Sales of Nintendo’s GameCube continue to be brisk in Europe, with the company shipping its millionth Cube to retail this week – only days after it was revealed during a publisher’s financial conference call that the company has at least a 300,000 unit lead on Microsoft’s Xbox in the territory despite launching several weeks later.
Marking this significant milestone for the new platform, Nintendo has announced release dates for its key titles between now and Christmas, keen to point out that its strongest franchises and games have yet to appear on the console in Europe. The schedule reveals that Nintendo’s approach of drip-feeding AAA titles to the market in order to maximise sales of each one is still very much alive and well.
Following up the already-confirmed release of Resident Evil in September, Super Mario Sunshine will be arriving sooner than expected on October 4th – arguably the most anticipated release of the year, and obviously timed with a view to driving sales of the Cube in the pre-Christmas period. The build-up to a spectacular Christmas for the console continues a month later on November 1st with the release of the highly anticipated Eternal Darkness, and then rolls on to November 22nd when StarFox Adventures appears at last.
Other major titles appearing on the Cube in the run-up to Christmas include Doshin the Giant, Mario Party 4, Wario World and Disney’s Magical Mirror. Notably absent, however, are Legend of Zelda and Metroid Prime, both of which have been pushed back into 2003 for Europe.