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Bullet placement is everything. You could shoot a deer with a 50 cal and hit it in the leg and it is not going to die right away. It may die from blood loss or infection but the bullet itself will not be the culprit. One of my kids hunts with .223. We have taken several deer and hogs with it. I personally prefer hollow points for deer in .223. The more damage you do on the inside the better. With such a small wound channel caused by soft point bullets it is very easy for the entry and exit hole to get plugged by tissue and not leave much of a blood trail if they run off. The hollow point acts more like a grenade on the inside and gets shrapnel in multiple organs at the same time. Keep your shots within 100 yds, any further than that and it gets dicey with the .223 unless we are talking neck shots. If you are hitting deer in the neck at over 100 yds your are a pretty good shot anyway and recovering your deer is not an issue. We use the 55 gr Hornady A Max in the ARs for deer/hogs.