With MachineGames developing Indiana Jones, what’s up with Wolfenstein 3?

Out of nowhere, Bethesda announced that MachineGames would be making an Indiana Jones game through the new LucasFilm Games banner. It’s an unusual fit, but it makes some sense given how the Swedish company has a knack for killing Nazi scum. However, this development has some people worrying about MachineGames’ Wolfenstein games as developing the Indie title be bumping a third main Wolfenstein title down the line. So what is up with Wolfenstein 3?

Is Wolfenstein 3 still coming?

Wolfenstein Youngblood Xbox Game Pass

Wolfenstein 3 is still likely coming. Senior Vice President of Global Marketing and Comms Pete Hines confirmed after Wolfenstein Youngblood‘s release in 2019 that “they” are “absolutely” making a third Wolfenstein. Also Youngblood and Wolfenstein 2 left some big threads dangling and it’s likely both were developed to work together and lead up to a Wolfenstein 3.

But there are still some aspects that could have changed or at least pushed this game down the line just a bit. Wolfenstein Youngblood along with Wolfenstein Cyberpilot were not received well critically and neither cracked the July 2019 or August 2019 NPD lists. Bethesda has not commented on this matter, but is possible that this could have changed plans for Wolfenstein 3. A game with the Indiana Jones license is probably a safer bet, too.

And although it would easy to point to Microsoft being a factor, it couldn’t have been. Microsoft bought Bethesda in September 2020, but that deal isn’t “expected to be finalized in the second half of fiscal year 2021,” according to NPR. Microsoft doesn’t own Bethesda yet so it doesn’t get a say in what Bethesda does in its current form.

But “they” is in quotes in the above Hines quote because it isn’t clear what team or teams would be making Wolfenstein 3. It’s very likely that MachineGames will make Wolfenstein 3, but the studio would be under Microsoft’s discretion by then and since Arkane Studios co-developed Youngblood, nothing is confirmed or set in stone. But given how Wolfenstein has persisted in some form since 1981, Wolfenstein 3 is bound to happen at some mysterious point in the future.