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A high-octane action game overflowing with raw brutality, hard-boiled gunplay and skull crushing close combat. Set in an alternative 1989 Miami, you will assume the role of a mysterious antihero on a murderous rampage against the shady underworld at the behest of voices on your answering machine.

Soon you'll find yourself struggling to get a grip of what is going on and why you are prone to these acts of violence. Slip on one of 25 unlockable animal masks to conceal your identity and tweak the gameplay in your favor or crank up the challenge.

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It's been a while since I've released any news publicly about Midnight Animal, and a public update's been long overdue. So, without any further ado, let's get into it.

Weapons/Combat

First off, all weapons for Midnight Animal are complete. There are 95 weapons in total as of right now; there are about seventy 'normal' weapons (weapons that are acquired, well, normally, either carried by enemies, or which spawn naturally within the environment), and just under thirty 'experimental' weapons, which are weapons which can only be acquired through the contracts system.

The Contract System

Speaking of the contract system: this is a new feature that I've added to replace the weapon unlock system, and to complement the mask system. In designing the masks, I sought to create for each individual mask a very particular and unique kind of ability, so that each different mask yields dramatically different kinds of playstyles. Consequently, I realised afterwards that there ought to be a better way to differentiate masks than just giving them different starting weapons (because once those weapons inevitably ran out of ammo or were lost amidst the scuffle, the masks' unique advantages would simply be rendered obsolete). Consequently, I stripped a lot of the masks which were simply 'start with x weapon' of their weapons, and altered them to be more unique. That being said, some masks will still start with weapons, but those weapons will typically be locked to the mask, and will be used in unusual or unique ways.

From that decision was born the contract system: as one of the American government's most successful and prolific operators, John has unparalleled access to an unusually wide arsenal of advanced and experimental weaponry being developed by renowned arms manufacturers. These weapons, designed with maximum lethality in mind, grant the user unique and extremely powerful abilities; although in most cases, their experimental nature means ammunition is scarce, if nonexistent, and each shot must be fired with punishing accuracy.

Weapons can be purchased using funds awarded following successful completion of each contract, and can be retrieved from the trunk of John's car once unlocked, to be used during the contract. Cash is awarded based on the quality with which each contract is completed; the raw numerical score you receive based on your performance will be converted into a monetary equivalent, with 70% going to your expendable income, and the other 30% allocated towards various fees deducted from your pay.

List of Weapons

Below is a list of every single weapon in the game (minus most of the experimental weapons), along with their in-game variant names, if applicable:

  • SB USG-SR (generic automatic service rifle)
  • Bartoli FR-12 (SPAS-12 combat shotgun)
  • Bartoli FR-12S (suppressed SPAS-12)
  • Golf club
  • Lead pipe
  • Baseball bat
  • Combat knife
  • Bartoli 220 (double-barrel shotgun)
  • SB Zenith 40S (suppressed semi-automatic handgun)
  • SB Zenith 40 (semi-automatic handgun)
  • Katana
  • Sz. Type-336 (Micro-Uzi)
  • Aries DB357 (high-calibre revolver)
  • MR vz26 (Skorpion machine pistol)
  • Maschinen Taktische Pistole 37 [MACHT 37] (MP5K)
  • MACHT 37S (suppressed MP5)
  • Pool cue [+ broken pool cue]
  • Fire axe
  • Nightstick
  • Crowbar
  • Machete
  • Sledgehammer
  • Trophy
  • H&H 18V power drill
  • Frying pan
  • Pot [w. boiling water]
  • Pot [w/o boiling water]
  • SB M10S [suppressed MAC-10]
  • SVG-76 [Kalashnikov automatic rifle]
  • Isando Gehenna Mk II [generic flamethrower]
  • Bronson M310 [bolt-action sniper rifle]
  • H&H 18 in. 40.2cc gas-powered chainsaw
  • H&H 18-gauge 2-1/8 in. brad nailer
  • Bicycle chain
  • Meat cleaver
  • H&H Type 10 (signal pistol)
  • Skateboard
  • Fragmentation grenades
  • Mannequin arm
  • Statue bust (Bust of Helios l m a 0)
  • Bronson 1928M (Thompson submachine gun)
  • Aries Vindicator (generic light machine gun)
  • SB Geist (auto-loading tactical crossbow)
  • Electric guitar
  • Hammer
  • Pipe wrench
  • Bartoli Model 90 (hunting rifle)
  • SB Mk23 (P90)
  • Aries Widowmaker (AA-12)
  • KT 12GA (KSG assault shotgun)
  • Bartoli FR-15 (semi-automatic tactical shotgun)
  • Bong [+ shattered variant]
  • Shovel
  • Brick
  • Glass bottle [+ shattered variant]
  • Hobby horse
  • Scissors
  • Screwdriver
  • Petrol bombs
  • Hatchet
  • Fire poker
  • Zweihander
  • Morning star
  • Battle axe
  • War hammer
  • Briefcase
  • Stack of cash
  • Bartoli S1000 (sawed-off double-barrel shotgun)
  • Bronson SAA-5 (Colt Single Action Army)
  • ZR v418 (Mauser C96)
  • Windurger No. 2 (tranquiliser pistol)
  • Isando RGL-220 (MGL-140)
  • Bartoli Auto 9 (burst-fire pistol)
  • Isando CL-40 (pump-action grenade launcher)

