Large queues meant some shoppers were turned away even before stores opened at 0700 local time (2100 GMT).
The console officially went on sale on 11 November but Sony only made 100,000 machines available on launch day.
Instead of opening at midnight, stores organised lotteries to decide who in the queue would get a long-awaited PS3.
Outside Bic Camera's flagship Tokyo store more than 1,000 people queued for their chance to buy a PlayStation 3.
Shop attendants with microphones warned impatient customers that sales would end if there were any injuries.
"Standing in line today is the only way to make sure I got one," said Takayuki Sato, 30.
Tomoaki Nakamura, 41, said: "I've been waiting for this day to come for so long. I'll play it all through the weekend. No time for meals."
The head of Sony's game unit head, Ken Kutaragi, known as "the father of the PlayStation", expressed his gratitude to those who had waited.
Post a Comment