Reviewer: Soroush Smith
Release Date: 2011-05-17
Developer: Team Bondi
Publisher: Rockstar Games
Tue 31 May 11
Post world war two Los Angeles was a place filled with violence and criminals, some would even call it a battlefield. Team Bondi of Australia did an amazing job at capturing that era and it's atmosphere. L.A. Noire uses an animation system called MotionScan and it was used to capture real life actors to present real life animations and facial expressions within the game. Since you do see the faces of characters throughout the game most often, it would be a shame to not have such technology as MotionScan.
L.A. Noire can be very entertaining and does a great job at keeping you hooked unlike other games, but the game tends to be very repetitive and predictable with all the car chases, gun fights and crime solving. L.A. Noire seems a bit too simple and the only "detective work" required would be the interrogations, which even then aren't even that difficult to succeed in. The developers may boast about their realism and difficulty but it seems that they put too much of their work into the graphics and left out a lot of gameplay mechanics, just hop in one of the cars, take it for a spin and you'll notice the stiff and unrealistic car driving.
The sound effects are quite immaculate, they come from the right directions and sound realistic, from shooting a gun to walking or to speaking. The sound definitely immerses you in the game and allows you to appreciate the ambiance of 1940's Los Angeles. What's even better is the voice acting, combined with a well written storyline, it leaves you speechless and constantly playing and waiting to see what will happen next. The only time you will want to stop playing this game is in between cases, otherwise you'll be too wrapped up deciding what will happen next.
L.A. Noire plays very simply, but it doesn't take much skill to play. If you're ever looking for clues, any person could just walk around repeatedly tapping the "Action" button until you pick something interesting up, then all you have to do is swing your analog stick in circles until your controller vibrates and then you concentrate on that area. The car driving is too stiff and very unrealistic, even driving at top speed and swerving between lanes won't make you lose control. If this game wasn't really based on the car driving, then that would be acceptable but the fact that you drive everywhere and engage in car chases means that the car driving should be realistic and well done. Another aspect of the game that is too effortless is the interrogations, after running through a few of them, and you will never make a wrong accusation. It is possible to stumble upon a couple of expert liars that will make it difficult, but out of all the people you interview, a couple isn't hard enough.
L.A. Noire has a great story and is definitely worth the money that you pay, some of the gameplay features aren't top of the line or they can be highly repetitive but Team Bondi does an amazing job at telling the story of Cole Phelps, you will want to finish the game and you will never see the twists and turns heading your way to impact the game in ways you couldn't imagine.