A new video game that asks players to identify Nazi leader Adolf Hitler’s psychological issues and “avoid” the Holocaust has drawn online outrage.
The indie game, called “Heal Hitler,” has been available for purchase since July 22 on popular video game digital store Steam.
Its description says: “POV: You are Hitler’s psychologist in 1925. Diagnose his complexes by using both Jungian and Freudian psychotherapy and attempt to heal him. Resolve Hitler’s trauma and prevent catastrophe via therapy and psychology. Succeed and avoid the war and holocaust.”
“Hitler was human too, just like you,” it argues. “If you distance yourself from him by dehumanizing him and calling him a monster, you are doing psychological damage to your self.
“In order to develop your shadow, you need to realize and admit that given the right circumstances, you could become someone like Hitler too. You are both good and evil. And if we don’t admit that someone like Hitler could come again, we are doomed to repeat history.”
The game was created by Czech developer Jon Aegis, who has denied allegations that he is a Nazi apologist, claiming that he researched psychological reports and accounts by people who had met Hitler.
When Aegis promoted the game in several Reddit forums, not all users were happy.
“This is offensive and weird. And speaks to a complete lack of personal experience with the holocaust,” one user wrote, according to Newsweek.
“This game is in super poor taste and is a bad idea,” wrote another.
The result is video games being filled full of games like this that distort the Holocaust or simplify it.
The Light in the Darkness is about the Holocaust in France, where it wasn't the Nazis that did the Vel D'Hiv Roundup but the French.
Most people don't know this.
— Luc Bernard (@LucBernard) July 27, 2021
“I don’t give a s*** about Hitler’s childhood traumas, you should be more interested in his victims,” said a third.
Holocaust expert Daniel Kennedy was quoted by the Daily Mail as saying the game trivializes the Holocaust.
“The entire premise of the game is in such incredibly bad taste I can only assume it was deliberately designed to cause offense,” he said. “I’m guessing they were hoping to sell a few copies based on shock value alone.”