For nearly two decades, "Doom" has been considered
evil in Germany: The game was "banned" or, more
precisely, "indexed" in Europe's biggest market for
PC games. In 1993, the Bundesprüfstelle - a governmental body
- found the game was adult content, i.e. harmful to minors. In
1994, "Doom II" suffered the same fate. At the time, the
Bundesprüfstelle suspected that the games appealed mainly to
As of August 31, 2011, both games have been removed from the
"index". The Bundesprüfstelle followed ZeniMax'
arguments and held that by today's standards, "Doom"
and the German version of "Doom II" are no longer harmful
to minors. The games were rated "16+" the same day by
USK, the German Age Rating Authority. Already several weeks
earlier, the Bundesprüfstelle held that "Gears of War
3" was not adult content, i.e. not to be indexed. The original
international version of "Doom II" remains on the
"index", as it contains levels from another
The case is a novelty: While the Bundesprüfstelle has
removed several other media from the "index" in a similar
procedure, games so far had been removed generally only after the
25 years period of the initial decision had elapsed, and
"Doom" was probably the most prominent of all games
"indexed" in Germany. The economic interest of the
original "Doom" game may be limited today, but the brand
remains on of the most valuable games brands of all time. When the
game was "indexed", each mentioning of the name in
Germany was close to being a criminal offense: In fact, advertising
or promoting an "indexed" game in Germany is criminal,
and there is no clear line between using a game's name and
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