And so it begins.

Google's always loved April Fools' Day and has used the opportunity for more than a few well-produced jokes. And, just like Black Friday deals and CES announcements, the new April Fools' Day is the day before April Fools' Day. And so Google's kicking things off with the Google Maps Pokémon Challenge. Says the YouTube description announcing the Pokémon challenge:

To catch 'em all, grab your Poké Ball and the newest version of Google Maps for iPhone or Android. Then tap the search bar, "press start," and begin your quest. And, follow Google Maps on Google+, Facebook or Twitter for hints and tips for the most dedicated trainers.

Clearly we're getting an early start on April Fools' Day this year, and if Google's past pranking behavior is anything to show, we've got plenty more coming today and tomorrow.

Source: Google Maps (YouTube)