shtml
  13. http://thegia.com/archive/news/n990603a.html
  14. http://academic.csuohio.edu/makelaa/history/courses/his373/The%20Japan%20Times%20Online.htm
  15. http://www.iist.or.jp/wf/magazine/0196/0196_E.html
  16. Japanese Pop Industry (MIT)
  17. http://archive.wired.com/wired/archive/9.09/topten_pr.html
  18. http://archive.li/4d5Jq
  19. "Pokemon X · Y" is released on October 12, 2013, Famitsu
  20. Chew, Jonathan (December 24, 2015). Star Wars Franchise Worth More Than Harry Potter and James Bond, Combined. Fortune. Retrieved on November 29, 2016.
  21. http://www.lefigaro.fr/secteur/high-tech/2015/01/22/01007-20150122ARTFIG00382-nintendo-premier-vendeur-de-jeux-video-en-france.php
  22. http://venturebeat.com/2016/10/20/pokemon-go-is-the-fastest-mobile-game-to-hit-600-million-in-revenues/


Best selling franchises
Best selling franchises · Highest grossing franchises

Mario · Pokemon · Final Fantasy · Street Fighter · Sonic · Dragon Quest · Call of Duty · Grand Theft Auto · Madden NFL · The Legend of Zelda · Gran Turismo · Resident Evil · Halo · Metal Gear Solid · (more)

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

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

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