Hotline Miami
| Hotline Miami

You've never played anything quite like Hotline Miami before - unless, you know, you played it on PC last year.

With the injection of Hotline Miami on to the PS Vita, one thing's for certain: you've got no excuse not to give it a try.

It's brutal, it's bloody, it's fast-paced, and it's just that little bit experimental. As long as you don't mind a bit (a lot) of pixellated gore, this is for you.

Ring ring ring ring ring ring ring

You pay a hitman of sorts, carrying out bloody murders at the behest of a mystery caller. It's clear from the start there's more to this premise than meets the eye.

Hotline Miami plays from a top-down perspective, with you entering buildings, smashing through doors, and bonking people on their heads with golf clubs, crowbars, and whatever else happens to be lying around.

What makes Hotline Miami so tense is the one-hit-kill nature of it all. If an enemy manages to hit you before you hit him, or shoots you down with a shotgun or uzi, it's all over. Just one hit is all it takes.

Fortunately, you've got plenty of moves to make you feel like a badass. You can throw open a door to knock someone down, belt the guy next to you in the face, grab his gun, spin around and take another guy's head off, then lob the gun at the final guy, jump on him, and pound him to death with your fists.

Melee weapons keep you stealthy, while guns will call attention to your presence, and unleash the hordes in your general vicinity. It's great that Hotline Miami allows you to play the game however you like - there is no right or wrong approach.

As you can probably guess, Hotline Miami is a seriously brutal, messed-up game.

After each level you're forced to walk back through the mess you created to reach the exit, which really emphasises just how horrible your deeds are.

The trippy visuals and late '80s setting play along with this bloody mess of an experience too, while the awe-inspiring soundtrack bangs the psychedelic drum in the background.

It's for you

If there's a complaint, it's that the game's AI could do with a revamp. The enemies tend to patrol in a random, wall-bouncing trajectory, meaning that each playthrough is slightly different while also being very mechanical.

And enemies are severely stupid, too - fire a weapon and they'll all run out into the corridor one by one, straight into your firing line. Kill an enemy in a room and his buddies won't even notice, and will even walk right over his corpse.

It sort of makes sense alongside the generally ridiculous storyline and arcade feel, but you may feel as though the game could benefit from a greater degree of realism.

Hotline Miami on the Vita doesn't handle as well as the PC version, but its brief stages suit the pick-up-and-play nature of the device perfectly. The visuals looks slightly sharper on Vita too.

There are differences, but for the most part this is every bit the hallucinatory gore-fest that it was on PC. If you haven't already played it, you're in for a treat.

Hotline Miami

Hotline Miami is brutal, gory, masterful, essential. You'll play for the arcade mob shootings, and stay for the psychedelic style