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Despite gov't approval, Google rejects Attentat 1942 from Google Play Store in Germany

"How we're supposed to make an historically-accurate game about WW2 horrors without Nazis? We don't know."

Attentat 1942 developer Charles Games says that Google has blocked the release of its historical game on the Google Play Store in Germany, Russia, Austria, and France over Attentat 1942's in-game use of Nazis.

“How we're supposed to make an historically-accurate game about WW2 horrors without Nazis? We don't know,” tweeted Charles Games at the start of a longer thread on the issue.

Those tweets from the dev (via PocketGamer) say Google rejected both the game and Charles Games’ subsequent appeal despite the fact that Attentat 1942 uses Nazis in an accurate historical context, was developed alongside historians from Czech Academy of Sciences and had already received approval for a German release by government regulators in 2018.

“We're also frustrated because it hinders what mobile games are allowed to do,” tweeted the studio. “We firmly believe that videogames are art and can be an important part of public conversations. When we ban everything with any controversial keywords no matter the content, everybody loses.”

Attentat 1942 debuted on Steam in 2017 as a historical game the tells the story of Nazi occupied Czechoslovakia through the eyes of World War 2 survivors. It took no small amount of work to get the game approved to launch in Germany given the country’s regulations on Nazi imagery, as discussed in a blog post the team wrote up on the process.

That approval looked to hinge on the context in which Nazi symbolism was used in the game, and was largely made possible due to a change made in Germany’s Entertainment Software Self-Regulation Body created a pathway for case-by-case assessments.

While Charles Games hasn’t given up on launching the mobile port of Attentat 1942 on the Play Store, Google has so far remained steadfast in rejecting the game over its references to Nazis. Since that thread first went up however, Google Czech has reached out to the team promising to look into the rejection after Google’s developer support team followed up with little else to add.

“We hope Google will retract their decision and approve Attentat 1942 in the end,” tweeted the studio. “We want to keep history alive and considering how vast the mobile audience is, it would be a huge shame to lose them.”

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