Germany isn't especially known for its game development, but there's a huge amount of stuff that gets made there. You've got Astragon, which you might not have heard of, but you’ve definitely heard of the range of simulators it publishes. You've got Piranha Bytes, who’ve been making incredibly 6/10 RPGs since before most of the VG247 crew were on solids, and you got you've got Egosoft constantly squirrelling away on the X series, which is nothing to do with Elon Musk, but is essentially Starfield but for poindexters. If this all sounds like Germany is Europe's largest purveyor of slightly janky games that have really niche audiences then yeah, uh, actually, that's about the size of it.
There might well be more games set in Germany than are made there, though. Predictably there's a lot of World War Two shooters on the list, but there's also racing games, murder mysteries, a surprising amount of Point & Click adventures, and an upcoming Assassin's Creed game that's about witches or something. Also Pentiment, which is a masterpiece. And so, in celebration of this vibrant gaming powerhouse, and honestly not just because I got my dates wrong and did the Gamescom episode a week late, we're asking our esteemed panel today: what is the best German game?
Special thanks to David Bulmer for performing "Jim's Theme".
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You could also simply read the summary below, if you're the sort of person who skips to the last page of a book (a wrongun, a reprobate, a Bad Seed).
Rebecca is our new Guides Writer (although she's a familiar face around the ReedPop stable, having previously been a staffer at our sister site Rock Paper Shotgun). For her first podcast appearance she decided to re-establish her well documented love of Gabriel Knight, and it wasn't a bad strategy, because it turns out Jim had an unhealthy obsession with those games in the 90s too.
Tom picked Project Gotham 4, because of course he did. There's a bit on the Nurburgring, so Tom's argument is that it is therefore set in Germany. By that standard, you could also argue that Top Gear was "filmed in Germany".
Connor went with Spec Ops: The Line, the German-developed third person shooter that's a loose adaptation of the novel Heart of Darkness, which means it's kind of also a loose adaptation of the movie Apocalypse Now, which means that it's the pseud's dream game for boring people at parties. Shooting's a bit crap tho.
“What is the Best Games Ever Show?” you ask? Well, it is essentially a 30-minute panel show where people (Jim Trinca and associates) decide on the best game in a specific category. That's it. It's good. Listen to it.
Come back in a week for another exciting instalment of the Best Games Ever Show.