Top Ten Best Selling Video Game Franchises by Most Sold

Best Selling Game Franchises

Final Fantasy is one of the worlds greatest video game franchises!
Final Fantasy is one of the worlds greatest video game franchises!

The Best Selling Video Game Franchises!

There are literally thousands of Video Game franchises out there, and fortunately most of them are pretty good. Unlike movie franchises, which generally die out pretty quickly, video game franchises often go on for ten or more games in the series. As well as creating regularly better gameplay in each new version of the video game franchise, a video game franchise can also last for decades, without flagging in the slightest!

In this Hub I am going to go over some if the best selling video game franchises in the world, and why they are where they are. You can find out more about the best video game franchsies at This is Freelance!

Rundown to the Best Selling Game Franchises

I did consider running several variables in to choosing which of the best selling video game franchises should reach which position in my top ten list.  In the end I decided to let the public decide, and have gone on the number of video games sold in each franchise.

So without further ado, welcome to the top ten best selling video game franchises! 

Best Selling Video Game Franchise

The Legend of Zelda is the Tenth best selling video game franchise in the world!
The Legend of Zelda is the Tenth best selling video game franchise in the world!

10) The Legend of Zelda

The Legend of Zelda is a fantastic best selling video game franchise that has endured for decades.  Despite its strong willed fan base, Nintendo have simply failed to create enough games to satisfy demand.  Whereas Mario, Pokemon, and similar have had several offerings every year, The Legend of Zelda seems to only get pulled out of the closet when a new console is released.

Even though not many video games have been released for the Legend of Zelda, it is still one of the most successful video game franchises in the world, having sold over 57 million copies. And despite it's low number of games produced, each game has a fantastic playability and entertainment value.  This makes the Legend of Zelda the tenth best selling video game franchise of all time!

Best Selling Franchise FIFA

FIFA is one of the most successful video game franchises in the world!
FIFA is one of the most successful video game franchises in the world!

9) FIFA

The FIFA series is probably one of the most well known, especially in Europe. While Madden may be the most popular in America, it actually only beats the FIFA video game franchise by 5 million sales! FIFA has sold over 65 million copies of it's FIFA brand football (Soccer) games, from football management and football simulation.

The FIFA brand is the most successful soccer game to be released, although it has come under huge competition from Pro Evolution Soccer.

The FIFA brand has grown considerably over the years, from a simple top down game, to the full 3D play screen, and complex managerial controls.  This great evolution of the game explains why FIFA is one of the best video game franchises in the world!

Best Video Game Franchise

Madden NFL is one of the greatest Video Game Franchises in the world!
Madden NFL is one of the greatest Video Game Franchises in the world!

8) Madden NFL

Where FIFA corners the soccer market in Europe, Madden NFL has become a huge success in the American Football video game franchise market.  Madden NFL is one of the most famous NFL games in the world, and has sold over 70 million copies worldwide.

While Madden has now retired, the series will continue to be named Madden NFL in all the upcoming games.  

As with the FIFA series Madden has become increasingly better with every release version.  As the Madden Game Franchise has evolved over the years it has increased in both complexity and gameplay to give one of the most immersive football experiences ever.

Best Selling Game Franchises

Grand Theft Auto has been a best selling video game, and a contentious video game over the last three decades.
Grand Theft Auto has been a best selling video game, and a contentious video game over the last three decades.

7) Grand Theft Auto

Grand Theft Auto has been an immensely successful since it's inception in 1997, selling over 125 million copies world wide, Technically these sales should put it in the top spot, however there have been some conflicting stats on it's actual sales (Some putting it between 70 and 80 million so I'm leaving it in this position till I get some more reliable statistics!

Grand Theft Auto is a series of games based on crime, mutilation and violence, so it is no surprise it has done incredibly well around the world.  There has been plenty of controversy over the Grand Theft Auto video game franchise, which has caused outcry with nearly every single game release that has been made.  Fortunately the censors have failed to battle against the millions that this series has generated, and there are still future plans to expand this beautiful video game franchise. 

Best Selling Game Franchise

Need for Speed has easily been one of the worlds greatest video game franchises.
Need for Speed has easily been one of the worlds greatest video game franchises.

6) Need for Speed

The Need for Speed video game franchise has been one of the few games to have survived from it's early days in the beginning of the PC games market.  Giving police chases, in depth races, and some great cars, the Need for Speed video game franchise has hooked millions.

