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Bravely Default outshines modern Final Fantasy titles by selling one million units

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Nintendo 3DS role-playing game Bravely Default has sold one million copies worldwide, placing it ahead of most recent titles in Square Enix's long-lived Final Fantasy RPG series, Dengeki Online reports.

Bravely Default launched in Japan in 2012, in December 2013 in Europe and in North America this past February. The game's lifetime sales, including downloads, exceed one million copies — 400,000 copies in Japan and 600,000 copies overseas, Square Enix told Dengeki.

While the game is not a true Final Fantasy title, the game does borrow many elements of the 27-year-old JRPG franchise: a focus on narrative and character development, different job classes players can develop — such as mages, warriors and thieves — and a storyline focused around crystals that protect and power the earth.

As a fairly new IP, Bravely Default has already inspired Square Enix to reexamine its approach to developing JRPGs. Shortly after its North American release — where it sold 200,000 copies in its first three weeks on the market — president Yosuke Matsuda stated that the game inspired the company to realign its focus on content for core gamers and "heavy JRPG" fans.

Square Enix's most recent financial earnings report for the year ending March 31, 2014 showed that Final Fantasy 14: A Realm Reborn is the Final Fantasy title to beat, with net sales of 94,571 million yen (around $928.8 million USD), an increase of 5.7 percent in sales compared to the same period last year. The company contributed its rise in net profits from sales of the MMORPG, which was rebooted last August under the guidance of producer/director Naoki Yoshida after a failed first launch in fall 2010.

The financial report also mentions "favorable sales" of Final Fantasy 10/10-2 Remaster, an HD upgraded version of 2001 title Final Fantasy 10 and its sequel Final Fantasy 10-2. The report does not mention Lightning Returns: Final Fantasy 13, the final game in the Final Fantasy 13 trilogy that launched in February to mixed reviews and a lukewarm reception.

A sequel to Bravely Default, Bravely Second, is already in the works, as is a job class-focused Monster Hunter-like spin-off using the same art style, Final Fantasy Explorers.