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Alternate History Nazi Victory

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Wells: It's basically our earth — same history, same timeline — with one crucial and critical difference.
Stein: So let me hypothesize. The Nazis developed the atomic bomb before the United States did, and they were more than happy to use it.
Wells: Yes, the Nazis won the war.
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There is one truth out there that most of the world is actually very grateful for: Nazi Germany lost World War II. And we're grateful because of the retroactive recognition of how different the world would be now if the Nazis had won. In fact, this is such a universal defining truth that lots of people want to either reinforce the goodness of Nazis losing or scare themselves with stories of what might have happened, anyway.

Of course, there's different degrees to how conclusive the Nazi victory would have been, and probably a few more wars. Perhaps the Americans would have nuked the world to death, or maybe the British were a bit slow on the planes and codebreaking. And, with how nice Germany is now, a Nazi victory might have just meant a longer period of shit before kind of leveling out again. However, speculative fiction isn't just interested with "They won but then got defeated in the Cold War" — it also wants the dystopia.

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Stories functioning on this will often include some kind of All-American resistance, as well as universal death camps (ones that everyone actually knows about) as a conflict to resist against, and a grunge-punk universe aided by not progressing from 1930s tech (unless Stupid Jetpack Hitler is in effect). The megalomaniacal architectural dreams of Adolf Hitler will often come true following the victory, with Berlin and other cities being considerably reshaped, and the gigantic Volkshalle being built.

Using this trope is typically prone to Alternate History Wank and Dated History: Nazi Germany had a lot of disadvantages and would have needed several lucky breaks just to win the war, let alone grow to a globe-spanning empire, but many classics of this subgenre (such as Trope Codifier The Man in the High Castle) were written before significant information about WWII was declassified, or without doing much research in the first place. Realistic Nazi victory scenarios have to take these disadvantages into account.

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Sub-Trope of Alternate History. See also Godwin's Law of Time Travel and Day of the Jackboot.


Examples:

    open/close all folders 

    Anime & Manga 

    Board Games 
  • Axis And Allies allows up to five players to reenact World War II from 1942 onwards when the United States joins the fray. Sufficiently adept (and lucky) players can end the war more favorably for Nazi Germany and their allies. It's incredibly rare for the Axis to Take Over the World however, both because of the logistical problems with any attempted invasion of the American heartland, and because by that point, the USSR and UK have usually been knocked out of the war already by losing their capitals, which is its own win condition.

    Comic Books 
  • DC Comics:
    • The DC verse features an Alternate Universe known as Earth-Xnote  where the Nazis won WWII and govern the whole world to the modern day. The Freedom Fighters are one of the few remaining resistances in the Nazi Regime. Many heroes from Earth-1 and Earth-2 are summoned over to aid in battling the Nazis. This universe was revived in The Multiversity, in which it is now Earth-10.
    • The Justice Society of America "Fatherland" story is about a future where the Nazis create a machine called the "Darkness Engine" that depowers superheroes and metahumans. Without this involvement, they manage to win the war. Time Travel prevents this future from coming to pass.
  • Marvel Comics has its fair share of Nazi victory alternate earths.
    • Fantastic Four: On Earth-98570, Reed Richards gains superpowers from the Nazis and becomes head of their party. On Earth-76611, Nazi access to vibranium wins them the war.
    • Excalibur: Earth-597 is another Nazi victory earth, featuring versions of the team that now work for the Nazis.
    • In one of the multiverses of Marvel Zombies, the zombie infection goes to WWII and the Nazi won the war by being converted into zombies, that included some of the heroes being converted and joining the Zombie-Nazi army like Captain America himself.
  • Block 109 is set in a particularly grim "Nazi Victory" world where, ironically, Adolf Hitler's assassination early in the war made the whole thing worse. After The Purge, a new leadership takes charge and expands the war onto other continents, develops nuclear weapons, and wipes out most of civilization (although the war against USSR turns out just as hopeless as it was in real life actually, thus mitigating the "total Nazi victory" a great deal). By the end, after more than a decade of non-stop total war, secret Nazi experiments have unleashed a Zombie Apocalypse that drives the new Führer (who is actually a Mole in Charge attempting to subvert the Nazi regime from within) to press the Reset Button for humanity as a whole.
  • Über is a vicious take on the scenario and Stupid Jetpack Hitler with the point of divergence arriving at the very end of World War II through the introduction of super soldiers on the Nazi side. The war gets extended, millions more end up dead, and results in an arms race between the different powers all trying to develop their own "Ubers". The Nazis' explicit plan is not to win, but to "make everyone else lose as well".

