Half of all New Horizons sales in the U.S., Japan, and Europe were digital

Around 50 percent of Animal Crossing: New Horizons sales in the U.S., Japan, and Europe were digital, according to Nintendo. 

Around 50 percent of Animal Crossing: New Horizons sales in the U.S., Japan, and Europe were digital, according to Nintendo. 

Offering an explanation as to why Nintendo's digital sales grew significantly during the fourth quarter, company president Shuntaro Furukawa said Animal Crossing -- which sold 11.77 million units in under two weeks -- was largely responsible for the surge. 

He suggested digital sales received a bump due to the title launching when COVID-19 lockdown measures were being introduced in many countries, resulting in many consumers shying away from the physical release.

"The release of Animal Crossing: New Horizons greatly contributed to the high percentage of digital sales reached in the fourth quarter of the previous fiscal year. Around 50 percent of the consumers who purchased this title in Japan, the US, and Europe did so digitally," he commented, during an investor Q&A.

"The Animal Crossing series is suited to being played as a digital version, and we believe that the timing of its release, coinciding as it did with the rise in calls to remain at home, resulted in some consumers choosing the digital version."

Although Furukawa views that high digital percentage as a fairly unique occurrence, he noted that consumers who've experienced the convince of digital downloads often become long-term converts.

"We see the very high percentage of digital sales as being due to these unique factors, and have not premised our financial forecast on this trend continuing as it has," he added. "On the other hand, once consumers experience the convenience of digital downloads, they tend to continue to choose digital downloads in the future, so we think that the percentage of digital sales will increase overall."

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