Goldsnake55 Jun 8, 2013 @ 4:08pm
I don't really get the ending...
I beat the game and did the alternate character, and I understand the story a bit more now, but I never really felt that it was clear... Was I forced to murder those people? I don't really remember ever "having" to do it. Maybe i'm wrong but can somebody explain the ending to me?

PS I loved the game reguardless! Best $5.82 i've spent!
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Fronzel Jun 8, 2013 @ 4:31pm 
The janitors manipulated people into killing Russian gangsters by implying there would be negative consequences if they didn't; the briefcase which contains the rooster mask has a note that says "failure is not an option".

They never actually had the wherewithal to force anyone to do anything but enough people foolishly obeyed for their scheme to work. Their patsies were the members of the "50 Blessings" nationalist group they set up, so maybe that implies bad things about the intelligence of people who'd join a group whiched peddled saccharine patriotism like “America is a tune”.

In the case of the player character (sometimes called "Jacket") there's the question of if he just likes hurting people and is taking this whole thing as an excuse. When it comes to Jacket, there are no firm answers.
Himitsu Jun 8, 2013 @ 4:55pm 
That all makes sense. I was surprised how much the game actually made sense towards the end, in a way (as described perfectly above).

However, I have two or three main questions which I'm not sure warrant their own thread (?) Warning, spoilers (obviously).

- Who are the masked men the main character visits? Is this 'real' or the character's loss of reality?

- If there really were no consequences for ignoring the messages, why is the main character's girl (that he rescues, somewhat ironically) killed by the guy who's in the police station? I'm unsure how that fits into the rest of the story.

- I'm not sure if this was actually intentional as part of the story and script; but if the two janitor types behind the whole thing were making so much money etc, why do they seemingly not care one bit when the alternative (biker) character is about to kill them?
Yossarian Jun 8, 2013 @ 5:00pm 
Goldsnake, I'm in a very similar situation. Got both endings and I'm still left scratching my head a little. As a whole I think Hotline Miami raises more questions than it answers, but the experience is top notch. I think what Fronzel is pointing out is relevant. People being manipulated against each other via intimidation by gangsters / illuminati group is kind of interesting, but that doesn't seem enough to me. It's too weak to fully explain what's just taken place. I just feel like it's not the whole story and also like Fronzel says, there are no firm answers. Maybe that's the point.
Yossarian Jun 8, 2013 @ 5:05pm 
Hitmitsu has some good questions. I would add:

How exactly is the Jacket character being manipulated via simple intimidation? He seems to have almost no grasp on reality from the drop.
Goldsnake55 Jun 8, 2013 @ 5:40pm 
Hm, Okay I understand it a bit more. But I got a question, what ever happened to the guy that gave you free crap after every chapter? Then he just "died" and wasn't there anymore. Was that just his imagination?
Fronzel Jun 8, 2013 @ 6:18pm 
Originally posted by Himitsu:
That all makes sense. I was surprised how much the game actually made sense towards the end, in a way (as described perfectly above).

However, I have two or three main questions which I'm not sure warrant their own thread (?) Warning, spoilers (obviously).

- Who are the masked men the main character visits? Is this 'real' or the character's loss of reality?

- If there really were no consequences for ignoring the messages, why is the main character's girl (that he rescues, somewhat ironically) killed by the guy who's in the police station? I'm unsure how that fits into the rest of the story.

- I'm not sure if this was actually intentional as part of the story and script; but if the two janitor types behind the whole thing were making so much money etc, why do they seemingly not care one bit when the alternative (biker) character is about to kill them?
-The identity of the masked people is pretty obvious if you look at the "cover art" for the game.

Here's one example of it I just quickly got from Google image search: http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/thumb/f/f4/Hotline_Miami_cover.png/250px-Hotline_Miami_cover.png

Here's a detail of the figures who appear over the words "Hotline Miami": http://actualplay.roleplayingpublicradio.com/wp-content/uploads/hotlinemia.jpg

The person wearing a horse mask is a woman, and the woman Jacket carries away from that one level is the only female character in the game. Jacket himself is the wearer of the rooster mask, and the owl mask is worn by a generic Russian gangster.

