“Merdarth, general of the Dark Lord’s army, stood, terrified, before the Orb.”
Ben DeVries (’15) graduated with degrees in literature and writing. He and his wife Jes, a fellow Calvin grad, live in Champaign, Illinois, where Ben is looking to add some letters behind his name. On the academic off-seasons, he reads fantasy and works as a glorified “go-fer” at the Champaign Park District. He’s been known to make a mean deep-dish pizza.
But as much as this story would insist that Link is the star of this latest quest, the real star of the show isn’t a person at all. It’s Hyrule itself.
The show excels in precisely the same way as its source material: it approaches its subject matter with a pitch-perfect ear for dark humor, and with an impishly ironic attitude toward storytelling.
During a Friday morning panel at the 2016 Festival of Faith and Writing in Grand Rapids, Michigan, writer Jessica Mesman Griffith said something that would later come to trouble me.
In contrast with games like Mafia, which lives and dies upon its players’ intuition, Secret Hitler introduces a mechanic that brings reason (or maybe reason’s bastard, hunch-prone son) to the table.
On bad days, I get worried not when the writing dries up but when it comes too easily, when it tumbles out onto the keyboard with a clatter like a hailstorm. Obviously, in those moments, something went wrong.