A lot of Sega’s people from the early 3D era concluded that their only real advantage was the fact that they simply tried things before everyone else: back then, even just a six-month head-start made you dramatically more skilled than your contemporaries, but as tech became more advanced and Sega’s people started leaving and sharing their expertise elsewhere, whatever perceived superiority they had dissipated pretty quickly. To give one example, the early Tekken team was primarily ex-AM2 people, who then jumped to Square and then splintered off into the diaspora.
exodus For example, with Tekken, that’s the winner at this point because it has not only outlived Virtua Fighter, it’s dramatically outsold every other fighting game series, including street fighter.
Nah, Smash has it pipped at 60 million sold, and Ultimate accounts for 20 million all on its own. (Smash 64 is by far the least successful of the five games at 4.5 million, a number most other fighting games would kill for—I don’t think SFV’s there, even.)
Tekken’s at 50 million, Street Fighter’s at 45 million; MK’s somewhere in the vicinity of those two, if not higher, but the numbers aren’t clear, especially for the WB-era games, which have sold extremely well but they never say precisely how well. Beyond that, you’re looking at way way lower numbers, I think Soulcalibur might be the only series to even crack 10 million. Dragon Ball FighterZ, which has sold 5 million and counting, has already eclipsed several decades-old fighting game franchises with a single game.
Tekken 3 was the single biggest-selling home fighting game for a long time, at around 8.5 million, but Smash Ultimate and Brawl both have it beat pretty significantly (as does 4, if you count both versions as one game), as have at least two of the last three MK games. FWIW, Capcom’s biggest one-shot is OG SF2 for SNES, which sold a little under 6.5 million IIRC, and Tekken 7 will probably end up overtaking it when all is said and done.