This explains why the horse mask shows concern for Jacket's well-being, why the rooster mask asks questions to provoke reflection, and why the owl mask constantly expresses hatred for Jacket.

-We see Jacket's girlfriend murdered by an animal-mask wearing assassin...but why? Jacket always obeys the phone messages for whatever reason. The janitors should consider him a valuable pawn. Why would they want to have him killed (his girlfriend apparently being gunned down just for being there)?

This murder also leads up to the most ridiculous parts of the game; the assault on a police station and the VERY absurd showdown with the Russian mob boss. I find these to be the parts of the game that most suggest themselves as not really happening.
The Russians aren’t behind the animal mask killers, anyway (obviously! They're the animal-masks' target!). Why does Jacket apparently attack them for revenge? It makes no sense.

-I don’t think the janitors (or anyone else) were making any money from the killings. They just to upset the “Russo-American Coalition” which is mentioned for the first and only time moments before the secret ending is over. Personally I see the whole thing as a sort of joke on the developers part; after getting to the secret ending it’s just a bunch of Cold War gobbledygook no one cares about.

They don't really care if the biker kills them because they say they've set up parallel operations all over the country; their plans will outlive them.
YOBA Jun 8, 2013 @ 6:57pm 
Originally posted by Fronzel:
This murder also leads up to the most ridiculous parts of the game; the assault on a police station and the VERY absurd showdown with the Russian mob boss. I find these to be the parts of the game that most suggest themselves as not really happening.
The Russians aren’t behind the animal mask killers, anyway (obviously! They're the animal-masks' target!). Why does Jacket apparently attack them for revenge? It makes no sense.
I think this part is very relevant. Perhaps Jacket is comatose or asleep and dreaming at that point and he is just imagining it all. Perhaps the girlfriend was just a figment of his imagination.

I came to this conclusion after reading the Wikipaedia article on Drive[en.wikipedia.org], the film Hotline Miami was inspired by. The quote of Ryan Gosling - who played the unnamed protagonist, I found in there, summed up the main character in Hotline Miami for me:

Originally posted by Ryan Gosling:
I think that might be the original one I read. I read a few drafts. I read one as well where he wasn't a stunt driver at all, which was a newer draft – maybe that's the one Hugh Jackman had; I'm not sure exactly. Basically when I read it, in trying to figure out who would do something like this, the only way to make sense of this is that this is a guy that's seen too many movies, and he's started to confuse his life for a film. He's lost in the mythology of Hollywood and he's become an amalgamation of all the characters that he admires.

So as someone else said, maybe the janitors and the biker were a joke by the developer or something like that, as that ending was ridiculously underwhelming. However, the Jacket ending sans the epilogue does make a tiny amount of sense in light of the above quote; he might just be imagining it all and may be still in hospital.

In any case, we'll find out when Hotline Miami 2 comes out. I, for one, can't wait to crush thousands more skulls. :)
Damuel Jun 8, 2013 @ 10:42pm 
Remember the fight with the biker? He bashes in Jacket's head in his story. Note, right after the fight with the Biker, the man you meet after every mission tells you he feels like something bad has happened. And slowly each mission gets more insane with Jacket seeing more and more hallucinations. When at the hospital, note that Jacket's head expldoes. Like it was bashed in. Hence, everything we see after the fight with the Biker is unreliable. From Jacket's side anyways.

The Biker's story is the correct side of things.
Himitsu Jun 9, 2013 @ 8:02am 
Very interesting replies everyone, it's amazing how much depth this game has. I discovered today there is a bonus chapter after completing the game called 'high ball' in the chapters section, which is relatively short and straight-forward with occult themes.

