Anime & Manga News

It's Blu-ray Sales That Matter: Buying Power of Otaku Maintains Anime Market

by dtshyk
May 9, 2011 9:25 AM | 75 Comments
According to the Association of Japanese Animations, the sales of the anime video media in Japan have increased for the first time in five years while the number of TV anime titles has been dropping since 2007. The recovery of the video media sales is attributed to the successful transition of the anime market to Blu-ray, which is more expensive than DVD.

Mainichi Newspaper reported that the Blu-ray sales are vital for the success of core-fan oriented anime, which are usually aired after midnight. One of the major anime producers said "Even if the rating of a midnight anime marks 10%, it's doesn't matter for us." Another producer said a TV anime can be regarded as a hit if sales per volume are more than 10,000 copies. dtshyk: this "10,000 copies" means the sales to the retailers, not to the individual customers.

Recent Major Hit Titles

K-ON! vol.01
Blu-ray 42,625 (DVD 10,326)

Angel Beats! vol.1
Blu-ray 27,052 (DVD 13,390)

Bakemonogatari vol.01
Blu-ray 58,098 (DVD 23,234)

K-ON!! vol.01
Blu-ray 38,452 (DVD 3,981)

Ore no Imouto ga Konnani Kawaii Wake ga Nai
Blu-ray 21,911 (DVD 5,093)

IS: Infinite Stratos vol.1
Blu-ray 27,064 (DVD 9,068)

Mahou Shoujo Madoka★Magica
Blu-ray 52,944 (DVD 9,097)

One volume of TV anime Blu-ray usually costs 5,000 - 7,000 yen ($62 - $88) for two or three episodes. If you collect all the volumes of one season, it will be around $400 - $500. The high purchasing power of core anime fans has been supporting the TV anime market.

Sudo Tadashi, the president of Anime!Anime!, said TV anime produced by popular anime studios like SHAFT and Kyoto Animation sell well because the Blu-rays of their anime are not simple video media but communication tools among the fans. The TV airing of such anime arouses enthusiasm among the audience and stimulates energetic discussions online. People purchase the Blu-ray as a souvenir of the whole excitements.

Sources: Mainichi, ASCII, Anime!Anime!

20 of 75 Comments Recent Comments

Hoppy said:
IS isn't worth $500, end of story, Strike Witches is much better.


You've got to be joking. IS is a show that looks absolutely superb in blu-ray, while Strike Witches is still a crap ecchi show where nobody wears pants. Ever.

I'm almost surprised half of you don't know the numbers for these series already. Almost, but then it hit me that this is MAL, where the uninformed roam free.

May 24, 2011 7:59 PM by yFSC

caninesrock said:

I've never really cared for picture quality. It's the storyline, characters, and the special features offered that make me want to buy an anime on DVD. As long as I can see the characters and there's not a big black box or anything major hiding the middle of the picture, I'm not really picky on how things look. And no, the tv I watched at my aunt's house was a big screen tv and I wasn't watching a DVD. I was watching a program on tv.
I have to admit, High Definition tv tends to be a little too bright. You can tweak that in the settings though and the TV itself will lose it's clarity after a while. That said, I'm a very picky person and DVD looks too grainy for me. It'd be fine if you're seeing it on the old CRT TV's but I can't stand it on LCD's or Plasma.

May 11, 2011 8:33 PM by Leon-Gun

Leon-Gun said:
caninesrock said:
I don't get the big deal with blu-ray. I'm sticking to my DVDs. I was there when it changed from VHS to DVD and actually thought DVD's were awesome compared to VHS,but blu-rays are just overpriced DVDs to me that you have to buy a whole new system for as well just to play them on. As far as I know, the only difference is the picture qulaity. I've been over to family's house that had HDTV and trust me, the picture quality is not that great. It doesn't look real or like you're there like commericals make it to look. In fact the extreme shininess and overly brightness of the whole thing made me get a headache and made it look more fake than normal tv.(Yeah. real life is totally that shiny. It looks so real. *sarcism*) There's no way I'm paying twice as much as I would pay for DVD just for something trivial(in my opinion anyway) like picture quality. Blu-ray and HD is just a scam to make money off of people in my opinion.
I'm gonna guess that you have a small screen and not an 720p or higher HDTV because DVD's on HDTV's look like shit. I guess i you are fine looking at grainy and opaque pictures you won't care.

