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Nintendo plays numbers game, loses


Nintendo's most recent press release exhibits the interesting quality of simultaneously telling us something we already knew and something we didn't. The first part should be fairly obvious if you boast any familiarity with portly Italian plumbers: New Super Mario Bros. for the DS is a huge success in North America -- certainly nothing worthy of a collective gasp. Selling over 500,000 copies since its May release, the shell-smashing, block-bashing retro platforming trip has practically given Nintendo permission to nonchalantly reach into your pocket, feel around for a few seconds and make off with your wallet.

What we weren't aware of, however, is that Nintendo really should have been sticking their hand into your front shirt pocket. That's where your calculator is. Nintendo claims that after "just 35 days on store shelves," the game has had a sell-through rate of "more than 20 every minute since the game went on sale May 15."


Be sure to mock us if our primitive thought processes are incorrect, but let's consider for a moment that there are 24 hours in a day and 60 minutes in an hour. That's 1,440 minutes a day, and so the 35 days that New Super Mario Bros. has been on sale (even though its been longer than that now) equates to 50,400 minutes. Divide 500,000 by that number and we get ... just under 10 copies sold per minute. Had Nintendo actually sold 20 copies per minute, they would have already hit over a million, and we're pretty sure that would warrant a press release all on its own. Dr. Kawashima is going to be so disappointed.

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