YMMV: Hotline Miami

  • Anticlimax Boss: Fighting the original hitman as the biker; he runs right at you, so all you have to do is whack him with your cleaver.
    • Justified, maybe even Fridge Brilliance, since Jacket is a One-Hit-Point Wonder like any other character and that you, as Jacket, would die from any attack Biker hits you with.
    • Not to mention Jacket simply charges the Biker, much like many a player would on their first round fighting him. Remember how well that went?
  • Awesome Music: The whole soundtrack.
  • Broken Base: In a hands-on preview of Hotline Miami 2, there was a part where one of the main characters prepares to rape a wounded woman, and is only stopped by the reveal that they're both actors filming a scene in a slasher movie. Reactions were what you'd expect, though the devs later apologized and vowed to edit the scene in the final release.
    The Actress: "I'm not your fucking girlfriend!"
  • Ear Worm: "Hydrogen"; "Crystals"; "Flatline"... Really, any song on the soundtrack.
  • Fashion-Victim Villain: Biker and Ninja Girl both arguably qualify.
  • Game Breaker: Big Balls, that is, throwing a dart at an enemy holding a gun. Kill everyone on the screen except one guy, get him to hold a gun with depleted ammo, get a dart, throw it at him repeatedly, and watch the points go up.
    • The Carl the Cricket mask gives you a drill as a starting weapon. It's a melee weapon that can't kill anyone directly, but finishing a stunned enemy off with it (by drilling into their skull) grants you a ton of bonus points. Completing the level using only the drill will guarantee a perfect rank.
    • The Jake the Snake mask makes any thrown weapon lethal as long as it carries momentum. What this means is that while wearing the mask, any weapon you grab can be used as an impromptu one-shot gun with an extremely wide scope that is completely silent and can mow down an entire crowd of mooks. That enemy with a gun is too far to close the distance with, and using a gun with blow your cover? Throw something at him and kill him silently. Shotgun ran out of ammo but there are more enemies coming at you? Throw the shotgun as they turn the corner and kill them all at once.
  • Hell Is That Noise: Any time the soundtrack hits a dissonant chord, which is often, but special mention goes out to the synthesizers on the tune that occurs at the intro to each mission.
  • Nausea Fuel: The sheer brutality of the violence, and the executions in particular, can have this effect. The game manages to avoid Crossing The Line Twice, making even the most desensitized gamer slightly disturbed at what they're doing to enemies (which fits in very well with the tone of the game).
  • Spiritual Licensee: The game owes a massive debt of influence to Drive, so much so that director Nicolas Winding Refn is specifically thanked in the credits. Accordingly, the two works share a retro 1980s-themed neon- and synth-heavy aesthetic (with Hotline actually being set in the 1980s); a mysterious, nameless protagonist who talks very little, if at all, and is known primarily by an instantly recognizable jacket; and graphic depictions of shockingly brutal violence (one of the game's finishing moves even looks very similar to the infamous head-stomping scene from Drive).
  • That One Level: The hospital. Not only is it a sudden unarmed stealth mission in the middle of a game as frantic as Hotline Miami, but it's also a massive Interface Screw too.
    • The following level, Assault, can qualify too. Loads of enemies, most of which have guns, very little opportunity to stealth through, and multiple big enemies.
  • This Is Your Premise on Drugs: Often compared to being on a terrifying crack cocaine trip (which, seeing as the game is set during the big crack epidemic in the 80's, is pretty appropriate). Not helping is that the majority of the game is the main character's coma dream. He got shot in the head and the police are waiting for him to wake up at the hospital, you see.