Top 30 Japanese Video Games 03/30/03

Our weekly rundown of what's hot in Japan for the week ending March 30, courtesy of Famitsu magazine.

Here are the top 30 best selling games in Japan for the week ending March 30, courtesy of the editors and marketing research types at Famitsu magazine.

The final week of the March release rush coincided with the spring vacations of most Japanese students this time around, resulting in a sales surge of the like we haven't seen since Christmas. Riding the crest of this wave is the latest game in the Super Robot Taisen series, a set of strategy sims starring robots from literally dozens of Japanese anime series�a new game in the series has been released on the last Thursday of March for the past three years. SRT Alpha sold nearly 331,000 copies in its first week, a respectable figure until compared to the 436,000 copies Super Robot Taisen Impact managed in its first week last year. Following up to the first PS2 game in the series is hard for any title, we suppose.

Second in the large list of newcomers is Dragon Quest Monsters: Caravan Heart, the first GBA title in Enix's portable monster-collector series. Despite the big name it only sold half as much as the last game (DQM: Cobi's Adventure) fared in its first week back in February 2001�of course, Cobi was undoubtedly helped by Enix dovetailing it with Dragon Quest VII's release six months earlier. There's also the fact Caravan's first-week sales only account for two days on the shelves; in the long run, chances are that it'll be the same long-seller its predecessor was. Cheers.

  1. Dai 2-ji Super Robot Taisen Alpha (Banpresto, PS2) [330,559 / NEW]
  2. Dragon Quest Monsters: Caravan Heart (Enix, GBA) [210,427 / NEW]
  3. Taiko no Tatsujin: Doki! Shinkyoku darake no Harumatsuri (Namco, PS2) [102,940 / NEW]
    An expansion disk to Taiko no Tatsujin, Namco's drum-pummeling music game that's become a semi-sensation among Japanese gamers. The fact that it outsold all the individual Soul Calibur II's may be enough to make fighter fans shed tears.
  4. Final Fantasy X-2 (Square, PS2) [80,295 / 1,735,007]
  5. Soul Calibur II (Namco, PS2) [79,303 / NEW]
    A note on SCII's sales: Namco sold only 58 percent of the PS2 Soul Caliburs they shipped, a rather low figure compared to the 85 and 92 percent of original shipments the GC and Xbox versions sold respectively. This led to the rather amusing spectacle of an Xbox game actually being hard to track down in Japanese stores�normally they're piled to the ceiling from slow sales.
  6. Wario Ware, Inc.: Mega Microgame$ (Nintendo, GBA) [69,558 / 169,677]
  7. Soul Calibur II (Namco, GC) [47,620 / NEW]
  8. Pok�mon Ruby/Sapphire (Nintendo, GBA) [39,467 / 4,243,909]
  9. The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past (Nintendo, GBA) [38,471 / 170,561]
  10. Sanyo Pachinko Paradise 8: Shin Umi Monogatari (Irem, PS2) [38,448 / NEW]
    Take note, closet Irem fans: R-Type Final hits stores June in Japan.
  11. Mega Man Battle Network 3 Blue (Capcom, GBA) [28,708 / NEW]
  12. Arc the Lad: Twilight of the Spirits (Sony, PS2) [28,366 / 108,993]
  13. Dynasty Warriors 4 (Koei, PS2) [28,257 / 1,017,237]
  14. Taiko no Tatsujin (Namco, PS2) [26,639 / 484,986]
  15. Jissen Pachislot Hisshouhou! Salaryman Kintarou (Sammy, PS2) [22,344 / 91,415]
  16. The Baseball 2003 (Konami, PS2) [20,658 / 54,602]
  17. Shaman King: Soul Fight (Bandai, GC) [20,302 / NEW]
    Take a shaman, raise him via training, then put him through a series of rock-scissors-paper style battles. The lovely cel-shaded graphics make the game look uncannily close to the original manga's art style.
  18. Soul Calibur II (Namco, Xbox) [18,262 / NEW]
  19. Pia Carrot e Youkoso! 3 (NEC Interchannel, DC) [15,699 / NEW]
    Perhaps one of the most infamous "girl games," as far as the Western audience is concerned. Run a chic caf�, hire on a bunch of cute young girls, design a yummy uniform for them, and let the puppy-love romance unroll.
  20. Pia Carrot e Youkoso! 3: Round Summer (NEC Interchannel, PS2) [15,558 / NEW]
  21. Yu-Gi-Oh! Duel Monsters 8 (Konami, GBA) [12,855 / 66,799]
  22. Memories Off Duet: 1st & 2nd Stories (KID, PS2) [12,159 / NEW]
    KID has been on something of a roll with the girl games recently. This, as you'd surmise from the title, is a collection of the first two games in the series, both of which were already released for the PC and other platforms.
  23. Sister Princess 2 (Media Works, PS) [12,063 / 43,608]
  24. One Piece: Mezase! King of Bari (Banpresto, GBA) [11,310 / NEW]
    An anime-license board game.
  25. Final Fantasy X (Mega Hits edition) (Square, PS2) [10,749 / 90,659]
  26. P.N.03 (Capcom, GC) [10,569 / NEW]
    Not the most auspicious of starts for the "Capcom 5," is it? Of course, Capcom themselves had realistic enough expectations�they only shipped out around 25,000 copies to Japanese stores. One wonders how Viewtiful Joe will do in this environment...
  27. Star Ocean: Till the End of Time (Enix, PS2) [9815 / 488,159]
  28. Final Fantasy Tactics Advance (Square, GBA) [9061 / 377,045]
  29. Dragon Ball Z Budokai (Bandai, PS2) [8068 / 504,851]
  30. Kirby: Nightmare in Dreamland (Nintendo, GBA) [7767 / 639,513]

Other New Titles

  • Shin Megami Tensei (Atlus, GBA) [6107]
  • Dancing Sword: Senkou (MTO, GBA) [3028]
  • Myst III: Exile (EA Square, PS2) [2031]
  • Kattobi! Golf (Konami, PS2) [1532]
  • Disney's Stitch: Experiment 626 (EA Square, PS2) [970]
  • Rally Championship (Success, PS2) [717]