Hotline Miami 2 Review Roundup

Bloodstained sequel draws widespread acclaim, though not without caveats.

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Hotline Miami 2, the distinct and debauched top-down shooter developed by Dennaton Games, has won praise from many critics as the game begins to release across platforms.

However, the response has not been unanimously positive, with some drawbacks cited in several reviews.

GameSpot's Hotline Miami 2 review was one of the most favorable, with critic Danny O'Dwyer describing it as demonstrating "marked improvements on an already tremendous formula." The video review can be watched above.

The nonlinearity of its narrative appears to have won favour from other reviewers, such as Polygon's Griffin McElroy, who described the game as "a bold deviation from its predecessor in a lot of ways, some of which work, some of which don't, but it’s also a departure from the storytelling conventions by which almost all games swear. It's not as smooth or streamlined as the original, but those very changes make it one of the most fascinating games I've ever played."

Other reviewers, such as VideoGamer's Steve Burns, was not as satisfied with the sequel's departure from the original's template, summarizing: "Hotline Miami was nasty, brutish, and short. Hotline Miami 2, sadly, is not."

Hotline Miami 2 is out now across a range platforms, such as PlayStation 4, PlayStation 3, PS Vita, PC, Mac, and Linux.

  • Game: Hotline Miami 2
  • Developer: Dennaton Games
  • Platforms: PS4, PS3, PS Vita, PC
  • Release Date: March 10
  • Price: $15

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GameSpot -- 9/10

"In almost every way, Hotline Miami 2 is a marked improvement on an already tremendous formula. This is a game that had me pumping my fists and laughing with joy throughout my time with it, and I was left despondent by the time it drew to a close. A gutsy, refined game that isn't scared to force you into corners and watch you battle out of them, as well as an audiovisual joy that marries graphics, music, and gameplay so well that even the pause screen is a work of art." - Danny O'Dwyer [FULL REVIEW]

Eurogamer -- Recommended

"Hotline Miami 2 leaves me conflicted. There's lots to love here, but the structure makes it difficult to explore and exploit. It's still an absolute riot to play, and the urge to press on remains compulsive, despite the narrative hi-jinx. Its failings are never enough to truly spoil things - Hotline Miami 2 is definitely to be recommended. It's the sequel that everyone expected, perhaps. But I'm not sure it's the sequel the original truly deserved." - Tony Coles [FULL REVIEW]

VideoGamer -- 7

"Even Wrong Number's story, its strongest element, is prone to serious error... Ultimately, Hotline Miami 2 improves upon its predecessor in a way that is pleasing, but non-essential. And to get there, it undercut the one thing that made the original great. Hotline Miami was nasty, brutish, and short. Hotline Miami 2, sadly, is not." - Steve Burns [FULL REVIEW]

IGN -- 8.8

"Hotline Miami 2: Wrong Number is a great game and a worthy sequel. It's more confident in its style, storytelling ability, and level design than the first game. It has enough depth to stand on its own, but also manages to nail a balanced variety of new and old Hotline Miami goodness for fans who want both." - Chloi Rad [FULL REVIEW]

Game Informer -- 8.5

"Though it is not for the faint of heart, Hotline Miami 2: Wrong Number provides thrills at the occasional and momentary cost of your sanity. Though you'll likely find yourself screaming at your screen on a regular basis, you're equally as likely to find yourself eagerly loading the next level." - Brian Shea [FULL REVIEW]

Rock Paper Shotgun -- No Score

"Dennaton have said this is the final Hotline Miami game and it's heartening to see that it's the design that has been squeezed dry rather than the style or setting. Throughout the game, every weird quirk and rule that drives the action falls under scrutiny, and when you walk away, you'll have a better understanding of the intricate work that goes into the split-second timing and inch-perfect positioning. Each level is an exquisite machine designed to reveal and betray the game's cruelties and compromises. With rare exceptions, they succeed handsomely and with style to spare." - Adam Smith [FULL REVIEW]

