You can always rely on PCG to bring you the news of the hottest game releases as soon as they’re announced. Whether it’s shadow drops at Gamescom, bombshell announcements at TGS, or the latest news on hotly-anticipated titles like, uh, Wolfenstein 3D.
Okay, 1992’s premier FPS isn’t news to you, but people in Germany haven’t been able to buy the game since it was effectively banned from sale in 1994 for its inclusion of Nazi symbols. That ban—and a later one on the game’s 1997 expansion Spear Of Destiny—was at last lifted in 2019 (opens in new tab), but German players still couldn’t really get their hands on the games because they hadn’t been given an age rating by Germany’s Unterhaltungssoftware Selbstkontrolle (Entertainment Software Self-Regulation, or USK).
That’s now changed. German games site GameStar (opens in new tab) reports that the USK appears to have finally gotten around to checking out this newfangled ‘Wolfenstein 3D’ thing and given it a rating, along with Spear Of Destiny. The game can be enjoyed by 16 year olds, apparently, but Spear Of Destiny is a hard 18+. As spotted by Twitter user Kinsie (opens in new tab), Wolfenstein 3D and its expansion are no longer restricted in Germany on Steam, and are now available for purchase for a cool €4.99. It’s also available on GOG and the Microsoft Store.
It’s worth noting that there is a little bit of confusion surrounding Wolfenstein’s availability in the past. Both German news sites and several German Reddit and forums users are rejoicing at ‘finally’ being able to easily buy Wolfenstein 3D, but a few confused onlookers swear they picked up a copy of the game in Germany on sites like GOG. Then again, there are old GOG threads (opens in new tab) from Germans looking to get a copy of the game gifted to them to circumvent German purchasing restrictions. Regardless, even if it was possible—in some under the radar way—to buy the games previously in Germany, it shouldn’t have been under German law.
But that’s all changed now. Thanks to the USK rating and the changes to the game’s availability, residents of Germany can now join us, legally, in defeating Mecha-Hitler (opens in new tab) and saving the world from the scourge of fascism. And only 30 years late, too.