With some of today’s video games selling like hotcakes, it would be reasonable to assume that their franchises are among the best-selling video game franchises of all time. Well, you might be surprised! Here are the series of video games that top the list:
5. Grand Theft Auto (65 million units sold).
Interestingly, this series of video games didn’t experience major sales success until Grant Theft Auto III (2001). Since then, the franchise’s creators have continued to churn out new installments that feature new and exciting designs. And yes, it’s fair to say that criticism linked to the new installments’ advertising have also helped to boost the franchise’s sales. But regardless of whether you’re an opponent or proponent of the series, the franchise has clearly become one of the most successful ones in video game history.
4. Final Fantasy (75 million units sold).
The creation of the series is just as fascinating as its success. In 1987, the Japanese game development studio Square was on its last leg. It decided to throw everything but the kitchen sink into a new role-playing game: Final Fantasy. What makes the franchise so fascinating is that the games’ stories are mostly disjunctive, yet consistently include new and exciting gaming experiences for their players. Over two decades after the first Final Fantasy game hit the stores, the franchise continues its amazing run.
3. The Sims (90 million units sold).
The fascinating aspect of the franchise is that it’s based on our (traditionally humdrum) day-to-day routine. While the concept attracted a ton of critics, the game’s success has proved them wrong. In fact, the first installment of The Sims (2000) has won several awards, and has become the #1 best-selling PC game in the history of the world. Who knew that eating and sleeping could be so much fun?
2. Pokemon (164 million units sold).
While successful cartoon characters often become featured in video games, sometimes the opposite happens. The Pokemon franchise was born in 1996, when Nintendo simultaneously released two Pokemon Game Boy titles. Since then, the characters have been featured in trading cards, a cartoon series, various feature-length films, and of course-several video games.
1. Mario (195 million units sold).
After making his debut in “Donkey Kong”, Mario began his successful video game career, with the 1983 game “Mario Bros”. Amazingly, each video game console that Nintendo has released, has included a Mario game. While some games in the series weren’t blockbusters, others have become legendary in the world of video games. The array of games in which Mario appears includes:
- Donkey Kong Jr.
- Super Mario Bros.
- Super Mario Bros. 2
- Super Mario Bros. 3
- Dr. Mario
- Super Mario World
- Super Mario Kart
- Paper Mario
Have you ever wondered where the franchise’s name originated from? It was named after the landlord of Nintendo of America’s office: Mario Segale.
While producing a one-hit wonder is impressive in today’s highly competitive video gaming market, creating a successful franchise is an even greater feat. While these franchises are currently the top dogs, will they ever be dethroned?