Polygon -- 8.5

"Hotline Miami 2 may look like its predecessor, but it's a completely different beast. The original was a drug; a pulsating, hypnotic thing. Hotline Miami 2 consciously makes it slightly harder to get lost in that flow, but trades that trance for a story that I'm still rapturously unpacking. It gives you the tools and freedom you need to execute unbelievable killing combos, and then gives you ample time to consider the consequences." - Griffin McElroy [FULL REVIEW]

The Sixth Axis -- 7

"Wrong Number tries to do too much too quickly, and its multiple character paths don't work as well as hoped. Add in the fact there are fewer masks and it feels like a major part of the game has been stripped out. Overall it doesn't quite reach the same heights as its streamlined, bizarre predecessor." - Aran Suddi [FULL REVIEW]

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blackothh

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I know nothing about this game or the first one, but oh wow is the picture they keep plastering all over gamespot one of the ugliest repulsive pieces of art ive ever seen......

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DarkLight748

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The first game was rubbish and so will this one. In any case I will never buy a game from a dev that promotes piracy.

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Rufusamatrix

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<< LINK REMOVED >> They didn't. They said those who want to play the game and can't buy it because of the ban in Australia can just pirate it. I respect a dev whose first priority is that people enjoy their game not just getting the money back (and they would make money anyway). The true promoters of piracy are those who inflate their games with collectibles nonsense next to poor game design wrapped in idiotic DRM system topped by DLC and micro-transactions horseshit.

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keufnbbh

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<< LINK REMOVED >> first of all both games are good. Secondly your dumb head is full of rubish shit. Piracy is the solution to all the low quaility crap we get these days. i bet you're ubisoft lover.

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GoodGamesGuy

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Hotline Miami 2 got a 9 and Ori got a 9, can't we all just get along!

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B1ank

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And as usual. Fanboys are sh!tting up gamespot

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Gamerno6666

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PCgamer: 57/100

......

Drunk PCgamer.

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BuBsay

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I've gotta say, the Xbox crowd has been especially terrible in the Gamespot comments lately.

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thecman25

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<< LINK REMOVED >> the xbox crowd has been terrible for a while

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nastyhotpocket

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anybody bashing hotline miami is jealous the game is the bomb,its not the ps4s fault M$ is to greedy to put it on xbox1,i suggest you play it before bashing it because its not on your console.

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Professor-T

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I played the first on PC and have a hard time wrapping my mind around how this game works with a controller. Does it work well?

On one hand I can see it actually being easier, but I can also imagine it being a total mess.

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muzza93

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Vita was definitely the way to go for the first hotline Miami. The touchscreen made targeting enemies on the fly a breeze

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drocdoc

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I thought I was the only one, mouse and keyboard is fine but when I tried using the controller it just didn't feel right.

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deactivated-58270bc086e0d

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<< LINK REMOVED >> Actually not too bad. I think it would be awesome if it worked more like a twin stick shooter where you point and shoot at the same time but then it would probably be TOO easy.

With the original controls pointing and clicking accurately was probably a little easier on mouse though. Then again if you played tonnes on controller it is probably hard to move to mouse just because of muscle memory.

So it works well both ways.

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jedofarc

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<< LINK REMOVED >> as weird as it sounds because its mostly not the norm, i thought it was easier on a controller. Actually i thought it was best on a Vita (thanks friends nephew).

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Nazgoroth

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What no Ouya? How insulting...

oh wait.

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Thanatos2k

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So....pretty good.

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rasterror

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Xbox fanbabies, please shut your dumbasses up and keep it moving. Unless you have reasonable complaints or gripes about the game move the hell along.

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rasterror

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But nothing!

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rasterror

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Lol.

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rasterror

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Not my kind of game but I'm glad it's good for those looking forward to it.

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liquldgold

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This games look like garbage just like the consoles that it runs on.

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B1ank

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<< LINK REMOVED >> I'd like some salt with my fries mr Liquidgold

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PS4andXoneGamer

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<< LINK REMOVED >> Nope its amazing

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DrunkenPunk800

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<< LINK REMOVED >> It's also on pc...

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Domiddian

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He's a mentalist Xbox fanboy. And I actually think he's about 12.

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Domiddian

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A bit like you then.

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GamerOuTLaWzz

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<< LINK REMOVED >> I doubt he can even run.