Scores of controversial games, spanning an era of over twenty years, have just been pulled from the German Steam store.
The removed games:
Aliens versus Predator Classic
Blake Stone: Aliens of Gold
Blood: One Unit Whole Blood
Blood II: The Chosen + Expansion
Carmageddon Max Pack
Carmageddon 2: Carpocalypse Now
Kingpin — Life of Crime
Painkiller: Black Edition
Painkiller Hell & Damnation
Rise of the Triad
Shadow Warrior Classic Redux
SiN Episodes: Emergence
Star Wars Dark Forces
The Chaos Engine
Various bundles that include the removed titles have also been pulled:
Carmageddon Complete Pack
Lucasarts Jedi Knight Bundle
Nordic Games Classic Mix
Painkiller Complete Pack
Painkiller Hell and Damnation Standard 4-pack
Painkiller Hell and Damnation Collectors
POSTAL 2 4-Pack
POSTAL 2 + Paradise Lost
Rise of the Triad – 4 Pack
Star Wars Collection – 2015 -RP
The Apogee Throwback Pack
The Chaos Engine 2-Pack
Whilst there has been no official word from the folks at Valve, this seems to have been done due to the titles appearing on The List of Media Harmful to Young People (also known as The Index).
This list is a collection of media that have various possible restrictions placed upon them to protect children from media deemed unsuitable. It includes things such as games, music, books and movies, and is run by the Federal Department for Media Harmful to Young Person, a branch of the German government.
When a title is placed on the list, it is placed in one of two categories. Games placed on List A are unable to receive a USK rating, the German equivalent of the ESRB, preventing an official German release. It also means buyers of foreign versions must not make the game’s content accessible to minors in any way. List A games can’t be advertised and physical copies can’t be openly sold.
That sound bad? Well, for List B games things get much worse. When titles are placed in this category they can’t be sold at all within Germany, so no more selling stuff under the counter for example.
Steam has consistently removed these games from the German store. Alekhine’s Gun is the most recent example of a game being removed in Germany, with this being due to its use of Nazi symbols which grants an automatic ban in this region.
It appears that they have just done some cleaning up of titles that somehow managed to slip by. Although, how such controversial games as Harvester (seen above) and Postal managed to slip by unnoticed is sure confusing.