Pac-Man maps, medical dagga & PS Flow: How not to get taken in by April Fool’s

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We considered doing our own April Fool’s story, but ultimately decided against it because, let’s be honest, they’re rubbish… unless you’re elgooG and can spend a lot of time, effort and money to get them “just right”.

So instead, we came up with these handy steps that, if followed, should help you avoid being suckered in by today’s inevitable glut of stories designed to dupe.

  • Read everything very carefully; if a headline sounds too good to be true, it probably is. If it’s genuinely exciting, it’s a lie. If it’s something you’ve wanted to see happen for years and years and years, it’s more than likely not true and warrants further investigation.
  • In today’s world, the news isn’t exciting (bad – yes, exciting – no), so when a thrilling headline appears your default stance should rather be “Oh is it?” than “That’s so awesome!” That remains true of every day of the year, but especially this one.
  • Should you find a suspect headline, plug it into Google, or head over to to check how true it might be. Snopes has a great reputation for debunking internet ridiculousness, and is a solid source of accurate information on a wide range of hoaxes, pranks and April Fool’s jokes.

With that out of the way, we thought we’d round up some of the internet’s better April Fool’s pranks, just so you can see the kind of things people have been falling for all morning. But not you, of course.

What stories have you spotted that you think should be on the list? Feel free to hit us up with a link.

UPDATE: We’ve been alerted by a reader that the addition of Pac-man to Google Maps is not actually an April Fool’s joke, and that it doesn’t work on Google Maps Classic. backs that up with an article titled ” Google Maps Pac-Man is not an April Fools’ joke, it’s a gift from Google“. Thanks, Andre!

Deon du Plessis

Deon du Plessis

Deon got his first taste of PC gaming at the tender age of 11 when his father bought an 8088 XT, ostensibly to "help him with his homework". Instead, it introduced him to Leisure Suit Larry, King Graham, Sonny Bonds and many more, and Deon has been a PC gamer and hardware enthusiast ever since. He landed his first professional writing gig in 2006 at a prestigious local PC magazine, a very happy happenstance as he got to write for a living about things he loves - tech, PCs, gaming, and everything in between. He's been writing about it all ever since, and loves every minute of it.