User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 695 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 47 out of 695

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  1. Oct 28, 2012
    It's sadistic fun at its best. Think super meat boy in top-down shmup with awesome 80s disco soundtrack and some weird tripping story interludes. A game that rewards you for perfectly timing smashing through a door, jumping on someone's face, bashing it in, taking their baseball bat, throwing it into the next room at a mobster's head, taking his gun, then shooting his friend in the room that is rushing at you with a crowbar. Then he wakes up from his daze and you pop him in the head, then all hell breaks loose as every single enemy on the map proceeds to enter the room you are in, and you only have 4 bullets remaining in this auto shotgun... so you hold back behind a corner of the doorway as they rush in "CLICK, CLICK, CLICK, CLICK" goes your mouse, and "BAM BAM BAM BAM" goes your shotgun... there's bloody mess EVERYWHERE but there's one guy left and he's running in with an assault rifle.... so instead you right click... and your autoshotgun goes flying across the room in your single last chance of faith in the game.... knocks the bodyguard out and then you storm him and jump on his face and keep bashing away until he stops moving and the last breathe of air escapes his now-limp corpse. Then a voice yells "GO BACK TO THE CAR!" while the smooth 80s disco beat continues to kick in. Oh how sexy you feel. If that sounds like your kind of game. GET ON BOARD Expand
  2. Nov 20, 2012
    Loud, violent, pulpy and bizarre, Hotline Miami submerges you in a sublime audio/visual state of trance that will make your head spin and leaves you craving for more!
  3. Oct 30, 2012
    This game is incredibly fun, and violent, and tense, and introspective, and uncomfortable. As one reviewer said "It's a game about the things you do in it". You don't beat it; it beats you.

    Best summed up with this quote: "And when you gaze long into an abyss, the abyss also gazes into you"
  4. Oct 25, 2012
    The game is rly fun to play.. it feels like loaded from psx or GTA1. It has a nice story that force you to use your imagination. You need skill to play this game.. at the beginning you will die a lot because the game is hard but with some practice you will get good fast and will start to enjoy the game. Hotline Miami is the kind of game that makes you rly use your brain.

    You can play
    this game like a thief using only melee weapons or like Rambo.

    Amazing soundtrack and old 16bit graphics.
  5. Nov 27, 2012
    This game is superb beyond mere mortal words. It along with Tekken Tag Tournament 2 & Max Payne 3 are my games of the year. The music is a pure eargasm & combined with the flawless strategic gameplay puts you in a murderous trance. It's like Manhunt, Crossed with the 8 bit games Spy Vs Spy, Elevator Action, with a dash of Tetris in spirit of the puzzle & flow. The violence would make Mortal Kombat blush. Never has looking through a mentally broken man's masked hazed vision been so rewarding, Story is among the best. The combined artistry from one developer murks whole multimillion dollar corporations efforts. This 1 man swedish developer is a beast & deserves to become a millionaire. Buy this game now! I hope it comes out on PSN & XBox live. Suda-51 bow to the creator of Hotline Miami he took your title of madman of gaming & understands great game design. Expand
  6. Feb 14, 2013
    This has got to be one of the best games I have played in quite a while. There are many games that offer great gameplay but the stories are usually the very simple, easy to understand nonsense that is also present in all blockbuster movies. And with Hotline Miami, one doesn't just get a pathetic, half-assed attempt at something more complex and meaningful but actually a complete one. For the movie lovers: think Inception vs. Memento.
    As for the awesome music and art style and everything else... that's covered in so many reviews already...
    There are only two minor gripes I have with the game: Enemies often can't be hit when they stand very close to you (although that may be because one's weapon reaches through them.... there usually isn't enough time to analyze this...). And there are no online leaderboards. Which is really a damn shame for a game with a score system as this one. Then again... making people hunt high scores just for the fun of it may not even be what the developers had in mind?
  7. May 29, 2013
    An excellent little indie game with an astonishingly good soundtrack, interesting plot, and great game play. I couldn't stop playing until I completed it, which took me about 3 hours, but for only a few dollars this is entirely worth the short play time.
  8. Dec 28, 2013
    Don't listen to the idiots around here saying b*llsh*t about hotline miami..IT IS A GEM!!!Story and mood wise!U need an Xbox360 controller for sure,but it is worth your time...Violent,psycho,atmospheric plus a SUPER soundtrack!What else u want from an indie game 18+?It's on sale now!GO 'N' GET IT!!!
  9. Dec 22, 2012
    this kind of games are the only ones that I really enjoy. Difficult, different to the rest of games and with adult content. The graphics and animations are awesome so as the faces (love the beard dude). I have no doubt that this is the goty of 2012, not those **** unlimited franchises that are all years the same game.
  10. Jun 21, 2013
    I felt like I was playing NeoGeo... controls were perfect... it just had this real arcade feel to it. I dig it. There are a lot of negative reviews that piss me off... learn how to play the game before you diss it. There's some serious strategy here and the fun factor and replay value is high. The colors, the music, the way it feels, can't be ufcked with.