    Fan Works 

    Films — Live-Action 
  • It Happened Here is a grimly low-key film set in a Nazi-occupied Britain. The US, the USSR, and a British colonial goverment-in-exile are still in the war, there's an active British resistance movement, and the ending strongly implies that the Third Reich is headed for defeat.
  • Fatherland, based on the Robert Harris novel, posits the same "Nazis Have Taken Over Europe And Are Now Engaged In A New Cold War With The Americans" world as the novel, though with a few changes (the point of divergence being a failed Normandy invasion rather than a more successful Caucasus Offensive) and a more hopeful ending for the protagonists.

    Literature 
  • Animorphs: Subverted in one Megamorphs story where the villain was messing around history and tried to make the D-Day landing fail as he'd caused the American Revolution to fail, all in an attempt to weaken human resistance to the Yeerks. Unfortunately, he'd already changed time quite a bit, and so the defenders weren't Nazis but an allied French and German force. Hitler himself shows up as a low-ranking chauffeur in the army, and thus has no clue why these people are suddenly very angry at him.
  • Fatherland is set in an alternate 1964 where the Nazis now control Europe, and the truth about the Holocaust drives the plot. It's also something of a Deconstructed Trope; rather than the Nazis building a world-spanning empire, the Nazi state covers Europe only and has more in common with the later stages of the Soviet Union, slowly decaying under the weight of its own tyranny and inefficiency while engaged in a Cold War with the United States.
  • The Man in the High Castle is set in a world where the assassination of Franklin Delano Roosevelt and the USA's complete neutrality led to an Axis victory in WWII. By the 1960s, Nazi Germany controls Europe, Africa, and the eastern USA, while Imperial Japan controls Asia and the western USA. The tension between those two superpowers is reminiscent of the OTL Cold War tensions between NATO and the Warsaw Pact.
  • Third Reich Victorious showcases ten self-contained stories, in all of which Germany wins against the Allies.
  • The Guy Saville novels The Afrika Reich and The Madagaskar Plan both take place in a world in which the Nazis were victorious, most of the African continent is under their control, and the Jewish population of Europe has been deported to Madagascar.
  • The Proteus Operation starts in a world where, due to help from time-travelers, the Nazis and Japanese had won the war. Now, thirty years later, North America and Australia are the only parts of the world outside of their control.
  • The Laundry Files has an example in the very first book. Bob encounters an alternate reality where the Nazi's won the second world war by summoning a being known the Jotun Infovore. It was all down here from there. And by downhill we mean a Class X-4 Apocalyspe.
  • Otto Basil's "Wenn das der Führer wüsste", ("If only the Führer knew") is a scathing satire in the form of a crime novel (the Nazis are mostly the esoteric-wacky kind).
  • The What If? counterfactual novels written by actual historians posits a few of these.
    • In one of them, Hitler seizes on the delay caused by the Balkans campaign of 1941 to invade the oil-rich Middle East through Turkey, then launches a two-pronged Operation Barbarossa in 1942. Soviet resistance collapses within several months, while the U.K. is forced to sign a peace treaty because of the threat Germany then poses to India.
    • In another scenario, this is however subverted when Halifax signs a peace deal with Hitler in 1940. The Nazis still launch Operation Barbarossa, but the strategy used is less favorable and the Soviets were expecting them in the absence of a western front. The war lasts much longer, but by 1947 the USSR steamrolls all of Nazi-controlled Europe right up to the English channel and installs communist puppet regimes.
  • Stephen King's novel The Long Walk is a very subtle example. While it's entirely set in an Oppressive States of America, references made by various characters indicate that Nazi Germany won the war in Europe, attacked the U.S. East Coast, then ended up in a stalemate when both sides developed nuclear weapons. The subsequent economic downturn led the United States to adopt a totalitarian government as well.

