Fun With Numbers: Berserk’s Third Movie Offers an Upper Bound on US Amazon Sales Projections

I’m officially done tracking US release data for the month of April, and the full data is here, if you care to check. I’m not posting a full summary; a lot of things got released, and I’m at the point where each month of data isn’t going to revolutionize my results. But there was one neat null result I got out of this month. The BD for Berserk’s third movie (Golden Age: Advent) put up the best release week of any release I’ve tracked to date, spending the majority of the days between April 15 and April 20 in triple digit rankings. Despite this performance, and a healthy amount of preorder ranking, it failed to crack the top 20 on the US BD charts (preorders are counted in first-week totals).

I’ve been collecting older BD charts via the Numbers for two months now (they’re about 2-3 months delayed from the present time), and those (from January and February in particular), suggest that a release needs to move between 10,000 and 20,000 BD units to crack the number 20 slot in any given week. Therefore, any amazon-rank fit I use to try and convert the numbers into approximate sales figures should be able to take that Berserk data from March 25 through April 20 and come out with a sales figure below at least 20,000, possibly below 10,000 (I’ll have more exact figures in a few months when the Numbers catches up to that week). That’s not a super-tight constraint, but it’ll help me clean out some of the more egregious overestimates in trying to fit the data (this may or may not disqualify the fit I used on the March data, which projects the movie at just a hair under 16,000 copies).

Fun With Numbers: April 2014 Amazon Data (Initial Numbers)

US amazon data may not be a perfect source, but it is a very interesting one, with a lot of organic components. I’m just about done collecting data for March releases (data for the 18th will be up when my schedule permits, data for the 25th still needs to be collected), and while these datapoints have managed to shed some light on a few of the narratives I pulled out of the February data, they’ve also raised still more interesting threads to be explored.

That means it’s in my best interests to continue collecting data both to broaden the sample and to give predictions a viable testing ground. All numbers posted here were collected on March 25th, via amazon’s upcoming anime releases page, one week before the earliest releases on the list.

Note: The price I note is the series’ MSRP price. If the series becomes listed at more than 50% off that price at any time during the amazon solicitation, I will note that both now and during the final analysis. The February part 1 release of Robotics;Notes had such a discount, along with Psycho-Pass and One Piece (all Funimation releases, which is probably noteworthy at this point).

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Introducing Unnecessary Terminology: The Fake Genius Zone

There’s a scene in Naoki Urasawa’s Happy! where the main character Umino, who’s gotten herself matched up against a player who should be by all rights an easy win, gets mixed up in a match-fixing gig. Due to her honest nature, she still tries to win the game, but finds herself stymied against an opponent playing much harder than she normally would, at a level that one informed observer remarks she’ll “never reach again” as a result of considerable pressure heaped on her from outside sources.

You know who else is under crushing pressure all the time? Mediocre manga authors.

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