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87

Generally favorable reviews - based on 19 Critics What's this?

User Score
8.2

Generally favorable reviews- based on 204 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 reeks of raw brutality and skull crushing close combat as you find yourself outgunned and using your wits to choreograph your way through impossible situations. Its visual style, a driving soundtrack, and a surreal plot 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. Expand
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 18 out of 19
  2. Negative: 0 out of 19
  1. Jul 11, 2013
    100
    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. Jun 26, 2013
    92
    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.
  3. 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]
  4. 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]
  5. Jul 23, 2013
    85
    Aside from some control issues, this is an essential for the adult gamer. [Issue#233, p.76]
  6. Jul 4, 2013
    82
    Hotline Miami is pure gameplay, a videogame with personality and bloody heart.
  7. Jul 1, 2013
    70
    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.

See all 19 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 21 out of 29
  2. Negative: 6 out of 29
  1. Aug 8, 2013
    10
    One 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 Expand
  2. Jul 22, 2013
    10
    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 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. Collapse
  3. Oct 6, 2013
    9
    I love this game, at times it can be horrifyingly scary others it can be a fast paced action packed kill fest, but either way you'll still enjoy it. Just don't play it if you get sick at the sight of squished squirrel on the road. Expand
  4. Jul 27, 2013
    9
    A truly fantastic game. I can't imagine it's for everyone, with its over the top gore and retro aesthetic/game play, but if you're up for that, then give this game a go. It features one of the best soundtracks in gaming history with tracks from Perturbator, M O O N and Sun Araw, giving it an excellent 80s vibe as you explore and shoot/slice/clobber through the mysterious world of Hotline Miami.
    The story; while not entirely apparent, seems to purposely keep players in the dark to elude to some sort of enigma that keeps the entire game shrouded in suspense. This works as a great motivator to beat Hotline Miami even if you don't care for getting high combos and scores. There aren't many games like Hotline Miami so full of interactivity yet also with such a fast pace; want to use the shotgun a guy just dropped after you smashed his head in, or a brick you found on the floor to be lobbed at three thugs in succession? You can.
    I'm not some goreaphile like some folk who obsesses over having ultra detailed blood and guts in their games, but the gore certainly does add some extra dimension to this game. It just fits the overall atmosphere and brutality of it all; thereby only enhancing the experience. If you want something very different yet adrenaline pumping, exciting and full of fast paced and unrelenting action, definitely try Hotline Miami. It's an experience you won't swiftly forget.
    Expand
  5. Sep 5, 2013
    8
    Fast, fun, simple and addictive with clever retro 80's design work and great soundtracks to accompany it. Proof that simple graphics and simple intuitive gameplay work well. Expand
  6. Dec 21, 2013
    7
    A brutal game that pays homage to the gory 80's action flicks and retro games of old. The game nails style, sporting old-school graphics and soundtrack that really help suck you into the game. It's story is also great, if a little too vague, and leaves you with a sense of mystery about the events of the experience. I found myself asking if the character had just gone insane, or if it was all just one cocaine fueled nightmare. The story might not give you all the answers, but it definitely keeps you guessing in a good way. Where the game stumbles the most for me is in it's gameplay.

    This is a challenging game, just not always fairly. Enemies can kill you in one hit so you really have to come up with a good strategy if you want to get through these levels. The problem with this is that death can just feel random at times. You might be able to get the drop on an enemy one second, only to have them gain foresight next time and blow you away before you can even get close. I have had enemies ignore loud gunshots, yet somehow manage t hear me open a door from halfway across the map and swarm me. It's moments like these that just make it seem like death can be unfair, but unlimited lives make up for most of the frustration.

    Another area where the game stumbles is with it's controls. It's got a twin stick shooter set-up, but aiming with the analog stick feels stiff and awkward making it almost impossible to pull off a quick shot when you need to without the lock on system. Unfortunately the lock-on system also has it's own issues. It doesn't always lock on to the target you want it to, and I've had times where it would change targets on me for no reason. Issues like these can add many deaths to a game that will already kill you if you're not on your toes. Naturally these issues, as well as the light hit detection issues, lead to a lot of deaths that just don't feel fair.

    So these issues do bring down the experience, but they don't ruin it. When everything is working the way it should the game can be an absolute blast. Bashing an enemies brains in and completing a level is extremely rewarding and there are plenty of reasons to replay levels for new unlockables and high-scores. Overall this is a flawed game that can still provide a heck of a lot of fun if you're willing to put up with it's issues. It can be a frustrating experience, but there are enough good things here that I fell that I can still recommend it to those who are looking for something different and don't mind the games extreme brutality.
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  7. Dec 17, 2013
    0
    Being killed after one hit just doesn't work in a game as inprecise as this. I do not recommend this to anyone because you will die at the first try..

See all 29 User Reviews