Originally posted by Goldsnake55:
Hm, Okay I understand it a bit more. But I got a question, what ever happened to the guy that gave you free crap after every chapter? Then he just "died" and wasn't there anymore. Was that just his imagination?

I was wondering this too. I think as outlined above so well it was imagination. I was also thinking perhap's it is where Jacket goes into each venue and takes/steals items and imagines the positive conversations which die as his situation and mental state worsens..
YOBA Jun 9, 2013 @ 10:44am 
Originally posted by Himitsu:
Originally posted by Goldsnake55:
Hm, Okay I understand it a bit more. But I got a question, what ever happened to the guy that gave you free crap after every chapter? Then he just "died" and wasn't there anymore. Was that just his imagination?

I was wondering this too. I think as outlined above so well it was imagination. I was also thinking perhap's it is where Jacket goes into each venue and takes/steals items and imagines the positive conversations which die as his situation and mental state worsens..
I took a look at the Hotline Miami Wiki[hotline-miami.wikia.com]. Turns out that guy is Richter - the person who kills Jacket and his girlfriend! Also note the janitors crop up here and there. Suddenly everything makes a lot more sense - Richter was watching him all along.
Goldsnake55 Jun 9, 2013 @ 11:14am 
So jacket technically went into a coma after the fight with helmet, so that's why the story got way out of hand after that. Its making sense.

Also I heard Hotline Miami 2 is going to be at E3!
[λG] ThePerson5 Jun 13, 2013 @ 6:44pm 
If Jacket was killed in his fight with Helmet, then what does that mean about the scene in Jacket's house in which he and the hooker are shot by the rat-mask dude?
Damuel Jun 13, 2013 @ 8:21pm 
Originally posted by λG ThePerson5:
If Jacket was killed in his fight with Helmet, then what does that mean about the scene in Jacket's house in which he and the hooker are shot by the rat-mask dude?

Jacket may not have been killed, just seriously injured. We DO see imaginations from his side of the story after the fight.

And if he WAS killed, then obviously that whole scene never happened.
zambal Jun 13, 2013 @ 10:40pm 
I just finished this game (but not the biker story). At the end I felt weird, I was expecting the truth. For me we were watching an inner view of reality, trough his eyes. I thought he was in that situation because of a kind of drugs or even mesmerize (phone messages).
On the second part of the story everything looks bad, no more nice guys at pizza place or vhs store, just guys who look like a corpse with a bad atttude.

I really enjoyed the meeting with the 3 mask into the dark, was like different angles of his personality, and the rat where does he come from?
This game leave me too many questions.

PS: sorry for my english.
YOBA Jun 14, 2013 @ 11:39am 
Originally posted by Damuel:
Originally posted by λG ThePerson5:
If Jacket was killed in his fight with Helmet, then what does that mean about the scene in Jacket's house in which he and the hooker are shot by the rat-mask dude?

Jacket may not have been killed, just seriously injured. We DO see imaginations from his side of the story after the fight.

And if he WAS killed, then obviously that whole scene never happened.
I still believe he was killed.

As I pointed above, the guy at the store who gave you free stuff was actually Richter - the guy in the rat mask that kills Jacket and the Hooker. He is the guy in the police station by the way that Jacket strangles to death. The face of the shopkeeper and Richter are identical, save for a tacky beard.

Throughout the game, the Shopkeeper gets increasingly more worried about things, then becomes more aggressive. I believe this is not actually happening and is a result of Jacket's delusions. We can deduct from this that the shopkeeper is the one who ends up killing Jacket only because he seems to be his only human contact (and notably, the Hooker, his other contact, dies with him). The interactions between Jacket and the shopkeeper act as a sort of Greek chorus and reflect the state Jacket is in.

Therefore, I conclude that the Biker, not Richter killed Jacket. Or at least, put him in a comatose state or something. Comatose people have a small perception of the world around them by the way. So I think everything after that is in Jacket's mind while he's in hospital and the Biker's interpretation is the accurate one.
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Date Posted: Jun 8, 2013 @ 4:08pm
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