April Fool’s in Gaming.

Video Game Developers have always had fun with April Fool’s Day.  Here’s two example of this year’s offering from two of my favorite game developers:

Big Head Mode:

Blizzard has always been in touch with its goofy side.  The writers for their games are often self-referential enough to know when to take things seriously and when to let loose with wise-cracks.  They April Fools’ Day jokes often take the form of announcements on their website and tease hilarious content for their games.  Interestingly enough, their jokes often turn out to be partially true in their game.s  One of their jokes last year had a special skin for Abathur in Heroes of the Storm (called Pajamathur) that eventually became a real skin.  About six or seven years ago, they teased a special Terran unit in StarCraft II called TerraTron that showed up as the final boss in a mini-game.

This year, they’ve announced a Big Head mode for Heroes of the Storm.  Your characters now look like bobblehead versions of themselves.  (Think along the lines of a chibi or SD in anime-terms.)  I would not be surprised if this became an actual option in the final release of the game.  Actually, I am certain that it will be.

Bear witness here: http://us.battle.net/heroes/en/blog/18538454

There’s also an Easter Bunny skin for Murky, but I can’t tell if that’s for April Fools or not.


So for the last, oh, year and a half or so, I’ve been playing an online game called War Thunder.  This gist is that you fly around in warplanes and/or tanks from the WWII era.  It’s a fun online shoot-em’-up.  The game is developed by a Russian company called Gaijin.

For the past two April Fools’ Days, Gaijin has implemented gimmicky joke events.  Last year, a giant snail would appear on the field (Gaijin’s company’s mascot) and before that, you could choose to fly as a My Little Pony.  Sadly, I was not aware of the game at that time, otherwise I would’ve totally joined then.  The idea of shooting an enemy as a fruity pegasus sounds just too fun.

This year, you get to join in an event where you stomp around in a giant mecha reminiscent of a Metal Gear or an AT-ST from Return of the Jedi.  No fooling.  This is made even better by the fact that War Thunder strives for realism, so the idea of a giant robot walking over the burning husks of their enemies is even funnier.

This may not be the best April Fool’s Day joke that Gaijin has pulled, but it is the best implemented one.  The mecha can only be driven in a special event separate from the other games.  You do not need access to the dev server or worry about goofy gameplay fouling up the traditional game modes.

More info here: http://warthunder.com/en/news/2975-event-march-to-victory-en

So, what’re your favorite gaming gags this year?  List them in the comments below!

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