    Three top games in the last
    however many years: Shadow Complex, Super Meat Boy, Binding of Isaac, and Hotline Miami.

    Werd to your moms.
  11. Dec 24, 2012
    Super fun. Not too long, but I got a good 6 hours out of it. I love the art style. Everyone agrees the music is great.

    The game is a trip. Surreal story, immersing style and setting, addictive gameplay. I paid $5 for it, and I would have paid more.
  12. Oct 30, 2012
    Full review:

    Hotline Miami, from indie developer Dennaton Games, is a hard-hitting, visceral experience. It starts in a dark alleyway where a nameless observer instructs you to kill three men. The first two with your fists, the last one with a baseball bat. The violence in Hotline Miami is brutal. It isn
  13. Nov 4, 2012
    A personal favorite and personal indie GOTY, Hotline Miami allows you to relive the days of newgrounds and Xgenstudio's "Stickman Arena" with it's arcade, top-down, style. The gameplay isn't the only thing really mesmerizing about the title, though, the music was flawlessly chosen for the title to portray the feelings of the protagonist. Definitely cathartic and worth a try for anyone who can appreciate a retro style arcade title. Expand
  14. Nov 18, 2013
    I think this game made it to my top 10 its fast paced action old school graphics and has nice music. The theme of the game is also very good along with the 80s setting
  15. Oct 26, 2012
    Excellent game. The tension, the artistry, the speed, the strategy... A commendable and highly artistic rendation and critique of violence in popular media and an immense retro throwback make this game an instant cult hit. Granted, it's not for everyone but if you like vintage, tongue in cheeck humor and the 80's... go play it!
  16. Oct 29, 2012
    Ultraviolence, through and through.. just splendid for those who have the stomach. as far as game mechanics go, for me it took a little time to get used to, but the learning curve can be pretty steep, and it will definately sharpen your reflexes. ive beat the game, but i still want to unlock all the secrets and the alternative endings. not to mention the mask.. all in all its a true bargain. you get way more fun out of it, than you put money in. 9/10 Expand
  17. Jan 16, 2014
    A gaming masterpiece.

    I picked this bad boy up on Steam yesterday for $2.49 but even at its full price of $10 I wouldn't have been disappointed. A brutally tough and gory retro romp through a psychedelic 80's Miami. What's not to love?

    The audio is sensational. The various weapons and sound effects are crisp and as for the musical score? It's available as a standalone purchase if
    that's any indication of the quality ;)

    The graphical style is a tip-of-the-hat to yesteryear gaming - there's even a pixelated NES hooked up in the protagonist's, bedroom. When you consider this game was developed by a team of two men and the finished product we have is a refresh of an old game concept put on a 'maybe pile,' any commenters that suggest this game is merely a 'hipster' money grab have made their opinion null and void.

    Gameplay wise, I couldn't help but be reminded of True Lies for the SNES, but the unforgiving enemies and one-hit (for the most part) kills have a Smash TV vibe to them. But this game is unique. You can approach a stage a number of ways, by perhaps either stealthily knifing everyone as their back is turned, or trying to funnel enemies through a choke point with 6 shotgun rounds at the ready. In later levels you'll need every trick in the book to make through alive.

