In the most dramatic of comeback stories, Sony has reportedly reclaimed its place at the top of the video game industry for the first time since 2006. Japanese newspaper Nikkei claims that the giant sold a total of 18.7 million consoles (across the PlayStation 4, PlayStation 3, Vita, and PSP) during the fiscal year that’s just finished, pushing it ahead of Nintendo for the first time in eight years.

While the manufacturer’s hardware sales actually fell by 20 per cent year-on-year, the early success of its next-gen format, in addition to the ongoing popularity of the PS3, meant that it was able to comfortably overcome the House of Mario’s still respectable 16.3 million units tally. Microsoft’s sales actually increased by 16 per cent to 11.6 million during the same period, but without a handheld device, it’d be unfair to factor the Redmond-based firm into this particular race.

Sony will no doubt be pleased to see its brand back on top, but it will be hoping that the ongoing success of the PS4 pushes its numbers even higher next time. Of course, with the Vita flagging and the PSP soon to be discontinued, there’s no guarantee that it will continue to grow – even if its next-gen machine maintains its current momentum.