I've never really cared for picture quality. It's the storyline, characters, and the special features offered that make me want to buy an anime on DVD. As long as I can see the characters and there's not a big black box or anything major hiding the middle of the picture, I'm not really picky on how things look. And no, the tv I watched at my aunt's house was a big screen tv and I wasn't watching a DVD. I was watching a program on tv.

May 11, 2011 8:07 PM by caninesrock

caninesrock said:
I don't get the big deal with blu-ray. I'm sticking to my DVDs. I was there when it changed from VHS to DVD and actually thought DVD's were awesome compared to VHS,but blu-rays are just overpriced DVDs to me that you have to buy a whole new system for as well just to play them on. As far as I know, the only difference is the picture qulaity. I've been over to family's house that had HDTV and trust me, the picture quality is not that great. It doesn't look real or like you're there like commericals make it to look. In fact the extreme shininess and overly brightness of the whole thing made me get a headache and made it look more fake than normal tv.(Yeah. real life is totally that shiny. It looks so real. *sarcism*) There's no way I'm paying twice as much as I would pay for DVD just for something trivial(in my opinion anyway) like picture quality. Blu-ray and HD is just a scam to make money off of people in my opinion.
I'm gonna guess that you have a small screen and not an 720p or higher HDTV because DVD's on HDTV's look like shit. I guess i you are fine looking at grainy and opaque pictures you won't care.

May 11, 2011 6:38 PM by Leon-Gun

dtshyk said:
One volume of TV anime Blu-ray usually costs 5,000 - 7,000 yen ($62 - $88) for two or three episodes. If you collect all the volumes of one season, it will be around $400 - $500.

No thank you.

May 11, 2011 3:48 PM by Soundtrack

I don't get the big deal with blu-ray. I'm sticking to my DVDs. I was there when it changed from VHS to DVD and actually thought DVD's were awesome compared to VHS,but blu-rays are just overpriced DVDs to me that you have to buy a whole new system for as well just to play them on. As far as I know, the only difference is the picture qulaity. I've been over to family's house that had HDTV and trust me, the picture quality is not that great. It doesn't look real or like you're there like commericals make it to look. In fact the extreme shininess and overly brightness of the whole thing made me get a headache and made it look more fake than normal tv.(Yeah. real life is totally that shiny. It looks so real. *sarcism*) There's no way I'm paying twice as much as I would pay for DVD just for something trivial(in my opinion anyway) like picture quality. Blu-ray and HD is just a scam to make money off of people in my opinion.

May 11, 2011 3:22 PM by caninesrock

NicoleXNorway said:
Madoka Magica FTW. Most serries in the US you can buy off the internet for like 20-40$, but at stores for anime it's like Japan's prices. crazy.


A lot of Japanese anime have retail bonuses and if you preorder from Amazon Japan you can often get the anime for less, I preordered Baby Princess for $56 US on Amazon Japan while the preorder price was cheaper. The only disadvantage is that you better make a decision FAST because that reduced price will not stick for long.

May 11, 2011 9:50 AM by Hoppy

Madoka Magica FTW. Most serries in the US you can buy off the internet for like 20-40$, but at stores for anime it's like Japan's prices. crazy.

May 11, 2011 9:11 AM by Nikoru-san

bluray ftw. quality is LEVELS above regular dvds. wathcing eva 2.22 on my ps3 with hdmi, fucking win to say the least

May 10, 2011 4:29 PM by KingCez

IS isn't worth $500, end of story, Strike Witches is much better.

