Nintendo Switch Mario Kart FiguresSource: Rebecca Spear / iMore

Nintendo might not use the latest technology compared to Microsoft's Xbox Series X or Sony's PS5, but that hasn't stopped the Japanese video game company from performing incredibly well in 2020. Since Nintendo is doing so well this year, we can expect to see many great things from the company in 2021 and beyond.

So, how do we know Nintendo is doing well? On November 5, Nintendo released its latest financial earnings report, which, among other things, revealed that Nintendo was confident enough to increase its financial forecast midway through the fiscal year. According to Bloomberg, Nintendo is projecting 50% more profit than it initially expected and we haven't even hit the holiday 2020 season in earnest yet.

Nintendo's increased sales are largely due to the fact that many people are stuck at home during the pandemic and have turned to gaming for entertainment. In 2020, the Nintendo Switch has become Nintendo's second best-selling console of all time at 68.30 million units sold. This year's success was also helped immensly by the fact that Animal Crossing: New Horizons released at the start of the Coronavirus coming to North America and unexpectedly boomed into a phenomenon.

Nintendo's best-selling consoles

How Nintendo's consoles stack up next to each other as of September 30, 2020.

Rank Console Hardware sales Software sales Release date
1. Wii 101.63 million 921.85 million November 19, 2006
2. Nintendo Switch 68.30 million 459.49 million March 3, 2017
3. NES 61.91 million 500.01 million October 18, 1985
4. SNES 49.10 million 379.06 million November 21, 1990
5. Nintendo 64 32.93 million 224.97 million September 29, 1996
6. GameCube 21.74 million 207.57 million November 18, 2001
7. Wii U 13.56 million 103.27 million November 18, 2012

Animal Crossing has sold over 26.04 million copies since March 2020. This makes it the second best-selling Nintendo Switch game of all time, only beaten by Mario Kart 8 Deluxe, which according to the latest report currently wears the crown at 28.99 million copies sold since 2017. And that's after competing with dozens of other popular Nintendo Switch titles like Pokémon Sword and Shield and the Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild that have also sold in the millions through the years.

Top 10 best-selling Nintendo Switch games

How the best Nintendo Switch games stand as of September 30, 2020.

Rank Title Copies sold Release date
1. Mario Kart 8 Deluxe 28.99 million April 28, 2017
2. Animal Crossing: New Horizons 26.04 million March 20, 2020
3. Super Smash Bros. Ultimate 21.10 million December 7, 2018
4. The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild 19.74 million March 3, 2017
5. Pokémon Sword and Shield 19.02 million November 15, 2019
6. Super Mario Odyssey 18.99 million October 27, 2017
7. Pokémon: Let's Go, Pikachu! and Let's Go, Eevee! 12.49 million November 16, 2018
8. Super Mario Party 12.10 million October 5, 2018
9. Splatoon 2 11.27 million July 21, 2017
10. New Super Mario Bros. U Deluxe 8.32 million January 11, 2019

It's surprising in some ways to see just how well Nintendo is doing considering how badly the company floundered with its flopped Wii U console from 2012 through early 2017. Unlike it's other gaming console competitors, Nintendo chose to focus on the playing experience rather than focusing on intense graphics or processing power. In that way, it's held it's own and has carved a path for itself that Sony and Microsoft cannot fully follow.

What this means for Nintendo's future

Nintendo LogoSource: Nintendo

So what does the future hold in store for Nintendo and Nintendo fans? Well, due to the Nintendo Switch's success, Nintendo plans on extending the life-cycle of this hybrid gaming system rather then moving on to something else entirely. This gaming company has a history of releasing multiple versions of its most popular hardware as is evidence by the line of handhelds released from 2004 through 2015:

  • DS
  • DS Lite
  • DSi
  • DSi XL
  • 3DS / 2DS
  • 3DS XL / 2DS XL
  • New 3DS XL / New 2DS XL

I'm confident that this means we'll be getting newer versions of the Switch in the near future, like we did with the Switch Lite and Switch V2. It's already been rumored that a Nintendo Switch Pro console with potentialy more powerful graphics and processing power might be in the works. And some sources claim that Nintendo will release or at least announce an upgraded Switch console in Q1 2021.

At any rate, with this year's surge of profits I'm sure Nintendo will continue to do what it does best - explore both new gaming experiences and hardware while providing its fans with newer entries for its popular franchises. Afterall, we still have Bayonetta 3, the Breath of the Wild Sequel, and Metroid Prime 4 to look forward to. Not to mention, that Nintendo is in a cushy position to fund new gaming enterprises.

Nintendo's future looks bright

Nintendo has done really well for itself in 2020, thanks to everyone being stuck inside during the pandemic. The Nintendo Switch is now the second best-selling console Nintendo has produced and will continue to sell well as we dive into the holiday 2020 season and beyond.

With so much profit coming in, Nintendo is set up comfortably to continue experimenting and producing hardward and games with Nintendo's special brand of charm. One thing is for sure, we can expect more greatness from Nintendo in the coming years.

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