Yup, it's that time of year again for all that tomfoolery to take place that would normally result in people loosing their jobs, if it weren't for it being April Fool's Day. One company that always seems to have a few tricks up their sleeves for the event is Blizzard Entertainment, and with as many games they currently have in the works or actively being played, they always have three to four jokes for us all to laugh at a bit.
The first up is one that I, not being a fan of the Slanket/Snuggie fad, personally get a chuckle from reading. Apparently Blizzard will be releasing a limited number of X-treme Gamer Blankets branded as Diablo III merchandise. The blanket (shown to the right) comes in one of two colors, Magi Blue or Blunderbore Brown, and has "Freedom of Movement Holes" in the front to help you move around while staying warm; it has both form and function! (but unfortunately no style) Even better is that if you purchase two of the blankets you also get a Diablo III Body Pillow with the picture of some grotesque devil spawn on it, perfect for scaring you to sleep.
Next on the block is something for all you virtual reality fans out there, the Battle.net Neural Interface. Apparently it comes in three fabulous colors and "reads and adapts to your unique brainwave signature, forming a permanent and unbreakable bond, ensuring that all your senses are properly mapped to your character's view of the game world;" however, apparently removing the device once properly mapped to your brainwaves is not advised and will probably leave you with permanent loss of brain function. I do have to say, if this would allow me to even come close to beating one of the thousands of Starcraft experts I have to face right now in the Starcraft II online beta, it'd be well worth the brain loss, since I'm already beating my head against the desk in every match.
On the World of Warcraft side, it looks like they are releasing a new ranking system called the Equipment Potency EquivalencE Number, or EPEEN for short. Apparently the system will keep track of the elite gear you get, along with any individual and raid achievements that you unlock, and work out a number based on that info. The real kicker is that the system will also use the phasing abilities of the game, so that as you increase in EPEEN, you only see those of similar level. This means you'll never have to see all those noobs (or better yet all the elitist a-holes) again, since they won't be in the same plane of existence as your character. There are even rewards as you EPEEN grows such as "a permanent bonus to 'need' rolls, the ability to cut to the front of the queue in the Dungeon Finder, a larger ignore list, [and] a much shorter dungeon deserter debuff."
The last joke are two funny little tongue-in-cheek mobile games that Blizzard has announced called Blackthorne 2: Thorne Harder and Queen's Quest. The first is a throw back to one of Blizzard's first games, the SNES Blackthorne property, redone as a iPhone game. The second uses the Starcraft universe to properly mimic the PC adventure Quest series of Sierra Entertainment, which is currently a child company of Activision Blizzard. Make sure to read the bullet points for the games, since it makes jabs at both DRM schemes and Facebook/Twitter integration.
Overall, there are plenty of jokes and images in the above to make anyone whose enjoyed a Blizzard (or Sierra) game in the past chuckle a bit. Enjoy it while you can, cause in a few days you'll be back to pondering the joke that is when Diablo III will ever get released.