May 10, 2011 3:56 PM by Hoppy

Stop with the K-ON, IS hate people

May 10, 2011 2:47 PM by RandyW88

TreF said:
K-ON!! is saving the anime industry. U mad, DEEPfags, anime-is-dyingfags, moehaters & corp.?
It just shows that the Japanese have bad taste in anime, similar to Japanese game sales. Nothing new, really.

And go back to 4chan with that shit, good god.
Defiance said:
sheep.
SurferDude said:
sheep.
Keep on sticking it to the man, cool guys.

May 10, 2011 2:06 PM by Hraesvelgr

Heck ya, the buying power of the Otaku!

Also, I love blu-ray quality, but I'm not about to pay $400-500 for a bunch of seasons. Maybe if I really like something I will, but I'd probably wait till it goes on sale.

May 10, 2011 1:18 PM by Frediloc

Onibokusu said:
Touka said:

Seriously, it isn't common knowledge so get off your high horse. Having no interest in importing goods from Japan why the hell should I know how much things cost over there?


Aw, that's so cute. You lodged that it wasn't common knowledge, then instantly stated you had no interest in importing and thus you know nothing of it.

The price of anime in Japan is common knowledge. You don't even have to be interested in importing, one minute of browsing ANN would have given you that information.

Really, you should actually know what you're saying once in a while.

define: common knowledge
com·mon knowl·edge
anything generally known to everyone

The prices of anime in Japan are not common knowledge. One glance at a couple of the replies in this topic can tell you that much. I can't believe we're having a debate so petty.

May 10, 2011 12:00 PM by Touka

StormViruz said:
dtshyk said:

Bakemonogatari vol.01
Blu-ray 58,098 (DVD 23,234)
Mahou Shoujo Madoka★Magica
Blu-ray 52,944 (DVD 9,097)


These 2 great titles from SHAFT is totally dominating. :D

Well, good news is good.


^ This

May 10, 2011 10:41 AM by Layfonkun

Guardian978 said:
That would explain the increasing amount of censorship going on in most of the broadcasts these days. Elfen Lied, after all, aired uncensored and was 10x bloodier than Deadman Wonderland has shown us so far. Highschool of the Dead cut the violence in ALL their broadcast editions, saving the full portion of the blood and guts for those who bought (or downloaded) the Blu-Ray version. For shows without fanservice or excessive violence, though, I'm not sure what the point of getting it in BD is (other than the superior quality). There's probably even more extras and other stuff in the anime whose main selling point isn't 'Hey, come see what we didn't show you on TV!'
All the BD releases now always have extra unreleased episodes, and that's just 1 of several extras. Companies like SHAFT actually go and remake entire scenes just for their BD releases. Look at the Bakemonogatari and Madoka Magica releases for an example.

May 10, 2011 8:46 AM by Leon-Gun

That would explain the increasing amount of censorship going on in most of the broadcasts these days. Elfen Lied, after all, aired uncensored and was 10x bloodier than Deadman Wonderland has shown us so far. Highschool of the Dead cut the violence in ALL their broadcast editions, saving the full portion of the blood and guts for those who bought (or downloaded) the Blu-Ray version. For shows without fanservice or excessive violence, though, I'm not sure what the point of getting it in BD is (other than the superior quality). There's probably even more extras and other stuff in the anime whose main selling point isn't 'Hey, come see what we didn't show you on TV!'

May 10, 2011 7:02 AM by Blind_Guardian

Lol IS...

May 10, 2011 5:59 AM by AlexSadist-sama

I download all my anime, so they can ask $100/episode for all I care. Silly japsheep.

May 10, 2011 5:55 AM by SurferDude

leeahseng said:
wow, surprised on K-on and IS blueray sales
K-ON selling isn't really a surprise. It's like a common fact and knowledge now.

May 10, 2011 4:54 AM by Valentiln