    In summary, if you like a challenge and some good old fashioned violence, buy this game!
  18. Nov 25, 2012
    Absolutely brilliant game, surefire candidate for game of the year next to The Walking Dead. The game is very well planned, mechanics unique, and the game itself is completely unique. Soundtrack is great and fits perfectly, and this incredible playability. As for the story at the beginning of it at all does not feel - I just perform some tasks masked guests. At one point, after a certain event, but I will not say what because I do not want to do spoilers, the game turns upside down and the story would normally dent in the seat or chair, depending on where we sit. Many may not like the pixel visuals, but to me it just did not bother and I think the graphics are very well matched. I would recommend to anyone, especially to players who like to play an independent and tactical game, because these species are undoubtedly the work. Expand
  19. Jul 13, 2013
    I know this isn't the best game in the history. it's far from it. BUT, it brings to me wonderful memories from great games from the past, that made my childhood awesome, like NES Mission: Impossible, and PC GTA 2. Now, about the game itself, i'ts awesome, it's hard, and it's beatiful. It has minor cons, but we have to evalute him like the way the creators made it. Is not for everyone, the game it's basically about dying a lot, but learning a lot too. Juego increíble, gracias por traer mis mejores recuerdos de infancia de vuelta. Expand
  20. Oct 26, 2012
    There's been a while since I didn't play anything so addictive as this game. I'd even dare to say it feels far more immersive than nowadays boring and unchallenging AAA titles. If you have any real knowledge about video games and good taste, then you'll enjoy this game. The artistry and music are also awesome. It definitely is a must buy.
  21. Nov 11, 2013
    Fenomenal experience. it is such an incredible game which you will need to play in order to see how incredible it really is. The soundtracks and the storyline completely mesmerize me into a virtual reality.
  22. Dec 10, 2012
    INDIE GAME OF THE YEAR FTW, Great music soundtrack, Brilliantine gritty knife throwing game play, engading and interesting story, AN ORIGINAL CONCEPT DIFFIDENTLY WORTH ALL YOUR MONEYS
  23. Nov 25, 2012
    This game is the most brutal addictive game I've played this year. The storyline is good and fun but the best part is the soundtrack as it ads to Hotline Miami's feel. You play as jacket as he gets messages through his answering machine you fallow his brutal violent lifestyle. You kill by knocking them down with your fists though you can get guns and alot of melee weapons to smash your way through this version of Miami. Plus you can now use your Xbox controller. Expand
  24. Dec 3, 2012
    Hotline Miami is an excellent game. The game's artistic direction is great - the moment you turn the game on, you'll be sucked into it's universe, and it will be difficult to let go. It's like playing a bizarre music video. The colorful but gritty graphics seem to dance to it's pumping soundtrack

    The controls are easy to get and the game mechanics will soon lead you to a sequence of
    combos, and the game will reward you for your boldness and suicidal tactics. The masks you can choose can make a difference, so this game ain't no trial-and-error as some guys say. Some levels I would go all John Rambo on one moment, and in the other, I would catch a knife and give the enemies a Michael Myers slash-fest.

    The stealth level is a tad frustrating, but not THAT much. If you make good use of your 'look ahead' action, it will help you a lot.

    I highly recommend this to everyone!
  25. Aug 21, 2013
    A Subversive, disturbing, addictive game and packaged with an unrivaled soundtrack that produces a not-entirely-stable altered state in my brain. It's 180 proof distillation of 80's Miami Vice nostalgia, pseudo 12bit gaming, gore-a-fied violence, and corset tight gameplay combined with neurosis inducing difficulty.

    It also digs into the narrative and psychology of wearing masks (do you
    wear the mask, or does it wear you?) and on whether questions need to be answered to provide a compelling story.

    And the music? My god. From wild spaced out country-influenced-dub, to psychotic driving electro and exposed-nerve disco. The music will be slithering around in your brain long after your eyes lose their bloodshot state you gained from playing the game.

    Even in a year with some incredible releases like Mass Effect 3 and Walking Dead, this is my Game of the Year for 2012.

