r/place is Back


u/zafuru on Reddit

Side-by-side comparison of what r/place looked like 8 hours after it was uploaded in 2017 (Left) and 2022 (Right).

Samuel Pappas, Lifestyle Editor

Reddit’s “r/place” returns five years after its first debut in 2017. On April Fools Day in 2017, the subreddit included a giant blank white canvas to give users the ability to place or change the color of one pixel every five minutes. After three days, r/place came close, and the final image was archived. It was a sprawling cluster of different online communities collaborating and clashing for space and prominence.

The final version of r/place from April 4th, 2017. (r/place on Reddit)

Once again, on April Fools Day, in 2022, r/place is back with a fresh slew of memes and pixel art to fill the space. Within just a few minutes, new subreddits were created to collaborate on their online artwork and attempted to defend them from vandals so they could end up in the final version. The following are highlights from the the extensive activity:

The flag of Ukraine asserted itself in the center-left of the canvas. Users began writing “F**K PUTIN” until one moderator posted a notice saying how the name of their enemy shouldn’t take up space on the flag. At the time of writing, the Ukraine flag was adorned with sunflowers, rainbows, and (for some reason) “Among Us” crewmates.

Fans of the series “Attack On Titan ”, split into three separate subreddits, came together to draw the protagonist, Eren Yeager, similar to how he appears in chapter 139 of the manga. After seeing and hearing the internet give non-stop praise to the franchise for years, it’s funny and satisfying for me to see Eren immortalized in r/place as the crybaby he truly is.

The Counterstrike logo shoots Fortnite into nothingness, Genshin impact is invaded by Shrek, and Ukraine hosts all manner of artwork within the first day of r/place 2022 on April 1. (r/place on Reddit)

On April 2nd, 2022, an update doubled the space of r/place and expanded the color palette, giving users even more opportunities to enhance their creativity and online artwork. While crude art quickly filled the blank space, Germany continued pushing until its flag stretched to the other side of the screen, making it the enormous flag in terms of sheer volume. Another void appeared in the center of the new territory, this time with a white skull bleeding from the eyes. It’s a disturbing sight, to be sure, but the r/RocketLeague community has done an excellent job keeping its logo clean.

The void is already losing ground against a rainbow from the North East in day two of r/place. (r/place on Reddit)

In the period of 96 hours, over 2 million users who joined the r/place subreddit participated in changing a pixel of the canvas at least once this year. The activity ended on April 4th, 2022, and the servers closed, keeping people from making any more changes to the online canvas.

As of now, it’s uncertain if r/place will return next year or not. Maybe Reddit users will have to wait another five years. Until another blank canvas is uploaded, users will look forward to another April Fools Day and prepare to battle, one pixel at a time.

Visit r/place on Reddit.com to see the finished 2022 product that represents thousands of fanbases and communities on the site.