Germany has lifted a seven-year-long ban on Fallout 3, which might hint at the game being made available on Xbox One via backwards compatibility. It could pave the way for a PS4 re-release as well, but given the console has no ingrained backwards compatibility option it would have to be a fully-fledged re-release.
The company recently won its case, three years before the 10-year ban imposed on the RPG was set to expire, reports IGN Germany. Bethesda had "initiated a difficult and rarely-successful trial" with the Federal Department for Media Harmful to Minors (BPJM) to delist Fallout 3.
Ahead of the trial hearing, the company had prepared detailed application letters and formed a team to examine the contents of the game. The team, termed the Big Council, comprised 12 delegates representing German community organisations, State Assessors, BPJM Group members and the publisher.
"In the case of Fallout 3, the request for delisting was granted even though only seven years passed since the game was banned. The Big Council decided at its meeting on 4 February that Fallout 3 will be removed from the list because its content is no longer classified as harmful to minors from today's perspective," a BPJM member said in a statement.
Fallout 3 was banned in 2009 because of the level of violence in the game. It had earlier faced similar prohibition in Australia in 2008 over the alleged use of word chems (an abbreviation for chemicals), ketamine and PSP. The characters use these substances and experience drug-like effects.
"Corresponding with the list of various 'chems' are small visual representation of the drugs, these include syringes, tablets, pill bottles, a crack-type pipe and blister packs. In the board's view, these realistic visual representations of drugs and their delivery method bring the "science-fiction" drugs in line with "real-world" drugs," said Office of Film and Literature Classification (OFLC) in its report.
IGN Germany asked Bethesda for comment regarding the decision and the possibility of a re-release on Xbox One, and received the following response: "We cannot give a statement at the moment, but will answer your questions in a couple of weeks."