...but wait...

Now, you may be looking at that list, and asking yourself, wait, he just listed 75 weapons, how the hell is he going to make all them unique? To which the answer is, broadly, they're not. On the whole, many of the weapons (particularly the melee ones) are primarily cosmetic, and there for novelty's sake - because who hasn't fantasised about beating people down with a thick wad of cash? That being said, I have done a few things to make weapons feel better to use in general, and hopefully these following principles translate well across all the weapons:

  1. Firearms now must be fired according to their fire modes: you must now click to fire each individual round for semiautomatic weapons, instead of just holding down left mouse and unleashing a torrent of bullets. This adds a sense of urgency and deliberation to the gameplay; while gameplay itself moves much faster, the process of shooting becomes an act which must be carefully and consciously considered. Having the player click multiple times in order to expel bullets, as one would expect when firing non-automatic weapons, builds tension by giving the player a more intimate, though subtle connection to the gameplay. This also applies to burst-fire weapons, which are a new addition to the series. Certain firearms have alternate fire modes, which can be toggled by pressing X. This will probably be unavailable on controllers.
  2. Certain melee weapons will break after attacking, taking on different forms; for example, the bottle will first act as a blunt weapon, then shatter, becoming a bladed weapon. This isn't particularly new or innovative, but there are more weapons that act like this, which is the only reason I deemed it particularly notable.
  3. Melee weapons will now have multiple uses:
    1. Heavy weapons can destroy things like doors and weak walls.
    2. All blunt weapons will be able to temporarily knock down fat enemies, like Tony's punches in HM2. This won't kill them, but temporarily disable them, preventing them from chasing you. You cannot execute them; you're just buying yourself time.
    3. Heavy weapons can kill fat enemies.
    4. Every knife throw will kill fat enemies.
    5. Thrown bladed weapons will always be lethal to normal enemies.

Hopefully these changes will give each weapon a sense of uniqueness past the novelty. Ultimately, much of them simply exist to increase immersion, and give the player a certain amount of variety (both aesthetic and mechanical) in completing each contract.

Interface

The interface has been entirely redesigned in order to meet the new aesthetic principles I sought to pursue with Midnight Animal. The interface is heavily inspired by modern typography and corporate aesthetic, and is clean, utilitarian, and minimal: at once informative, and unobtrusive. In creating the new interface, I identified the two main issues I had with the former UI:

  1. Enemies at the periphery of the screen often got obscured by the large and sometimes distracting HUD.
  2. The HUD itself contained unnecessary components such as the score, and oftentimes (particularly in the case of ammunition) was confusing because symbols were unclear.