I have to admit I was a huge fan of the early games, although my attention did wane as they became more console focused.  The Need for Speed video game market has still done amazingly well considering the competition in racing games, 

The Need for Speed series has easily been one of the Best Video Game Franchises of all time.  Its real joy however is in multiplayer, where you and your friends can engage in intense one on one battles.

Greatest Game Franchise of all time

Final Fantasy is one of the worlds greatest game franchises of all time!
Final Fantasy is one of the worlds greatest game franchises of all time!

5) Final Fantasy

Final Fantasy turned from a small time Japanese game to one of the worlds best video game franchises. Selling over 90 million copies, the Final Fantasy series has reached homes around the globe for decades.  The Final Fantasy games will generally keep people occupied for hundreds of hours, as they grind, battle and quest to grow their characters to the ultimate level.

While the Final Fantasy Series has progressed significantly through it's inception, the best selling game franchise has remained true to its roots.  Every Final Fantasy game follows the same tried and tested formula to ensure it remains one of the worlds best selling video game franchises.


The Sims 3 is One of the Greatest Video Game Franchises Ever.

The Sims is by far one of the greatest games ever made, and it is no surprise that the Sims is one of the greatest video game franchises of all time, even though it is relatively new compared to its competitors.
The Sims is by far one of the greatest games ever made, and it is no surprise that the Sims is one of the greatest video game franchises of all time, even though it is relatively new compared to its competitors.

4) The Sims

It's no surprise that the Sims in near the top spot as one of the best video game franchises of all time.  It has a huge number of expansion packs to go with it's in depth addictive games.  In the Sims you create a family, or even several families, and watch as they grow, breed, and advance in skills and jobs.

The Sims video game franchise has grown considerably over the years, and it has now sold over 110 million copies worldwide.  Its astounding success can in some ways be accounted to the games uniqueness, mixed with its amazing gameplay.

This sims is one of those games which nearly everyone has played, it's simplicity overlays a huge complexity, which ensures that one of the best selling video game franchises will never grow old

Best Selling Video Game Franchise

Tetris easily makes it in to one of the greatest all time video game granchises
Tetris easily makes it in to one of the greatest all time video game granchises

3) Tetris

A time old classic, Tetris started off as a time wasting game, but now with its carious incantations, it has sold over 125 million games.  While it may not be complex, advanced, or as graphically pleasing as the other games which have developed over the last 30 years.

There isn't much I can say about this legendary game, it's simple, addictive, and has become THE game to waste time on around the globe!

While it doesn't quite make the top spot, Tetris is one of the best video game franchises ever created, and not surprisingly, it came from Japan! 

The only question remaining is, what level can you reach before the speed becomes just a little bit too fast?

top selling video game franchise

Pokemon is one of the greatest ever video game franchises!
Pokemon is one of the greatest ever video game franchises!

2) Pokémon

Ok, i'll admit it, I was addicted to this, along with the majority of people I knew.  Even the cool kids would be quietly playing Pokemon when they thought nobody was looking. 

With over 175 million copies sold, Pokémon easily makes it in to the top ten video game franchises of all time.  It is hard to deny that this game has been one of the greatest games ever released, and its continuing incantations have given it more and more appeal.

Initially Pokémon came out for the Game Boy, that green screed monster, now however the great video game franchise has brought out increasingly advanced versions of Pokémon, so now people can even play online against other Pokemon Masters.  

It is not hard to see how the monster collecting game Pokémon became one of the best video game franchises of all time, but despite its impressive sales, it did not quite make the top spot. 

Best Game Franchise Mario

The New Super Mario Brothers is the latest in the best selling game Franchise Mario from Nintendo.
The New Super Mario Brothers is the latest in the best selling game Franchise Mario from Nintendo.

1) The Best Selling Game Franchise of All Time - Mario!

The Mario series has been around for decades, most recently with the New Super Mario Brothers series.  Needless to say the Mario Franchise is easily one of the top video game franchises with over 220 million sales over it's lifetime.  This staggering amount seems phenominal, but nearly everyone has some kind of Mario game, whether it is for the Nintendo DS or Nintendo Wii

The Super Mario Bros have appeared in both games and films, fought mushrooms and turtles, jumped through pipes, jumped OVER plant, but most of all, they have jumped in to our hearts.  As the Italian plumbers save the princess time and time again, gamers the world over buy in to this great game franchise!

