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Attentat 1942 – a chilling trip to a Europe at war and to things I never understand

Content of the article: "Attentat 1942 – a chilling trip to a Europe at war and to things I never understand"

Attentat 1942 is a kind of “detective story” set early 2000 in the Czech Republic where you try to uncover certain parts of your grandfather’s past during the Nazi German occupation.

In the beginning of your 2-3 hour journey you get a short introduction into how the protectorate of Bohemia and Moravia got created by using historic video and audio recordings. But you find yourself in early 2000 where the story of your grandparents slowly unfolds as you interview contemporary witnesses.

Interviews are done like an FMV game with actors that all speak Czech (I have to guess here). Proper subtitles are provided. Past events are cleverly interwoven with comic style visual novel, puzzles or dialog options.

You need to ask the right questions in the FMV parts as well as comic parts to get all the clues to proceed. It is not too tough but at times it lacks some proper guide what to do next.

The story pretty much went under my skin because you see the occupation from the civilian point of view. You talk to people that collaborated, that lost everyone in concentration camps, to members of the resistance and to ordinary people that just had bad luck.

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The only thing I found lacking was the context for someone who is not too familiar with Czech history. I had to look up a few things to provide context. So, for me the game also was a learning experience.

As a German I find these kinds of historical stories chilling and very unsettling. I know that both my grandparents served in the Wehrmacht. Although they have been dead for a long time now I never understood why they did what they did.

A few years back, I found myself on a beach in Haifa (Israel) after a week-long conference. There was a British guy whose grandpa served in the RAF, an American whose grandfather still told stories about fights in the Black Forest in Bavaria and a lady who had lost almost all family in concentration camps. I was standing in the middle with two grandfathers served in the Wehrmacht. We drank to “peace” and were silent for a long after we shared our family stories.


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