Study Guide

Young Goodman Brown Summary

By Nathaniel Hawthorne

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Young Goodman Brown Summary

Picture this: "Young Goodman Brown: The Video Game." Yeah, we know, we're asking you to picture a video game that only the most hardcore of hardcore Shmoopians would want to buy. Seriously, a video game with Puritans? But picture it anyway. Because "Young Goodman Brown" is basically structured like a quest-based video game.

Brown sets off on a journey into the forest near his hometown. The scenery becomes scarier and scarier, and the challenges become more and more difficult. First he encounters an elderly witch, then a couple of devil-worshippers, then a spooky "black mass of cloud" (47). Can he resist all this evil? At last, everything culminates in a big, spectacular showdown with a final boss (the devil himself) and his minions. And then, finally safe from harm, our hero returns home to the quiet village of Salem.

There's a hitch, though. Instead of collecting glowing gold rings or pink health potions, young Goodman Brown gathers up… distrust and anger. See what we said about nobody wanting to play this video game? Bummer.

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