It’s less than a week away from the launch of Hyrule Warriors: Age of Calamity (HW: AoC). I reckoned this game will be a commercial success in my previous post but I didn’t give the idea that to what extent it counts as a success for HW: AoC? Of course, everything is comparatively speaking. Depending on the development and marketing budgets (or even broader strategy of developer/publisher), 3M shipment for one game might be a disappointment while 1M shipment for another might worth a celebration artwork and even secure future development.
Let’s do some math. Since HW: AoC is a Nintendo Switch exclusive, the first way to estimate shipment is via attach rate. The idea of attach rate is based on installed base which is distorted by the development of the platform including household penetration, replacement/upgrade of Nintendo Switch, new/additional purchase of Nintendo Switch Lite. But it’s still a good starting point for this exercise. Another way to look at this is from fan base perspective. The lifetime shipment of The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild (BotW) is a proxy of existing fan base of Legend of Zelda on Nintendo Switch so the cumulative shipment of HW: AoC can be estimated as a conversion of BotW fan base.
Another information comes from The Legend of Zelda: Link’s Awakening remake (2019). As of CY1Q20, Link’s Awakening has sold around 4.4M copies representing an attach rate of 7.9% at that time.
With these information, my predictions for HW: AoC below:
- The first year attach rate reaches 10% of CY3Q20 installed base (68.3M units). This means HW: AoC will roughly sell 6.8M copies or more by CY3Q21.
- Lifetime sales exceeds 10M copies making HW: AoC one of the best selling Warriors games.
- Lifetime conversion from BotW will be around 33% (HW: AoC divided by BotW)
- This one is to capture the scenario when sales exceeds 10M copies. It might be sooner than my prediction. We will have some color after Black Friday. As HW: AoC counts as Nintendo’s 1P title for this holiday so it’s quite likely Nintendo will mention the sales number (at least for North America) in their press release around Black Friday.
Koei Tecmo will significantly benefit from this collaboration, financially and reputationally. This new title launch will benefit other Zelda games and warm up the sequel to BotW next year.