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Helldivers 2 Players Blown Away By Fake Game Master

Red alert! An imposter may have infiltrated High Command. Some nefarious provocateur is seemingly impersonating Joel, the Game Master controlling "Helldivers 2" from behind the scenes, and we have no idea what grand plan the imposter is pursuing. To be fair, some Helldivers might not care what Fake Joel is planning because when he shows up during a mission, you can rest assured that things are about to get way more exciting. The other day, a video started floating around the internet showing a player called "[AH] Joel" popping up in a "Helldivers 2" match.

This so-called Joel tells the other players that he needs to get back to work. Before he leaves, he spawns in an an APC, a giant armored truck, and leaves it for players to enjoy. This is one of the upcoming "Helldivers 2" features that hackers leaked quite a while back, and players have been dying for a chance to play around with it. In the video, the other players are delighted, believing that Game Master Joel has just delivered a special gift for them. However, some new information has come to light that makes this bizarre delivery even stranger.

Joel v Fake Joel

If you've been paying any attention to the meta story of "Helldivers 2," you probably wouldn't be surprised to learn that an Arrowhead Games employee is jumping into games and giving random players access to unreleased content. That's right in line with how the company has been interacting with its community. The devs like to ramp up the game's excitement by layering in all kinds of unexpected surprises, even if they have to lie to players to get the job done.

Unceremoniously dropping an APC into a game seems exactly like the type of thing that Joel and his compatriots would do, but supposedly this incident was entirely out of their control. An anonymous source reached out to Rock Paper Shotgun after it reported on Joel's special delivery, explaining that they wanted to "put the record straight." This source, which has been verified by Rock Paper Shotgun, revealed that Joel is way too busy doing Game Master stuff to queue into a game. In reality, they say, an unnamed party has somehow unlocked the APC and dropped it into the game. That said, Joel reportedly wasn't upset by the news of the APC being dropped into a game. In fact, he reportedly said he was glad that he and Fake Joel both wanted people to have as much fun in "Helldivers 2" as possible.

Fans have theories about Fake Joel

At this point, Arrowhead Games has conditioned us to never remove our tinfoil hats. Players are already trying to dig into the dark origin of the Automatons and theorizing about the Game Master's next move, and now we're getting to the bottom of Fake Joel and these bonkers APC drops. Well, at least some players are. Some players are utterly unconcerned with Fake Joel's real identity. As long as he keeps delivering amazingly fun items, they're not worried about what he's really up to.

And this actually plays right into one of the most believable fan theories about Fake Joel: What if he really is Joel after all? Arrowhead loves to keep players guessing, even lying to our faces about the existence of flying bugs, so why wouldn't the devs lie about the identity of this APC courier? The studio could be using this as a method of building hype for the next big update. After all, the developer teased mechs for a little while before they were added to the game for real.

Whether or not Arrowhead is doing this on purpose, Fake Joel and his APCs are definitely building hype. Getting to see the armored vehicle in action has gamers more excited than ever for vehicles to properly arrive in the game (especially since it means less walking). 

Fake Joel could just be some hacker out there doing good deeds, but considering everything that Arrowhead has done up to this point, we're also willing to believe that this is another unorthodox strategy from a developer that's made unpredictability into a core part of its brand.