The Worst April Fools' Joke Of All: 'Half-Life 2: Episode 3'
Yeah, this one hits a bit hard.
Video game price guide site CheapShark drew up a fairly authentic looking Steam page advertising the long-lost "Episode 3," a portion of "Half-Life 2" that's been in development for going on six years. Despite the eagerness of fans, little news has been generated about the development of the episode in the last few years, reducing it to the video game equivalant of Schrödinger's cat.
The fake site offered fans the chance to pre-order the episode that's become something of a legend over these last few years, saying the game was set to be unlocked in October 10, 2013, six years to the day that "Half-Life 2: Episode 2" released. But the fake site reveals its web of deceit when players click anywhere in the page and viewers are greeted with the message, "April Fools from CheapShark! (...sorry, no Episode 3)"
The pictures certainly looked the real thing, possibly because they are. They were part of a leak of concept art from several months before that found its way to ValveTime.
To their credit, CheapShark soon enough realized just how cruel their goof was, removing the link from their front page. But it's still dirty pool. For shame CheapShark. What would Gordon Freeman say?