Some games don’t have to try hard to generate outstanding sales. Their franchises are already so well-established that people race to buy their new releases as soon as possible. The name just speaks for itself.
Over the years, there have been many incredible franchises, plenty of which are still around several decades after first being introduced. With the sales they’ve generated, we don’t imagine they’ll be fading into the background anytime soon. Exactly which of these is the best-selling franchise of all, though?
Here’s a countdown of the top seven.
The Wii wasn’t just one of the most innovative and best-selling consoles in gaming history. It also had its own franchise of games, which generated some impressive sales.
The likes of Wii Music, Wii Party, Wii Fit, Wii Play, and – of course – Wii Sports helped this franchise to shift just over 202 million copies during the console’s lifetime. That’s almost exactly double the amount that the Wii sold while in production.
Obviously, some of these titles were helped by the fact that they often came bundled with the Wii. However, many were bought individually, which is a testament to how well Nintendo was able to produce games for this console.
Call Of Duty
Shooters are incredibly popular with millions of players worldwide, hence Call of Duty’s impressive sales over the years. Racking up around 300 million copies across the nearly 20 games released, it’s easily the most successful franchise in this genre.
The games are beloved for their fast-paced gameplay, which is easy to pick up and hard to put down. They really bring out the competitive nature in people, hence why some do everything in their power to win.
They’re not above using COD cheats, like the ones provided by IWantCheats. Their hacks are almost always undetectable, with the promise of money back if you do get found out. That pretty much makes it a win-win situation, especially when you keep missing out on that precious victory.
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Grand Theft Auto
When will Grand Theft Auto 6 come out? Who knows, because Rockstar Games seems determined to get absolutely everything out of the fifth main entry as they possibly can.
By the time GTA V gets a sequel, it will have appeared on three consecutive generations of console, thanks to the upcoming release on PS5 and Xbox Series X/S. Those eager to play the game on the newest consoles will contribute to the 140 million + copies it’s already sold, a number that makes it the second best-selling game in history. Overall, that accounts for more than a third of GTA’s 320 million franchise sales.
The mix of an open-world setting and compelling action-adventure gameplay definitely justify the incredible sales of this series. The question is, can GTA V’s eventual sequel outperform its predecessor?
Every year, there are a few games you can rely on coming out. FIFA is one of them.
Since 1993, at least one new edition of this famous football title has been released annually, and fans have yet to get bored of them. Their love for building the perfect team and beating their friends in skilful matches has helped the franchise generate sales of roughly 325 million. That’s pretty impressive, given that developer EA isn’t particularly popular with fans. Their anti-consumer practices and lack of innovation have tarnished the company’s reputation, but that doesn’t stop people from buying FIFA every year.
Given that the football franchise has been a constant presence since the ’90s, it’ll likely keep pumping out games for years to come. However, it wouldn’t be a shock if fans started demanding more from each new release as they yearn for a slightly different gaming experience from the last.
When you take other elements into account, such as merchandise, movies, and trading cards, Pokémon is easily the most successful media franchise of all time. However, based solely on video game sales, it sits in third place with an estimated 368 million copies shifted.
It’s incredibly impressive for a franchise that hasn’t always strayed too far outside of its comfort zone. Many of its games have followed similar structures, but players keep flocking to buy new titles, as evidenced by the strong sales of each title. Clearly, the appeal of having new Pokémon to catch and new stories to discover is enough for many.
With the upcoming Pokémon Legends: Arceus set to take the franchise somewhere entirely different, it’s unlikely that sales are going to diminish for this franchise anytime soon.
Compared to other best-selling video game franchises, Tetris probably seems quite basic. After all, you don’t do much except arrange falling blocks to remove lines and stop yourself from reaching the top.
However, the simplicity is part of the game’s appeal, along with its addictive nature. That’s why it’s racked up almost 500 million sales, the majority of which come from mobile downloads.
Even though it’s been out for almost four decades now, there’s no denying that Tetris still offers a lot of replayability. The fact it can fit into other genres, like the battle royale format of Tetris 99, also means there’s still ways to keep the franchise fresh and selling.
Since appearing in Donkey Kong back in 1981, Mario has easily become one of the most familiar faces in gaming. Sure, he might look a little different than he did in the ’80s, but that doesn’t change the fact that his red overalls and moustache are now synonymous with amazing video games.
Over the past 40 years, the (former) plumber has amassed sales of over 680 million. Just over half of that comes from the Super Mario games, with Mario Kart amounting to around 154 million. The Mario Party (56 million), Mario Sports (41 million), and Mario RPG titles (27 million) also come into play here.
With the franchise encompassing so many different genres, it’s no wonder it’s the biggest one out there. No-one even comes close to stealing Mario’s crown.
What each of these franchises has achieved during their lifetime is truly incredible. It’s hard to say if any of them will ever get displaced over the coming years, but for now, this is how the seven best-selling video game franchises stand.