    ...It makes me want to buy a mask.
  26. Nov 3, 2012
    This is not a game that everyone will enjoy. It presents a disconcerting, neon-glowing underworld through which the player is propelled by addictive, ultra-violent game mechanics. These actions, and their motivations, are turned on the player by posing them as questions - both outright, and implicitly, when the violence reaches its stomach-turning peaks. Hotline Miami presents one of the strongest explorations of video game violence and player motivations ever put to binary. It is also an important game. It brings to a mass audience what indie games are capable of: tackling issues that mainstream games **** around to avoid offending the press and the public, as well as eschewing the linear criteria of what's considered "quality" presentation in games. The game would be no better with more advanced graphics - in fact, the themes would be diluted by a greater focus on realism. The neon lights coupled with streaking blood and bright pink gore act like a scribbled highlighter on a page. The iconography of the character art works towards setting the player up: each enemy is faceless, their silhouettes only changing to convey what type of threat they are. They are set up to be classified as problems to be solved. This is what makes the questions posed to the player so powerful.

    The game is fun. But it's a strange kind of fun. I would implore you to try it with an open mind, without trying to frame it or categorize it at first. Like a great art-house film, it feels very "complete" in what it sets out to do, which goes above and beyond trivial issues such as "I don't like 2d art" or "why is there no health bar". Those who fail to open up to new experience miss out on a lot in life, this game being no exception...
  27. Nov 4, 2012
    Two guys. Old and primitive technology (Game Maker 7.1, 2007). One wonderful game in old-school hardcore style. Fantastic environment and atmosphere: from soundtrack to visual effects. Well designed gameplay / mechanics. It's godlike!
  28. Nov 7, 2012
    Gameplay, music, atmosphere, difficulty, story i give 10 for that. Maybe graphics are retro style but i love retro games so i give 10 for that aswell ;D Game is amazing it isGOTY for me, playing it gave me more fun than anything that come out this year, and i play alot... Game developers needs to play this game and learn, stop doing re-skins, fancy looking games with **** gameplay, and tons of crap that come out recently... This game ROX so much i recomend it to anyone. Expand
  29. Feb 6, 2013
    A hazy, grimy and unapologetically brutal rampage through an 80s tinted world, or a subversive and though-provoking look into the pervasiveness of excess violence in video games and media in general? Decide on whichever you want, as none of these questions really matter when you're actually down playing this wonderfully addictive, and surprisingly tactical, kill-fest.
  30. Nov 14, 2012
    Excellent old-school game with atmosphere of GTA1 and SVGA vintage style. Best for hardcore gamers who get tired from modern games. Market is full of retro-platformers but this is something different and will please virtually anyone.
  31. Dec 3, 2012
    Hotline Miami is an excellent game. The game's artistic direction is great - the moment you turn the game on, you'll be sucked into it's universe, and it will be difficult to let go. It's like playing a bizarre music video. The colorful but gritty graphics seem to dance to it's pumping soundtrack

    The controls are easy to get and the game mechanics will soon lead you to a sequence of
    combos, and the game will reward you for your boldness and suicidal tactics. The masks you can choose can make a difference, so this game ain't no trial-and-error as some guys say. Some levels I would go all John Rambo on one moment, and in the other, I would catch a knife and give the enemies a Michael Myers slash-fest.

    The stealth level is a tad frustrating, but not THAT much. If you make good use of your 'look ahead' action, it will help you a lot.

    I highly recommend this to everyone!

Generally favorable reviews - based on 51 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 48 out of 51
  2. Negative: 1 out of 51
  1. 87
    From the get-go, Miami’s presentation has a unique style, with vivid colors, generous amounts of post-process filtering and a stunning soundtrack (you will just let the game play on, only to hear the tracks). But at the same time, all notions of continuous fast-paced action gameplay disappear. Hotline Miami is essentially a top-down stealth game, that rewards the player with imaginative (and quite violent) kill animations. [January 2013]
  2. Dec 18, 2012
    A stylish slice of retro carnage. This is the bloodiest, least forgiving game of the year. [Jan 2013, p.85]
  3. Dec 17, 2012
    A drug-induced coma of violence, strategy, death and rebirth. [Jan 2013, p.67]