Bandai Namco’s flight combat game Ace Combat 7: Skies Unknown flew into the UK physical sales charts this week. A debut at number two in the UKIE/GfK charts for the week ending January 19th gave the Ace Combat series its biggest ever UK launch.
Ace Combat 7: Skies Unknown made a particularly big splash on the PlayStation 4. PS4 versions of the game accounted for over three quarters of total sales (76%), perhaps boosted by the game’s VR functionality.
To put the game’s sales performance in context, the Ace Combat series is almost 25 years old and has had a loyal fanbase throughout that time. For the latest entry in the series to post its biggest UK launch is a very promising sign.
Nonetheless, Ace Combat 7’s strong performance wasn’t enough to topple another behemoth of Japanese origin. New Super Mario Bros U Deluxe retained top place on the charts despite a 43% drop in week-to-week sales.
The fact that FIFA 19 suffered a similar drop in sales (33%) as it fell from two to five highlights that there has, as expected, been a post-Christmas lull in sales. Nonetheless, pre-Christmas big-hitters Red Dead Redemption 2 and Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 held steady in third and fourth place in the charts and Nintendo Switch titles Super Smash Bros Ultimate and Mario Kart 8: Deluxe retain their place in the top ten at six and seven respectively.
It has also been a decent month for rebooted platformers. Crash Bandicoot N.Sane Trilogy and the Spyro Reignited Trilogy surged from 11th and 13th last week to ninth and tenth this week. The fact that two Mario games and a Smash Bros also made the top ten highlights the enduring appeal of cartoony platform characters: five of the top ten places in the chart belong to them!
Resident Evil 2 is set to make a big impact on the charts next week. Indeed, a sign of fans revving up for the reboot was the jump back into the charts of Resident Evil 7 (28th place). With Kingdom Hearts III, Far Cry: New Dawn, Metro Exodus and Crackdown 3 also coming soon it looks like the January sales lull will be very brief this year.
A more extended list of top sellers can be found here.