The UK liking Pokemon Sword/Shield is like the least surprising thing ever, though.
While the Switch has been a monumental success the world over, in the UK, its plaudits so far have been relatively more muted. The UK has always been one of Nintendo’s weaker territories, and one of Sony’s strongest, so Nintendo has had to settle for more moderate sales for their hybrid there so far.
But that’s changing now. The Switch has performed exceptionally strongly in the UK all year, mostly credited to a whole spate of great game launches, as well as the existing catalog of classics on the system. And now, with the launch of the Switch Lite, and Pokemon Sword and Shield (which are, incidentally, set in a region based on the UK), sales for the console have surged. GamesIndustry reports that Switch sales were up 70% the week leading up to Pokemon’s launch, and 30% the week of Pokemon’s launch. All told, the strong activity for the Switch is expected to contribute towards it becoming the bestselling console in the UK this year—which will also end the PS4’s five year reign at the top in that country, should it happen.
It is, of course, well deserved. The Switch is a great machine, and Pokemon Sword and Shield are fantastic games. Still, to see it happen in the UK is a bit surreal. Now to see if Nintendo is able to sustain this kind of success the world over in the coming years.