While Mario seems a little bit dated nowadays, the sales are still racking up as they release new games for both the Nintendo DSi and the Nintendo Wii, whether you are in to racing, or fighting, there is a game for you in the Mario Video Game Franchise!

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Comments 29 comments

mynameisnotpaul profile image

mynameisnotpaul 6 years ago from Kentuckeh'

Love these games!


sabrebIade profile image

sabrebIade 6 years ago from Pennsylvania

Mortal Kombat didn't make it? I'm surprised at that.

Great Hub!


thisisoli profile image

thisisoli 6 years ago from Austin, Texas (From York, England!) Author

Afraid not! Although it was a great series!


Frank 6 years ago

Mario won! yay!


Flamar 6 years ago

Pokémon has earned its place in second, although I think it should've made it to the top spot. However, Mario is more widely known and so I'm not surprised it came at no.1. I hate it when typical shooter game players simply deny the fact that Pokémon is one of the best selling games because they think it's now childish. Im nearly 17 now, and I won't stop loving Pokémon. Anyone who love Pokémon is a friend of mine. :D


thisisoli profile image

thisisoli 6 years ago from Austin, Texas (From York, England!) Author

Haha, I do agree that Pokémon is a fantastic game, I spent way too much time in my younger years playing it!

Mario is also however a huge amount of fun, in this case though it's the numbers that gave these video game franchises their places in the top ten video game franchise list!


prasetio30 profile image

prasetio30 6 years ago from malang-indonesia

I like those game very much, thanks


thisisoli profile image

thisisoli 6 years ago from Austin, Texas (From York, England!) Author

Glad you enjoyed my best video game franchises list :)


Pokémon and Mario 6 years ago

Well pokémon IS mega awesome, and it is still living today with its 175 million. I thought that Pokémon was gonna win but i wasn't surprised that Mario won! HES A LEGEND! And I cant believe that people think hes childish! I'll kick those people in the NUTS


Anthony Brooks 6 years ago

I really like all of these video games that you itemized.I think Street Fighter Should Be somewhere in there.


kyky 5 years ago

Legend of zelda forever !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! :)


daddyhalo3 5 years ago

im surprised that halo wasn't over zelda somewhere


thisisoli profile image

thisisoli 5 years ago from Austin, Texas (From York, England!) Author

I think you've to remember that halo is a relatively recent game, with relatively few sequels made. This list is based on the official sales statistics of these game franchises over their life time based on official sales figures. This is not based on money made etc. Since many game franchises made a lot more through the franchise movie rights and other associations than the game itself. Super marion is making a killing with all of it's super Marion games across all the nintendo platforms


Irina 5 years ago

Mortal Kombat wasn't even in Top 10? I think this list is all wrong


the zamm 5 years ago

howcome halo or cod isn't on this list


hhelen profile image

hhelen 5 years ago

Nice to see Grand Theft Auto in there - it was the first game I ever bought; loved it.


CoryBrito profile image

CoryBrito 5 years ago from Midfield, Alabama

IF you guys go and look back this isn't correct at all....FIFA franchise has not sold more than the zelda franchise, go look it up...Also considering the fact Zelda has been out at least 10 years longer than FIFA, AND the zelda series has had games released every couple of years all of which at least grose at least 250 million dollars, original snes versions and n64 grossing more...im guessing total copies of the entire zelda series has at least sold twice as many as the FIFA series....dude when making something like this espcially to the veiwing eyes of a gamer, PLEASE site your sources when trying to give facts because this isn't no where near accurate...Matter of fact, Call of Duty black ops become the most sold game in the entire US not too long ago, and all of the call of duty games have outsold and outranked many sports games on a wide scale....just saying...This may be your opinion on top selling but it snt fact, also the fact sonic isn't on there when it outgrosses Zelda doesn't make sense. The only accurate one up there, I think, is mario.


CoryBrito profile image

CoryBrito 5 years ago from Midfield, Alabama

Also if you notice hes calling certain items franchises when it is just the game itself such as Sims3, hes calling Sims3 the franchise when the Sims have been out way before that and other sim games OWNED by the same company *facepalm*


thisisoli profile image

thisisoli 5 years ago from Austin, Texas (From York, England!) Author

The sims 3 is infact a sub-franchise, hate to burst your bubble. These stats were taken directly from company reports, Other Franchise listings (Which I fact checked) and even some cross referencing on Wikipedia.

