If you spot a slack-jawed graphic designer staring at their computer screen with an expression of horror, they haven’t just seen a ghost—they’ve seen Hellvetica.
Though the terrible typeface is meant as a Halloween-themed take on the traditionally pleasing Helvetica, it doesn’t contain jagged edges, dripping blood, or any other characteristically spooky elements you might imagine.
Instead, it’s just really poorly spaced. In typography, the process of adjusting the space between letters is called kerning. While you probably peruse materials typed in well-kerned fonts without thinking about letter spacing at all, sloppy kerning can make things pretty difficult to read.
According to The Verge, the deliberate kerning catastrophe that is Hellvetica was masterminded by New York-based creative directors Zack Roif and Matthew Woodward, who may have just become the graphic design industry’s first supervillains.
“Kern in hell,” the website states, along with “Welcome to type purgatory,” and “The quick brown fox jumped over the lazy dog and into the underworld,” all typed in the visually abhorrent Hellvetica.
It also features a fake quote from the Swiss creator of Helvetica, Max Miedinger, who died in 1980 and is undoubtedly rolling in his grave. “What have you done?” he supposedly said.
However, it did pique the interest of the diabolical founder of hell itself.
“I don’t hate it,” Satan said.
If you want to partake in the pandemonium by typing in Hellvetica this Halloween or forever, you can download it here.
[h/t The Verge]