The 3DS may be five years old, but apparently, the aging handheld still has quite a bit of steam left in it. According to Nintendo, via analyst group NPD, the 3DS was the most popular-selling system in U.S. retail for the month of July, largely due to the popularity of Niantic's Pokémon GO.
As per usual, Nintendo declined to disclose the exact numbers, but it noted that sales of the 3DS skyrocketed up 80 percent compared with July 2015. This trend occurred for all members of the 3DS family: the original, the budget model 2DS and the premium Nintendo New 3DS.
So, why did the 3DS suddenly do so well last month? Nintendo attributed the surging sales to three factors: the previously-mentioned Pokémon GO, Monster Hunter Generations and the recent price drop on the 2DS, which has apparently caused it to sell like hotcakes at its current retail value of $79.99 bundled with Mario Kart 7.
It's difficult to ascertain how exactly Pokémon GO helped increase 3DS sales. Nintendo itself lost a considerable chunk of market value after it revealed that it has little stake in hit mobile app. Rather, it simply owns a third of the Pokémon Company, which is the actual publisher of Pokémon GO.
Despite that fact, Nintendo said the 3DS' success was due to the "widespread positive public reception for the Pokémon GO mobile app, which has renewed interest in core Pokémon games on Nintendo systems." In other words, Nintendo says it's all about brand recognition — which is likely exactly what happened.
As one might expect due to Nintendo mentioning Monster Hunter Generations, it wasn't just hardware sales that did well; the company's software sales also managed to beat out the competition in July.
Monster Hunter Generations was the best-selling game in U.S. retail full-stop. In addition, Nintendo noted that it had several other titles that were in the top 10 for July: Minecraft: Wii U Edition was sixth place, Pokémon Omega Ruby in eighth and Pokémon Alpha Sapphire rounding out the list in 10th.
Lastly, just like with software and 3DS sales, monthly sales for the 2DS were not disclosed, but Nintendo noted that the budget version of the platform had crossed the $2 million mark in the U.S.
Considering the results from last quarter, this development is definitely good news for Nintendo. What's more, regardless of how well the 3DS does in the coming months, it will likely see a huge surge in sales once more once Pokémon Sun and Moon arrive at the end of November.