Yes Zelda has been out longer than Fifa, but think of the size of the Fifa fan base,compared to the Zelda fan base.


CoryBrito profile image

CoryBrito 5 years ago from Midfield, Alabama

hate to burst your bubble but they WEREN'T! Hes taking statistics from one single game sale and comparing them. You have to look at the ENTIRE genre sales. Btw here's what franchise means big boy, FRANCHISE (noun)

The noun FRANCHISE has 3 senses:

1. an authorization to sell a company's goods or services in a particular place

2. a business established or operated under an authorization to sell or distribute a company's goods or services in a particular area

3. a statutory right or privilege granted to a person or group by a government (especially the rights of citizenship and the right to vote), sighted from http://www.audioenglish.net/dictionary/franchise.h...

Sims3 is not a franchise because it isn't a company but actually the good ITSELF! Mario, is owned by nintendo a franchise, so you don't have ur facts straight there. And we arent talking about fanbase but FACTS. Final fantasy, the entire series, has about 25 games or more i lost interest after FF11, final fantasy has been out since 1987 in japan and 1990 in america. Each game has sold at least 10 million copies or more, except for the originals where the # is a little lower. That being said Sim3 and the grand theft auto series have NOT outsold final fantasy. The grand theft auto serties didn't hit computer until mid to late 90's and didn't sell all too well respectively to the later games. YOU SIR, do NOT have your stats right either. Zelda has had atleast 25 games as well, most selling at least 5 million copies per game. Sonic has been out since 1990, at least 25 games, NOT including the games in which his caharacter is used for cameo appearances, all selling at least 2 million copies or more worldwide. So, you do NOT have your facts straight dude, espcially when u don't know what a frnachise is.


Psycho Gamer profile image

Psycho Gamer 5 years ago from Earth

ouch.....but Corybrito is actually right...nevertheless...this list includes some of the greatest games ever..


smartrich22 profile image

smartrich22 5 years ago from Bandung, Indonesia

Hi thisisoli... this is interesting, nice info for gamers! :)


Link 5 years ago

What?!?

I am dissapoint!

The Legend of Zelda is the greatest.

While, still Pokémon is actually pretty good. I'm not sure I even like Mario...

Well, The Legend Of Zelda is amazing, just with the Wii remote, you can feel the swing of the sword and for anything else, the graphics are awesome and the puzzles keep me enhanced. I love the Twilight Princess. OOT is overrated.

Pokémon, I LOVED POKÉMON.

I never had any games, but I loved playing player made games online, because it's just like the real thing, except some stuff. Legend of Zelda needs the top spot, and Pokémon needs the second. I just have to say that Mario is just failing...

Sorry, you've lost your coins.

(*Game over music*)


gam0r 5 years ago

LOL, FIFA sold almost double as much copies as a franchise than Madden and is the most sold sport video game franchise in the world selling around 100Million to date, so the numbers are completely off.

Take into account that the Franchise also came way later and has competion from another 70 Million soccer franchis with Pro Evolution Soccer, there really is no way Madden should be even mentioned.

http://www.businesswire.com/news/home/201011040067...


FUNKYOU 5 years ago

@smartrich22 Mario's game is not over! Have you played Super Mario Galaxy?!? Comon now! But LOZ is the best franchise of all time!!


gamermonkey profile image

gamermonkey 4 years ago

Great list. I'm a huge fan of the Zelda series as well as Final Fantasy. Who else remembers playing Pokémon for hours and hours as a kid? Which franshise do you think will some day make the list? I'd be interested to know what you, or anyone, thinks. Again, great post. Keep it up, thisisoli.


sharmakartikey profile image

sharmakartikey 3 years ago from Himachal, India

Amazing List, I have played all these titles and have loved each one of them. These games were almost perfect and worth every single penny you spend of them, no reason they did so well in the commercial market.


willoughbysarah profile image

willoughbysarah 2 years ago from Surrey

The legend of my Zelda, is one of my favourite franchises of all time and I adored the Sims 2- although I'm not really keen on the third installment, I can't wait for the Sims 4 release to come out


Jayden Amador 23 months ago

Awesome games!

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