When Final Fantasy XIII-2 made its Japanese retail debut on December 15, it did so in lackluster fashion. For 99% of games coming out, having a first-week Japanese sales total of over half a million would be a triumph -- huge success. But Final Fantasy XIII-2's 524,000 performance (PS3 version) is a mere one-third the size of the original Final fantasy XIII, and even stands distantly in the shadow of Final Fantasy's first direct sequel, Final Fantasy X-2, which also sold over 1.5 million right out of the gate. For a Final Fantasy title, XIII-2 is performing far below expectations.
Things get worse for Square Enix when one considers that XIII-2 is supposed to be a game kept interesting in the long term with frequent DLC updates. This does not stop people from trading the sucker in, even a mere two or three weeks after its launch, however. Getting back from my Christmas vacation, something really stuck out at me as I made my rounds in the game shops: there are a lot of used copies of Final Fantasy XIII-2. Above, I am holding one small store's hearty supply of five used copies of the barely three-week-old Final Fantasy XIII-2, selling for 4,980 yen each. The game launched with a price closer to 7,000 yen for new copies, but has already plummeted to 5,500 in most stores.
Sales were well under half of what Square Enix expected, the price has fallen like a rock, and trade-ins are rampant. From the looks of things, Final Fantasy XIII-2 isn't the comeback S-E was hoping for.