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PS3 outsells Wii in March in Japan

New titles for the PlayStation 3 push the game console ahead of the Wii for the first time in 16 months. (From Reuters)

Sony's PlayStation 3 outsold Nintendo's Wii in March for the first time in 16 months in Japan thanks to new PS3 titles from Sega Sammy and Capcom, a game magazine publisher said.

Video game sales are closely watched for hints on how soon Sony can turn around its struggling game operations and how much growth momentum is left in the Wii.

Domestic sales of the PS3 came to 146,948 units in the five weeks through March 29, compared with 99,335 units of the Wii and 43,172 units of Microsoft's Xbox 360, Enterbrain said Monday.

The latest versions of popular action adventure series from Sega Sammy and Capcom--Ryu Ga Gotoku 3 and Resident Evil 5, respectively--came in first and second in game software sales in the period, helping drive PS3 demand.

Etsuko Tamura, an analyst with Mizuho Investors Securities, said that despite its strong showing in March, the PS3 is unlikely to threaten the Wii's global dominance as more software makers are focusing development resources on the Wii.