Title: Hotline Miami Collection
Developer: Dennaton Games
Publisher: Devolver Digital
Genre: Action, Adventure, Arcade
Platform: Nintendo Switch
Age Rating: PEGI 18 – Blood and Gore, Crude Humor, Intense Violence, Partial Nudity, Sexual Themes, Strong Language, Use of Drugs
Release Date: 19/08/19
Price: £22.49 – Rapid Reviews were very kindly provided with a review code for this title.
It has been well-documented throughout video game history that Nintendo is considered the most ‘family-friendly’ of the consoles on the market. From Mario to Diddy Kong, Tom Nook to Marina, there has been a lot of love for the characters that Nintendo have carefully curated for the PEGI 3+ titles that they develop. That being said, the tide has turned somewhat in recent years, and there are now a whole host of ‘mature’ titles available, allowing the Nintendo Switch to cater to a broader audience. It doesn’t get much more ‘mature’ than the Hotline Miami Collection, and it has most definitely earned its 18+ certificate…
Developed by Dennaton Games, and published by Devolver Digital, Hotline Miami and Hotline Miami 2 are ultra-violent top-down shooters. By accepting jobs via the telephone in your home, you then jump in your car and arrive at the location of your target. Guards patrol the rooms in the buildings equipped with all manner of weapons, and you must clear the floors before finding your next victim.
Set in 1989 Miami…
I won’t divulge the contents of the ‘storylines’; instead, I’ll let you experience it firsthand yourself. They are both whacky, weird and sometimes wonderful, but it never feels like the most important element of both games. The action is where Hotline Miami shines, and shine it does. Offering both a stealth and an ‘all guns blazing’ approach, you dispatch of your victims in whichever way you see fit. The controls are the well-suited, with the left stick used to move your character and the right to aim. The left bumper is to pick up and swap weapons, with the right being used to shoot or swing. The left trigger is also put to good use, as you can hold it down and move the right stick to extend your view to see what awaits.
The action is punchy and intense, with one wrong move resetting the scene. A strategy is essential to success: everything from finding the right weapon to luring victims in and using the environment to your advantage is required. The strategic approach is further enhanced by the unlockable masks that your player can wear. One makes more guns appear on the map, and another makes doors lethal – swinging them open can kill an enemy. There are many to unlock and use, and it can change the way the game plays out.
Hotline Miami at home on a handheld
Synonymous with Sony’s PS Vita, Hotline Miami is no stranger to the handheld scene. Having been released on all major consoles – aside from Microsoft’s Xbox – in its seven years since release, it is one that feels very much at home in a portable format. It has even made an appearance on Android devices, and this is indicative of its nature. It is an excellent game to pick up and play or spend hours having one more go at a level.
The Hotline Miami Collection is an excellent port for the Nintendo Switch. It runs well and looks beautiful. It is the perfect fit, and the only real question is why it hasn’t arrived sooner. There was a very occasional slowdown, and the AI would sometimes get stuck in a loop. This meant they were unable to get out from between furniture and the like, but nothing that stopped the Switch from being a fantastic place to enjoy these games.
Ordinarily, much praise would have been reserved for both of the games’ soundtrack. Upon initial release, the soundtracks were heralded as an outstanding complement to the action. Edgy, fresh and synthesised, it sets the tone. Unfortunately, as someone who has played the games on both Vita and PS4 previously, I found the music to be a little too familiar this time around. For newcomers, they will get to experience the music that accompanies the action for the first time – a delight for any gamer.
With three years separating Hotline Miami 1 and 2, there are several ‘quality of life’ improvements that the sequel made. Visually, the game is more detailed, and the same can be said for the weapons available and the development of the character. The protagonist can roll in the second game, changing the dynamic somewhat of gunfights and stealth – a welcome addition. Hotline Miami 2: Wrong Number is the more advanced of the two titles, but the fun factor in both remains the same.
Time to hang up…
Bold, brash, brazen and bonkers, Hotline Miami: Collection is a must-have indie title. With its pixelated art style and finely tuned gameplay, it is one that will undoubtedly continue to impress as the years go by. If you’ve never played it, there’s no better time than the present. If you have, there’s no better time to reacquaint yourself with this fantastic collection.
Rapid Reviews Rating
You can purchase Hotline Miami Collection from the Nintendo eShop on the following link, https://www.nintendo.co.uk/Games/Nintendo-Switch-download-software/Hotline-Miami-Collection-1621521.html
You can find and read our reviews on OpenCritic.