Consequently, I made several major changes:

  1. I completely removed the score element from the game (no popups, no score display in the top-right corner), both to free up space, and because the score is entirely unnecessary. Some people use the score as a means of determining if they got a kill; in order to provide some kind of feedback, I added small impact sounds upon death, which play if the player gets a kill. These provide a more fluid, and natural confirmation that is integrated better within a diegetic context.
  2. I shifted everything to the bottom, since in almost every level, players will be moving from the bottom of the screen to the top, and this prevents enemies at the top of the screen from being obscured by the score or the combo. It also anchors the player's HUD to the bottom of the screen, and instead of looking left, the player will naturally shift her gaze downwards to view the UI; which in turn also subtly promotes environmental awareness, and helps deal with enemies that were otherwise previously not dealt with.
  3. Instead of using an ammo counter for guns, I opted to convert the ammo entirely to text, and have the current ammunition count be represented by an actual weapon icon. This makes sure the player knows exactly what weapon she is holding to minimise any possibility of confusion (for example, in HM2, the 9mm handgun and the submachine guns all held the same ammo icon, which was confusing for me on more than one occasion). This icon will also display for melee weapons (due to the changes above, melee weapons each have special properties now, so distinguishing between them could be potentially vital during a playthrough), sans ammunition counter.
  4. The fonts have been updated to be easily readable at even the slightest glance. I'm still having some issues with rendering the fonts smoothly, as seen below in the screenshot, but this isn't too big of an issue.

The current HUD looks like this:

HUD

(Note that this is just a mockup, and that the ammo counter

doesn't actually represent the current situation at all.)


Aesthetics

Now, you may be looking at that interface, and you may be thinking to yourself, that looks nothing like the Hotline Miami I know and love! And you may even be thinking, hey, in fact, doesn't that look awfully familiar? People have been asking about the aesthetic style of Midnight Animal for a while, and whether or not it will continue in the trend of the rest of the Hotline Miami series. The answer to this is, in case I somehow haven't yet made it abundantly clear, a firm and definite no. The 80s are over. There are no glittering synth glissandos; there are no palm trees; there's no Ferrari Testarossa to drive off into the burning neon sunset. Midnight Animal is not Hotline Miami - if you're looking for a good old-fashioned nostalgic time, the Hotline Miami Reddit community has produced some excellent work. Now that that's cleared up, I'll talk about what Midnight Animal does look like.

Midnight Animal is, at heart (or at least one aspect of its duplicitous, convoluted heart), a game about men (and women) in suits. Though it may not be apparent yet, really, it's a game about bureaucrats, and economists, politicians and executives pushing pieces around on a whiteboard and watching the pieces fall into place. The game, then, should reflect that: even amongst the grime, even amongst the filth, there is still a sense of control and refinement. A large part of the game takes place in dirty, lonely places; flooded shipping yards, condemned apartment blocks, derelict metro stations. Despite the absolute ruin of these haunted locales, John passes through them neither as a blind inhabitant, as the mute protagonist of Hotline Miami did, nor as a vengeful victim, as the many broken antiheroes of Hotline Miami 2 did; but as an assassin, a literal agent of strife sent with the very purpose of exacting glorious and devastating violence. Although he is by no means immune to the violence of the world in which he lives, John, through virtue of his profession and his status, is able to escape the violent geopolitical trap of the city itself, yet still stand at its gates, peering in - ready to strike whenever he is called upon, but always removed. He is in many more ways than one detached, and he carries with him the professional callousness of the politicians and businessmen to whom he answers. Although the smooth, airport-esque curves of the UI's type-face (Coolvetica RG, for the typographically curious) may seem initially jarring and even off-putting, standing at stark contrast with the abject violence it records, this is by no means accidental, but very deliberate, and deliberately alienating, and distancing.

