HOTLINE MIAMI is one of if not the best game franchises I have ever played. Whether it’s the story, gameplay, or audio design. In this small digital piece of text, I will tell you why Dennaton Games have created a literal blessing from god.
DO YOU LIKE HURTING PEOPLE?
Hotline Miami is a top-down beat ’em up shooter in which your goal is to kill everything you see moving. There are usually 2 floors on a level. Controls are simple, classic WASD, Left mouse click to use a weapon, and right-click to throw/switch weapon. Press shift key to explore the area of the map which is not in your reach. Guns are not reloadable because no and if you die on a floor then sorry there are no checkpoints. Usually, you start a level bare-handed weapons and get weapons by beating other mobs and take whatever they have. Usually what weapon a mob has is randomized. Beating is a brutal part of the game. Just because it’s 2D and pixelated does not mean it can’t have gore heck Hotline Miami is possibly the goriest game of the time. Beat the living crap out of a guy with your hands, Crush someone’s skull with your leg, etc. There is also this feature called “masks” which gives the player a unique ability, each mask can be unlocked in-game by doing specific challenges. There are a variety of guns and weapons in this game. Hotline Miami 2 spices this core formula up by adding a lot of new types of mobs with a unique way to kill them. There are also windows through which enemies can see you and get alerted. Both you and the enemy can shoot each other through the windows. There are also several new characters and masks with a lot of new abilities. There are also unlockable bonus levels which adds a piece to the lore. The gameplay is hard like really hard and needs extreme practice and creativity. At the end of each level, there is a scoring system that evaluates and grades your performance. It is evaluated on times you died, time taken, and other parametres. The grades are like the one in your school from D to A+ and an even supreme S which Is very hard to get.
and yeah tip: Don’t be afraid of dying 🙂
Each level and intro sequence in Hotline Miami franchise has its own unique and signature OST (Original Sound Track) which are the only reason you haven’t rage quit yet. The soundtrack has a 90’s retro vibe to it. The OST of this game totally set the mood and tone of the atmosphere. They sometimes describe the vary nature of the character, for example, the OST “RUN” in scene 13 of Hotline Miami 2 called “SUBWAY” made by author “iamthekidyouknowwhatimean” perfectly represents the mental state of Evan Wright, the character we are playing for that level. The music is calm but has chaotic anger inside it hidden but comes out when forced to. When I first heard the music in the beginning of the level I thought it would be a trash soundtrack but as it proceeded it ended up being my favorite music of all time. The Album of Hotline Miami is the very definition of eargasm. Totally ruined my interest in any other soundtrack.
YOU’RE NOT A NICE PERSON, ARE YOU? (spoilers)
The story of Hotline Miami is really amazing because it’s not a fairy fantasy it is the reality.
Hotline Miami 1 has a linear story play. It follows the story of a character Jacket who is getting anonymous messages on his answering machine to go to a specific address and kill everyone there and do a specific objective mostly being picking an object and delivering it. Mostly these places were home to Russian Mobsters. It is later discovered that Jacket was not the only one getting these calls and hence a large network was at play. Later in the game, it is revealed that Jacket was in a coma and all the past game events were recreations done by his mind. He ends his arch by escaping the hospital and killing the leader of the Russian mafia and ending the game from his side.
The game then tells the story of “Biker” a character Jacket kills in one of the missions. The biker got tired of these anonymous phone calls and decides to track the caller. The biker goes to the phone call center kills the manager and tries to track the caller. He finds out the source of anonymous phone calls and tracks them. It is revealed that this operation is being carried out by two Janitors who call themselves to be patriots of an organization “50 blessings”. Depending on the player’s action you either leave the janitors alive (no) or kill the janitors (yes). The game ends with Biker vibing to the night.A nice short and sweet story. [Now, this is where conflict appears, according to Jacket’s side he kills Biker at the Phone call center but according to Biker’s arch, he kills Jacket. Both sides cannot be trusted because Jacket’s story is a recreation of events from his mind while Biker was on a heavy drug dose the night before. What really happened no one can tell.]
THIS PARTY STINKS (spoilers)
In contrast to Hotline Miami 1, Hotline Miami 2 story is very dark and depressing. It has non-linear storytelling which is a way more complex storyline. Miami Has changed a lot. Jacket’s action has led to many people trying to recreate the events, a film being made on him, a book being written on him. The game also contains some prequel missions to tell the past life of Jakcet. There are now 15+ playable characters and a lot of masks. I can’t sum up the story like I did for Hotline Miami 1 above because it will be too long and tiery to read. At the end of the game, everyone dies, and that is kinda beautiful. It gives a sweet message of letting things go and nothing lasts forever and that you gotta pay for what you have done. The game ends with an iconic dialogue by Richard and that is
LEAVING THIS WORLD IS NOT AS SCARY AS IT SOUNDS
In conclusion, if you can handle the violence this game has to offer, then you must pick it up right now. The story, OST, art style, gameplay, gore, and everything is totally amazing. It has insane replay value with a motivation to get a better rank in each level. It shows you don’t need great graphics to have a great gameplay and story. At this point, I must say it’s not a game it’s an experience, a feeling, a pain. You are not a good guy in this world you are an animal and a wild one for sure. TIP : Don’t be afraid of dying