Publisher: Rockstar Games
Developer: Team Bondi
Release Date: May 17, 2011
Platforms: Playstation 3, Xbox 360
ESRB: M - Mature
Never has a game seen this much positive feedback from mainstream media.
Usually video games get crucified for violence even before they’ve seen a full
week on retailers’ shelves. Either something was in the water during the games
launch or all media’s around the globe have finally seen the truth about the
gaming industry. L.A. Noire is the game that will change how we look at games
for years to come.
L.A. Noire has been getting fairly positive feedback across the board. Gaming
websites are giving it anything above an 8 while news outlets seems to be
calling this the best game out there, followed with perfect scores. I can see
how some would give this game an 8 and then I can see those perfect scores. This
lead me to really sit down and think about L.A. Noire as I started to bust the
bad guys and help citizens from not jumping off a building. L.A. Noire does its
job, but maybe only for the first time thru.
Most people expected L.A. Noire to be just like Grand Theft Auto, but only in
the late 1940s. That is not the case at all since you play as Cole Phelps, a
rookie cop who you, the gamer, have to progress thru the game to make sure he
gets his proper recognition. So instead of running around and killing regular
Joe’s, you have to make sure that those regular Joe’s don’t get hurt or killed.
That is only some of L.A. Noire since that part I just mentioned only deals with
the side missions you can complete in the game, which can get very tidies right
You might be driving to the next destination when all of the sudden the police
radio lets you know there is a crime being done at such and such area. It is up
to you to either respond or not, but since I wanted to get the whole feel of
L.A. Noire I usually accepted and tended to the issues. If you fail one of these
side missions you can re-do it so don’t worry if you messed up. What grinds my
teeth so much here is these side missions always seemed to be in the opposite
direction of the main mission. When you would finish one you’d start heading
back, but when you nearly get to the main mission marker another side mission
came thru. After 2 or 3 times I just let my partner do the driving and thank God
you have the option to do so. Yeah you can earn a trophy/achievement by driving
but enough is enough at one point.
With the games main missions they are not what I was expecting when L.A. Noire
was first introduced to us on the Internet and in gaming magazines. At the crime
scenes you have to look for clues and with the clues you can ask civilians and
suspects questions pertaining to the case or with the evidence you found. There
are three options you get to pick when questions these people, the truth, doubt,
or lie. At any point you can look back and see what they said or you can use
your intuition, which you have to earn when leveling up Phelps. Pay close
attention to face movement and how they talked since that plays a huge role on
how you answer.
The main missions in the game don’t let you lose, giving you that feeling that
the developers are holding your hand as you progress into the game. Originally
L.A. Noire was going to let you continue if you made mistakes but all I kept
getting were chances to correct my mistakes. L.A. Noire really does feel like
you are playing a Hollywood movie and that is good, but Heavy Rain had the same
feeling and in that game, if you screwed up it was over, the game moves on with
the other characters.
Still, even though the story sits on one straight line, I did enjoy playing as
Cole Phelps. Moving up the law enforcement ladder is really neat, especially in
the games time period. L.A. Noire, hands down, has one of the best stories I
have played. Ok so the story is on that one line to the finish, but oh my
goodness it has a lot of twists that will shock you. I still can’t believe some
of this got onto a game and in game stores. This story will really hit home and
I think both movie and gaming companies need to look at L.A. Noire and step up
their games/movies stories.
L.A. Noire took so damn long to make with the new technology Team Bondi used,
MotionScan. Actors were recorded by 32 surrounding cameras to capture their
facial expressions from every possible angle. This got such big press, even in
development, that L.A. Noire was the first video game in history to be shown at
the Tribeca Film Festival. Seeing the characters in the game, all of whom have
great animations from the head below, is something, I know, I’d never see in a
video game anytime soon.
For the rest of the game the developers made sure L.A. Noire fit the time
period. All the cars look great and run like they should (high speed car chases,
yeah right GTA fanboy), advertisements will confuse you (sorry Pepsi and
Wendy’s, wait for a new Tony Hawk to advertise in), and the city looks so real.
Team Bondi actually took photos from a daredevil in the 1940’s and based Los
Angeles after that. It took some time, but the finished product is something you
have to see.
How do I talk about a soundtrack that is flawless? L.A. Noire’s music is
phenomenal. The games music fits every moment, from chasing down your suspect to
when you have to shoot a criminal while their holding a hostage. L.A. Noire has
one of those soundtracks that you’ll want to listen to after the game has been
turned off. Also the game has excellent spoken dialogue from the actors.
I’ve only praised L.A. Noire in my review except for in my second paragraph,
where I stated how the game might only be enjoyable for the first play thru.
Since L.A. Noire has that “hold your hand” feature I talked about, why would you
want to go back and play again? True, one could go back and input all the right
answers in cases to get more trophies/achievements, but when you have a game
clocking in between 10 to 20 hours with only the main storyline, or 50 to 60
hours by completing everything, going back might not sound so grand. Team Bondi
has stated how they’ll keep releasing new cases files for the game, ranging from
1 to 3 hours of gameplay. That sounds cool, but I still can’t justify this as a
perfect replay value title.
I think L.A. Noire is getting the mainstream press that will help the video game
industry even more. The game deserves all the good words that are being given.
This 5 year project as paid off for those who have the time to play something
that is not like all the other titles Rockstar has put out. L.A. Noire is an
experience like no other with the MotionScan technology. If you have the time to
play a game like no other then you better lay down some money and buy L.A. Noire
Gameplay: 8 out of 10
+ L.A. Noire takes elements from Heavy Rain and makes it into
the game it could’ve been.
- Side missions can get repetitive pretty fast, even the main
ones too (back and forth time).
Story: 10 out of 10
+ Hands down, this is the best story in video game history.
+ Being able to relive certain famous cases is a tons of fun.
Graphics: 10 out of 10
+ Los Angeles has never looked so beautiful. Team Bondi did a
+ The characters look so real you’d think wizards used dark
magic in this game.
Audio: 10 out of 10
+ Best soundtrack of 2011.
+ Characters sound just as good as they look.
Replay Value: 8 out of 10
+ Gamers who dare to complete everything in L.A. Noire will
- When it’s over, why other playing it again?
9.20 out of 10