On the other hand, Midnight Animal is also a game about a man struggling to find meaning in a world devoid of meaning, or sympathy. John is a man plagued by sadness; born and raised in an era of calamitous change, haunted by a history of violence, John's anger and melancholy has manifested physically in the world of Midnight Animal. Inspired by Silent Hill 2, and the notion of a world in which an individual's pain, suffering and pathos can be so powerful as to change the very constitution of the world in which they live, I wanted to explore the concept of Miami as not just a city doomed by its own troubled history, but as a psychogeographical canvas for each one of its inhabitants, whose individual agonies and melancholies have, catalysed by decades of civil unrest and strife, become inextricably interwoven into the very psychosphere of the city itself. Consequently, in Midnight Animal, which is primarily the story of John, the world appears as a manifestation of his sadness, and his pain: Miami, to John, is a city of Cimmerian shadows and perpetual rain, desaturated and faded, drained of colour and will to survive.

Miscellaneous

In more casual news, as the semester comes to an end and summer rapidly approaches, a lot of time is opening up in my schedule, which means that very soon, I'll find myself with a lot of free time. I plan on dedicating most of this time to finishing up Midnight Animal and making it as good as possible; while there may be some features which may have been a bit too ambitious for the August release date (executions for all weapons is looking a bit unfeasible at the moment), the bulk of the game should be finished upon release date, with any extra or miscellaneous stuff being added afterwards through seamless updates. I don't want to rush anything if it means that the quality will go down, so if it means a dozen or so of the more esoteric weapons are missing executions on release, I'm going to set my priorities straight, and you're going to have to deal with it.

Translations

In the meantime, I'm also looking for translators; whatever language you're willing to add, I'm willing to add it in if you're willing to provide a faithful and well-written translation. I won't have a completed script ready for translation until about mid-June or so; until then, please provide a translation of the Steam store page (can be found here), so that I can assess your abilities, and also have a bunch of translations for the Store page. If someone has already translated the language you want to, don't worry; I'm not a polylinguist in any sense, and any and all editing is more than welcome! If you can think of a more faithful or poetic way to say something, by all means, let me know. Anybody interested in translations can email me at spenceryan123@gmail.com.

Artwork/Posters/Shirts

A lot of people have been asking if they can get apparel or posters of the official artwork, and as promised, I've opened up a Society6 page where you can get whatever you want, from shirts to iPhone cases (exclusive to Apple, unfortunately) to wall prints to goddamn clocks(!) I specifically chose Society6 because I've heard from multiple reputable sources that their content is extremely high quality, and I can verify this personally. The prices are a bit high, and I apologise; I made them as low as possible, and I'm only making an average of $2.00 or so on each one, so if it's any ease to your mind, this is more for dedicated fans than as a means of profit for myself. Though if you are interested in supporting me financially, I definitely recommend you check out either my Patreon or my PayPal... ;)

Here's a picture of one my close friends wearing a shirt he and I designed together. If you're interested in download the full resolution image album, check out the Tools of the Trade album on Imgur.

How combat works

How combat works

Midnight Animal 5 comments

A brief rundown of how combat has been modified, going over several different aspects of it.

Update 03

Update 03

Midnight Animal 5 comments

Bug-fixing, optimisation, gameplay changes, Steam Greenlight, a demo, release date.

Looking for level submissions, and music

Looking for level submissions, and music

Midnight Animal 23 comments

I'm opening up the game to give followers a chance to see their personal levels and hear the tracks they produced in the game. Read the description for...

Update 02

Update 02

Midnight Animal 6 comments

Stuff I've been working, stuff left, potential release dates, and promotion.

Comments  (0 - 10 of 15)
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boxofcereal
boxofcereal

nice game !

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Tomasgd1
Tomasgd1

God, I love this game.

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ssenmodnar34
ssenmodnar34

i went on a killing spree in miami in 1989














then i played hotline miami

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Guest
Guest

is this a good game???

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the meme
the meme

yes

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quickpizza
quickpizza

yes it is

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yoyo85290
yoyo85290

How did i play at this game

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alflife
alflife

Awesome Game!!!

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TaksinGames
TaksinGames

http://youtu.be/6lD_d6aDnSg check it ! ;D

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