Despite receiving rave reviews from a variety of gaming publications Grand Theft Auto: Chinatown Wars ultimately flopped at retail. Nintendo however have stepped forward to take a look at why this has been the case, acknowledging that large franchises on the Nintendo DS tend to sell well over an extended period of time, rather than just a short one month period.
Remember that many games for Nintendo DS have a non-traditional sales pattern. The trend is toward ‘evergreen’ games that sell well over an extended period of time instead of in a one-month spike. Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare for Nintendo DS is a good example. In its first month (November 2007), it sold only 36,000. To date, it has sold through nearly 500,000. Grand Theft Auto: Chinatown Wars is a great game that has received tremendous reviews. We expect that with continued backing, it will follow the same long-tail/evergreen sales route that other top sellers have taken.