People in Germany May Start Seeing Nazi Imagery in Some Video Games

Hitler's toothbrush moustache was digitally removed from the German version of WW2-themed video game Wolfenstein II

"Through the change in the interpretation of the law, games that critically look at current affairs can for the first time be given a USK age rating", said Secker in a statement".

For the version of the game in Germany, Hitler's famous moustache was digitally removed and swastikas were replaced with triangular symbols, keeping with the ban then. However, video games will now be assessed on a case-by-case basis. "The law still says, and will for many years say, that flooding the market with Nazi symbols is not something we want - it's forbidden", he clarified. Now video games will be given the same treatment as movies: As works of art, they will be exempt from the ban on swastikas. The gaming community have been strong advocates for video games to be treated like films.

In the wake of that ruling, game publishers have had to make significant edits to numerous games for release in Germany, sometimes to a ridiculous degree.

The move followed a heated debate in Germany and around the world late past year following the censorship of the video game "Wolfenstein II: The New Colossus,"which takes place in an alternate universe that depicts a Nazi victory in the Second World War and features an aging Adolf Hitler".

Germany is softening its stance against the use of Nazis imagery in computer and video games, the country's Entertainment Software Self-Regulation Body (USK) said on Thursday.

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The 1998 decision was recently challenged in a case surrounding Web-based game Bundesfighter II Turbo, a politically themed satirical fighting game.

In an April decision on Bundesfighter (as reported by Lexology), Germany's attorney general ruled that the art exemption does apply to the game.

Felix Falk, managing director of the German Games Industry Association, has welcomed the move, and believes that games will finally be able to "play an equal role in social discourse".

The USK, which was given responsibility for policing content by Germany's youth protection services, also said that games themed on the Nazi era would be subject to an age limit.

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