Metascore
85

Generally favorable reviews - based on 51 Critics What's this?

User Score
8.4

Generally favorable reviews- based on 750 Ratings

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  • Summary: Step into the neon-soaked underground of 1980s Miami as bizarre messages on your answering machine seem to be urging you to commit terrible acts of violence - but will you obey? Hotline Miami overflows with raw brutality and skull crushing close combat as you find yourself outgunned and using your wits to choreograph your way through impossible situations. An unmistakable visual style, a driving soundtrack, and a surreal plot that will have you question your own thirst for blood. Bash and blast through over 20 multiscreen levels with 35 unique weapons and collect 25 game-altering masks in one of the darkest and most unusual independent games on the scene. Expand
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 48 out of 51
  2. Negative: 1 out of 51
  1. Dec 2, 2012
    100
    Hotline Miami is proof that it is possible to create a fresh and addictive action game, even with the game's emphasis on retro. At the same time it evokes truly human feelings the modern-day shooters die trying to deliver.
  2. Nov 2, 2012
    90
    It's a puzzle game and a strategy game as much as an action game, then, and like Rockstar's Manhunt, it will sicken you even as it provides its murky thrills.
  3. Dec 17, 2012
    90
    A drug-induced coma of violence, strategy, death and rebirth. [Jan 2013, p.67]
  4. Nov 9, 2012
    87
    For all the careful planning that might go in a stickup, it all usually comes down to clutching out impromptu, split second shootouts. Sometimes these quirks manifest as incompetent A.I. behavior or exploitative gameplay, but for the most part, it all congeals in a remarkably tense and satisfying experience with depth to go with its style.
  5. Oct 28, 2012
    85
    Let's just say it: Hotline Miami isn't for everyone. It's brutal, bloody and extraordinarily unforgiving. Thanks to Hotline Miami, the 8-bit top-down shooter genre gets put in the spotlight again after Retro City Rampage. It deserves the attention. Well, if you can stomach countless retries and a dozen smashed skulls.
  6. Nov 6, 2012
    80
    Those looking for a challenge in planning, reflexes and dexterity – and those with the intestinal fortitude to witness the scads of gruesome deaths that result – will be well served by Hotline Miami.
  7. Nov 23, 2012
    30
    I wonder if the developers themselves knew what exactly they were trying to create. Is it a stealth game? a tactical strategy? a top-down arcade? Kitschy, bold artwork is only there to cover up the lack of cohesive ideas, and crude execution.

See all 51 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Negative: 18 out of 180
  1. Jan 22, 2014
    10
    This harsh gritty top down arcade style shoot'em up, is one of the greatest indie games ever made. Everything in this game is flawless, the art, the music, the controls, and the story. Let's start with the art style, the game has an interesting mix of retro pixel art mixed with some bright colors and trippy visuals later on in the game. The its hard not to keep looking at the screen because the art just has you so mystified. Next is the music. The music is so wonderful, its a mix of 8-bit old school video game style music, with techno and its so dark and catchy. The music matches the game perfectly. Third the controls. Not much to say, easy, simple , fluid. But most importantly fun, they get really fun really fast. The fast pace of the game perfectly match the fast controls, and easy learning curve but longer mastery curve. Last the story. The plot is given in bits and pieces, and very cryptic. But when its all over all the pieces come together and you loose your mind. You really feel like YOU the player just witnessed some one loose their mind. Everything about this game adds not only great replayability value its so much fun for under ten dollars (even cheaper if you wait for a sale on steam). All in all this is a great game. Expand
  2. Jan 17, 2014
    10
    Hotline Miami is the type of game that you sit down, play, and figure out three hours later that you are still playing it. The game's replay-ability, story, and fantastic gameplay are wonderful to experience, but the reason Hotline Miami deserves a ten instead of a nine is the music. The soundtrack alone gets a ten. Expand
  3. Dec 10, 2012
    10
    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 Expand
  4. Jan 21, 2014
    9
    Let me break it all to you guys, this game is for those who enjoy: 1) GTA I & II, 2) Psychodelic/Progressive Music, 3) Arcade rush, 4) Arcade Graphics

    Pure 80's/90's awesome.
    Expand
  5. Jan 29, 2013
    8
    Going to throw this out before you read my review of this game, it might be worth your time checking out the bad reviews. If you don't then i'll sum it up to this, if you love this game your a blind, dumb hipster that love broken games. There to funny to read, but anyway......

    Hotline Miami is one of those different games to come out in the indie section. To be honest, When I first saw the game I didn't think it belonged there until I got a peak at the gameplay. When it went up on sale not to long ago I thought I would give it a try and right away loved the game. At the begining of the game your greeted by a homeless looking guy who teaches you the basics then you meet the masked three (that's what I call them anyway.) I'm not going to talk about story and ruin it for ya so lets talk game play.

    Since the game is a over the top shooter it doesn't look like something you could be stealthy at, but that's where your wrong. Depending on what you like in weapon wise and what your mask does you could go silent or all out but the trick of this game is to plan your attack instead of going right at it, a simple thing that many game developers tend to push to the side to help out newer gamer's. As long as you think before you act you can get threw this game pretty well but remember, just like your enemies can be killed by one hit, you can die with one hit as well so trial and error is needed when you first start playing just to get use to it. The more you kill the more points you collect and you can make more points by how bold you get, how many chained kill you collect and even how you take them out and with allot of different weapons to choose from you wont get tired trying something different like switching your shotgun for a base ball bat or sword.

    I myself haven't beaten the game just yet but from what I have played I am very pleased with this game, but to be honest I like to see more for this game and if not this one then I hope to see allot more for Hotline Miami 2 (yes they are already developing a second game). From what I can tell, after you beat the story there isn't much else for you to do except play the sorry again and get high scores on all the levels. What this game could use is a user friendly level maker along with some sort of server system to share these levels to other players, but that's just a personal idea since I don't want to just drop this game after defeating it. Besides that, I really dig the music in this game. It kind of gave me a 80's movie soundtrack feel to it and goes well with the entire gameplay feel.

    In the end, I'm giving it a 8.5 (even tho I can only give it a 8 here) for trying something new and winning.

    P.S. Notice I never talked about graphics beyond 'over top shooter'? That's because graphic's is never something you should worry about. you don't need good graphic for a good game, the game could look like crap and still be awesome.
    Expand
  6. Feb 21, 2013
    8
    „Hotline Miami“ is a great ultrabrutal arcade shooter with fast pace action. With some unlockables and a heavy difficulty you simply cannot make something wrong. If you're not a moralizer, get this game! Expand
  7. Feb 17, 2014
    0
    I had this game gifted to me on Steam and I thought it would keep me amused for a while, it didn't though it's the most overrated game I have played in a while.

    The graphics style and music are good but it stops there.

    At first glance looking at the steam page you might think this is an action game like Smash TV or Zombie Shooter, it's nowhere near as good as those and nowhere near as much fun, you basically have limited ways to kill the enemy who rush and one hit kill you all the time.

    The aim of the game is to die non stop and keep trying until you win and feel rewarded - just a shame the devs and all the fanboys forgot that games are supposed to be fun to play.

    In short - an overhyped game with a high difficulty to hide a shallow game underneath.
    Expand

See all 180 User Reviews