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Memory Card: Hotline Miami

Written by Culture, Gaming, Memory Card

Do you like hurting other people? You kind of have to if you want to enjoy Hotline Miami, or at least enjoy tearing apart little pixel sprites representing Russian mobsters.

In one of the most important moments in Hotline Miami’s short yet packed narrative, a representation of inner consciousness donning a rooster mask asks our nameless protagonist this question.

Hotline Miami is an absolute masterpiece. It was critically acclaimed on release and has since developed a cult following.

To clarify, this is what you do: You break into a building, smash a few guys in the face, and immediately get killed. You restart, break in again, smash some more faces, pick up a gun, and get shot again. You restart again and again until you’ve made it through the level and then you do it all over again.  

Unsurprisingly, Hotline Miami is an absolute masterpiece. Released in 2012 by indie studio Dennaton Games and published by Devolver Digital, it was critically acclaimed on release and has since developed a cult following. It’s easy to see why – it’s an amazing game in almost every way, maintaining a level of adrenaline-pumping exhilaration throughout a playthrough.

The soundtrack acts as the perfect pairing to this, so much so that I’d say it is actually a part of the gameplay. Aesthetics-wise, the look of the game is simply superb. Heavily influenced by Nicolas Winding Refn’s 2011 film Drive, which was also partly responsible for the rise of the outrun aesthetic and synthwave genre seen in the 2010s. 

The Quentin Tarantino-esque hyper-violence of Hotline Miami makes it a bloodbath that’s hard to forget. The game still has an active fanbase a whole eight years after release and five years after its sequel, which is another impressive game. If you haven’t played this game yet I suggest you pick it up today, it’s only £6.99 on Steam and definitely worth a play. 

Featured image credit: @devolverdigital (Twitter)

Last modified: 9th March 2020

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