    Live-Action TV 
  • Spike TV ran a one-shot special, entitled "Alternate History", covering what would've happened if Hitler won World War II. It wound up being a spectacular example of Artistic License – History when covering how we get to that point. Some examples:
    1. The biggest goof is the complete exclusion of the Russian Front. The Germans concentrated the overwhelming majority of their resources in the East and suffered the most casualties there. The American-British-French invasion of Normandy is often given undue weight as a 'turning of the tide' event because of Hollywood movies focusing primarily on the Western front. While it certainly sped up the German defeat, by the middle of 1944 the German war effort was in fact already doomed. Even if the Germans had managed to repel the Allies at D-Day, they still had the whole issue of millions of pissed off Soviets marching on Berlin to deal with, not having time to contemplate invading the UK and the US.
    2. The rationale they give for a German victory in D-Day is... deployment of the Me-262 jet fighter. One of the key aspects of Operation Overlord was aerial supremacy; the Allies controlled the skies over the Channel. The Me-262 had some advantages over propeller based fighters, but the jet engines didn't make it a superplane (its performance not being critically better than any other plane constructed) - by the end of the war, Allied forces had racked up several 262 kills. Additionally, by 1944 Germany was having several problems with manufacture of jet engines - namely, they no longer had the resources to make them properly. The engines they could manufacture didn't last - they had to be rebuilt after operation, and had a short operational life.
    3. Then there's the whole "nuke the East Coast" bit. There's a reason the Civilization games have always made The Manhattan Project a world wonder - the effort to produce a viable nuclear weapon required a massive amount of research and resources; there's a famous anecdote that when General Groves asked for such-and-such a number of tons of silver from the U.S. Treasury, he got the starchy reply that "we do not speak of tons of silver at the Treasury. Our unit of measure is the troy ounce." (he did get the silver in the end). The production of fissionable material alone took not only massive facilities to process the material, but large amounts of power to run said facilities (which is why the facilities were built in the Tennessee Valley.) Then there was figuring out how to make an atomic bomb actually work. And the US faced all that without any serious efforts to undermine the project - whereas Germany had their program hindered by several notable acts of sabotage, such as having a major shipment of heavy water scuttled. In addition, one of the great wastes of resources Germany committed was the whole driving out or killing of the Jewish scientists. You could say that in this "Alternate History" they didn't do that, but then they wouldn't really have been, well, Nazis. Aryan supremacy was a core plank of the Nazi ideology, and they were just not pragmatic enough to compromise on that.
    4. There was also the fact that Germany's nuclear program was actually nine separate rival programs, each actively hindering and the others and fighting for an ever-dwindling budget. They were also constrained by ideologically-correct "German Physics," which threw out several relatively recently-discovered principles that made the Manhattan Project possible because they were considered tainted by association with Jews. The Nazis did everything possible to make sure that their nuclear programs would be nothing but abject failures in every area imaginable, something "Germans make nukes first" scenarios conveniently gloss over.
    5. Hell, even if they DID manage to win the war by forcing the US and Soviets to surrender over nuclear bombs, there is no way they would ever enforce their laws in the US. The militaristic and patriotic nature of the nations would encourage an active rebellion against their controllers. Same goes with the United Kingdom. Controlling and patrolling a nation is much harder than forcing it to surrender (as has been evidenced several times in the Middle East). Germany would be burning through resources and money to no end trying to even establish a proper police force.
  • Arrowverse:
    • Crisis on Earth-X reveals the existence of an Alternate Universe called Earth-X where the Nazis won WWII and establish a New Reich that governs the whole world. It is loosely based on the comics story shown above. In this universe, many of the main universes heroes have Evil Doppelgangers that are allied with the Nazis, including Oliver Queen/Dark Arrow who is the Fuhrer and Kara Danvers/Overgirl who is one of his generals. The premise of the crossover has the Nazis of Earth-X invading Earth-1 and clashing with the heroes.
    • Very nearly happens in the Legends of Tomorrow episode "Out Of Time" and just gets barely averted. Damien Darhk and Eobard Thawne meddle with history, selling an atomic bomb to the Nazis which they use to destroy New York in 1942, leading the Allied forces to withdraw and the Nazis to seize victory. The Legends spend the episode trying to prevent this from occurring by first kidnapping Einstein (who they believed the Nazis would use to acquire the secrets to the bomb), but later it's revealed it was actually Einstein's wife who gave them the knowledge. With the bomb heading towards New York, the Legends have their Cool Ship take the blast instead, averting the crisis that would have led to the Nazi victory.
  • Both the miniseries and novel SS-GB take place in an alternate reality in which the Germans forced the British to surrender after winning the Battle of Britain and successfully invading, with them then occupying the UK.
  • Star Trek:
    • In the Star Trek: The Original Series episode "The City on the Edge of Forever", a delusional Bones is sent back in time and saves the life of Edith Keeler, who then goes on to convince President Roosevelt to stay out of the war. This is a downplayed example since the consequences are never shown beyond the Enterprise being erased from existence. Nazi Germany's victory meant that mankind continued to be involved in petty internecine squabbles and never became a space-faring civilization.
    • A two-part episode, "Storm Front", of Star Trek: Enterprise is set in an altered timeline where time-traveling aliens had armed the Nazis with an arsenal of devastating energy weapons, leading to the rapid conquest of Europe, Asia and the eastern seaboard of the U.S. It features a highly entertaining alternate-universe propaganda clip describing the bright, shining future in store for America now that it's Germany's "partner". The point of divergence was the assassination of Lenin before he could turn Russia communist, though by the time of World War 2 itself, the aliens have become open allies of the Nazis.
      • That said, the episode also implied that the tide was turning against the Nazis, with German troops stretched thin, the Russians preparing to retake Moscow, and near the end of Part 2, US troops launching an offensive into Pennsylvania. The Enterprise bombing a key R&D facility and wiping out the Nazis' alien allies probably didn't help, either.
  • The Man in the High Castle, based on the famous Philip K Dick novel of the same title, as described in the literature section. Features the same overall geopolitics as the novel, but with a lot of Adaptation Expansion. There's a large plotline that takes place in Berlin in season 2, for instance, whereas the book only focused on the occupied American territories. On a more metaphysical level, the reels being spread by the mysterious Hawthorne Abendsen and Takomi's visit to another Alternate Universe establish that the world inhabited by the main characters exists within a much large Multiverse, containing some realities in which the Nazis won as well, and some in which they lost the war.
  • Misfits has an episode in which the timeline is temporarily altered so that Germany won World War II and the UK is still Nazi-run in the 2010s. In an extra-grim twist, this happened because a Jewish man used time-travel powers to attempt to kill Adolf Hitler, and not only did he fail, but his smartphone fell into Nazi hands and they reverse-engineered it to gain a massive technological advantage over the rest of the world, causing their victory.
  • The BBC serial ''An Englishman's Castle" is set in an alternate 1970s, in which Nazi Germany had invaded and occupied Britain during WWII. The protagonist is the writer of a popular soap opera (also called "An Englishman's Castle") that is set during the Battle of Britain.

