Thank you. First, if this is how you feel, I don’t pretend to change your point of view, and I understand that you want to stay away from a game that makes you uncomfortable. I still want to explain where I come from.
The Nazi party was the governing body in Germany during WW2. As such, technically, all German armed forces were under Nazi command. However, many soldiers were not sympathetic to the views of the party, let alone official members of it. Certain sections of the army, like the U-boat crews, were known for having many dissidents in their ranks. The film “Das Boot” demonstrates this well. I write this candidly; to lump all German soldiers into the Nazi stereotype is at best a mistaken shortcut, and at worst a profound lack of understanding of the history of Germany during WW2.
Many games and films portray the German army without adhering to the views of the Nazis. For my part I despise both the ideology and the actions of the Nazis, but I have educated myself on the subject, which allowed me to form a nuanced and informed point of view about the horrors of war, and better understand that every side had villains, heroes, and victims. Consequently, it doesn’t prevent me from wanting to portray and honor all the men who fought during WW2, regardless of the nation they belonged to. We should remember that many men from all sides didn’t agree to the war nor wanted to take part, but they were not given a choice. It’s not to say that I want to shy away from reality in the game. As a U-boat captain, you will have to attack and sink allied ships, sometimes even civilian ships, and I believe that any wargame should have the courage to put the player in front of their contradictions, because war was not a pretty affair, regardless whom you killed, and whom you did it for. If you’re interested to know more, I’ve detailed in my devlog the historical and technical reasons that led me to focus this game on U-boats. Also, I intend to make a sequel to Atlantic ‘41 with the American B-29 bombers as central theme, which shows another side of WW2 that interests me. But this game too will have to confront its history; it was B-29 bombers which dropped the only two atomic bombs ever used against human beings, with a toll estimated to 200,000 casualties, essentially civilians.
To be clear, I’m not making an equivalence between the ignominy of the Holocaust and the use of atomic bombs against Japan. I try to illustrate how the personal views and actions of individuals dragged into a war should not be conflated with those of their governments.
As for Nazi Germany in particular, and WW2 in general, I recommend that you read on the subject. There’s many good books and essays available. WW2 is one of the most tragic and important moments of human history. It shaped the world we live in today, and we owe to the fifty million people who lost their lives to collectively try to better understand history, so that we can talk about it with care and respect, and avoid falling prey to caricature and ignorance.
It was maybe a longer answer than you cared for. I just want to make sure that you understand that I don’t take your question lightly, and that I did the research and the reflection before getting into this project.