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Zelda: Breath of the Wild on Switch is outselling the console itself

How?! Why?!

The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild - Link taking in a vista Nintendo EPD/Nintendo
Samit Sarkar (he/him) is Polygon’s deputy managing editor. He has more than 15 years of experience covering video games, movies, television, and technology.

The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild continues to be the Nintendo Switch’s best-selling game, with worldwide sales of 2.76 million copies through March 31, Nintendo announced today.

Nintendo sold 390,000 units of Breath of the Wild’s Switch version in Japan, and the other 2.37 million copies elsewhere; the figures represent all sales, whether physical or digital versions. The Wii U version is doing well, too, with 1.08 million units sold worldwide, making for total sales across both platforms of 3.84 million copies. The company previously said that in the U.S., Breath of the Wild is Nintendo’s fastest-selling launch title of all time and the fastest-selling game in the history of the Zelda series.

Total worldwide sales of the Switch are sitting at 2.74 million units so far. Curiously, that means that during the Switch’s first month on the market — the console launched on March 2 around the globe — Nintendo had an attach rate above 1 for Breath of the Wild. That is, more people own a copy of the game’s Switch version than own a Switch itself.

This was also true in the U.S. for the month of March, where Nintendo sold more than 925,000 copies of Breath of the Wild and over 906,000 units of the Switch. In announcing those sales figures two weeks ago, Nintendo gave a couple of possible explanations, saying, “This may be attributed to people who purchased both a limited edition of the game to collect and a second version to play.” Two packages are available: a $99.99 Special Edition and a $129.99 Master Edition.

Nintendo also announced today that total global software sales of Switch games reached 5.46 million units during March, which means the console’s total attach rate is 1.99. In other words, Switch owners are buying an average of two games — one of which is almost certainly Breath of the Wild.

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