Generally favorable reviews - based on 19 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 18 out of 19
  2. Negative: 0 out of 19
  1. Jul 11, 2013
    Each level in Hotline Miami begins with a choice – which rubber animal mask will you wear? Pixelated, haunting renditions of a variety of animals are represented. Dog, insects, donkeys. Which would you prefer? It’s a powerful and completely cosmetic decision that blends simple, fast action mechanics and surrealist narrative to an incredible accumulation.
  2. Games Master UK
    Sep 1, 2013
    Dizzyingly good soundtrack. [Oct 2013, p.73]
  3. Jun 26, 2013
    It’s not for everyone (even one of our own editors described it as “barf-tastic” at one point) but if you let its hooks into you, you will discover one of the most addictive, rewarding, crazy-ass games of recent memory.
  4. Sep 10, 2013
    Hotline Miami is ludological entertainment at its finest. It is a game about grinding levels and that practice makes perfect. It is also a game about exploring new narratives and discussing the video game worlds fascination with violence and gore. A must play.
  5. Playstation Official Magazine Australia
    Aug 12, 2013
    All you really need to know is that Hotline Miami is one of the best, and hardest to master, indie games to ever grace a PlayStation. That said, Hotline Miami still needs to be a permanent fixture on your PS3, and the Vita version executes train trips without mercy. [September 2013, p70]
  6. Jul 3, 2013
    Hotline Miami is truly a unique experience packaged in a bloody mess of human skin and entrails. It’s a title that grips the player with its sharp, visceral game play and asks uncomfortable questions which there aren’t clear answers to.
  7. Jul 2, 2013
    At the end of the day, Hotline Miami's simple, quick gameplay, though frustrating, is kept fresh by the level design and unique fighting style it delivers. It's definitely deeper than your average action game, and not as straightforward as it appears.
  8. Jun 26, 2013
    Quotation forthcoming.
  9. Unless you’re anti-games lawyer Jack Thompson, you’ll enjoy Hotline Miami for what it is: an impossibly stylish indie tour de force about playing with your food. With its incredible soundtrack in your ears, neon flashes in your peripheral vision and endlessly, shamefully gratifying combat in your hands, you’ll learn to stop worrying and love the wrong.
  10. Official PlayStation Magazine Benelux
    Sep 27, 2013
    The ultra-violent indie hit Hotline Miami has found its way unto our PlayStation 3 an Vita and it is a drug infused combination between GTA, Metal Gear, neon lights and animal masks. Yes, you should play this. [September p.91]
  11. Jul 9, 2013
    Hotline Miami doesn’t apologize for what it tries to do. It’s a throwback to the golden age of gaming but at the same time, it reminds us that over-the-top violence was always tongue-in-cheek in those days.
  12. Play UK
    Jul 23, 2013
    Aside from some control issues, this is an essential for the adult gamer. [Issue#233, p.76]
  13. Jul 2, 2013
    On the PlayStation 3, Hotline Miami delivers an unforgettable adventure starring an obedient serial killer. Unfortunately, this home console port feels too loose and pulling off certain moves can be painful. It's occasionally infuriating, but that doesn't keep Hotline Miami from being one of the most exciting games to hit the PlayStation 3 in a long time!
  14. Jul 4, 2013
    Hotline Miami is pure gameplay, a videogame with personality and bloody heart.
  15. Jul 5, 2013
    A gritty ultra-violent top down action game that dares to be different and excels at what it does. Tight controls and polished mechanics make this game a joy to play and extremely hard to put down.
  16. 80
    Hotline Miami is a treat for hardcore lovers of NES-era titles, but its insane difficulty and lack of replay value may not appeal to everyone.
  17. Jun 26, 2013
    Hotline Miami is an intoxicating celebration of violence that will have you pounding the restart button for more.
  18. Jun 25, 2013
    There is something near perfect at work here as gameplay, story, visuals, controls and audio all compliment and enhance each other. It feels like a cliche, or lazy writing, to call Hotline Miami a ‘pure’ gaming experience but that is very much what it is.
  19. Jul 1, 2013
    It encompasses the audiovisual elements, the neon graphics and low-rez music, and the joyous bloodiness of early shooters. But at the same time it also encompasses how dehumanising and routine the old games were – how the violence was immature and gratuitous and just a way of dressing up limited gameplay mechanics with visceral feedback to actions.
User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 267 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 22 out of 32
  2. Negative: 6 out of 32
  1. Jul 22, 2013
    This game is great. It's 80's themed style and music go perfectly with it's over-the-top bloody violence. I have been playing for weeks and amThis game is great. It's 80's themed style and music go perfectly with it's over-the-top bloody violence. I have been playing for weeks and am incredibly addicted. I highly recommend this game. It is definitely difficult, but that's what makes it so special. It holds a special place in my heart. Full Review »
  2. Aug 18, 2013
    This review contains spoilers, click full review link to view. This game. Oh, God, this game. I have spent hours upon hours playing this game, it is superb and i love it. It may even be my favorite indie game of the year! First, presentation. Hotline Miami is set in 1989, it wanted to look like something you would see in the 90's, and it totally got it right. The flickering and the colour scheme fits the mood so well, and even for a pixely game, it is just beautiful. It's a pretty gory game, which doesn't usually bother me, but this game is just brutal. Every hit you make feels real and consequential, it fits the character so well, you really do get a deep and visceral impact from it. Brilliant. I really did like the way Hotline Miami controlled, it felt rigid, but still fluid and usable. The premise of this game is murder. Cold-hearted murder. Not like what you see in war games, where they kill without remorse, Jacket really feels his actions throughout each level, and so does the player. This game is definitely not for the weak of heart or stomach. The mask theme is genius. Who are you? Why do you do this? What kind of monster lies beneath this mask? A normal man with no other choice. The masks give you different abilities, which you can unlock in the game the more you play. I think that is a great implementation of symbolism. The game gets more and more surreal the further into the story you get, and the more surreal it gets, the more immersive the story is and the more you want to play. You want to know what happens next, what kind of mayhem awaits you on the next floor? This game's story is just amazing. It's dark, terrifying and breathtaking. Every new level gets tougher and darker. Every kill you make has an impact on you, whether it was a shot from a distance, or hands-on murder. This game is brilliant, and i loved every second of it. Amazing. Full Review »
  3. Aug 8, 2013
    One of the most unique games I have ever played. A compelling understory topped with 80's retro and miami vice-inspired setpieces create aOne of the most unique games I have ever played. A compelling understory topped with 80's retro and miami vice-inspired setpieces create a truly memorable experience. The great soundtrack combined with digitalized blood and guns make it one of the best games of the year Full Review »