Japanese consumer magazine Famitsu has listed the top ten most successful game developers in Japan, according to the number of units of software sold in Japan during 2004.
Toping the list is Pokémon
originator Game Freak, with almost 4 million units sold in Japan alone last year. The second highest ranked developers are Nintendo’s first party teams, who saw success last year with titles such as Pikmin 2
and the Famicom Mini
(aka NES Classics
The third highest ranked was role-playing developer Level 5, followed by Capcom's internal teams, Konami’s Tokyo based studio and the developers of Koei’s massively successful Dynasty
and Samurai Warriors
As can be seen, several of these developers had only one game on release last year and yet still managed to post Japanese-only sales figures that would dwarf many Western titles – with Dragon Quest VIII
accounting for over 3 million sales alone.
This magnitude of success illustrates exactly why some Japanese developers and publishers are still happy to cater almost solely to their home market, without needing to dilute their products in order to attract a wider global audience. However, Capcom's self-avowed attempts to reach a Western market with titles such as Shadow Of Rome
shows that worldwide reach is increasingly important, even to the largest Japanese publishers.
|Pos.||Developer||Units Sold||No. of titles||Most Notable Release|
|1||Game Freak||3,999,760||3||Pokemon FireRed/Leaf Green|
|2||Nintendo||3,558,079||13||Famicom Mini series|
|3||Level 5||3,231,288||1||Dragon Quest VIII|
|5||Konami Computer Entertainment Tokyo||1,867,314||3||World Soccer Winning Eleven 8|
|6||Omega Force||1,696,286||3||Samuari Warriors|
|7||ArtePiazza/Matrix||1,611,155||1||Dragon Quest V|
|8||Namco||1,059,371||6||Ace Combat 5|
|9||Sammy||902,105||1||Jissen Pachi-Slot Hisshouhou|
|10||Hudson||833,318||2||Mario Party 6|