    Video Games 
  • The Wolfenstein franchise from The New Order onwards focuses on an Alternate History timeline where the Nazis are victorious in WWII and establish a New World Order. Some other games play around with this and instead explore WWII being dragged out longer than 1945.
  • In Zombie Army Trilogy, in the final days of WWII, Hitler is informed he's about to lose and orders the execution of "Plan Z", the resurrection of all the fallen Nazi soldiers as zombies. This causes havoc for the Allied forces who now have to deal with Nazi zombie mobs ravaging towns. Eventually, Hitler himself is killed by the zombies and joins the ranks of the undead but still retaining his human sentience, and leads his undead army to further tighten his grip on the Third Reich.
  • In City of Heroes, Portal Corp's founder stumbled into a dimension (Delta Zeta 24-10, better known as Axis America) where the Axis won World War II; he was killed there by Reichsman, the equivalent of Primal Earth's Statesman. Reichsman tried to invade Primal Earth. He was captured, but he would later be freed and restore the Primal Nazi enemy group, the 5th Column.
  • Hearts of Iron, while mainly a historical simulator, doesn't actually force players to stick to real-life history. As a result, when in the hands of a sufficiently good player, Nazi Germany can overcome the odds and end up winning World War II.
    • The New Order: Last Days of Europe is an unreleased Hearts of Iron IV Game Mod set in a world of alternate Cold War between victorious Nazi Germany, Imperial Japan and the United States of America. While Germany managed to crush both the British Empire and the Soviet Union and launch a nuclear strike on Pearl Harbour in 1944, forcing the US to concede defeat, their economy couldn't sustain itself much longer and crashed several years after the war. Even though the dire economic situation was eased somewhat by massive introduction of slave workforce from the occupied territories, Germany by 1962 is a nation on the brink of collapse, with youth protesting across the country, the industry almost entirely dependent on slave labor and a conflict between various factions for power in the Reich, which turns into a full-blown Civil War after Hitler's death.
    • Thousand-Week Reich is based on a timeline told in maps, and is based on the premise of Operation Dynamo failing, leading to Britain signing an armistice with Germany in 1941. Germany goes on to dominate mainland Europe, while Japan is defeated by the Allies by 1945. By 1952, the world sees a cold war between the German-led 'Neuordnung' and the US-UK-Canadian-established Toronto Accord, but the Reich is tottering, and would need very talented leadership to avoid collapsing.
  • Fury Software's Strategic Command can keep the war going up until 1947. Skilled enough players can secure victory for Germany in Europe and even conquer Canada and the US East Coast.
  • One chapter of the text adventure Time: All Things Come to an End has the protagonist visit an alternate version of 1980s England where Germany won World War II. In the following chapter the player must travel to 1940 to restore the original timeline.

    Web Original 

    Western Animation 
  • In the Justice League three-parter "The Savage Time", the Justice League inadvertently travel to an alternate present-day Earth where the Nazis rule America (and presumably the rest of the world) due to Vandal Savage deposing Hitler (turning him into a Human Popsicle) during World War II and taking his place as Führer, allowing the Nazis to win the war. Savage sent his past self a laptop with a very detailed historical database as well as plans to build futuristic weapons such as the monstrous War Wheels to secure that victory. The Justice League finds out about his time machine, travels in time to 1944 and tries to stop Savage before it's too late, with the help of some old school World War II-era DC Comics heroes they come across such as Blackhawk and his squadron, Sgt. Rock and his Easy Company and Steve Trevor.

 
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Fatherland Intro

A historical overview of how Nazi Germany won World War II.

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Main / AlternateHistoryNaziVictory

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